Hannah and the Dread Gazebo

Critics

LemonMeter

67 %

Reviews: 12

Audience

LemonMeter

Reviews: 0

A strange and wonderful play that is a mix of unexpected whimsy, delightful comedy, profound despair and more than a little bit of magic. Hannah is two weeks away from becoming a board-certified neurologist when she receives a strange package from her grandmother, who may—or may not—have just ended her life in a most flamboyant fashion. The mystery leads Hannah and her family on a surreal, funny, heartbreaking adventure back to their roots in South and North Korea and the forbidden Demilitarized Zone that divides them. Wildly theatrical, this startling new comedy twists together creation myths and family histories to explore what it means to walk the edge between cultures. Presented by the Fountain Theatre in association with East West Players: Aug. 17 – Sept. 22; Fridays @ 8 p.m. / Saturdays @ 2 p.m. & 8 p.m. / Sundays at 2 p.m. / Mondays at 8 p.m.; $25-$45; In addition to regular seating, Pay-What-You-Want tickets are available on Monday nights (subject to availability). Fountain Theatre, 5060 Fountain Ave. (at Normandie), Los Angeles, CA 90029; (323) 663-1525; www.FountainTheatre.com.

Reviews

Avatar

Hannah and the Dread Gazebo also is different not just because it is presented in association with East West Players (another worthy Los Angeles company) or because it is written by Jiehae Park and is breathlessly directed by Jennifer Chang, but because it seems perpetually on the verge of making a point without quite making it.

sweet-sour - Sylvie Drake - Cultural Weekly - ...read full review


Avatar

FUN AND IMPRESSIVE… the original story, the rhythmical acting, and the acting were all remarkably good… this play is the wish of a family, the wish of a country, and ultimately of humanity.

sweet - Sookee Chung - Korea Times - ...read full review


Avatar

This critic is versed more than many in Korean history since WWII; however, because of the constant shifting of focus, he often finds himself adrift in a sea of dumbfoundery.  Yes, it is obvious that identity is at the core of this dramedy and the ground on which these characters trek remains always unsteady. Unfortunately, though, the search for connections exhausted this reviewer after awhile.

sour - Bill Reese - Table to Stage - ...read full review


Avatar

The play is both humorous and tragic as it explores the problems of living on the edge of two cultures, further complicated by the uncertainties of dealing with a divided country. Although it deals with too much in too short a time, it offers valuable insight into problems faced by Korean-Americans in today’s world.

sweet - Marilyn Tower Oliver - Los Feliz Ledger - ...read full review


Avatar

My favorite part of Hannah and the Dread Gazebo is after the final bow when Director Jennifer Chang has the cast perform “A Sweet Potato Woman” to bright lights and music. Dancing standouts include Hahn Cho and Gavin Lee.

sweet-sour - Jill Weinlein - On Stage Blog - ...read full review


Travis Michael Holder

Hopefully, the Fountain Theatre-East West Players collaboration on Jiehae Park’s poetic though thematically too ambitious play will spark a new desire to explore issues that touch people whose stories are often overlooked in the quest to shout out about more universal topics overwhelming our society. In that effort, this sincere and well-groomed production should be heralded and congratulated for opening those doors.

sweet-sour - Travis Michael Holder - Ticket Holders LA - ...read full review


Avatar

Hannah and the Dread Gazebo is a thoughtful piece that reflects on “the in-between”. Multiple elements stir the characters through limbo both literally and figuratively as they wait to find out their family members’ fates, as well as their own. A stronger ending and fewer tangents would allow that theme to be felt more deeply.

sweet-sour - Lara J. Altunian - Stage Raw - ...read full review


Avatar

Directed by Jennifer Chang, the performances are wonderful–potent with some delightful whimsy, serious in basic plot, with an affecting, soft basso ostinato of genuine grief. The play is literally magical.

sweet - Paul Myrvold - Theatre Notes - ...read full review


Gil Kaan

The Fountain Theatre, in association with East West Players, soundly mounts the California premiere of Jiehae Park's HANNAH AND THE DREAD GAZEBO with a solid acting ensemble, complemented by vividly effective video visuals. Jennifer Chang ably directs her talented cast of six as they weave through the realistic lives of a Korean family (separated by continents) interspersed with flashes of Korean folklore.

sweet - Gil Kaan - Broadway World - ...read full review


Avatar

Park's fluid script and smooth staging by director Jennifer Chang create an evening where suspension of disbelief is made relatively easy by the genuine quality of each of these over the top characters.

sweet - Michael Sheehan - On Stage Los Angeles - ...read full review


Avatar

The production, directed by Jennifer Chang, makes vivid use of urban landscape projections on Yee Eun Nam’s darkened set. But the clumsy staging turns this into an unconvincing dream.

sweet-sour - Charles McNulty - LA Times - ...read full review


Steven Stanley

Theater genres are a matter of taste, and if magic realism is your thing, you may well take to Hannah And The Dread Gazebo in ways this reviewer did not. I for one would have preferred a good deal more realism and a lot less magic.

sweet-sour - Steven Stanley - StageSceneLA - ...read full review


Avatar

Hannah and the Dread Gazebo also is different not just because it is presented in association with East West Players (another worthy Los Angeles company) or because it is written by Jiehae Park and is breathlessly directed by Jennifer Chang, but because it seems perpetually on the verge of making a point without quite making it.

sweet-sour - Sylvie Drake - Cultural Weekly - ...read full review


Avatar

FUN AND IMPRESSIVE… the original story, the rhythmical acting, and the acting were all remarkably good… this play is the wish of a family, the wish of a country, and ultimately of humanity.

sweet - Sookee Chung - Korea Times - ...read full review


Avatar

This critic is versed more than many in Korean history since WWII; however, because of the constant shifting of focus, he often finds himself adrift in a sea of dumbfoundery.  Yes, it is obvious that identity is at the core of this dramedy and the ground on which these characters trek remains always unsteady. Unfortunately, though, the search for connections exhausted this reviewer after awhile.

sour - Bill Reese - Table to Stage - ...read full review


Avatar

The play is both humorous and tragic as it explores the problems of living on the edge of two cultures, further complicated by the uncertainties of dealing with a divided country. Although it deals with too much in too short a time, it offers valuable insight into problems faced by Korean-Americans in today’s world.

sweet - Marilyn Tower Oliver - Los Feliz Ledger - ...read full review


Avatar

My favorite part of Hannah and the Dread Gazebo is after the final bow when Director Jennifer Chang has the cast perform “A Sweet Potato Woman” to bright lights and music. Dancing standouts include Hahn Cho and Gavin Lee.

sweet-sour - Jill Weinlein - On Stage Blog - ...read full review


Travis Michael Holder

Hopefully, the Fountain Theatre-East West Players collaboration on Jiehae Park’s poetic though thematically too ambitious play will spark a new desire to explore issues that touch people whose stories are often overlooked in the quest to shout out about more universal topics overwhelming our society. In that effort, this sincere and well-groomed production should be heralded and congratulated for opening those doors.

sweet-sour - Travis Michael Holder - Ticket Holders LA - ...read full review


Avatar

Hannah and the Dread Gazebo is a thoughtful piece that reflects on “the in-between”. Multiple elements stir the characters through limbo both literally and figuratively as they wait to find out their family members’ fates, as well as their own. A stronger ending and fewer tangents would allow that theme to be felt more deeply.

sweet-sour - Lara J. Altunian - Stage Raw - ...read full review


Avatar

Directed by Jennifer Chang, the performances are wonderful–potent with some delightful whimsy, serious in basic plot, with an affecting, soft basso ostinato of genuine grief. The play is literally magical.

sweet - Paul Myrvold - Theatre Notes - ...read full review


Gil Kaan

The Fountain Theatre, in association with East West Players, soundly mounts the California premiere of Jiehae Park's HANNAH AND THE DREAD GAZEBO with a solid acting ensemble, complemented by vividly effective video visuals. Jennifer Chang ably directs her talented cast of six as they weave through the realistic lives of a Korean family (separated by continents) interspersed with flashes of Korean folklore.

sweet - Gil Kaan - Broadway World - ...read full review


Avatar

Park's fluid script and smooth staging by director Jennifer Chang create an evening where suspension of disbelief is made relatively easy by the genuine quality of each of these over the top characters.

sweet - Michael Sheehan - On Stage Los Angeles - ...read full review


Avatar

The production, directed by Jennifer Chang, makes vivid use of urban landscape projections on Yee Eun Nam’s darkened set. But the clumsy staging turns this into an unconvincing dream.

sweet-sour - Charles McNulty - LA Times - ...read full review


Steven Stanley

Theater genres are a matter of taste, and if magic realism is your thing, you may well take to Hannah And The Dread Gazebo in ways this reviewer did not. I for one would have preferred a good deal more realism and a lot less magic.

sweet-sour - Steven Stanley - StageSceneLA - ...read full review