Review: Boston and Beyond

By Susan Mulford, Boston and Beyond

This magnificently intense production grabs your attention within minutes of its start. At the brief intermission, I wanted to shout, “NO! Don’t stop now!”” as the amazing plot was mesmerizingly bringing the audience to the edge of numerous, fervent, possible directions. Flat Earth Theatre, recipient of numerous theater awards, again brings an outstanding production to the Black Box at The Mosesian Center for the Arts, 321 Arsenal St. in Watertown. This contemporary, fairy-tale like thriller by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, has been beautifully directed by local rising star, Michael Hisamoto*, (boasting an impressive resume as actor, teacher and now director), who has artfully manipulated a cast of four brilliant performers, each so strong, that one would have to award this as a brilliant ensemble performance. The four, including Laura Chowenhill (Jess); Trinidad Ramkissoon (Nihar); Abigail Erdelatz (Sarah); and Matt Crawford (Eric), unfold, with genuine realism, their highly individualistic roles in this all absorbing tale. Fascinating shadow puppetry, under the creative direction of Puppetry Consultant, Libby Schap, further enhances the mounting tensions.

The story surrounds a wide-eyed grad student, Jessica, who in pursuit of her degree as a Social Worker, is collecting stories from teen runaways, living on the street. But, when she meets Nihar, a 15 year old Indian youth, she finds herself, along with her young sister, and policeman boyfriend, thrust into a seemingly unbelievable fantasy when she, against her ethical judgement, provides sanctuary for this young man, who eerily seems able to predict the future…including bizarre weather patterns.

Nihar relates his personal tale of fleeing the King of Shadows and his constant fear of being captured again. But, is the boy just disillusioned, maybe lying, or is he, along with Jess and her loved ones now in danger?

As Flat Earth Theatre stated, “Drawing from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s play conjures up a world more strange than true when this dis-tempered fairyland seeps through the cracks of reality.” Parents take notice. Due to some intense, adult dialogue, I would not recommend this show for children under 13. For tickets to this miraculously engaging, highly entertaining, and not-to-be-missed production, visit