You’ll wonder how you were transported to a 1930s jazz masquerade when you enter the Punchdrunk troupe’s modernized take on Macbeth in Sleep No More. The entire audience donning unemotional masks were made to wander around the five-story, 93-room set of the McKittrick Hotel in Chelsea for an interative theatrical presentation where you are part of their story.
Punchdrunk brings over their brilliance from Britain and uses using reworked music from the soundtrack of classic Hitchcock films, and perfecting the film noir suspfensful eeriness as you wander through the haunting maze of rooms. All rooms contained props – pages of journal entries, books, jewelry, meds from https://www.ukmeds.co.uk/general-health/sleeping-tablets, trinkets, houseware – on display to be handled by passerbys.
Not really having a clue what was going on, I felt anachronistically out of place, especially after being separated from my friend. I roamed around to each and every room myself with my heart ferociously beating. The actors also roamed from room to room with a following of masked audience members, their performances were of lyrical ballroom dances, sensual and passionate love trysts, tragic solos of yearning, and incredibly intense action-packed scenes that engulfs all your sense.
During one scene, I was whisked away by one sultry dancer who took me by the scarf and led me across the dance floor, making this the “interactive” scene I experienced. After the grand finale in the ballroom, guests are invited to relax in the bar and lounge with the soothing jazz vocalist and ensemble to ease your mind.
The extraordinary minds behind Sleep No More include Felix Barrett (Direction and Design), Maxine Doyle (Direction and Choreography), Colin Marsh (Executive Director), Stephen Dobbie (Sound Design), Beatrice Minns and Livi Vaughan (Design Associates), and is produced by Emursive, headed up by principals Randy Weiner, Arthur Karpati, and Jonathan Hochwald.
This is a show and experience not to be missed.
Images via Emursive/Punchdrunk and Alick Crossley
Tickets are $75 and are available here.
The McKittrick Hotel
530 W 27th Street
New York, NY
Entry times are:
Monday-Thursday at 7:00 p.m., 7:20 p.m., 7:40 p.m., and 8:00 p.m.
Friday and Saturday at 7:00 p.m., 7:20 p.m., 7:40 p.m., and 8:00 p.m.; and 11:00 p.m., 11:20 p.m., 11:40 p.m., and midnight.
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