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  Shipwreck: A History Play About 2017 at Woolly Mammoth Theatre

Shipwreck: A History Play About 2017

Woolly Mammoth Theatre
641 D St NW Washington

A group of well-meaning liberals gathers at a farmhouse in upstate NY for a relaxing weekend. A son adopted from Kenya struggles to feel connected to his new family and country. And the 45th US President sends a history-altering dinner invitation. There is plenty of blame to spare as snow piles high, mountains crumble, and the wounds of the 2016 election break open. The mythology of America is re-written in real time as we are forced to grapple with the legend of a frightening New York man made from gold. Anne Washburn (Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play) returns to Woolly with a sinister and sensational new play.

Thru - Mar 8, 2020

Wednesdays: 7:30pm
Thursdays: 7:30pm
Fridays: 7:30pm
Saturdays: 1:30pm & 7:30pm
Sundays: 1:30pm & 7:30pm

Box Office: 202-393-3939

Nearby Restaurants

  Shipwreck: A History Play About 2017 Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

MetroWeekly - Recommended

"...An East Coast weekend getaway wrapped up inside a contemplation of racial identity, Anne Washburn’s Shipwreck: A History Play About 2017 (★★★☆☆) has its moments, but ultimately tries to do too much. Set six months into Donald Trump’s presidency, Washburn snows a handful of liberals into a farmhouse, which one of the couples has recently taken on as a second home. As a long evening turns into a sleepless night, the group devolves into discussions of the seismic shift of the election and what it says about America. There are some subtle revelations vis-à-vis identities and views on Trump, but most of it revolves around the kind of mindless, half-formed discussion that has always passed for “informed” among the indulged."

Kste Wingfield

BroadwayWorld - Somewhat Recommended

"...Directed with aplomb by Saheem Ali, SHIPWRECK poses big questions about our current political moment even as it draws us into the recent past. There are striking moments where the stars align and theatre goers are treated to the signature Woolly Mammoth experience: a perfect marriage of award winning acting, innovative set, lighting, sound, and costume design, and thought provoking dialogue. There are also moments when the Washburn's cumbersome script tries to tackle too much in its three hour runtime."
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Evann Normandin

Talkin Broadway - Recommended

"...Periodically, other voices turn up. Mark (Mikéah Ernest Jennings) tells about being adopted from Kenya as a child and his experiences as the only black member of his family (and, often, his society). The guests worry that the only people who are truly innocent are those who don't yet know about the temptations of money and power. And, with shifts in Arnulfo Maldonado's deceptive scenic design, Colin K. Bills' unearthly lighting design, and Jared Mezzocchi's projections, Washburn occasionally moves her vision into the realm of nightmarish hallucinations. The Bengsons have composed an eerie score for voices, manipulated by sound designer Palmer Hefferan."
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Susan Berlin

DC Metro Theater Arts - Somewhat Recommended

"...These fantasy Trump encounters, intended to induce laughs and create estrangement, feel ultimately gratuitous and unchallenging. Looking back at the events of 2017 from today in 2020, Shipwreck feels like a retread rather than an illumination, poking fun at our everyday attitudes and beliefs even though our wounds have already scabbed over."
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Beatrice Loayza

MD Theatre Guide - Recommended

"..."Shipwreck" is a play worth seeing. Go for the outrage and chaos which mirror our current national discourse. Stay for the unspoken questions."
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Mary Ann Johnson

DCTheatreScene - Recommended

"...This is terrific stuff (though it does seem to go on a bit long) but it is a picture, not a story. I get that we have met the enemy, and he is us, but then what? At a moment of high drama — if this were a musical, it would be the eleven o’clock number — we are treated to an imaginary recreation of the meeting between Comey and Trump which preceded the former’s firing. In a huge candlelit grotto, Trump (Biehl), wearing a half mask, makes Comey (Odom) sit, alone, at a table."
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Lorraine Treanor

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