The Temple, or, Lebensraum

Nominated for the 2015 New York Innovative Theatre Award for Outstanding Full-Length Script. A claustrophobic descent into terror set aboard a sunken U-Boat in the middle of WWII, as the crew fights to survive despite their dwindling oxygen and being trapped with a madman.

******PRESS: "Incredibly brave and patient ... [A] genuinely magnificent piece of theater. Watching a talented artist...
Nominated for the 2015 New York Innovative Theatre Award for Outstanding Full-Length Script. A claustrophobic descent into terror set aboard a sunken U-Boat in the middle of WWII, as the crew fights to survive despite their dwindling oxygen and being trapped with a madman.

******PRESS: "Incredibly brave and patient ... [A] genuinely magnificent piece of theater. Watching a talented artist like Cassidy deconstruct and then reconstruct the source code of Lovecraft’s story and style is a helluva thing to see. ... Like the characters in the play, you are completely submerged in the events of the play, and when THE TEMPLE OR LEBENSRAUM wants to it strikes its audience like a perfectly aimed torpedo." (Mitch Montgomery, Surreal Time Press).

"Death is the undiscovered country, and THE TEMPLE is an expedition to map the unseeable. ...[T]he play ends on a masterful note of narrative suspension you should witness for yourself, it’s clear, and inescapable, and maybe even reassuring, that there’s always a longer way down." (Adam McGovern, Fanchild).

"This tense, literally breathtaking situation is the stuff of a story by 20th century visionary H.P. Lovecraft and of an even better dramatization by Nat Cassidy. ... THE TEMPLE OR LEBENSRAUM will bring you on that terrifying, liberating adventure. ... Most amazing ... Scares everyone to death ... Effortlessly universal in the way ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT tries to be." (Ed Malin, NY Theater Now).

"Nat Cassidy's adaptation of Lovecraft's THE TEMPLE is such a delight. Well, as much of a delight as anything involving mutilation, suffocation, cannibalism, Nazis and the elder gods can be. Cassidy is a strong storyteller; one who fully appreciates just how powerful the combination of excellent actors, fraught situations, and an audience's imagination can be. ... Cassidy knows that the real drama comes, not from any monsters, but from the relationships between the characters, especially in how they react to the Nazi officer in their midst. ... Watching the character go from a bumbling PR man to a psychotic killer is amazing. ... I should also point out that one of my favorite moments of the play was during a scene where the men were running out of air. The actors were arranged on the floor trying to breathe. No dialogue. Just breathing. The amazing thing is that the audience was rapt the entire time." (Byrne Harrison, Stagebuzz).

"Disturbing ... Fascinating ... I admired this greatly." (Eva Heinemann, Hi Drama).

"A horrorshow of the claustrophobic lives of German submariners and the evil that consumes them ... [A] living, breathing, immersive spectacle. ... Make[s] the horror of the sea, of WWII, and of the Lovecraftian-influenced Gnostic psychodrama all too real. ... [Heinrich is] one of the most chilling displays of inhumanity that I’ve ever seen onstage. He is a true devil, in the most Christian sense of the word, all charm and bonhomie, doing nothing more than opening the door to horrors that the regular men of the ship seem all-to-easily able to commit." (Michael Niederman, New York Theater Review).

"Tortured by both real and psychological dangers, the sailors nevertheless preserve their sense of humor ... reminding us that even in the worst of times there’s always something to smile about. ... Although “The Temple” has a specific political context, even those who do not know a lot about German history will enjoy the play. It is not only the story of Nazi Germany; it is also the story of soldiers, protecting their country and of individuals willing to survive in the face of grave danger. ... Engaging and worth our time and attention." (Ekaterina Lalo, Reviewfix).

"Does an effective job of imparting the mundane horrors of life on board a submarine. ... Lovecraft fans will be happy to see one of his lesser stories brought to life, but the weird science themes are just there for flavor. The true goal of the show is to explore the lives of men who fought for the wrong side of a war. THE TEMPLE OR LEBENSRAUM does this admirably." (Charles Battersby, Theater for Nerds).
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The Temple, or, Lebensraum

Production History

  • Workshop
    ,
    Tin Drum Productions, Mozzlestead, The Brick Theater
    ,
    2015

Awards

Finalist
,
Outstanding Full-Length Script
,
New York Innovative Theatre Awards
,
2015
Winner
,
Outstanding Actor in a Lead Role
,
New York Innovative Theatre Awards
,
2015