"The sexiest couple on a New York stage just now...I groaned when I heard 'Heisenberg' was traveling to Broadway. I would never have predicted that it would seem even more vibrant and emotionally charged...The production’s creative team thwarts expectations at every turn...Mr. Stephens is an uncannily subtle dramatist who never wears his depths on the surface...He makes us see how conventional story lines fail to hold their shape when unspooled within the mess of human reality." Full Review
"A terrifically matched pair of actors playing a questionably matched pair of lovers...'Heisenberg' plays off the standard romantic comedy pairing of an offbeat, eccentric young woman who fascinates a straight-laced, conservative older man, though Stephens injects it with more honesty and heart than punch lines...'Heisenberg' may seem somewhat thin and whimsical on the surface, but in the hands of two fine actors it's a touching and satisfying venture." Full Review
"If I understand the oblique title correctly, 'Heisenberg' is about how being with another person—being observed, at close range—can affect your direction...Mark Brokaw’s spare production seems even less imposing in the company's Broadway house, but that works to its advantage. Stephens’s carefully crafted 75-minute play has a sense of how little its characters matter to the universe. It makes that smallness feel liberating." Full Review
"One of last year’s best dramas has somehow become one of this year’s best comedies...The two-person cast is still terrific, with Parker doing her best stage work in years, and Arndt again a wonderful surprise to New York audiences. The script, too, is all but unaltered...Yet somehow the spin seems to have reversed direction; it’s now less like a whirlpool pulling you under than a tornado flinging you up...But with the story’s increased size come the social pleasures of large-scale theater." Full Review
"In most narratives, the age difference alone would disqualify Georgie and Alex from potential romance. But Stephens plays by his own rules in this story...There's nothing to even vaguely suggest where we might be headed, but Parker and Arndt keep us deeply invested in each of their erratic movements...Stephens wraps the play in this metaphor of 'uncertainty'...He draws this parallel with a light enough hand that Georgie and Alex remain human beings and not mouthpieces for philosophical theory." Full Review
"They are a mismatch made in dramatic heaven. Combine Parker and Arndt with the intriguingly enigmatic script and the canny direction by Mark Brokaw, and you have another winning new play...The play loses none of the dynamic impact it had on 55th Street. In fact, the spare staging actually enhances the fragmentary nature of the play, with the pair striving to maintain balance as if on a metaphysical seesaw...What joy there is in watching actors like this, in a new play like this." Full Review
"The trick lies in making the woman equally lovable and bizarre, and also creating some kind of quirky chemistry between her and the man. On these grounds, 'Heisenberg' constitutes a thoroughly fizzled science experiment...This is the first romantic comedy in recent memory that leaves one actively rooting for the couple not to get together. Then again, 'Heisenberg' is neither romantic nor especially funny." Full Review
"The mystery is how a team with such track records and talents–playwright Simon Stephens, director Mark Brokaw, Parker—could produce such gibberish...The problem is that, in the six short scenes of this 80-minute play, there is scarcely a line that comes out of the woman’s mouth that sounds like anything anybody would actually say, except for a character contrived for the stage...Everything about 'Heisenberg,' in short, is fake." Full Review
“The Manhattan Theatre Club’s season opener...offers rich, intelligent dialogue, crisply efficient staging, two strong actors, and a situation and characters that require swallowing with more than a single grain of salt...Most audiences will appreciate the play as an amiable, straightforward romantic dramedy between an elderly man and a younger woman, each in need of filling a well of loneliness. You do, of course, have to make allowances for dramatic license.” Full Review
"It is blush-makingly trite...The result is, not to put too fine a point on it, a blatant exercise in masculine wish fulfillment, and it doesn’t help that Ms. Parker seems to think that Georgie is an inexplicably youthful Manic Pixie Dream Girl..Mr. Stephens has aided and abetted Ms. Parker by putting eye-rollingly twee sentences in Georgie’s mouth that no actor, however talented, should be expected to utter with a straight face. He’s the culprit-in-chief—she’s merely a co-conspirator." Full Review
"In all its nakedness, Brokaw’s production resembles an acting class, where only a table and chairs would be available to suggest a setting. As it happens, the play itself is just as thin as the production values...Despite its initial promise, this static two-hander quickly goes flat. Nevertheless, Parker and Arndt play off each other wonderfully. Parker is a wild bundle of energy and whimsy, while Arndt, initially the straight man to Parker’s theatrics, eventually opens up and comes to life." Full Review
"Stephens pushes the extent of unknowability pretty far, and doesn't always drop the dramatic anchor he needs to keep it on message. Georgie's behavior is a flood of overstatement that is not properly dammed in Parker's performance...Arndt, though, plays his part superbly...The evening becomes more about the artifice of its creation than the relationship it documents, and despite its intriguing, understated premise, it just isn't written well enough to function in that capacity." Full Review
"'Heisenberg' is only 80 minutes long and even that is too long with Mary-Louise Parker's horrible grating, whiny vocal tones and staging that is obstructed, no matter where you sit...This play puts the audience to sleep. The problem is I just did not believe this romance for a single second...Why this play is called 'Heisenberg' is beyond me, as there was nothing explosive or chemistry that was exciting to watch...How this play made it to Broadway is a mystery." Full Review
“Mary-Louise Parker and Denis Arndt and this wonderful play have made the transition with deeper performances, even with the volume turned up a notch to accommodate the bigger space. It is, hands down, the most romantic, not to mention sexiest, show in town…The acting is stripped bare as, in the beautifully calibrated performances, Alex’s initial imperturbability yields to Georgie’s ever-more poignant persistence.” Full Review
"For Mary-Louise Parker die-hards, 'Heisenberg' won’t disappoint...There’s fertile material there, along with moments that are lovely and contrived in director Mark Brokaw’s spare staging. But the issue with the play remains unchanged from last year’s Off-Broadway run. Arndt lives his role. Parker plays hers. There’s a nagging difference, that’s for certain." Full Review
"Stephens is doing what appears to be the thing he is most brilliant at: creating two characters, flawed and difficult, engaging (but sometimes disengaging) in a one-on-one dialogue that is as complex in its emotionality as it is in its simplicity of words...Parker is exceptional in making Georgie so layered that we are instantly taken. And Arndt shows a quiet yet powerful dignity in his depiction of this surprising man...Both Parker and Arndt fit perfectly into the skins of their characters." Full Review
"With a set consisting of just a couple of tables and chairs the only glitter in 'Heisenberg' comes from the acting and that's certainly in good hands here. The part of Georgie seems written to order for Mary-Louise Parker's singular affinity for somewhat lost, almost child-like characters. Denis Arndt's Alex at first seems mostly a sounding board for Parker's Georgie...But though Parker has the showier role, Arndt quickly becomes a much more significant and endearing presence." Full Review
"The connection that begins with a kiss is the engaging subject of Simon Stephens’s 'Heisenberg'...Under Mark Brokaw’s astute direction, Ms. Parker and Mr. Arndt tackle the rich complexities in Mr. Stephens’s script and successfully grapple with the mysteries of human connection...'Heisenberg' meets the vicissitudes of the human condition and clarity convenes on the stage of life and on the stage of the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre." Full Review
"Simon Stephens' play is as sumptuous an experience as theater gets...Director Mark Brokaw upped the intimacy level by putting bleacher seats on much of the stage, making the venue into a poor man's theater-in-the-round. Then he let Parker and Arndt do what they do best...Stephens does nothing less than alchemy here. He captures new love and old love at the same time, hope and fear, the new world and the old." Full Review
"How much punier can plays get on Broadway? The director Mark Brokaw has found a way. It’s no longer enough that audiences are asked to sit through an evening that’s only 80 minutes sans intermission...Brokaw has reduced the performing space at MTC’s Samuel J. Friedman Theatre to a narrow catwalk...Arndt is amiable and dull while Parker is hyper and unhinged...Georgie and Alex are wrong for each other, and so their happy ending emerges as false and forced." Full Review
"Often enchanting, occasionally frustrating, and ultimately poignant two-hander...Director Mark Brokaw and scenic designer Mark Wendland have created a small central playing area on stage with the part of the audience seated behind them on the stage...It’s about as anti-spectacle as Broadway gets. And it doesn’t matter one bit!...I may not know much about physics, but I am certain that these actors’ sterling work is not to be missed." Full Review
"The actors are back, even more nuanced and riveting...Director Mark Brokaw’s simple, impeccably observed production has little more than a couple of metal tables and chairs with which to burrow into fine-tuned character studies...In just a few ingratiating, ultimately devastating scenes, Stephens and his actors carve out mismatched, lonely grown-ups who are as confused and fascinated by their history and future as we are." Full Review
"This has to be one of the most unlikely, yet deeply convincing couples you’ll ever see on stage; a romantic, highly sexual relationship that slowly evolves despite reticence, red flags and trap doors at every turn. Playwright Simon Stephens has created two marvelous characters who make what could have been yet another quirky-girl-gets-repressed-man-to-open-up scenario into something eminently richer and more satisfying...Timing is impeccable, physical acting perfection." Full Review
"The working out of the playwright’s musings, under the snappy direction of Mark Brokaw...is in the hands of two terrific actors, Arndt and Parker...All lies in the writing and acting, and the stars are commanding. Parker, in a role very different than some of the parts she has played, is amusingly flamboyant and a dynamic force that little by little brings Alex out of his shell...There is no uncertainty that this is a captivating play offering two highly appealing performances." Full Review
"An improbable, if sweet, romantic fantasy. It all goes down very easily, thanks to director Mark Brokaw and, especially, the actors...Mary-Louise Parker and Denis Arndt make the opposites-attract notion involving, even if the bridging of the characters' age gap would require more elaboration to be persuasive...Georgie, an American expatriate who talks nonstop, could be taken for a psychopath in a less accomplished portrayal. But Parker makes her an ultimately fetching kook." Full Review
See it if youre a fan of Mary Louise Parker. Want to see a heart warming performance of Denis Arndt showing its never too late for a broadway debut
Don't see it if you like clear cut plot explanations, want fast moving story development and more than two people plays
See it if I sat on the stage and was completely engaged with the two actors, who give simply phenomenal performances.
Don't see it if You want more substance than a relationship. However, it's absolutely fascinating to watch them interact and respond to each other as people
See it if You like two handers with a lovely, beautifully acted male lead winning over an ethically compromised partner.
Don't see it if you like modulated performances. If you are averse to high strung, high pitched women characters.
See it if You can enjoy an engrossing story with a minimalist set. If you enjoy complex interpersonal emotions and connections.
Don't see it if have trouble following a plot that is delivered only through conversation or it you don't like plays with only 2 actors.
See it if you like in fast paced drama, if you want to see great acting or if you want to see a developing relationship between unlikely people
Don't see it if you want a spectacle or if you hate shows that are mostly about character development
See it if You love Mary Louise Parker. You enjoy 2-character plays where relationships develop. You like to discuss the play after you've seen it.
Don't see it if You need to understand the characters. You don't enjoy wordy plays.
See it if you're a Mary-Louise Parker fan.She won't disappoint.It's short, intimate, but I didn't feel moved.Good set-up for the story. (seen Off-Bw).
Don't see it if you don't like 2-person plays, British settings, looking for strong emotions.
See it if You are a fan of human connection & the intricacies of emotion. This play is a glimpse into a chance meeting & the journey shared together.
Don't see it if You are not ready for an intimate, two person play. MLP was hard to understand at times. Be prepared to listen closely.
See it if you enjoy up close and personal plays; unconventional love story; brilliant and raw acting; simple and clever direction
Don't see it if do not like 90 minute, one act plays; you need a lot of action on stage
See it if You enjoy fine acting, quirky humor and think butchers in their 70's attract women 30+ years younger--discounted tickets a major plus
Don't see it if The lack of relevance of the pretentious title, lack of staging or lack of narrative momentum will bother you
Get alerts about your favorite artists and theater companies