Breathing Time

Theater, Drama
3 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
(4user reviews)
 (Photograph: Jacob J Goldberg)
Photograph: Jacob J GoldbergBreathing Time
 (Photograph: Jacob J Goldberg)
Photograph: Jacob J GoldbergBreathing Time

Breathing Time.Teatro IATI (see Off Broadway). By Beau Willimon. Directed by Aaron Rossini. With ensemble cast. Running time: 1hr 30mins. No intermission.

Breathing Time: In brief

Four New Yorkers are connected by a traumatic event in a comedic drama by House of Cards creator Beau Willimon. Aaron Rossini directs a cast of six in the premiere.

Breathing Time: Theater review by Diane Snyder

Those who know Beau Willimon from his work on the thrilling Netflix series House of Cards are in for a surprise: Almost nothing happens in his clever, meandering new play Breathing Time—until suddenly everything changes. The first half, set on the 95th floor of a lower Manhattan office building, has conscientious Mike (Lee Dolson) and freewheeling colleague Jack (Craig Wesley Divino) engaging in morning-banter mundanities that evolve into power struggles and culminate in Jack’s sorrowful monologue about his Vietnam-vet dad. Exactly when this scene is set becomes clear as a rumbling noise from outside reaches deafening proportions.

Then it’s three weeks later, and Jack’s sister, Denise (Shannon Marie Sullivan), meets Mike’s wife, Julie (Molly Thomas), trying to find out more about her brother’s life. But shared grief doesn’t translate into simpatico sentiments, and as their encounter dissolves into anguish, Aaron Rossini’s Fault Line Theatre production reaches full force. Willimon’s dialogue so thoroughly captures the rhythms of ordinary conversation that it can have a soporific effect in large doses, but Breathing Time is an ace showcase for its young cast and an unsentimental ‪look at lives interrupted.—Theater review by Diane Snyder

Follow Diane Snyder on Twitter: @DianeLSnyder

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Another well-executed piece from Fault Line Theatre. Breathing Time is an important piece that deftly explores the arbitrary nature of trauma with humor, clarity, and sensitivity. The kind of engaging, intimate character piece I've come to expect from this consistent company.

This peice is not to be missed! The story is so beautifully told you feel like a fly on the wall who gets to watch human beings in their most truthful moments. The performances are specific and captivating, the set is flawlessly designed and executed, the lighting and sound support and enhance the story so we feel like we are right there with these characters. An all around thrilling production by Aaron Rossini and Fault Line Theatre.

Expertly utilizing light and sound, this performance is funny, touching, and exhibits superb acting and direction.

Willimon delivers yet another poignant and intimate piece. Beautifully executed by Rossini and a captivating cast. Not to be missed.