“During the three years I’ve been covering theater for Gothamist, I’m quite confident I’ve never deployed the oft-overused word ‘genius’ to describe a production. So then perhaps you’ll trust me when I tell you The Confidence Man is most definitely a work of dazzling genius, a spellbinding feat of collective creativity.” – GOTHAMIST
“★★★★★!” – TIMEOUTNY
“An impressively cohesive piece of installation art” – Variety
“Heartbreakingly beautiful” – NYTHEATRE.COM
As disarmingly relevant today as it was in the 19th century, The Confidence Man begs the question: in whom may we safely place our confidence? In light of recent economic events surrounding Bernard Madoff, sub-prime lenders, and the deflating of the real estate bubble, confidence is a word on many minds these days. President Obama included the theme in his 2008 inaugural address, noting a profound "sapping of confidence across our land — a nagging fear that America's decline is inevitable, and that the next generation must lower its sights."
Woodshed Collective’s production of The Confidence Man was composed of a series of interwoven and simultaneously performed vignettes throughout the ship, evoking the whirlwind of both a riverboat journey and the everyday urban chaos of New York City. Inspired by Herman Melville’s iconoclastic novel, the show pushed the company’s boundaries by allowing audience members to immerse themselves in the experience, the production seeks to blur the line between performer and patron, reclaim confidence in the power of live theater, and leave the lingering impression that the audience members themselves may not be immune to the confidence man’s charms or cons.
Conceived and Designed by Woodshed Collective
Text by Paul Cohen, inspired by Herman Melville’s The Confidence Man
Direction by Stephen Brackett, Lauren Keating, and Michael Silverstone
Production Design by Gabriel Hainer Evansohn
Scenic Design by Sara Walsh and Daniel Zimmerman
Lighting Design by Zack Brown
Sound Design by Daniel Kluger and Brandon Wolcott
Costume Design by Jessica Pabst
Produced by Stephen Squibb and Teddy Bergman
Performed by Ben Beckley, Kate Benson, Pepper Binkley, Felipe Bonilla, Rusty Buehler, Juliette Clair, Eric Clem, Dan Cozzens, Todd D'Amour, Danny Deferarri, Aaron Dias, Matt Dickson, Nicholas Feitel, Emmitt George, Chris Gliege, Lara Gold, Laurel Holland, Jocelyn Kuritsky, Jane Lee, Roger Lirtsman, Moti Margolin, Brendan McDonough, Melissa Miller, Heidi Niedermayer, Emily Perkins, Michael R. Piazza, Mallory Portnoy, Jacob Grigolia-Rosenbaum, Hugh Sinclair, Gina Vetro, Lee Zarrett