Closed 1h 10m
Until the Flood
West Village
88

Until the Flood NYC Reviews and Tickets

88%
(23 Reviews)
Positive
100%
Mixed
0%
Negative
0%
Members say
Great acting, Absorbing, Relevant, Intelligent, Resonant

About the Show

Alumni writer Dael Orlandersmith returns to Rattlestick as writer and performer of this solo-play, written in response to Michael Brown’s death.

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Member Reviews (23)

90
Relevant, Masterful, Powerful, Riveting, Thought-provoking

See it if Solo actress plays various St Louisans giving their perspective on the M. Brown killing. Compelling, chilling portrayals of the characters.

Don't see it if You don't want to confront racism, classism, and fear in the USA. This show isn't just about Ferguson. It's scary.

85
Absorbing, Great acting, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Intelligent

See it if solo show about the Michael Brown killing specifically & racism in general; she plays a variety of characters of various ages & views

Don't see it if don't like solo shows where the actor plays a variety of parts no matter how well done Read more

Critic Reviews (15)

January 18th, 2018

“Brings the questions, the pain and even the unspeakable thoughts of hundreds, if not millions, to life. ‘Until the Flood’ is an urgent moral inquest...Orlandersmith digs deep enough into each character, and with such decency, that no segment seems obligatory. Even the worst human among them is allowed his back story...Perhaps 'Until the Flood' is more effective for leaving you uncertain about which genre it falls into...Moves from character to character with minimal fuss.”
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January 19th, 2018

"Eye-opening and quietly moving...Orlandersmith brings an entire community to life by channeling her interviews with people who were on the scene of this inflammatory racial incident...Orlandersmith slips in and out of character...It’s hard to say exactly what Orlandersmith does that makes all these people come to life...Somehow, she gets under these black skins and white skins and finds the common humanity of people who are just…people.”
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January 18th, 2018

“A heartrending demonstration of the potential of art to reach across cultural boundaries and generate the kind of empathy that could potentially help bring us all closer together...Part of the appeal of ‘Until the Flood’ lies in seeing the dazzlingly nimble ways in which Orlandersmith transforms from one character to another...Orlandersmith's virtuosity as a performer never overwhelms the human beings at the heart of this show...A production that impresses in its simplicity."
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January 19th, 2018

"’Until the Flood’ is compact and hard-hitting...Orlandersmith is a brilliant listener...adding to the impact of each vignette is her skill at transforming herself into each of the speakers at a moment's notice...This brief, fast-moving piece maintains its grip from first to last, thanks to Orlandersmith's riveting work and Keller's tight direction...A brave and powerful testament that holds up a devastating mirror to our tribalized society.”
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January 19th, 2018

"Searing, bleak, and vividly performed...It’s a powerfully well-balanced examination of race relations in the United States with hopeless conclusions...Orlandersmith skillfully organizes the material into short monologues that are revelatory, insightful and often tinged with humor...Varying her vocal inflections and altering her physiognomy she conveys the essence of each individual. It’s a riveting performance of range and depth...Theatrical, gripping, and pessimistic."
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January 22nd, 2018

"Under Neel Keller's direction, it not only becomes a probing study of a community but a revelation of how blacks look at whites, and vice versa...'Flood' doesn't fall into any tidy theatrical genre...No matter what you call it, however, it's a powerful piece of theater...The story that 'Flood' tells is a sad one. It suggests that no satisfying answers will ever be found regarding the Michael Brown case. Perhaps the real takeaway is that the conversation on racism in our country must continue."
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February 15th, 2018

"These believable and authentic characters – five white and four black – all portrayed by Ms. Orlandersmith in powerful performances, share their 'spin' on the shooting of Michael Brown...The strength of the piece lies in this honesty and authenticity...Ms. Orlandersmith creates nine distinctive characters with subtle vocal inflections and brilliantly crafted expressions and body movements...Neel Keller’s direction is unobtrusive and gently allows the poet to work her magic."
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January 21st, 2018

“The goal is to demonstrate the multiplicity of positions on the spectrum of racial attitudes and opinions...There may be no major surprises but it's definitely healthy to hear the diversity of views so humanly represented…Audiences will receive a first-rate performance addressing a compelling problem in American society. It doesn't attempt to offer solutions but if it can keep the conversation going it will have done its job.”
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October 27th, 2016

"This is gripping theatre that gives us a group of composite characters who all affected in one way or another by the situation that occurred. It's also a must-see show that will have a profound effect on everyone who views it...Orlandersmith does an impressive job of inhabiting each of these characters and bringing them to life on the stage...It's a bravura performance, and one that should not be missed...A short but mesmerizing piece of theatre that I consider required viewing."
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October 25th, 2016

"Each profile in the hour-long show has a specific atmosphere and impact...The results are moving in unexpected ways...If all you remember from the news coverage is the riots, 'Until The Flood' is everything else, beneath the tip of a brutally telegenic iceberg...One of the greatest things about this show is getting inside the minds of its two black teenagers...These are the moments to be most grateful for, that seem to unlock the mystery of Michael Brown."
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October 18th, 2016

"Orlandersmith’s drama is a riveting, thought-provoking production...Even-keeled and balanced in its approach to the nation’s festering problem of race relations that goes back 400 years, 'Until the Flood' is certain to generate conversations about who we’ve been, who we are and who we will become in this unique Heartland city...What Orlandersmith has achieved is bringing a community’s raw emotions from the streets onto the stage in thoughtful and reflective fashion."
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October 15th, 2016

"Orlandersmith delivers a fast-paced, wide-ranging series of character sketches...Orlandersmith also plays two young black men in especially effective scenes...Orlandersmith doesn’t push her story forward; we don’t find out what happens to either of them. She lets 'Until the Flood' hover, midair, with its characters locked in a perpetual present tense. Without saying so explicitly, she forces us to remember how that happens only onstage. In reality, life goes on."
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October 24th, 2016

"Orlandersmith provides an unflinching look at our community—a different perspective through eight distinct characters...As a performer, she masterfully becomes these characters—seamlessly switching voices, cadences, and postures to capture their personalities...This high-voltage piece is an example of what art can do—reflect a time and affect change. It may make us squirm and tear up. But it can't not affect us."
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October 19th, 2016

"Playing eight characters in the span of 70 minutes, Ms. Orlandersmith brings pain, wisdom, and enlightenment to the subject...At times gritty, at times hopeful, these are real stories from real people...Keller has brought Orlandersmith’s words and insights to the stage with power and sensitivity. One can’t help but be moved by her words and her performance...She brings an intensity to each individual that you can believe and feel for...It’s a dazzling tour de force."
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October 16th, 2016

"'Until The Flood' is far more about the experience of race and interaction than it is about the Michael Brown death. That’s obviously a deliberate focus. It’s exposition, exploration, rather than preaching...Orlandersmith’s characters, even without the slight changes in wardrobe, are clearly delineated, and she changes accents and body habitus so well those changes are superfluous...Worthwhile, and more challenging than it appears at first."
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