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BANANA SHPEEL - Warning: May Induce Vomiting

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EugLoven
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joined:4/23/05
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Never in my entire life have I been more turned-off by a performance than I was tonight!!! BANANA SHPEEL is just as terrible as the pre-opening word of mouth. In fact, its worse. (too bad, because the Opening Night Party at Roseland was insanely fun!)

I cannot believe something like this got the financing, green-light and name from Cirque du Soleil.... You know? That renowned and adored circus company celebrating its 25th Anniversary? Yeah, them. They should be appalled of what is representing their good name at the Beacon.

From the very first minute... no... second of this show, you are turned off. I am dead serious, the minute the lights go out and there is one sentence of dialogue (which I will get into later), there was a literal sinking into the seats by the audience: Oh gawd, what have I gotten myself into???

There is hardly any aspect of CIRCUS and HUMAN ENTERTAINMENT in this show. Instead, it is a messy disgusting sequin dancy loose TALKATIVE and unfunny production, stuffed with oddity, incongruency, and an attempt to have fun. Comes off like it was written by a team of 7th grade drama club kids and rehearsed for 3 hours.

Full of cursing (yeah seriously, they cuss... in a family show?). Bad and crass humor (lower than lowest-common-denominator). Lets just say the Act 1 closing number involved people running in and out of wooden boxes as a magic trick, singing to the ring-leader a song about not being a jerk, a dude in a leotard flexing his butt, a man dressed as a tiger trying to get your attention, another incredibly uncomfortable skinny long-haired dude thrusting his orange underwear at you, the ensemble dancing in glittery costumes with about as much energy as a moss-covered rock. Dont forget the guy juggling hats, a girl dropping a guitar from her feet, and two people doing hip-hop moves disguised as a balancing act. Senseless.

This show is currently on several papering sites, and not even selling-out on there! I cannot warn you enough... a disaster. If this is your FIRST Cirque experience, I am sorry. And if you are a HUGE Cirque fan, do yourself a favor and forget this one exists.

IN SHORT: I hated it. My tickets were comps and I still want my money back. Hop on the bus and go to Randalls Island to see OVO (which is terrific)!!!


Updated On: 5/22/10 at 12:59 AM
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lulu10
Swing
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I can't speak to the Broadway incarnation of the show, but what I saw in Chicago was horrendous. The person I brought with me was so offended by the content that we had to leave at intermission. (that was a first for me...) There was not a single redeeming quality for this show when I saw it-- still can't believe it made it all the way to New York. What a waste of money.
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adamgreer
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Maybe getting fired from this was the best thing that could have happened to Annaleigh Ashford and Michael Longoria.

My name is neither "adam" nor "greer."
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MiracleElixir
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Yeah, but did you like it?


Seriously, though, I have tickets for this for tomorrow, and from your report, Eug, sounds like I will be getting stoned beforehand.
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everythingtaboo
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adamgreer, I said the exact same thing when Michael and Annaleigh were fired, and that was based on the sneak peek i saw last year, with the original storyline that made no sense.

MiracleElixir, just stay at home and punch yourself in the face repeatedly. It gives you pretty much the same effect. I saw it a week or so ago (to a half empty house), and wanted to die. Literally. Die.


"Hey little girls, look at all the men in shiny shirts and no wives!" - Jackie Hoffman, Xanadu, 19 Feb 2008
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LizzieCurry
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Wow, what a mess:

The San Francisco engagement of Banana Shpeel has been cancelled. The show was originally scheduled to perform at the Golden Gate Theatre from October 16 - November 14, 2010.

SHN Audience Services will contact all tickets buyers and issue a full refund to their account. Tickets buyers may also call 888 SHN 1799 directly.

http://shnsf.com/shows/bananashpeel
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Mister Matt
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After reading about the show, I skipped the production in Chicago. I usually try and make it to any Cirque du Soleil show I can, but I had a bad feeling about this one as soon as it was announced. I'm glad I missed it.
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After Eight
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I found it as bad as everyone here said. I can't imagine why they even conceived of a tour after its disastrous stay in New York.
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uncageg
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"(too bad, because the Opening Night Party at Roseland was insanely fun!"

Cirque throws the best parties. I worked for them back in the 90's.


Just give the world Love.
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winston89
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I do know that the show was scheduled to go to Toronto after its stint in San Fransisco was finished. I wonder if they canceled the Toronto run as well?
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Tag
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Nope, it's playing right now in Toronto until the 10th.
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newintown
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BANANA SHPEEL - Warning: May Induce Vomiting#11
Posted: 10/5/10 at 10:11am
Utter crap. Saw it in NY (it was NOT a Broadway gig, by the way, but played the beacon, usually reserved for medium draw pop shows or urban theatricals). Nothing redeeming whatsoever. Why they keep throwing money away on it is a mystery.
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logan0215
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BANANA SHPEEL - Warning: May Induce Vomiting#12
Posted: 10/5/10 at 11:29am
I echo all of Eug's sentiments and am also a huge fan of CdS.

I saw it at one of the Men Event performances where they offered a cocktail party afterward around the corner. I ended up chatting up the MSG Entertainment PR guy who tried so desperately to back-pedal on it and say that Wintuk was meant for kids and this was meant for mature audiences. He did not seem to realize how long of a history I have with seeing Cirque shows and it really shows how clueless the company has become regarding what their target audiences want.

The only audience this was meant for is the trash bin.

Cirque is consistently embarrassing themselves of late with these shoddy, thrown-together shows they are simply creating to bring in some money.
I love America. Just because I think gay dudes should be allowed to adopt kids and we should all have hybrid cars doesn't mean I don't love America. [turns and winks directly into the camera] - Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) on 30 Rock
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clever name
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BANANA SHPEEL - Warning: May Induce Vomiting#13
Posted: 10/5/10 at 11:54am
What makes it so offensive? What made your friend leave at intermission?
I'm glad we passed on this!
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logan0215
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BANANA SHPEEL - Warning: May Induce Vomiting#14
Posted: 10/5/10 at 12:32pm
I wouldn't say it was offensive in the conventional way, but more so that it sort of bastardized the idea of Cirque and their type of clowns which are more about clever foolery than crass humor.

The clowns were very rude to each other, characters were telling each other to shut up left and right and it all felt very mean-spirited while disguised in sequins and neon colors aesthetically speaking.

They may have been trying to capture the "New York attitude" but they were way off the mark.
I love America. Just because I think gay dudes should be allowed to adopt kids and we should all have hybrid cars doesn't mean I don't love America. [turns and winks directly into the camera] - Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) on 30 Rock
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ABB2357
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Yes, please spill more details! This sounds like all kinds of legendary fail.
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newintown
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It's definitely not the "so bad it's good" kind of thing. It's a show that tries soooooooooooooooooo hard to be hilarious and (of course) results in being boring, unfunny, and torture to sit through.