Debbie Z

New York City | 50-64 | Female
About:  Singer and Lover-of-all-things-Musical-Theater
Reviews (78)
80
Clever, Entertaining, Absorbing, Funny, Delightful
July 8th, 2022

See it if You enjoyed the movie also starring Billy Crystal, you appreciate the long vanished world of borscht belt humor and you love Billy Crystal

Don't see it if You don’t like Billy Crystal or you don’t find borscht belt humor funny and the family drama portrayed on stage wouldn’t interest you.

Also I had low expectations and was pleasantly surprised. The show was fun ... Read more Read less

97
Intelligent, Delightful, Edgy, Funny, Absorbing
July 8th, 2022

See it if I was predisposed to like this show but I LOVED it!! Alex Edelman’s take on the world is insightful, clever, nuanced and hysterical.

Don't see it if You don’t like stand-up comedy. You don’t like insightful contemporary humor or your politics skew to the far far right.

79
The Lucky Star
Midtown E
Important, Intense, Thought-provoking, Resonant, Ambitious
June 8th, 2022

See it if You are interested in a new twist to a Holocaust narrative and you believe in the importance of telling these stories. Powerful acting

Don't see it if The second act is weak and not as compelling. It diminishes the power of the story. Overall, this is a show to see and to think about.

92
Absorbing, Masterful, Resonant, Entertaining, Delightful
April 25th, 2022

See it if You seek a show that will touch your heart, reach into your soul and make you laugh out loud. Great stories and songs performed by a master!

Don't see it if You’re looking for a conventional cabaret show or a program that won’t move you. This show has so much more! It’s multi-media & interactive

81
Company (Broadway)
Midtown W
Clever, Great singing, Resonant, Quirky, Ambitious
February 18th, 2022

See it if you love Sondheim, you love this show, you’re really curious to see what this gender switched version looks like. The songs!! Patti!

Don't see it if You are looking for a standard narrative -driven musical. Or you are looking for the traditional version of this show.

84
Intimate Apparel
Upper W Side
Great singing, Intense, Profound, Intelligent, Ambitious
February 17th, 2022

See it if You want to see the synergy of musical theater and contemporary opera with a story that is powerful and haunting. An important show!

Don't see it if You want a light and hummable score with a story that does not demand that you think about US history or the fragility of illusion.

90
Thought-provoking, Intense, Great singing, Masterful, Profound
January 6th, 2022

See it if You want a complex piece of American life portrayed in an unusual way. Sharon Clarke is marvelous and surrounded by exceptional talents.

Don't see it if You were looking for a traditional book musical or you prefer not to see Jewish life portrayed in all its complexity.

93
Exquisite, Ambitious, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing
December 16th, 2021

See it if You love beautifully crafted and well written theater, you are interested in the way that Theatre illuminates history.

Don't see it if you prefer that your theater experience is entertaining, you don’t want to sit for 3 1/2 hours and history and politics don’t interest you

97
Riveting, Must see, Absorbing
November 11th, 2021

See it if No better show for a first show post-pandemic. A story of positive, life-affirming behavior during a bleak time of great uncertainty & pain

Don't see it if I think everyone should see this show. Only skip this show if your heart is frozen.

77
Cliched, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great acting
January 15th, 2020

See it if You are a fan of the two stars who give masterful performances or you appreciate slice of life productions.

Don't see it if You don’t want 2 hours of conversation about confronting the end of life or some occasionally banal or corny father-son interaction.

78
Great singing, Entertaining, Ambitious
December 20th, 2019

See it if you love Deanna Durbin, Judy Garland, stories of Old Hollywood, and one woman shows. Beautiful singing of old standards.

Don't see it if you're looking for a nuanced, fully-realized portrayal of this unsung Hollywood actress. It's a challenge to make this work & it mostly did

79
Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great singing, Ambitious
December 14th, 2019

See it if you love Baby, Maltby & Shire, you are intrigued by an immersive theatrical experience. The cast was fabulous & the production ambitious.

Don't see it if you have any issues with small, tight quarters, updating shows or are uninterested in a show about fertility and relationships.

Also I understand that theaters have budgets and need money from ticket sal... Read more Read less

78
Relevant, Work-in-progress, Thought-provoking, Resonant, Ambitious
December 6th, 2019

See it if you feel that history can teach us much about the present, you enjoy plays that bring sacred text to life, you admire experimental theater.

Don't see it if you want a fully-realized, linear narrative, you have no interest or context for stories from the Talmud.

Also I have known these stories for over 40 years yet this retelling of the... Read more Read less

85
During previews
Games
Soho/Tribeca
Thought-provoking, Intense, Relevant, Ambitious, Absorbing
October 13th, 2019

See it if the overlooked stories of women appeal to you, you seek a new perspective on Holocaust stories, you enjoy learning about the Olympics

Don't see it if you are looking for a light, sports-oriented story or you don't want a Holocaust-related narrative.

78
LOVER
Midtown W
Cliched, Quirky, Indulgent, Ambitious
October 13th, 2019

See it if you like one person confessional shows. The show evolved from a rather banal recitation of relationships to a deeper portrayal of a life.

Don't see it if you want a deep story although the show picked up midway and became far more interesting. Far too many Jewish stereotypes for my taste.

68
Disappointing, Confusing, Ambitious
September 11th, 2019

See it if you're curious about Hedy Lamar's interesting and complex life or you enjoy shows that highlight the lives of women.

Don't see it if you want any real understanding of Lamar's life beyond her many disappointing marriages. I hoped for context for her scientific interest.

79
Rinse, Repeat
Midtown W
Relevant, Ambitious, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Intense
August 11th, 2019

See it if you are interested in the rarely-discussed but prevalent subject of disordered eating. That the playwright plays herself is powerful.

Don't see it if you seek something light and fun. This is serious and painful yet illuminates an important subject. I wanted more nuance in the parents.

78
Hannah Senesh
Financial
Great singing, Profound, Intense, Relevant, Ambitious
August 6th, 2019

See it if you are interested in Hannah Senesh specifically or theater which deals with the Holocaust or strong women. An ambitious undertaking!

Don't see it if you want light entertainment or don't care to remember the legacy of a great Jewish heroine. There is music but it's not a musical.

91
Working: A Musical
Midtown W
Intelligent, Resonant, Relevant, Great singing, Absorbing
June 30th, 2019

See it if you love the work of Stephen Schwartz or any of the brilliant collaborators who created this show, you enjoy a show that evolves to its time

Don't see it if if you want a traditional musical with a linear narrative, a hero, a heroine and great sets, fancy costumes and elaborate dancing.

90
Hilarious, Great singing, Funny, Entertaining, Delightful
June 9th, 2019

See it if you love Carl Reiner and stories of theater in the 30's, a fun coming-of-age story and a fabulous cast, especially Chris Dwan as David.

Don't see it if you don't love stories of an aspiring life in the theater, you don't care for a linear narrative and the time period holds no interest.

84
During previews
Little Women
West Village
Delightful, Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Entertaining, Relevant
May 25th, 2019

See it if Little Women was one of your favorite books and you are curious to see how it works as a play and how it speaks to our time.

Don't see it if You prefer not to have a classic work of literature reframed to illuminate some of the contemporary challenges of gender and identity.

23
Sincerely, Oscar
Midtown W
Insipid, Indulgent, Excruciating, Disappointing, Banal
April 17th, 2019

See it if you want to hear Hammerstein's music, no matter what and you didn't believe that the bad reviews could really reflect how bad it was.

Don't see it if you cherish the music and life of Oscar Hammerstein and want a show that pays proper homage to his genius. Actually, just don't see it.

79
During previews
The Cradle Will Rock
East Village
Thought-provoking, Relevant, Intense, Great acting, Ambitious
March 29th, 2019

See it if you believe theater should give us insight into our world, if you enjoy the work of Marc Blitzstein and Kurt Weill.

Don't see it if you're looking for a light, frothy, colorful musical or you want an escape from the challenges of today's political climate.

72
During previews
Vilna
Midtown W
Intense, Disappointing, Thought-provoking, Resonant, Ambitious
March 16th, 2019

See it if you agree with the author that as the actual survivors die, plays and books must bear witness to these events. At times, a powerful play.

Don't see it if you seek a show with nuanced character development or the Holocaust or events surrounding us don't interest you.

Also There was much to commend this show although I think the playwright sa... Read more Read less

89
Clever, Delightful, Resonant, Funny, Entertaining
December 20th, 2018

See it if you're an optimist at heart and love a story with a happy ending, you appreciate a clever premise & a well-executed production. Great cast!

Don't see it if you're looking for a traditional musical or you're wanting something dark and deep.

80
Gloria: A Life
Gramercy
Absorbing, Intelligent, Relevant, Resonant, Riveting
November 24th, 2018

See it if You care about feminism and are interested in the movement through the prism of Gloria Steinem’s life. Beautifully crafted production

Don't see it if women’s rights are irrelevant to your life. Supporters of the current administration will be frustrated with this production.

92
Enchanting, Exquisite, Great staging, Masterful, Must see
November 17th, 2018

See it if you feel passionately about musical theater and one of the most iconic shows that transformed Broadway in its time and continues to thrill!

Don't see it if you hate dancing, musical theater magic or you want a linear narrative in your shows.

95
Ordinary Days
Midtown W
Absorbing, Exquisite, Great singing, Must see, Resonant
November 5th, 2018

See it if you look to theater to illuminate our world. This show does that & more. The music is beautiful, the story powerful & the acting wonderful

Don't see it if I think everyone should see this show. It's neither big nor splashy but quietly moving and profound. If you're looking for CATS, don't go!

90
Delightful, Great singing, Great staging, Masterful, Must see
August 13th, 2018

See it if you enjoy Lieber and Stoller's music or if you don't know you do because most of these songs are iconic and are presented in a fabulous way!

Don't see it if you want a book musical or you hate musicals or you hate Lieber and Stoller's music or you need to sit for three hours for an intense drama.

60
During previews
R.R.R.E.D.
Gramercy
Quirky, Indulgent, Confusing, Great singing
August 13th, 2018

See it if you like Monty Python or absurdist theater. The singing is good & the premise is intriguing. Great singing and awesome surprise guest!

Don't see it if you want a show that makes a lot of sense. I got the point but the show meandered all over the place. Giveaways didn't obscure the problems

69
Skintight
Midtown W
Ambitious, Cliched, Intense, Thought-provoking, Indulgent
June 21st, 2018

See it if you are a passionate fan of Idina or the others, you are intrigued by exploring definitions of beauty, youth and family, & oh, that set!

Don't see it if the histrionics got in the way of depth, the subjects of the play were intriguing but the playwright didn't take us anywhere new or helpful.

71
During previews
The Fourth Wall
Midtown W
Ambitious, Edgy, Intense, Thought-provoking, Relevant
June 1st, 2018

See it if you enjoy Gurney's work, are intrigued by political satire masquerading as comedy of manners & this company's commitment to inclusion.

Don't see it if you are annoyed by an affected manner that pervades the show even if it serves the play's purpose, you want your theater free of politics.

Also I appreciated the intimacy of this theater space but was irritated to ... Read more Read less

90
During previews
Absorbing, Ambitious, Great acting, Epic, Masterful
April 12th, 2018

See it if you want a classic, produced with style, intelligence and phenomenal acting. Its themes are sadly resonant. 3 hours flew by!

Don't see it if if you know or care nothing for Joan's story or the conflict between church and secular authority. If 3 hours seems daunting, don't go!

76
During previews
Goldstein
Midtown W
Great singing, Cliched, Resonant
March 30th, 2018

See it if You seek a small musical that deals with large themes such as intergenerational family drama with great singing (impressively unmiked),

Don't see it if You are looking for a big splashy show or you want a show that delves beneath the surface of Jewish themes

Also Loved the location. My first time at the Actors Temple and it is alive... Read more Read less

50
The Cover of Life
East Village
Ambitious, Disappointing, Intense, Slow, Cliched
March 12th, 2018

See it if your desire to see a show about three sisters married to three brothers in Louisiana during WWII trumps seeing a polished, coherent play

Don't see it if you are looking for a well-written play with great dialogue and a compelling narrative. The actors deserved better material.

Also I really wanted to like this play. The premise was interesting and I w... Read more Read less

86
The Amateurs
Gramercy
Intelligent, Masterful, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Great staging
March 11th, 2018

See it if you like your theater with multiple layers of meaning, you enjoy a play that makes you laugh and think at the same time

Don't see it if you're looking for a consistent narrative or a play that makes you think about uncomfortable subjects like the nature of individuality.

69
During previews
Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Confusing, Disappointing, Intense
January 31st, 2018

See it if you are interested in the early days of Israel's development and you are intrigued by the intersection of culture, music and identity

Don't see it if you seek a show with more action than lots of speeches at other characters. Too much 'talking heads' staging.

Also I wanted to like this show so much but it just didn't come together su... Read more Read less

73
Dizzying, Quirky, Relevant, Funny, Thought-provoking
January 21st, 2018

See it if you need more Jack McFarland in your life, or seriously, if you are intrigued by the issue of what mainstreaming does to gay culture.

Don't see it if you have no interest in gay culture or issues that affect the gay community or you are easily offended by drug/alcohol use.

92
During previews
Great writing, Masterful, Intense, Intelligent, Resonant
January 21st, 2018

See it if you enjoy Eve Ensler's political-activist/personally-driven theater. Her story is compelling & powerful. The staging is extraordinary.

Don't see it if you don't want a one-woman show that deals with explicit discussions of illness or Eve Ensler's kind of theater does nothing for you.

83
Memorare
Greenwich V
Absorbing, Intelligent, Intense, Relevant, Thought-provoking
January 13th, 2018

See it if you are concerned with the divisiveness and hostility present in American culture today & want to see theater that evokes these issues

Don't see it if you are looking for a light-hearted story of nuns and religious life or you prefer your theater to be an escape from the challenges of today

71
Ambitious, Great acting, Cliched, Slow, Intense
January 6th, 2018

See it if You love the golden age of Hollywood, you enjoy one woman shows and shows that illuminate the challenges faced by women.

Don't see it if You are hoping for a lighthearted show or a musical

65
Hot Mess
Midtown W
Fluffy, Disappointing, Quirky, Good acting, Indulgent
November 20th, 2017

See it if you're looking for cute one act play, you like the actors and you're a fan of stand up

Don't see it if you seek a fully realized show that delves into a complicated relationship or you don't need for an extra dose of raunch with your comedy.

92
Brigadoon
Midtown W
Enchanting, Great singing, Must see, Romantic, Delightful
November 18th, 2017

See it if You love classic musicals, the enchanting music of Lerner & Loewe, Kelli O’Hara doing anything, Stephanie J Block and gorgeous dancing.

Don't see it if You hate beautifully sung and danced musicals or you prefer a more realistic story line

69
Clever, Great singing, Relevant, Entertaining, Cliched
July 23rd, 2017

See it if You're intrigued by following a single $100 bill through several owners with commentary by Ben Franklin, you enjoy David Friedman's music

Don't see it if You find the premise too cheesy or saccharine. I also found a number of the characterizations too clichéd or stereo typical.

Also The performers were terrific, handled a dizzying number of costume cha... Read more Read less

91
Great acting, Great staging, Enchanting, Must see, Delightful
July 10th, 2017

See it if you have a pulse! Great revival of a fun show. Donna Murphy was exceptional as were her castmates. Staging & costumes were extraordinary.

Don't see it if you don't enjoy a Jerry Herman show or a show of the Golden Age of musicals, or you don't want to be dazzled by a beautiful show.

66
Napoli, Brooklyn
Midtown W
Great acting, Cliched, Disappointing, Intense, Great staging
July 10th, 2017

See it if you enjoy ethnic family drama and shows that incorporate historical events. Most of the actors rose above their one dimensional roles.

Don't see it if you seek drama that really gets beneath the surface of the action & as noted elsewhere, loud noises bother you. Just one, but it's a doozy.

Also The first act had great promise but the second act was profoundly disa... Read more Read less

85
During previews
Absorbing, Great singing, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Enchanting
July 7th, 2017

See it if you appreciate the legacy of Yiddish music and culture and how relevant these songs are today & you want a show that is well-sung and acted.

Don't see it if you have no interest in Yiddish language or culture, you don't like supertitles and you believe that America has no room for newcomers.

92
Oslo (Broadway)
Upper W Side
Absorbing, Great acting, Great staging, Must see, Resonant
June 23rd, 2017

See it if you appreciate great drama that resonates to the issues of the day & if you love great acting. Oslo stays with you after long it's over.

Don't see it if you're not interested in a serious drama that deals with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and you prefer a show with more action & less talk

Also I know a lot about this topic and I knew exactly how the story would e... Read more Read less

88
During previews
The Whirligig
Midtown W
Riveting, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Relevant
May 7th, 2017

See it if you seek a riveting 2+ hour drama that invokes a lot of the issues surrounding addiction and the way a community responds to one of its own.

Don't see it if you seek a light evening of entertainment or don't want a show that shows the underbelly of small town life & its young adults' struggle

82
Pacific Overtures
East Village
Absorbing, Exquisite, Great acting, Great singing, Masterful
May 7th, 2017

See it if you're a fan of Sondheim and/or John Doyle, you appreciate a show which gets to the heart of the piece and presents it simply & masterfully

Don't see it if you're expecting a full and elaborate production with costumes and staging

Also this show is ever more timely and timeless than before. Seeing John Do... Read more Read less