"One of the funniest shows you'll ever see."
November Theatre Picks, San Francisco Magazine
"If Dan Carbone is our local Billy Bob Thornton, then Up From The Ground (his half of an event called 'Hysterics') is his Sling Blade -- a twisted show about Southerners, written and performed by Carbone himself. His hilarious caricatures of a farmer, his wife, and their son and neighbors are like nothing else currently onstage in this city; they seem to come from another world, like the flower that grows in the field behind their farm. ("It don't seem like nothin' Jesus would leave," growls the farmer.) Up From The Ground premiered at the 1998 Fringe Fest, and Kaliyuga Arts is giving it a new production here in an evening of two solo pieces. The other show is also about crazy people -- Jill Dowse's X: the Rise & Fall of an Asylum Star, starring Jennifer Taggart. Taggart plays the 15-year-old Augustine, who was known as Mademoiselle X when she lived in the infamous 19th-century Parisian asylum Salpetriere. The young Augustine's career as a sort of madwoman exhibit for the Parisian elite -- Dr. Charcot showed her seizures off to artists, writers, and intellectuals -- comes into focus here as a metaphor for several things, including acting itself. Taggart is playful, delicate, crisp and enthralling; she turns Dowse's script into a cool and elegant nightmare. 'Hysterics' may be the sleeper hit of this crowded fall, proof of life in little rooms for those who look beyond La Boheme."
Michael Scott Moore, SF Weekly
"A thought-provoking drama. Clever and biting ... Up From The Ground premiered at the 1998 Fringe Fest and is given a new production here. Carbone takes the role of all the characters and he is hysterical and heartbreaking -- a combination of Buck Owens, Billy Bob Thornton and Jonathan Winters ... X: the Rise & Fall of an Asylum Star stars Jennifer Taggart in a tour-de-force role. Taggart runs through a range of human emotions during her solo act. She is hysterical and giddy. There are moments of pathos, reflection and anguish. The artist holds the audience spellbound by her amazing acting ability. Steven Patterson directs this United States premiere and it is right on the mark ... An enthralling evening of intellectual theater!"
Richard Connema, Talkin' Broadway Regional Review/West Coast
"Unusually gripping ... Both solos depict misunderstood individuals who struggle to come into their own. Dramatically powerful in content and form."
Annette Lust, Women's Voices
"Don't remember when we have seen such original and intriguing work ... A great relief from what we see in mainstream theatre." Jan Sobotka, Redwood City, CA
"A really cool show ... Kaliyuga's choice and treatment of material is such a rare combination of compelling, risky and professional. " John Baumann, San Francisco, CA
"Absolutely wonderful and the directing was out of this world ... I will spread the word." Tristan Thunderbolt, Richmond, CA
"Wow! ... Thank you for a super evening. Brilliant." Steven McKearney, San Francisco, CA
"Both Jennifer and Dan were wonderful and you [Steven] and John created a beautiful and simple backdrop for both pieces. I'm sorry we didn't come earlier in the run!" Carolyn Doyle, San Francisco, CA
"Sorry that I couldn't catch you and Dan and Jennifer after the show to rave about how wonderful I thought it was. This was kind of a first for my date, and he was positively entranced ... You turned a spare cast and set into a magical event. I'm so proud of you." Linda Noble, San Francisco, CA
"A great 90 minutes of theater ... Jennifer Taggart is amazing. Dan Carbone is wonderful ... Anyone who loves good theater should catchHysterics." Richard Connema, Talkin' Broadway All That Chat/West Coast
"Everyone should go see this show." Rodney Anderson, Talkin' Broadway All That Chat/West Coast
"Freak show baby baby on the dance floor!" Patrick Dooley, Shotgun Players, Berkeley, CA
Kaliyuga Arts, 2678 Old Kings Road, Catskill NY 12414 212.400.7571
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