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Ben Brantley, NY Times

“The Perfect Show for the Holiday­s”

Elisabeth Vincentelli, ­NY Post

St. Ann's Warehouse and Kneehigh Theatre present


­Originally produced by David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and Cineworld­
Adapted and Directed by Emma Rice

­"Captivating… I felt enlivened, enlightened and seriously moved­." - NY Times

"A charming meditation on that dangerous phenomenon called love­." - NY Times

"The most blissfully entertaining and inventive show in town­." - NY Daily News

"Just go and let the considerable enchantment of [Emma Rice’s] ingenuity wash over you­­." - Associated Press

Noël Coward’s Brief Encounter makes its New York Premiere in this seven-week run at St. Ann’s Warehouse. The show is an adaptation of the 1946 film of the same name, directed by David Lean, and based on Still Life, a Noël Coward one-act first seen a decade earlier. Kneehigh’s Artistic Director Emma Rice has returned to Coward’s original play to rediscover elements that were discarded from the legendary film script.

­Switching seamlessly between live theater and remade film footage, Brief Encounter takes audiences back to a bygone age of romance and the silver screen. The production careens around varying moods of clipped, clenched passion heaving under the middle-class restraint of the duty-bound Alec and Laura, and the wild music-hall exuberance of the ­slap-and-tickle highjinks of two other clandestine couples among the railway station staff. The lives and loves of the three couples are played out in the train station tearoom as a grand entertainment, using the words (some newly set to original music) and familiar songs of Noël Coward to create a breathtaking, funny and tear-inducing show with live musicians on stage, characters jumping in and out of film screens, and a couple in love floating in mid-air.

Presented in association with Piece by Piece Productions and Double M Arts & Events LLC
Originally produced by David Pugh & Dafydd Rogers and Cineworld.

Supported in ­part by The Steinberg Signature Series and

Photo by Steve Tanner