Media coverage and reviews
Oregon Public Broadcasting - State of Wonder
KBOO - Stage & Studio
Artslandia - Adventures in Artslandia
DC Metro Theatre Arts
Review by John Stoltenberg
"...Whatever line there is between life and art completely blurs, and we ourselves are witness to something far more than theater."
"...It leaves us with the lesson that what’s complicated always has personal context and cannot be abstracted apart from individual lived lives. As such truthful storytelling about complexity goes, The Gun Show sets a brave example, with a terrific script brilliantly played."
Review by Krista Garver
"...a powerful show, an important show, and a show everyone should see."
American Theatre Magazine - 19 Political Shows to See This Fall
Oregon Arts Watch -
Preview by A.L. Adams
Review by Marty Hughley
“compact yet high-caliber theatrical, a short one-hour blast of personal recollection, rhetoric and genuinely conflicted questioning about the gun show that plays out in varying versions throughout our society, our political forums and our private lives.”
“...galvanic performance by Shambry. He’s charming, warm, funny, vehement, volcanic, tender, precise … he serves admirably as mouthpiece for the white, middle-aged playwright, allowing us to see her in these stories, yet he doesn’t banish his own presence, that of a leonine young black man, with a different upbringing but a similar care and concern about the issue.”
“It’s a remarkably committed and affecting performance, intense yet with a quality like a set of shifting transparencies, a convincing illusion pulled off even as he explains the trick to you.”
Portland Monthly (Interview with E.M. Lewis)
“Like a lot of people, I’ve had a variety of experiences with guns and am conflicted about guns. This is not a far right or a far left play. This is a grappling with guns in American society, and trying to figure out if there’s some way to come to terms with their presence, or some way in which we can make them a little bit more safe for us. It’s not an all-or-nothing proposition.”
Preview by Megan Burbank
“‘No way to prevent this,’ says only nation where this regularly happens.” It seems nearly every day, someone posts that Onion article in the wake of a mass shooting, and yet America remains a country in thrall to the political power of the NRA, despite clear support for common sense gun control. E.M. Lewis’ The Gun Show takes on our gun obsession, recounting experiences like growing up in a rural, gun-crazy culture and surviving an armed robbery. It’s about as timely as you can get. And given that Lewis’ solo show will be performed by Vin Shambry, one of the city’s best actors, it’s downright essential.”
Review by Joshua James Amberson
"Unpredictable and absorbing...The stories progress from lighthearted to unnerving."
"The Gun Show plays with expectations and preconceptions while attempting to think about guns in a way that goes beyond the current political debate. It asks the audience to consider, or reconsider, their positions on guns. And when the play ends, it asks them to talk about it."
"Gun Talks was uncomfortable, but it would be hard to argue that it didn’t enhance the play. Seeing the range of relationships to guns in one small theater changed the effect of what just happened onstage, and required everyone to consider it from a different angle."
"...worth going if only to see Shambry’s rollercoaster performance. Soft and tender one moment, jaded and full of righteous anger the next, joking around while doing a solid impression of Patrick Swayze’s Dirty Dancing finale moves a moment later, Shambry is stunning; in many ways, he’s embodying the confusion and emotional frustration of this moment in American history."
Review by Judy Nedry
"Part one of the play is the five stories; part two brings the audience into the conversation. Thus, every part two is a different experience. There is humor, love, and terror."
Review by Dennis Sparks
"This is, without a doubt, one from the heart and soul. It is not to be ignored. It is not to be trivialized. It is to be heard, digested and solved!"