Category Archives: Off-Broadway

The Pipeline

The Pipeline
Written by Dominique Morisseau
Directed by Lileana Blain-Cruz
Lincoln Center Theater at the Mitzi E. Newhouse
June 26, 2017
Production website
💉💉💉💉 out of 5.

I go from the wonderment and colossal budget of Groundhog Day to the basement of Lincoln Center to a play that has a teachers desk, a lunch table and a couch, a VERY white wall and some very harsh florescent lighting.  And I will take the second play over the first any day.  Pipeline was another play that I knew very little about before the show.  I knew it was about a teacher (familiar ground) and about a black student trying to navigate life in a ROUGH urban school – or survive a very preppy private school (certainly much less familiar ground.) Continue reading The Pipeline

The Parallelogram

The Parrallelogram
Written by Bruce Norris
Directed by Michael Greif
Second Stage Theater
July 25, 2017
Production website
💉💉💉 out of 5.

Now tonight I truly saw Groundhog Day but without all of the glitz.  It is also the only time that I have been to a show that during the intermission the first thing that the audience was doing was opening Google to see what a parallelogram was and how it had anything to do with the show.  Nothing wrong with doing a little geometry outreach. Continue reading The Parallelogram

The Government Inspector

The Government Inspector
Written by Nikolai Gogol
Adapted by Jefrey Hatcher
Directed by Jesse Berger
Red Bull Theater
New World Stages
July 23, 2017
Production website
💉💉 out of 5.
but the work of Michael Urie 💉💉💉💉💉

The Russians are funny people.  So often I have taught the Russian classic plays and my students take them with such reverence that nobody sees any reason to laugh.  The Government Inspector is all about the laughs and all about making fun of the greed and corruption that dominated the provincial Russian government and perhaps could say a thing or two about the current world of politics – – you think so.  (BUT although so tempting to bring “Trumpisms” into the play, they take the high road and trust the audience will make those connections if they want to. Continue reading The Government Inspector

Napoli, Brooklyn

Napoli, Brooklyn
Written by Meghan Kennedy
Directed by Gordon Edelstein
Roundabout Theatre Company
June 17, 2017
Production website
💉💉 out of 5.

This play was trying to do to much.  It was trying to tell the story of a true life plane crash in the early 1960’s that destroyed a good section of Brooklyn.  It also seeks to tell the story of a family with an abusive father who is trying to break out and break free.  It is also a coming out story about a young girl embracing herself as a lesbian.  It is also about the end of the 1950’s and the embrace of the radically unsettled world of the 1960’s.  THAT is a lot.  I had wished the play covered less ground and covered it more fully. Continue reading Napoli, Brooklyn

The End of Longing

The End of Longing
Written by Matthew Perry
Directed by Linda Posner
Lucille Lortel Theatre
June 15, 2017
Production website
💉 out of 5.

There is nothing more uncomfortable then being trapped in a small space with a die hard alcoholic.  Nothing they say has any meaning. Nothing they say is funny.  They make you uncomfortable.  They are narcissistic.  They go no where.  They mean nothing – and most of all – the next morning your left with a headache and a desire to resurrect those lost hours.

This play is bad.  Bad acting, bad story, bad delivery, and dreadful cliches.  Clearly this play was written by a TV star because no scene could develop or sustain itself beyond eight or so minutes.  Time that would be better spent on the commercial break.

You certainly do not care about these people.  You do not take a journey.  Truly you just get to spend time with a drunk convincing you he’s worth the 95 minutes.  He is not.