12 critics reviewed the show, resulting in a weighted average of 79.
The New York Times
“Conjures the passionate ambivalence of early adolescence with such being-there sharpness and poignancy that you’re not sure whether to cringe, cry or roar with happiness...Blazingly original and unsettlingly familiar...Cuts to the bone...A fearless cast, directed and choreographed with gloriously rough magic...The fact that the actresses playing these girls are adults...makes this latest work a memory play — and a reminder of how impossible it is to escape the way we were.”
Time Out New York
"Ferociously funny...Barron’s riotous, rattling, sensational new play...The kids are played by adults of varying ages...They sometimes break out of their time frame to share perspectives they will have years later. The effect of this doubleness is often hilarious—the actors’ dance skills also vary—but also poignant...Wondrous ensemble cast...Sharp direction...Has a pussy-power message, it is anything but fearless. It embraces fear, hugs it tight, and channels it into a queasy kind of triumph.”
New York Stage Review
“The playwright is intent on taking us someplace where we have rarely if ever been...Interweaves her very funny play with topics that some might find out of bounds...By presenting us with a wildly non-realistic dance team, Barron can slather on layers of fun, satire and incisive social commentary...The cast is universally fine...A bit too long...It can be self-defeating to keep us in our seats for an epilogue highlighting authorial points which the writing already makes expertly clear.”
“Dance Nation” was also reviewed by Michael Sommers of New York Stage Review, Marc Miller of Talkin' Broadway, Michael Bracken of Theater Pizzazz, Tim Teeman of Daily Beast, Brian Scott Lipton of CitiTour, Joe Dziemianowicz of New York Daily News, Samuel L. Leiter of Theatre's Leiter Side, Jonathan Mandell of DC Theatre Scene, and Robert Hofler of The Wrap.
The show was also reviewed by 36 Show-Score members, whose collective ShowScore is a weighted average of 76.
Top five adjectives describing the show:
Ambitious, Quirky, Edgy, Funny, Great acting
See it if…"You like to open your mind to creative and challenging 'weird' theater as well as moments of shock related to violence, sex, bodies, etc."
Don't see it if…"You want a traditional play and can’t 'go' along with actors of all ages playing 13. Or if offended by edgy, envelope-pushing theater."
See it if…"Coming of age of a group of 13 year old girls portrayed by grownups. Some funny and clever moments but a little too far out for my taste."
Don't see it if…"You are offended by nudity, foul language, and female body parts. This show is definitely not for everyone!"
synecdoche, ShowScore: 96
See it if…"You enjoy atypical and absurdist theatre with a strong emotional and political undercurrent."
Don't see it if…"You only like plays that adhere to naturalism."
See the Show Page with all critic and member reviews.
Note: The ShowScore displayed above is current as of right now, and may be different from the ShowScore when the article was published.