Have you seen Sleep No More?
June 6, 2011 7:23 AM   Subscribe

Has anyone seen "Sleep No More" in NYC? Trying to get first hand reviews of the show.
posted by gbentz to Society & Culture (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Try here.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 7:25 AM on June 6, 2011

I saw it in Boston, and it was really cool. (Feel free to MeMail me if you want more info -- don't want to clutter the thread if you're looking for specifically NY feedback.)
posted by cider at 7:26 AM on June 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

Saw it in May. Very cool experience, but I kinda wish I'd had a guide to take me through, so that I didn't miss too much. As it was, I feel like I didn't get to see everything that happened (which makes sense, since I think they only looped the show twice while my wife and I were in there, so it's probably not possible to see it all in one night).

Highlight was being dragged through the entire building by the Lady Macbeth character. Kinda tiring running up four flights of stairs, though. As for advice if you're going to see it, definitely follow around any characters you see. The set is cool and all, but it's much more interesting to see the interactions within the set rather than picking through the candy in the candy store.
posted by Grither at 7:34 AM on June 6, 2011

I think I saw it 5 times in Boston. I thought it was phenomenal. It's probably somewhat different everywhere it travels, given its very space-specific staging, but it's a lot of fun.

If you go, I would recommend getting into the earliest admission possible for that night. At least in Boston, you don't get ushered out, so it just gives you more time to explore.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 7:35 AM on June 6, 2011

Neil Patrick Harris tweeted about it. He loved it (1, 2).
posted by Kimberly at 7:35 AM on June 6, 2011

I saw it in New York in late March.

I found it to be a really intense aesthetic experience that did not quite rise to the level of a narrative. (Though I am very picky about narrative, YMMV.) It's a lot more like a lushly produced and graphic dance performance than a play. If you aren't already quite familiar with the plot of Macbeth, much of it will be completely lost on you.

There are some things you can and should do to maximize your experience.

1) If you see a character, follow them around, especially if you happen to catch a character alone.
2) If you see a large crowd of audience members all standing around or heading to the same place, go see what they're looking at, because it's probably an important scene.
3) Be aware that the story loops in the middle so that the scenes repeat (you'll know when this happens.) Follow different characters and go to different rooms the second time through.

In summary: I'm glad I went; I don't think it's quite as amazing as the hype, but still well-worth the money spent.
posted by Andrhia at 7:40 AM on June 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

Here is a friend's first-person comments of the NY Show (they've also seen it in Boston). spoiler-free version, additional info from her, with spoilers.

Best advice is to watch a good production of the actual play as close as you can to when you go - preferably the day of.
posted by anastasiav at 8:38 AM on June 6, 2011

I went last month, I loved it, I want to go again. In hindsight, I wish I spent less time poking around marveling at all the intricate designs and set dressing of the rooms (which admittedly made me very happy) and more time rushing after performers to follow (which was more exciting to share details about at the end with friends).

I typically really like a concrete narrative but SNM was an immersion in mood and tone and ambiguity that was exciting and scary for me to surrender to - it can feel uncomfortable, voyeuristic, and a bit like maybe you're maybe "doing it wrong," - but part of what you're getting out of the experience is spending the time existing in that uncomfortable space.

Go with at least a couple of friends if you can because the fun part is also putting everything together with them afterwards, but for sure you should all split up once you get in! Embrace the weirdness, the darkness, and the sense of being alone and completely free among the faceless ghostly horde.
posted by sestaaak at 9:00 AM on June 6, 2011 [2 favorites]

If you ever find yourself at a loss for what to do, hang around the nurse on the top "hospital" floor. I can't say any more without ruining it.
posted by the jam at 9:22 AM on June 6, 2011

Saw it this weekend. Any in depth review will just spoil your experience. I personally didn't see maybe 80% of the scenes because I was personally pulled into a storyline involving lots of 1:1 scenes with a particular actress and actor, with me serving as their go-between and my interactions with them triggering further scenes. Honestly? I feel like I had a better experience than the others in my group, who saw just about everything else - and the others in my group thought the same.

Definitely go. Be game. Allow yourself to be "sidetracked."
posted by NoRelationToLea at 11:00 AM on June 6, 2011

I saw it last month. The people I went with were split pretty evenly among two types. The "Follow the Actors" crowd and the "I'm nosy and want to poke around the set crowd"

I fell in the set appreciation crowd and had a very different experience than my friends who followed the actors. I would like to go again and follow the actors more.

I really enjoyed it and second the recommendation to get in as early as possible.
posted by Julnyes at 11:16 AM on June 6, 2011

I saw it last night, and wish I had spent the time doing something else. Pretty much anything else.

Calling it a play of any kind is troublesome. I agree with Andrhia – “graphic dance performance” is an apt description, so know that going in. Aside from some mutters and whispers, they don’t talk. I did not enjoy following the performers. Scenes (dance numbers?) took too long and were not the most interesting. The rooms, too, get tired.

I don’t mean to be a huge downer about it, so I’ll stop here. Out of our party of four, three of us didn’t like it, and one thought is was okay. None of us would go again. Just another anecdata point for you.
posted by SirNovember at 7:27 AM on June 15, 2011

A bit late, but hopefully this will fend off future endeavors- I saw it last night and thought it was boring, smug, and asked way too much of its audience. We spent the better part of an hour wandering around before actually stumbling on something "happening", and it was just the maid arbitrarily dancing on the table. The pantomime acting was excruciatingly slow, unless you're into things like watching a guy hem some pants for ten minutes, and even then you have to crane your neck to see around the crowds. Meanwhile, most of the more interestingly-designed spaces were just empty. Characters would literally run away and expect you to run after them.
posted by mkultra at 5:16 AM on March 2, 2012

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