by Nick Payne
Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle, WA

Scenic & Lighting: LB Morse | Costumes: Christine Tschirgi | Sound: Obadiah Eaves


“Desdemona Chiang’s incisive staging choreographs the hourlong piece in continual, circling motion without blurring the borders between dozens of micro-scenes and longer encounters, or ignoring times of meaningful stillness.”
Misha Berson, Seattle Times

“Throughout the show, I kept fighting back the urge to hold up a placard with a “10” on it…Since we’re so used to narratives where X and Y meet and either stay together forever or die in a bloodbath, you sort of unconsciously root for one narrative, despite the fact that all narratives are playing out at once. The tension between the result you’re rooting for and the structure of the play forces you to sublimate the other narratives as metaphors for the many vicissitudes of a romantic relationship. Roland’s infidelity in one universe, for instance, would have to function as a metaphor for pain he caused in the universe where he doesn’t ‘actually’ commit the infidelity. In this way, Payne presents love as the best and worst of all possible worlds.”
Rich Smith, The Stranger

“Payne gives a stunningly honest and real portrayal of real life with some beautifully rich dialog and a touching story. And director Desdemona Chiang takes on this simple yet quite complex two-person dialog and keeps the pacing and staging quite fluid and engaging… A sweet and engaging atypical romance with an ending that will tear your heart out. Yeah, bring the tissues… Whatever timeline or universe you may be in, you should make the choice to see this one. A lovely romance with a brain..”
— Jay Irwin, Broadway World

Constellations is only 75 minutes long, performed without intermission, but the emotional and intellectual ground it covers is far weightier than the play’s length would suggest. Director Desdemona Chiang creates a world of infinite complexity on a bare stage, relying on the prodigious talent of her two actors to convey the constantly changing locales, situations and emotional states of the two characters. Tavares and Moore are perfectly matched; both are immensely likeable and charismatic and when the play ends, we can’t help but wish them the very best as they face a daunting challenge together.”
Alice Kaderlan, Seattle PI

“Director Desdemona Chiang has built it smartly and sparely, relying on the phenomenal acting of Max Gordon Moore and Alexandra Tavares to carry the story. There are no set pieces at all, save for a finished wooden platform center stage which serves as the playing space for the entire show. Subtle light and sound cues (by L.B. Morse and Obadiah Eaves, respectively) honor the play’s luminous, ephemeral feeling and help keep the audience on track, whether we’re grounded on earth in the present, or launched forward in time, or even into the stratosphere.”
— Gemma Wilson, City Arts Magazine