"See Reverse” is theater at its finest. Over the course of 90 minutes, the play features 10 short scenes that were created by Broken Box Mime Theater's resident ensemble of innovative performers. The pieces performed truly embody the full range of what the art of mime is capable of. With only gestures, music, lights and well-applied facial makeup, took the audience on an emotional journey covering several profound themes throughout the show.
The first act opened with a piece called "The Plainview Community Players: Part 1" which humorously centered on the on-stage and behind-the-scenes antics of a young troupe of actors. Next was "Recollect," one of the most emotionally moving pieces of the set, focusing on an elderly woman and her caretaker who are both struggling with personal hardships and memories. “Automatic” was the shortest set and also the most unsettling segment as it depicted people silently miming the assembling of automatic weapons—undoubtedly a commentary on how easily Americans can get access to guns. By comparison, “The Whole Shebang” was a playful depiction of hand movements with three mimes demonstrating the behaviors of children in a playground. However, according to creator Becky Baumwoll, this piece is actually much deeper and aims to tell the entire history of the universe with hands and arms.
“The Good Detective” was a riveting film-noir-inspired piece that was performed in two parts. It tells the story of murder, betrayal, a corrupt cop and how the truth can sometimes be convoluted. “The Ruckus and the Well” is a fable that was sweet, yet at times, disturbing. “Communion” was an abstract commentary on the modern-day worship of technology and “Heartland” wordlessly conveyed the portrait of a father and daughter living in tension due to the political climate—the daughter is liberal and the father is conservative which hinders their communication even though they do love and need each other.
The production ends with “Plainview Community Players: Part 2” which was just as fun and engaging as part one. Ending on a high and lighthearted note, “See Reverse” was truly an artistic, thought-provoking delight and I highly anticipate seeing how this fine company, and its’ extremely talented cast, evolve in the near future.
Moreover, ART/NY's Jeffrey and Paula Gural Theatre itself is very spacious, brightly lit and clean. As an added bonus, an array of delicious chocolate candy bars were sold in the lobby at "See Reverse" for $1. If you have the opportunity to see this show and check out the cool venue, certainly do not hesitate. To learn more, see here and here.