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Last year at about this time, I enjoyed going to the interactive dinner at the Paramount Hotel called Queen of the Night. One of the producers also helps with a different interactive show called Sleep No More on 27th Street and 10th Avenue in a former nightclub space now calling itself The McKittrick Hotel (it is not a hotel). So, I went to see it last night with a date. I could not have been more disappointed.
The first red flag I spotted was that it was on nightclub row across the street from cheesy Scores. The people who had purchased expensive tickets were forced to wait outside in the cold like the normal riffraff hoping to get into a club.
The second red flag was the nickel and diming. Coat checks were $4 per person. The drinks were $14 and nothing was included in the ticket price (In contrast, Queen of the night included a full dinner and drinks).
Guests of the show are gathered in a 1930’s jazz club themed room where they are slowly taken aside into an elevator and asked to place on very uncomfortable masks that do not work over glasses. The masks had no holes on the nose, which made breathing much harder in the thick stagnant air of the theater space. Fake smoke machines were clouding the air for visual effects, and this made the air seem even more like a submarine full of chain smokers.
The theater is a five-story warehouse with mazes, stairs, and a central large hall. Actors began to appear, do random weird melodramatic skits, saying nothing, then running off. The crowd is supposed to follow them.
Ostensibly, the whole play is loosely based on Macbeth, but there was absolutely no discernible plot. It was one random act after the other.
Couples on dates are intentionally separated, as if this makes the evening more interesting. The problem is that one can easily lose their companion for the entire night. I never once saw my date throughout the show, and only later found her in the starting point bar at the end. I saw one lady crying in the bar because she was having such a bad time.
Hey, listen. I am all for creative sexy performances like The Box or Queen of the Night, but Sleep No More is a bore. After you run around and climb stairs, getting in a good workout, you leave feeling ripped off. The icing on the cake is when they ask you to buy a $20 pamphlet at the end which explains the goddamn show.