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Starship Astrov Media Page

Video made by Duncan Pflaster, using the haunting "Starship Astrov Theme" by sound designer Nick Moore and photographs by Brad Fryman.

Fantastic Reviews!

"Duncan Pflaster's new "Chekhovian Space Comedy" The Starship Astrov ties a clever concept to a sci-fi/speculative drama that authentically has something to say.(...) we have here a play that's timeless in its examination of the human condition (following in the path of the great Russian playwright) and oh so timely in its consideration of ecology versus economy. (...) The writing, concepts, and performances are all well above par for the Midtown International Theatre Festival (...) The Starship Astrov is certainly a worthy destination at MITF, and I suspect it may surface in another venue in the future (hopefully before the year 3047)." - Martin Denton,

"The remarkable thing is that it actually works, and works well, due in large part to playwright Duncan Pflaster's ability to walk the fine line between humor and pathos, just like Chekhov before him. Astrov is a very funny play, especially in the first half, but it still presents sad, lonely people longing for purpose, meaning and love. The twist is that it presents them not in a country estate, but in possibly the loneliest place of all - the endless void of deep space." - Byrne Harrison, StageBuzz

"Pflaster's show is sure to become a cult classic along the lines of The Rocky Horror Picture Show and one can just see it being done all over the place. The premise is the classic tale of Chekhov's Uncle Vanya retold with characters engaged in space travel. At first glance, the piece may not seem like much more than a Saturday Night Live sketch, but in the hands of the well informed Pflaster, the piece turns into a pretty amazing exploration of Chekhov's characters and themes." - Michael Roderick, 99 and Under the Radar (BWW)

"More than likely, you've been transported to The Starship Astrov, a play where playwright Duncan Pflaster takes the best of science fiction tropes and embeds many of the themes and characters of plays such as Uncle Vanya and The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov. The result is a play (delightfully directed by Eric Parness) that will tickle your funny bone with homages that run the gamut from Star Trek to Buck Rogers, but with an over arcing sense of nostalgia for the times in your own life when you knew you had to move on to the next stage. You can't help but smile as what seems (at first) to be corny caricatures change into ideal vehicles which transport the story not just across the galaxy, but also to a meaningful conclusion for our own lives. This is more than you would have expected from something billed as a comedy. (...) Sometimes you want a little cheesy science fiction, sometimes you want a bittersweet reflection on the human condition. Luckily in the case of The Starship Astrov you can have both. See it this week while you can as it only runs through July 31st. - Stephen Tortora-Lee, The Happiest Medium

"Pflaster packs his dialogue with clever one-liners, and the actors commit to their material. (...) An amusing evening of theater." - Rachel Crouthamel, Show Business Weekly

"Pflaster has reimagined some of Chekhov's characters and plotting with aplomb." - Andy Probst, Theatermania

Photos by Brad Fryman:
  1. Ariel Estrada as Professor Cole, Elizabeth A. Davis as Celaria and Philip Emeott as Dr. Rosy
  2. Philip Emeott as Dr. Rosy, Walter Brandes as Captain January, Ariel Estrada as Professor Cole, and Elizabeth A. Davis as Celaria
  3. Walter Brandes as Captain January, Rafael Jordan as Lieutenant Washington, Jennifer Gawlik as Ensign January, and Christine Verleny as Lieutenant Commander Camilo