Fly by Night OFF-BROADWAY REVIEWS

Photo: Joan Marcus
  • NY TIMES

  • NY POST

  • NY DAILY NEWS

  • NBC

  • TM

Opening Night:
June 11, 2014
Closing:
June 29, 2014

Theater: Playwrights Horizons / 416 West 42nd Street, New York, NY, 10036

Synopsis: 

 In this darkly comic rock-fable, a melancholy sandwich maker's humdrum life is intersected by two entrancing sisters. A sweeping ode to young love set against the backdrop of the northeast blackout of 1965, Fly By Night is a tale about making your way and discovering hope in a world beset by darkness.

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  • NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW OF Fly by Night

    The Deli Guy, the Waitress, the Actress and the Blackout
    ‘Fly by Night,’ a Metaphysical Musical

    Ben Brantley

    June 12, 2014: Harold McClam, a guitar-strumming sandwich maker in New York City in the mid-1960s, has a lot in common with the new musical Fly by Night, which is more or less centered on him. Both man and musical have a dopey appeal that is irresistible in small doses and an unfortunate way of sabotaging themselves by getting stuck in a groove. “In 1965, I will be a man of action,” proclaims Harold, portrayed by Adam Chanler-Berat (Next to Normal, Peter and the Starcatcher), a specialist in offbeat charm, in the long and winding show that opened at Playwrights Horizons on Wednesday night. That’s his New Year’s resolution, and oh, how we hope he’ll make good on it. But, no, soon Harold is digging himself deeper into the same old rut, never finishing that song about sea turtles he’s been composing pretty much since we first met him and lying sluglike in bed to contemplate the bittersweet mysteries of life. Such elusive mysteries are the main subject of Fly by Night, which was written and composed by Kim Rosenstock (who conceived the show), Will Connolly and Michael Mitnick. The script comes equipped with a philosophizing Narrator (Henry Stram), who delivers annotative musical musings like: “What is endless? What is momentary?”

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  • NEW YORK POST REVIEW OF Fly by Night

    Earnest ‘Fly by Night’ will enchant audiences

    Elisabeth Vincentelli

    June 11, 2014: The new musical Fly by Night is off-Broadway’s answer to The Fault in Our Stars — earnest, enthusiastic and possibly requiring a tissue or two by the end. Romance doesn’t come any sweeter than it does in this winsome love triangle set around the time of the 1965 New York blackout. The slightly dorky Harold (Adam Chanler-Berat, late of Peter and the Starcatcher) falls for the irrepressibly perky Daphne (Patti Murin, Lysistrata Jones), who dreams of being a Broadway star. But maybe it’s Daphne’s shy sister, Miriam (Allison Case), a diner waitress, who is Harold’s true love — this is the kind of show that takes words like “soulmate” seriously, so don’t even bother going if that makes you snicker. Miriam believes in her bond with Harold because a fortuneteller predicted it — the gypsy recommends looking for three cryptic signs, the last one a melody. Miriam can’t steal her sister’s beau! But the romance is written in the stars, and Miriam’s an astronomy buff!

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  • NY DAILY NEWS REVIEW OF Fly by Night

    ‘Fly By Night,’ theater review

    Joe Dziemianowicz

    June 11, 2014: Talented actors lend needed lift to the droopy musical fable Fly by Night. Written by Will Connolly, Michael Mitnick and Kim Rosenstock, three Yale MFAs who share credit for the book, lyrics and music, the show tells a tale of “boy meets girls” — sisters, actually. Yeah, complicated. Factor in a genial pop-rock score and whimsical storytelling, and Fly by Night summons a whiff or two of The Fantasticks. That long-running classic uses a simple narrative to dig up deep thoughts. Unfortunately, after five years and four developmental presentations, this look at life, love, fate and seeing the light is bogged down with baggage.

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  • NBC NEW YORK REVIEW OF Fly by Night

    Fly by Night Review

    Robert Kahn

    June 12, 2014: The great Northeast blackout of 1965 is the backdrop for Fly By Night, an often magical, occasionally meandering “rock fable” kept aloft by a winning group of stage vets. The dark musical, composed by a trio of multi-tasking Yale grads, is having its New York premiere at Playwrights Horizons. Youthful pros Adam Chanler-Berat, Patti Murin and Allison Case form the charming love triangle at the center of Fly By Night, which at heart is a tale about the deeply personal ways we all power through life’s darkness. Chanler-Berat is Harold, a frustrated sandwich maker whose mother has just died. Murin and Case are Daphne and Miriam, sisters from South Dakota, who venture to New York so extrovert Daphne can pursue an acting career.

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  • THEATERMANIA REVIEW OF Fly by Night

    Fly by Night

    Zachary Stewart

    June 11, 2014: On November 9, 1965, at the peak of the afternoon commute, a massive blackout rippled across the Northeast, leaving millions in the dark and stranding half a million people underground in New York City's subway system. The creative team behind Fly by Night, the new musical now receiving its New York premiere at Playwrights Horizons, has dramatically set the climax of this tale during that blackout. We've come to rely so heavily on electricity in our everyday lives that such moments take on an air of psychic and spiritual significance, as if the universe is trying to tell us something. While the show is dripping with serendipity and magic, Fly by Night actually raises more questions about the nature of the universe than it answers: Is everything fated, or are our lives just a series of random occurrences? Is coincidence merely the illusion of destiny? Happily, you get to ponder these deep questions while taking in a beautifully melodic score and an absolutely heartwarming story.

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