Review: ‘Titanic’ brings history to life before your eyes
How did they build titanic? Those words ring throughout the audience early on in this show and set you on the journey. Serenbe Playhouse brings this show to life in an extraordinarily rare production. Without a doubt, this is truly the production to end all other productions at this show.
Serenbe Playhouse has recently been reimagining shows from Evita to The Little Mermaid but nothing on this level. This is the biggest season Serenbe has seen so far and with this show, they’ve done something unprecedented. Simply put “You can’t fire a flare or sink a ship on a Broadway stage”. Brian Clowdus and the team at Serenbe found a show that would work for them and work well.
Titanic premiered on Broadway in 1997 and swept the Tony’s that same year with 5 wins. But this show still maintains a low profile when it comes to produced musicals from the same era. In my opinion, I believe it was over shadowed by shows that’d come before like Ragtime with similar stories. The concept of many stories weaving together to get across one essential point was huge at the time, so why is this the show that went under produced and without recognition?
Titanic is what happens when a show has all the potential for a life outside of Broadway and no one knows how to approach it. This team at Serenbe dove in head first and created an experience that’s unrivaled by anything to I’ve ever seen. This set is immaculate and breathtaking, I was in awe of it from the beginning to the end. Brian Clowdus has managed to stage this show to his advantage and it works because he know where he’s working.
Theatre is hard to produce but then you add the natural elements and it becomes a whole new world. With this show, the creative team tackled the biggest set we’ve seen at Serenbe to date, put the show IN the water, casted a large cast, and still must run this show in the most dramatic weather Georgia can offer. Titanic runs rain or shine, every night until the end of August, and it’s the most inspiring and heart stopping thing you’ll see. (Was that a death pun? Indeed. Indeed it was.)
In this production of Titanic, I was drawn into the staging/blocking of this production. One bit of the show i was pulled into is a conversation between the ship’s captain, architect, and proprietor. It takes place in act two and is fueled solely by fear and anticipation. This scene sets the pace for the rest of the show and it’s beautifully directed because they recognized the power within that moment to steer the show in a new direction. (another pun, boom.)
It’s overwhelming in the best way because it tells an honest and raw story. During the opening number, I just took a second and took in this cast. This cast of people of color in every class, seeing diversity and inclusion in action. Because in this show your color isn’t a way to further the plot and it made me emotional as a young actor of color. Just seeing actors of color create without the stipulation or confines of grief on a character.
Titanic has everything you’d want from big dance numbers, tragic love stories, but most exclusively a finale that is beyond anything you’ll ever witness or experience in a theatre. that finale is so real and emotional that I was an emotional wreck afterwards. It’s visually captivating, my mouth was agape, my eyes were full of tears, and my heart was pounding. And this emotional journey is a direct reflection of the work from the talent and creative team. They have talent coming from Broadway, Cincinnati Conservatory, and some fresh out of BFA programs around the country. These artists are telling this story truthfully every night and it’s awe inspiring. I can’t say enough about this production or cast, it’s truly indescribable and just..UGH! it’s brilliant, so unique that it was just extended farther into August so click here and buy tickets!