Recommended by Benjamin Benne

  • You Will Get Sick
    22 May. 2020
    A poetic and darkly comic piece that explores what it means to live in a distinct body, and the inevitable decline in health of that body. The brilliant character arc shows deterioration through pliable limbs becoming rigid hay and the metaphor of death is ever present with circling prehistoric birds waiting to snatch up the humans below. The play also deftly depicts the decline of empathy within our society and the commodification of healthcare and care-taking. I can't think of a more relevant play in the time of COVID-19. Also, it's laugh out loud hilarious. A real stunner. Bravo, Noah!
  • Another Kind of Silence
    26 Feb. 2020
    The standout at Denver Center's New Play Summit this year. It's language is jawdropping gorgeous and the relationships are some of the most delicate and sophisticated I've seen on stage in a while. The overall form, that pulls from Greek conventions and myth to invoke a chorus and an Orpheus/Eurydice parallel, is so innovative and brilliant. The play reaches beyond mere thought or emotion to a spiritual plane that made me think about the limits of language and how much weight and meaning a silence can hold. It's so achingly beautiful; I was holding my breath at the end.
  • Dark Play or Stories for Boys
    30 Oct. 2019
    A brilliantly constructed play of two strands that continue braiding with persistent mystery, yummy repetition of language and images, and steady, satisfying reveals. There are also pops of humor, violence, and poetry in unexpected and thrilling measure. Utilizing Nick's narration as the lens into the story allows for a expressionistic framework and the brilliant premise of: who's side of a story can you really trust?
  • TENDER ROUGH ROUGH TENDER
    12 Jul. 2019
    This play's characters and world are magnetic. Reminiscent of the world as we might recognize it but with an absurdist hint that makes it a little slippery, hard to pin down, and laugh out loud funny. I love the images of the world being on fire as these two people keep drinking and drinking -- but will they connect before everything goes up in flames? Also, the use of the abstract gestures in this play was one of the most influential theatrical devices to me as a young writer.
  • Lunch Bunch
    11 Jul. 2019
    I adore Sarah's body of work, but this is truly a standout amongst her accomplished, delectable creations. The rhythm and pacing launch you right into this vividly constructed world inhabited by a beautifully drawn ensemble. The language throughout is as delicious as the descriptions of the food consumed by the characters. And the play's many plot threads weave together in expertly crafted fashion for a final scene that is both sweet and satisfying.
  • Endlings
    6 Oct. 2018
    A standout play at the O'Neill this summer. It's a rarity in how expansive it is - going from an island in Korea to the island of Manhattan and spanning the underwater terrain in between. It reminds me of Aristophanes in its scope: HUGE and hilarious. Also, highly imaginative and fearless. The play looks at real estate and a person's skin and confronts some uncomfortable truths about POC in the theatrical profession. It's a play that will always stay with me and I can't wait to see it with the women actually diving at ART this coming season!
  • good friday
    17 Jan. 2018
    I'm a huge fan of Kristiana's poetic and unrelenting voice. Also, as a reader, I appreciate how she embraces the plasticity of the page in a way that is entirely her own. This play in particular gripped me from the start and I couldn't look away. The stakes start high and keep escalating through reveals and reversals that are sure to keep anyone on their toes. It unfolds in a frenetic yet organic way that makes it impossible to know what will happen next.
  • No More Sad Things
    4 Jan. 2018
    A play full of remarkable images and gorgeous language. The device of the GUIDEBOOK as a narrator allows this piece to move fluidly in unexpected directions; the play's structure is one of the most innovative and exciting that I've encountered. It's also one of those rare plays that is so masterfully paced that it pulled me right through every twist and turn from beginning to end without a single lull in its action. Also, the Black Rock image reversal in the latter half of the play is pure genius.
  • Cost of Living
    3 Jan. 2018
    I don't say this lightly: this is one of the most stunning plays I've read. It's characters and situations are so clear and seemingly simple - but are revealed to have true emotional depth and complexity. There's a striking sensitivity and sensuality to the writing. I particularly love the scenes where Jess is shaving John and Eddie is "playing piano" on Ani. Also, that bathtub scene between Eddie and Ani made me audibly gasp; it's one of the most brilliant scenes I've encountered...like, ever. It's a breathtaking work that left me thinking about it for days after.