On Tour!

Hartford, CT
Hartbeat Ensemble
January 2018

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Based on the story by Franz Kafka

Created by:


Jonathan Levin

Josh Luxenberg

Joshua William Gelb


"Are you still starving? When are you going to stop...?"

A man sits alone in a cage, starving himself for your entertainment. This darkly comic, visually-striking adaptation of the Franz Kafka short story uses physical theater, Victorian miniatures, puppetry, and a set of simple props to support a powerhouse solo performance.

Once cheered by thousands, the Hunger Artist is now forgotten by everyone except his one-time manager. What begins as a simple nostalgic story transforms into a startlingly inventive trip into the nature of memory, art, performance, and spectatorship, as told by the only person who remembers an artist whose act was simply... to hunger.


Hartford, CT
Hartbeat Ensemble
February 1 - 4


A Hunger Artist makes its New England premiere after acclaimed runs in New York, Edinburgh (Winner of the Lustrum Award for Excellence) and Baltimore.


Thu. February 1st @ 7:30pm
Fri. February 2nd @ 7:30pm
Sat. February 3rd @ 7:30pm
Sun. February 4th @ 2:00pm

HartBeat Ensemble creates provocative theater that connects our community beyond the traditional barriers of class, race, geography and gender.


360 Farmington Avenue
Box Office: 860.548.9144 x 116


New YOrk Press

"Directed by Joshua William Gelb from an elegant script by Josh Luxenberg, this visually arresting 'Hunger Artist' leads with enchantment... [Jonathan Levin] holds the audience in the palm of his hand."
—The New York Times
Critics Pick!
"Surprisingly lovable... full of jokes and sudden sympathy... The artist starves but we leave sated."
—Time Out New York
It’s almost as if Kafka himself willed it into being."
—The Huffington Post
"Beautifully imagined... full of heart... unfolding with ingenuity... It left me mentally and emotionally sated."
"Boisterously funny and chokingly sad... through pure showmanship it defies expectation at almost every turn."
"Makes you want to stand up and cheer. Possibly the best solo performance of the year!"
—New York Irish Arts

Edinburgh Press

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"A bravura display of theatrical skill... the best, most complete work I've seen this year. If I had a sixth star, it would get one."
"A magnificent performance that manages to enthrall and transport!"
—British Theatre Guide
"Ingeniously constructed... I simply have to say go and see it, you will not be disappointed."
—Theatre Full Stop
★★★★ ½
"One of the most imaginative shows… at this year’s Fringe!"
—Theatre Full Stop

The Team

Set and Costume Design: Peiyi Wong
Lighting Design: Kate McGee
Sound Design: M. Florian Staab
Puppet Design: Charlie Kanev and Sarah Nolen
Props and Toy Theater: Jonathan Levin
Additional Props and Puppets: Ariel Lauryn

Production Stage Manager: Elizabeth Ramsay

Producer (NYC): Audrey Frischman
Production Manager (NYC): Will Jennings
Trailer: Jesse Garrison


Booking Inquiries

A Hunger Artist is available for touring.

Please contact:
Amanda Cooper
ALC Management


Past Performances

January 2018
at the Connelly Theater

December 2017
at the Baltimore Theatre Project

August 2017
Edinburgh Festival Fringe
ZOO Venues
WINNER - Summerhall's Lustrum Award for Excellence

June 2017
at the Connelly Theater
Co-Produced by The Tank
World Premiere

September 27 & 28, 2016
at the New Ohio Theater
Work-in-progress presentation

November 5, 2016
at the UnitedSolo Festival
Work-in-progress presentation
WINNER - Award for "Best Satire"


A Hunger Artist was first developed at The Freight Residency (2015) and it has since been performed in developmental workshops at Cloud City and Jalopy.

This production of Kafka’s A Hunger Artist made possible by funding from:

The New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature

The Jim Henson Foundation

The Nancy Quinn Fund, a program of the Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York (A.R.T./New York)

Subsidized studio space provided by the A.R.T./New York Creative Space Grant, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation

The LIT Fund