King Lear (Broadway)
Closed 3h 30m
King Lear (Broadway)

King Lear (Broadway) NYC Reviews and Tickets

(394 Ratings)
Members say
Great acting, Ambitious, Disappointing, Absorbing, Confusing

About the Show

After playing the role to critical acclaim in London, Emmy, Tony, and Academy Award-winning actress Glenda Jackson ("Three Tall Women") brings her take on Shakespeare's mad monarch to a new production on Broadway.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (394)

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120 Reviews | 40 Followers
Great staging, Great acting, Must see, Masterful

See it if Lear at its best . Of all the Lear productions I have seen this is by far the most creative. Glenda Jackson is superb , Ruth Wilson is awme.

Don't see it if If you do not like Shakespeare.

69 Reviews | 18 Followers
Masterful, Intelligent, Great acting, Clever, Absorbing

See it if You enjoy a Shakespeare show in it's own language and storytelling style.

Don't see it if You have issues understanding Shakespearean speech.

211 Reviews | 87 Followers
Masterful, Epic, Great acting, Exquisite, Absorbing

See it if You like Shakespeare and want to see top of the line performers in one of his greatest plays.

Don't see it if You don’t like Shakespeare or can’t understand his language. You can’t sit through a long show (first act is 2 hours). Read more

262 Reviews | 48 Followers
Relevant, Must see, Masterful, Great acting, Great writing

See it if You enjoy excellence in every detail.

Don't see it if You do not have an ear for Shakespeare. Read more

63 Reviews | 22 Followers
Masterful, Great staging, Great acting, Entertaining, Absorbing

See it if This was brilliant. This was masterfully performed and staged. Every actor was so very good in their role. It was a night of pure pleasure

Don't see it if If you hate Shakespeare. It's the only reason not to go

155 Reviews | 31 Followers
Ambitious, Riveting, Epic, Great acting, Masterful

See it if Glenda Jackson is surrounded by an amazing cast

Don't see it if You can't sit through 4hrs of real ART

50 Reviews | 5 Followers
Must see, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if Glenda Jackson was fantastic, particularly considering she does this 8x a week and her seniority.

Don't see it if Perhaps a little too contemporary.

562 Reviews | 85 Followers
Riveting, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Intelligent, Brilliant acting

See it if you love seeing great actors dominate the stage:Jackson,Houdyshall and Thompson are beyond brilliant.This is a once in a lifetime production

Don't see it if you liked Be More Chill.This is serious theatre.How many chances do you get to see Jackson?Her Lear is so powerful,so relatable.Loved it.

Critic Reviews (46)

The New York Times
April 4th, 2019

"It should surprise no one that Ms. Jackson is delivering a powerful and deeply perceptive performance as the most royally demented of Shakespeare’s monarchs. But much of what surrounds her in this glittery, haphazard production seems to be working overtime to divert attention from that performance...By and large, the performances seem to have been blown into uneasy coexistence by random winds from different directions."
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Time Out New York
April 4th, 2019

"Gold’s production is full of interesting directorial choices that do not quite cohere into a shared universe for 'King Lear’s' characters to inhabit...Some of these performances work well on their own terms. What’s missing is a larger sense of shape...This production doesn’t want to be indulgent or overwrought; perhaps it doesn’t want to risk dishonesty. But after three and a half hours of diffuse dramatics, I felt nothing."
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New York Magazine / Vulture
April 4th, 2019

"After a royal amount of hype built on the promise of the towering Glenda Jackson’s role-defining performance, the painful truth is that Sam Gold’s 'King Lear' is a hot, heavy mess. And more painful still, Jackson’s Lear fails to transcend it...Underneath the production’s winks and nods, there’s nothing there — meanwhile, the play languishes somewhere in the wings. Most distressing of all, Jackson, for all her innate and palpable power, isn’t saving it."
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The Hollywood Reporter
April 4th, 2019

"Gold makes a lot of audacious choices, many of which you might disagree with, but they are seldom uninteresting...Gold at times lays on this contemporary veneer a tad too thickly...But even with on-the-nose moments like this, the production still feels thematically undercooked...Still, while the ensemble doesn't feel unified, there are some standout performances, Pascal's terrific Broadway debut as Edmund among them."
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Entertainment Weekly
April 4th, 2019

"She offers her own take on male frailty and hubris, her voice booming, her focus astonishing. If her gender enters into her portrayal at all, it is only fleetingly toward the end; it may be in the eye of this beholder, but a woman grieving a child registers differently from man facing the same catastrophe...Worth mention in an overall solid cast is Broadway regular John Douglas Thomas as the Earl of Kent...It is this returning veteran in the title role that makes this Lear memorable."
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April 4th, 2019

"Although Jackson fails to wring tears, let alone blood, from this production, the sheer intelligence of her performance makes it memorable...The supporting performances are all over the place, and the fidelity to fashionable race/gender/age-blind casting sometimes requires work to figure out who’s who...The bland staging has no discernible unity or vision, and actors rarely connect. In the end, you’re really here for Glenda Jackson...Wouldn’t have missed it for the world."
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April 4th, 2019

"This 'Lear' is a knock-out...A production of many memorable parts and moments...Wilson's performance grows in strength and vitality and even poignance, as if Wilson and director Gold have decided that only a truly go-for-broke approach could withstand the force of nature that is Jackson. They choose wisely...Scholars have long debated on whether the Fool is actually Cordelia...Gold suggests he has the answer. It isn’t the first or last moment of truth in this extraordinary production."
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The Washington Post
April 4th, 2019

"Confoundingly muddled evening...On the evidence of this latest version, no one is going to go near this thorny brute of a play there again anytime soon. Not that Jackson isn’t an inspired choice for Lear...Little effort has gone into creating the impression that all these characters occupy the same space or to establishing with any secure command of temporal logistics where we are at any given moment."
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