The Sound and the Fury OFF-BROADWAY REVIEWS

Photo: Sara Krulwich
  • NY TIMES

  • Opening Night:
    May 14, 2015
    Closing:
    May 27, 2015

    Theater: The Public Theater / 425 Lafayette Street, New York, NY, 10003

    Synopsis: 

    Obie Award winning ensemble ELEVATOR REPAIR SERVICE returns to The Public, home to its sold-out performances of "Gatz" (2010 and 2012) and "Arguendo" (2013), with their widely praised staging of William Faulkner’s modernist masterpiece, "The Sound and the Fury." With a lush sound score, high-energy choreography and a profoundly versatile ensemble, ERS delivers a verbatim staging of the novel’s opening chapter (“the Benjy chapter”), Faulkner’s famous experiment with memory and language. Serving up the tragic demise of Faulkner’s Compson family with humor and pathos against a backdrop of an eerily timeless Southern living room, this ensemble of theatrical daredevils, known for their fearless commitment, breathes thrilling new life into another American literary classic.

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  • NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW OF The Sound and the Fury

    ‘The Sound and the Fury,’ Elevator Repair Service’s Take on Faulkner

    Ben Brantley

    May 21, 2015: Time flies and crawls, warps and balances, melts and freezes. It passes by before you know it and it stands still forever. All those contradictory kinetic clichés are pulsing away in Elevator Repair Service’s mesmerizing “The Sound and the Fury,” which opened on Thursday night at the Public Theater. Adapted from the opening section of William Faulkner’s 1929 novel — the chapter titled “April Seventh, 1928” —this sprawling but surreally symmetrical production dares to try to capture onstage one of the most dizzyingly subjective points of view ever committed to print. For the narrator here is a man with the mind of a child, someone who, as another character describes him, has “been 3 years old 30 years.” This man-child’s name is Benjamin, though it was once Maury, and a lot of people call him Benjy. Trying to figure out what Benjy knows has been the bane and delight of countless modern comp-lit students. Many a densely written book has been devoted to Benjy’s way with words, which is a lot less arbitrary than it seems. But as far as I know, Elevator Repair Service is the first theater company to transform everything that’s said, thought and done in “April Seventh, 1928” into a sustained theatrical spectacle. I saw an earlier version of this “Sound and the Fury” at the New York Theater Workshop seven years ago.

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