Rochester, 1996

immersive theatre capital w / drycraeft los angeles · Ages 16+ · world premiere · United States of America

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Review by anonymous

June 11, 2018 certified reviewer

What I liked

The actors, especially the parishioners in the first third of the performance: engaging and convincing. I would have loved to have spent more time with them. As a matter of fact, the first third of the performance was really wonderful and set a tone for what I imagined would be sustained for the duration of the show. On a completely superficial note, Thaddeus Shafer is super handsome and it was a pleasure to watch him preach.

What I didn't like

For me, three things come up: editing, proximity, and ventilation. If I would have been told ahead of time that two thirds of the performance would be sitting in a van at full capacity with poor AC driving for miles and miles and back (with substantial periods of dead space), I would have responded with an emphatic. “F*ck no!” There was so much strong exposition and emotion in the first part of the show, and by the time we made several awkward stops and got to the final destination, I had sort of lost interest. There were two major characters battling against major life challenges and it felt as if they weren’t explored sufficiently (one was just left back at the beginning with barely a mention later in the show). I don’t think it was necessary to drive the audience about in order to forward the plot – the drive felt more of a character than our protagonist at times. One wonders if the entire story might have been effectively been told in the same space, or in an annexed room. I understand that there was a lot of effort placed into this show, and clearly a lot of heart. But at the end, I felt more captive than immersed.

My overall impression

There is a good story in there somewhere, and it is a shame that it took so damn long to get to it.

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