Theater

Rebel in the Soul

It is worth a visit to the Irish Repertory Theater to see “Rebel in the Soul,” a most interesting play about an Irish doctor’s mission to obtain healthcare for the poor in Ireland during the ’50s. Very well acted and …Read More

The Golden Apple

We’d heard that New York City Center’s Encores! production of “The Golden Apple” was a cult musical — a critical success in 1954, a commercial flop. Not sure any of that matters today, six decades later. It is fun, funky, …Read More

Present Laughter

Tired of the Depressing Headlines? Looking for Something Fun? Get Tickets to “Present Laughter.” We did just that over the weekend. “Present Laughter” — a revival of the Noël Coward classic — features a fine cast, led by a memorable …Read More

The Little Foxes

A little dated, but you will not look at your watch! The Manhattan Theater Club is staging a revival of Lillian Hellman’s 1939 “The Little Foxes.” We went on Wednesday and — after the response to my comments on “Sunday …Read More

How To Transcend a Happy Marriage

“How to Transcend a Happy Marriage,” at the Lincoln Center Theater for a few more days, reminds some people of the movie “The Big Chill.” As I was never able to make it through that entire movie, I suppose that …Read More

Pacific Overtures

For Sondheim aficionados (as I’m guessing most VDP members are), a new revival of “Pacific Overtures” opened last night at Classic Stage Company. As directed by John Doyle in his trademark minimalist style, it is pared back in every way—10 actors …Read More

Sweat

“Sweat” is an almost. It does the serious stuff well. An industrial town disintegrates for all the usual reasons. Former friends become enemies as factories shrink, jobs disappear and unions lose power. Crime, drugs and fights infect the community. Sounds …Read More

The Price

A lesser Arthur Miller play, and really unsatisfying. Even a talented cast (Mark Ruffalo, Danny DeVito, Jessica Hecht, Tony Shalhoub) couldn’t rescue it. Actually, we thought their performances were…strange. Blame it on the director? Danny DeVito played the comic role …Read More

Oslo

“Oslo,” starring Jefferson Mays and Jennifer Ehle, just opened at Lincoln Center’s Vivian Beaumont Theater. It appeared last year in a limited run at one of LCT’s smaller theaters. It received glowing reviews and we’d suggest you get ticket while …Read More

Oslo

This is a minority report: all the big reviews are ecstatic. Not that this J. T. Rogers drama doesn’t have its strong parts. The Bartlett Sher direction in the Lincoln Center Theatre is fluid – actors moving furniture on and …Read More

The Hairy Ape

We just saw the current production of Eugene O’Neill’s prize-winning play “The Hairy Ape” at the Park Avenue Armory. Bobby Cannavale is absolutely perfectly cast as Yank. His performance alone may be reason enough to see this. Paddy is also …Read More

The Hairy Ape

The Park Avenue Armory and Old Vic London Production of Eugene O’Neill’s play “The Hairy Ape” is a physical feat. Bobby Cannavale leads the charge in a beautifully choreographed non-stop journey from the bowels of a transatlantic ocean liner to …Read More

Pacific Overtures

The original 1976 Broadway production of this Sondheim-Weidman show got mixed reviews, as did most of the several revivals, some employing techniques of Kabuki theatre. The current revival at the Classic Stage Company is performed in-the-round with an energetic cast …Read More

Latin History for Morons

I had high hopes heading into the new John Leguizamo one-man show at the Public Theater. I thought it would be not only entertaining, but very interesting and hopefully even educational to learn about the Latino history, which he thought …Read More

Hello Dolly

Yes, it holds up, yes, it still works, yes, it’s faithful to the original, and yes, even an orangutan could probably play the title role, as Dolly the First has noted. This production of “Hello Dolly” is a special delight. …Read More

Bandstand

You come into the Bernard Jacobs Theatre expecting a nostalgic look back at the late Swing/Big Band era in the euphoria of America’s victory in World War II, before the Cold War set in. Instead, “Bandstand” serves up a cautionary …Read More

Saint Joan

This brilliant Donmar production of the Shaw classic “Saint Joan” is the best single modern-dress staging of any play we can remember. We saw it on NT Live (as in National Theater) from London. Set in a modern corporate board …Read More

946: The Amazing Story of Adolphus Tips

“946: The Amazing Story of Adolphus Tips” at St. Ann’s Warehouse is a terrific production in every way! Based on a children’s book about England in World War I! It is touching, charming, funny and sheer delight. Excellent acting, fine …Read More

Sunset Boulevard

Oh, how the audience responded to Glenn Close as she came on the stage! Enthusiastic at first, then escalating to wild applause with every scene, especially the beginning of the second act when “Norma” sings her “big number.” This production …Read More

Groundhog Day

If the Tony Awards had a category for “Best Stage Magical,” it would go to “Groundhog Day.” They will have to settle for “Best Scenic Design in a Musical,” which is accurate, but not sufficiently poetic. In other words, the …Read More

The New Yorkers

Encores! has done it again with “The New Yorkers.” Led by artistic director Jack Viertel, this theater series from New York City Center has resurrected a forgotten, creaky, nine-decade-old Cole Porter musical and created an evening of dance, songs and …Read More

Linda

Formidable acting, especially by lead Janie Dee. A terrific spinning set. A meaty topic – aging – as experienced by a middle-aged business woman. Janie Dee’s attractive female executive is a strong voice for the thoughts, fears, compromises and dilemmas …Read More

War Paint

How does a great-sounding story — the epic competition during the ’30s through the ’60s between cosmetic pioneers Helena Rubinstein and Elizabeth Arden — and two renowned musical actresses — Patti Lupone and Christine Ebersole — end up such an …Read More

Sunday in the Park with George

We missed this production of “Sunday in the Park with George” at City Center’s Encores! series and, since it has been a family favorite, we got tickets for its limited run on Broadway. This iconic Sondheim musical dates from 1983 …Read More

Come From Away

We went to see “Come From Away” in previews. It opens mid-month — get tickets now, because we think you will find it difficult after it opens. First let me make it clear, I am leery of new musicals and …Read More

Beauty Queen of Leenane

                      Much of the audience probably walks into “The Beauty Queen of Leenane” at BAM knowing that they’re about to witness the dark workings of a dysfunctional Irish mother-daughter relationship. …Read More

Man from Nebraska

This New York premiere of Tracy Letts’ 2004 play “Man from Nebraska” is a NY Times’ critics pick and has been extended through March 26, so clearly it has found an audience. However, while I am a fan of Letts …Read More

Sweeney Todd (in a pie shop)

Last night we experienced one of our most thrilling theater experiences. Surprisingly, it took place at a revival. But what a revival! A new production of the Stephen Sondheim/Hugh Wheeler musical “Sweeney Todd” has just arrived from London, where it …Read More

If I Forget

In the world of dysfunctional families, the Fischers aren’t so bad. In “If I Forget,” for all their differences, they come together after the death of their mother to celebrate their father’s birthday, and to deal with the issues of …Read More

Yen

“Yen,” a British import, opened a couple of weeks ago and, based upon our experience, is doing quite well. It may be that people are attracted to the play by the presence of Lucas Hedges (Oscar Best Supporting Actor nominee …Read More

Escaped Alone

We had the good luck to attend Caryl Churchill’s play, “Escaped Alone” (originally produced at London’s Royal Court Theatre and brought here with the original cast) at BAM this past Saturday. We read Brantley’s review in the Times and reasoned, …Read More

Sunday in the Park with George

Julia Benedict’s review of the New York City Center performance of “Sunday in the Park with George” made me look to see if it would be moved to Broadway — thank you Julia. We saw it last night at the …Read More

Jitney

Until this week we had never seen an August Wilson play nor really known much about his work, but with subscription seats to “Jitney” coming up on Wednesday, on Tuesday we went to see the film version of “Fences” — …Read More

Come From Away

“Come From Away” is the story of the 38 planes that were vectored into Gander, Newfoundland on 9/11 when US airspace was closed. It’s told from the point of view of the Newfoundlanders. Seven thousand “Plane People” arrived in a town …Read More

An Inspector Calls

J.B. Priestley’s “An Inspector Calls” had its premiere in 1946 and has been revived repeatedly ever since, with good reason. This play, too, is a philosophical polemic — actually about two: personal conscience and exploitation of women — but the …Read More