The Online Community for Culver City – The New Scene
Reviews are in on "Elephant Room," the new play at the Kirk Douglas Theatre through September 16, and for the most part the verdict is: GO! It's a night of sketch comedy and magic involving the exploits of Trey Lyford, Geoff Sobelle and Steve Cuiffo both subverting and honoring the most venerable magician tropes.
Calling the play the LA Weekly calls it a "fast-paced, hilariously oddball performance piece, which, amidst renditions of '80s rock standards, allows magicians to alternately dazzle and subvert our expectations through the use of deconstructed magic tricks."You can read the whole review HERE.
"Uniqueness in the theater is a rare commodity," says the LA Times, "and these guys are in possession of a patented, mood-brightening silliness." It continues, "[The three performers] succeed by the seat of their pants, which is to say through their collective free-form wits, recognizing that the only definition of theater that matters is the one that begins with giving pleasure to an audience." Read the whole review HERE.
LASplash.com calls the play "a high-energy fun extravaganza from the first moment of confetti streamers thrown at the audience to the last crazed moments wind down," Adding "Elephant Room will have you laughing, giggling, puzzled, and perplexed."
Hollywood Reporter is not as convinced. "The zaniness is studied, and glacial rather than antic," says writer Myron Meisel, "making memories of the Three Stooges or the Ritz Brothers fond by comparison. The frozen Seventies stereotypes of the magicians’ personas may be meant to be kidded with affection, but these targets are so stale that satire is unimaginable. I don’t doubt the sincerity of the artists, but at this point postmodern is way past cliché." On the other hand, the reviewer admits to being a 'longtime journeyman magician myself,' so maybe he's been thinking about this topic for longer than you have. You can decide for yourself HERE.
Finally, Bob Verini of Variety was also less than thrilled. Blaming the play's tone on 'Pee-Wee's Playhouse,' the review complains that "The framework of "Room" is incoherent and distasteful (beneath a wholesome veneer), and the performers spectacularly overestimate their personal appeal." Read it HERE.
"Elephant Room" plays at the Kirk Douglas Theatre through September 16. Tuesday through Friday, performances are at 8 pm; Saturday at 2 & 8 pm; and Sunday at 1 & 6:30 pm. The Kirk Douglas Theatre is located at 9820 Washington Blvd.