Already closed | 2h 35m | Midtown W

War Paint

From 1,323 member  reviews
Members say: Great singing, Entertaining, Great acting, Disappointing, Slow

About the show

Two-time Tony Award winners Patti LuPone and Christine Ebersole come to Broadway in this new musical about rival cosmetic titans Helena Rubinstein and Elizabeth Arden. More…

Brilliant innovators with humble roots, both women were masters of self-invention who sacrificed everything to become the country's first major female entrepreneurs. They were also fierce competitors whose 50-year tug-of-war would give birth to an industry. From Fifth Avenue society to the halls of Congress, their remarkable rivalry was ruthless, relentless, and legendary—pushing both women to build international empires in a world dominated by men. Costarring Tony nominees John Dossett and Douglas Sills, and directed by Tony nominee Michael Greif.

2h 35m | Already closed | Nederlander Theatre (Midtown W)

Member Reviews (1323)

MEMBERS SAY:

Great singing, Entertaining, Great acting, Disappointing, Slow
76
Avg Score

100
Absorbing, Delightful, Exquisite, Funny, Great acting

See it if You want to see two legends on stage

Don't see it if You don't like musicals

59
Great singing, Great staging, Disappointing, Undramatic, Lipstick-on-a-pig

See it if you want to see Patti & Christine, still at the top of their game.

Don't see it if you expect any dramatic arc, compelling narrative or campy fun. There's no story, so there was no reason for this musical to be written.

Also This show has a lot of the right elements to have been a great musical... Read more Read less

74
A treat to see double divas, but uninspired vehicle

See it if who wouldn't want to see combo of formidable Lupone and Ebersole in leading roles?

Don't see it if feels that you were seeing an "old" revival; predictable; mawkish ending; forgettable songs

Also After winning lottery, poor seats in back of theater assigned without ... Read more Read less

75
Great singing, Dated, Disappointing, Slow, Epic

See it if You love the two stars, or would like to see a female-empowerment musical for adults (that isn't Wicked).

Don't see it if You think this will be like a musical version of "Feud". It's not campy, and the story and music never truly excite.

83
Absorbing, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if savor 2 grand dames of the stage portraying 2 grand dames of the fashion industry.Wonderful staging and costumes.Great portrayals.

Don't see it if you have trouble understanding accents. I had real trouble with Lupone's accent in the first act. Chrisine was very easy to understand.

72
Clever, Entertaining, Great staging, Disappointing, Great singing

See it if you absolutely love the divas of the musical stage. A lot of detail was lost in the heavy accent Ms. Lupone used for her character.

Don't see it if you are not a musical fan, and don't care about the divas. This was just another musical which relied on big stars to sell tickets.

Also I expected more. While the singing was excellent, much of the story li... Read more Read less

75
Entertaining, Great singing, Great costumes

See it if It's worth it to hear Christine and Patti alone. The costumes are great and the quick changes amazing.

Don't see it if You have no interest in cosmetics or you want a plot with more depth.

79
Great staging, Ambitious, Beautiful costumes, Wonderful patti & christine

See it if Lupone/Ebersole go together like peaches and cream. Interesting story of the Rubinstein/Arden rivalry and women at the top of their game.

Don't see it if Unlike the talent, the score is not memorable. As the two women did not mingle in reality, there was little interaction between the leads.

65
Ambitious, Disappointing, Great singing, Great staging, Overrated

See it if You want to see Lupone and Ebersole be awesome. The singing is great, as is the staging and acting.

Don't see it if A strong story is a requirement to your theater. It felt like it dragged, and didn't really go anywhere. Also, I don't care about makeup.

70
Entertaining, Disappointing, Great singing, Great staging, Banal

See it if Someone gives you the tickets

Don't see it if If you have to pay to see it.

81
Don't miss the two divas together

See it if I waited until it was almost closed, but am I glad I saw War Paint. Their voices are both splendid but very different.

Don't see it if Both have charisma for days The same creative team as Grey Gardens, but the score and story are not as strong. A master class in stardom,

Also Sub-plot of old-style homophobia made me snicker. I once stayed in Eli... Read more Read less

82
Disappointing, Great singing, Overrated, Needs a script

See it if you love LuPone & Ebersole.I do, and it was worth going just to see & hear them. But the play meanders, doesn't tell enough of the story.

Don't see it if you are expecting a fully fleshed out story.This isn't Evita or Grey Gardens. Brilliant performances, but no book.We get hints about them.

79
Ebersole at her best/lupone always fascinating but could have been great story

See it if you want to see two great musical stars working together to make the most of a mundane book. Visual cupcake. costumes and sets.

Don't see it if You want real exploration of these dynamic women.

78
Entertaining, Interesting, Great staging

See it if you are interested in stories about women in power or about cosmetic companies growth and competition.

Don't see it if Elizabeth Arden & Elene Rubinstine's stories do not interest or you are not interested in women power struggles.

75
Cliched, Great acting, Great singing, Beautiful set and costumes

See it if you want to see two great performances and learn more about two important women, although this is the water downed Lifetime TV version.

Don't see it if you expect a nuanced version of this important story.

80
Ambitious, Great singing, Great staging, Disappointing, Quirky

See it if you love, love, love Patti and Christine, they shine! As do John Dosset and Douglas Sills.

Don't see it if you like a well scripted book that actually has the energy of a "war"

89
Delightful, Great singing, Entertaining

See it if War paint is a great showcase for Patti Lupone and Christine Ebersole. Fun and upbeat production!

Don't see it if If you prefer dramas.

79
Great singing, Great staging, Absorbing, Resonant

See it if you want to see 2 great ladies of the musical stage, especially Lupone, show their chops. They're terrific.

Don't see it if musicals are not your thing.

49
Cliched, Excruciating, Indulgent, Insipid, Pointless

See it if you'd be into a show that really should've been called "Paint Drying." What a waste of Broadway legends. So bad I'm actually angry about it.

Don't see it if 2 1/2 hours devoted to face cream doesn't sound like a good time. It's not. See this, & bitterly regret the nap you could've taken instead.

90
Excellent ensemble, Great staging, Superb singing, Era-stylized perfectly, Must-see (even w/weak book)

See it if you worship at the altar of either diva. Both icons slay & leave it all on the stage. Beautifully staged/choreographed w/great era costumes.

Don't see it if OMG just see the freaking show before it freaking closes! Book IS weak (although very relevant at times), but the show is very entertaining!

Also Seriously. Can't believe I waited so long. Putz.... Read more Read less

82
Wonderful singing, Slightly-dated, Fluffy and indulgent, Entertaining, Semi-underwhelming

See it if dying to see Patti Lupone steal a show and Christine Ebersole not doing poorly, either. This is a women's club: many issues still resonate.

Don't see it if seeking modern, fresh, edgy work. The rivalry between the two cosmetic juggernauts is rooted in history in a way that often feels dated.

Also Lupone and Ebersole make this show, and there is plenty of pluck, sass... Read more Read less

92
Enchanting, Entertaining, Great singing, Delightful, Must see

See it if you enjoy watching two legendary divas take the stage and sing their hearts out. Costumes, staging and supporting roles were great, too.

Don't see it if you don't like to hear divas sing.

Also This show was fabulous from start to finish. It would have gotten 100%... Read more Read less

96
Enthralling, Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Riveting, Gorgeous costumes!

See it if You have any interest is cosmetics or female empire builders. This is a glam piece, about glam women who created yet more glam--lush!

Don't see it if You don't want a show heavily weighted to the female perspective.

Also Expecting not to like this, imagine my surprise when I couldn't get en... Read more Read less

80
Exquisite, Glamorous, visually beautiful, Great staging

See it if you are interested in the history and rivalry of 2 cosmetic giants during the 1930s to 1950s in a beautifully costumed production.

Don't see it if you don't like musical biographies with a lot of biography thrown at us with many songs performed in a bit of a confusing presentation.

64
Great acting, Great singing, Disappointing, Overrated

See it if You want to see Patti LuPone and Christine Ebersole. The show Missed its opportunity to explore these pioneering business women's worlds.

Don't see it if The music is forgettable and the story is uneven. No other characters match the leads - very lopsided. A shame, theres a great story in here


April 6th, 2017
“Ms. Ebersole and Ms. LuPone go a great distance in disguising the show’s essential sameness. Ms. LuPone is as imposing as Rubinstein must have been, and presumably a whole lot funnier. Ms. Ebersole is equally formidable in a lighter vein. And Frankel and Korie have written numbers for their star...
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April 6th, 2017
"There are two excellent reasons to see 'War Paint,' and their names are above the title...Otherwise, much of 'War Paint' is a blur. It has been crafted with intelligence and care by the team behind 2006’s poignant 'Grey Gardens'...Michael Greif's direction keeps it moving efficiently along. But ...
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April 6th, 2017
"Beguiling but frustrating...For all the intelligence, sophistication, and sheer talent involved — LuPone and Ebersole are in top form — 'War Paint' keeps falling between an older model of storytelling and a new one, never fully climbing its way out of the gap...The structure quickly becomes a bi...
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April 6th, 2017
"The marquee draw is the dynamite pairing of Patti LuPone and Christine Ebersole, Broadway's finest, in richly distinctive roles that play to their respective strengths...Their contrasting turns here are simply mesmerizing...Despite its relatively low-key dramatic engine, this is a smart, sophist...
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Cast & Creatives (29)