Reviews: What Are Critics Saying About Life & Times of Michael K at St. Ann's Warehouse? | Playbill

The Verdict Reviews: What Are Critics Saying About Life & Times of Michael K at St. Ann's Warehouse?

Members of Tony-winning Handspring Puppet Company deliver an emotional story of a man born with a cleft lip and the trials he faces.

Nolufefe Ntshuntshe, Craig Leo, Carlo Daniels, Roshina Ratnam and Andrew Buckland in The Life & Times of Michael K. Fiona McPherson

Playbill's 2023 Edinburgh Fringe pick Life & Times of Michael K has officially opened Off-Broadway, and the reviews are rolling in.

Running through December 23, the piece is a puppet show for adults. Put together by the Baxter Theatre Centre and Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus, the production is an adaptation of J.M. Coetzee’s 1983 award-winning novel by South African director Lara Foot, with the Tony-winning Handspring Puppet Company (War Horse) leading the charge.

Set during apartheid in the 1970s and ’80s, it is the story of a man who was born with a cleft lip. Growing up in institutions and eventually becoming a gardener in Cape Town, Michael is determined to take his sick mother back to her hometown. But the journey into the countryside, amidst a fictitious civil war, is dangerous—and the trials that await him beyond those he expected.

Read the reviews here:

The Daily Beast (Tim Teeman)

New York Stage Review (Sandy MacDonald)

New York Theatre Guide (Amelia Merrill)

New York Theater (Jonathan Mandell)

The New York Times (Naveen Kumar)

*This review may require creating a free account or paid subscription.

Playbill will continue to update this list as reviews come in.

The creative team includes Foot, who adapted her novel and directs this stage adaptation; set designer Patrick Curtis, original music composer Kyle Shepherd; lighting designer Joshua Cutts; directors of photography and film Fiona McPherson and Barrett de Kock; videographer and editor Yoav Dagan; projection designer Kirsti Cumming; costume designer Phyllis Midlane; and sound designer Simon Kohler.

The cast consists of nine South African performers, led by puppet master Craig Leo, with puppeteers Roshina Ratnam and Markus Schabbing, and actors Sandra Prinsloo, Andrew Buckland, Wessel Pretorius, Faniswa Yisa, Carlo Daniels, Billy Langa, and Nolufefe Ntshuntshe.

For more information, visit

Today’s Most Popular News:

Blocking belongs
on the stage,
not on websites.

Our website is made possible by
displaying online advertisements to our visitors.

Please consider supporting us by
whitelisting with your ad blocker.
Thank you!