Smokefall

Remixing Our Town

Posted by: Kristyn Zoe Wilkerson at 10/14/2013 01:00 PM
Remixing Our Town

 “Grand Rapids for me is like the landscape of my imagination,” said playwright Noah Haidle in an interview with Tanya Palmer, the Goodman Theatre’s director of new play development. That imagination completely takes over in every arena of SmokefalI, directed by Ann Kaufman. Taking place in three realms of existence, the play explores the reality of a Midwestern family on the verge of a major transformation.


A Broken Family Through Time

Posted by: Amy Hoke at 10/14/2013 05:00 PM
A Broken Family Through Time

Noah Haidle’s “Smokefall” begins as it ends and ends as it begins; the ending is literally built into the beginning, and the ending is revealed to the audience within the first few scenes. The play is incredibly surreal yet it still manages to reveal the astonishingly real and vulnerable side of a family, a side that is evident in every family.


Terribly doleful; simply amazing

Posted by: Daetriana Burks-Reed at 10/14/2013 05:30 PM
Terribly doleful; simply amazing

From characters to set design, Goodman Theatre’s “Smokefall” is doleful yet still great. “Smokefall” has many scenes that make the viewer want to cry and some that make the viewer want to laugh. “Smokefall” is a very emotional play that tugs at your feelings.  Violet’s (Katherine Keberlien) pain is felt. Daniel’s (Eric Slater) depression is wonderfully shown in the actor’s facial expression and mournful voice. The play’s dysfunctional family can relate to so many other families. The fact that this play displays the daily but hidden problems of a broken family makes “Smokefall” sad and loving.


The Ordinary and The Disturbing

Posted by: Anne Amann at 10/14/2013 05:30 PM
The Ordinary and The Disturbing

Noah Haidle’s Smokefall is an absolutely striking production. The intensity of the emotions portrayed onstage tug at the audience’s heartstrings. There are many elements of the show which are symbolic, abstract, or have an extremely deep meaning that is revealed to the astonishment of all watching. The most intriguing aspect of the play, however, is the constant intertwining of the ordinary and the disturbing.


Philosophical, Paradoxical, Eccentric, Captivating.

Posted by: Melissa Oskouie at 10/14/2013 12:00 PM
Philosophical, Paradoxical, Eccentric, Captivating.

Director Anne Kauffman’s philosophical, paradoxical, eccentric, and vehemently captivating production of Smokefall centers on a normal, yet dysfunctional family from Grand Rapids, Michigan, comprising a mother named Violet (Katherine Keberlein)with twins on the way, her formidable but hilarious father seen as the absentminded Colonel (Mike Nussbaum), mute daughter, Beauty (Catherine Combs) whose meals consist of household items and earth, and husband Daniel (Eric Slater) who’s busy with work and disconnected from the rest of them.


Smokefall: A Play Like No Other

Posted by: Bertha Mendez at 11/07/2013 01:00 PM
Smokefall: A Play Like No Other

Director Anne Kauffman’s “Smokefall” is a play not like any other. It is a play that will leave you feeling shocked, delighted, slightly confused, yet very much entertained. The play focuses on how one choice can change the course of a person’s life.


Reality Without Any Sugar Coating

Posted by: Elizabeth Cruz at 10/22/2013 01:30 PM
Reality Without Any Sugar Coating

Directed by Anne Kauffman, Smokefall is a truly compelling poetic drama. This play is fulfilling to the mind and soul, with exceptional performances delivered by all the members of the cast. Playwright Noah Haidle is brilliant; he will make you feel all the stages of sadness from self-doubt and incompetence to mood swings. Haidle captures a growing family’s troubles. He shows how family troubles are not easily buried and take time to heal.


Reality Without Any Sugar Coating

Posted by: Elizabeth Cruz at 10/14/2013 01:30 PM
Reality Without Any Sugar Coating

Directed by Anne Kauffman, Smokefall is a truly compelling poetic drama. This play is fulfilling to the mind and soul, with exceptional performances delivered by all the members of the cast. Playwright Noah Haidle is brilliant; he will make you feel all the stages of sadness from self-doubt and incompetence to mood swings. Haidle captures a growing family’s troubles. He shows how family troubles are not easily buried and take time to heal.


Confusing but Powerful

Posted by: Morgan McFall-Johnsen at 10/14/2013 05:00 PM
Confusing but Powerful

Smokefall, written by Noah Haidle and directed by Anne Kauffman, begins by introducing a seemingly normal family with seemingly normal problems. There's the unhappy and overworked father (Eric Slater), the lonely, fretful mother (Katherine Keberlein), the deteriorating, senile grandfather (Mike Nussbaum), and the daughter who loves them all so dearly she'll sacrifice her own voice (Catherine Combs). Her troubled brothers come later, as does a more relatable, modern nephew. These are all characters with a purpose and they are portrayed beautifully by the actors, kept believable and undeniably human even as things get more and more abstract.


Fantasy and Reality Mix at the Center of Family Conflict

Posted by: Nina Wilson at 10/14/2013 05:00 PM
Fantasy and Reality Mix at the Center of Family Conflict

The Goodman’s Chicago premiere of Noah Haidle’s Smokefall, directed by Anne Kauffman, presents a sometimes funny, sometimes sad, and always original look into a seemingly ordinary Midwestern family. But, like with every family, peeling away the exterior reveals its share of hardships.


A Seemingly Happy Family

Posted by: Taysha Day at 10/14/2013 05:00 PM
A Seemingly Happy Family

“Smokefall” is a heartfelt play surrounding the life of a dysfunctional family in Grand Rapids, Mich. They had a conflict that was not easy to resolve. It showed how Daniel, the father, could not take living in reality with his family and wanted to escape. This caused misery for his family that he left behind.