Janet from Long Island

New York City | 50-64 | Female
About:  A writer/editor by trade, I currently work in marketing and communications for a university. My first year living in NYC I saw about 150 shows, partly courtesy of Show-Score. Some of my favorites of the 2017-8 season were "Desperate Measures," "A Walk in the Woods," and "Jesus Took the 'A' Train."
Reviews (72)
80
Relevant, Absorbing

See it if you are interested in feminist issues presented in a folkloric context.

Don't see it if you have a problem with melodrama or with some very heavy-handed acting in minor roles.

Also This play about slut-shaming and double standards for men and women, s... Read more Read less

80
Life x3
Chelsea
A small, inconsequential play that's smashingly well done. see if it you like reza's work.

See it if you like plays with a nasty bite. This is drawing-room comedy on a collision course with "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf."

Don't see it if you would get bored by constant dialogue with little physical movement. All the movement is in the parry and thrust of the conversation.

Also This is my third encounter with a Yasmina Reza play. I saw the origina... Read more Read less

80
During previews
Masterful, Intense, Great acting, Relevant, Must see

See it if to witness Elaine May's return to Broadway after 50 years (!), if you like Kenneth Lonergan's plays, or if you're interested in dementia.

Don't see it if you can't handle a quicksilver change of tone. Like dementia itself, this play moves quickly back and forth from comedy to tragedy.

Also I feel privileged to have already seen two of this year's likely Best ... Read more Read less

77
Overrated, Thought-provoking, Resonant, Unusual, original

See it if you're naturally inquisitive and appreciate personal history and found objects.

Don't see it if you like your theater straight up. This combines acting with multimedia, object display, and poring over documents in a classroom setting.

Also Because of the title (especially the exclamation point), I expected a ... Read more Read less

70
During previews
Intrusion
Midtown W
Underdeveloped, well-intentioned, Disappointing

See it if you would like to encourage a new talent.

Don't see it if a half-baked attempt at a great topic will frustrate you.

Also Reminiscent of the work of Anna Deavere Smith, this show features one ... Read more Read less

60
Disappointing, Banal, Insipid, Confusing, Missed opportunity

See it if you have an academic interest in sainthood and the Catholic church.

Don't see it if you expect something timely, lively, or revealing.

Also I should have stayed away when I saw the low scores here, but the conn... Read more Read less

65
Dated, Overrated, Fluffy, Disappointing, Confusing

See it if you like traditional musicals with big, colorful production numbers.

Don't see it if you care about character development.

Also I knew very little about this show aside from having sung a medley of ... Read more Read less

75
Cliched, Entertaining, Derivative, good choreography

See it if you'd enjoy a competent but by-the-numbers mashup of Guys and Dolls and West Side Story.

Don't see it if you want something fresh and original, a genuine coming-of-age story.

Also A Bronx Stale. Considering that this is putatively someone's life stor... Read more Read less

80
El Credito
Gramercy
Funny, Absorbing, Clever

See it if you like classic, fast-paced comedy with two sparring actors.

Don't see it if you have a problem with sexual humor.

Also Cuckoldry theme, a staple of European comedy since the middle ages, is... Read more Read less

80
She Calls Me Firefly
Soho/Tribeca
Absorbing, Relevant, Romantic, Immersive

See it if you're interested in an intense exploration of the multigeneration legacy of sexual abuse, and the lasting effects of a parent's suicide.

Don't see it if you're squeamish about dark psychological topics. You prefer a conventional theater setting to a small setting with smallish folding chairs.

Also Powerful exploration of the emotional turmoil of a young man whose cho... Read more Read less

75
Little Rock
East Village
Important subject matter; presentation too broad

See it if you want to learn more about the nine teenagers who integrated Central High School in Little Rock despite mobs, threats, and violence.

Don't see it if broadly written and played characters will ruin the show for you.

Also Well-staged show with music and projections reminded me a bit of "X: O... Read more Read less

75
Great acting, Entertaining, Profound, Tedious

See it if Just to see Condola Rashad's fresh, riveting, and contemporary performance as Saint Joan. Or if you like talky plays such as Travesties.

Don't see it if You are bored by static tableaux of people (mostly middle-aged white men) talking to each other.

Also The play is written as a series of deciding moments in which important... Read more Read less

78
Travesties
Midtown W
Dizzying, Great staging, Intense, Tedious, lacks emotion

See it if you would like a fast-paced, intellectual play that deals in literature, politics, and the history of ideas.

Don't see it if you want some pathos to go with your logos. You don't want characters reciting history at you as if they are a walking book or newspaper.

Also I've liked Tom Stoppard's work in the past (The Real Thing and Arcadia... Read more Read less

90
For a previous production
Brilliant, scathing, must-see

See it if you enjoy no-holds-barred social commentary and dark humor.

Don't see it if you can't tolerate scary, loud, up-close acting and graphic depictions of violence.

Also Still-timely play explores the worst of human behavior, including gun ... Read more Read less

75
Promising, well-meaning, earnest, uneven

See it if you like loose, improvisational monologues with a bit of audience interaction. Puppetry, oddly, is not THAT much of a feature of this show.

Don't see it if you dislike meandering philosophical conversations; if you prefer very structured entertainment or shallow, fun topics.

Also Randy the Australian puppet does some fairly standard comic shtick (wh... Read more Read less

86
45 Coffee Dates
East Village
Hilarious, Entertaining, Moving, affecting, a laugh/cry show

See it if you'd like a funny show about dating in NYC; you're a fan of Sex and the City or HBO's Girls; you're a woman who's done online dating.

Don't see it if you only appreciate very polished productions.

Also My high score is partly due to the subject matter. I too went on score... Read more Read less

87
Relevant, Topical, educational, inspiring

See it if you'd like to see an RSC actor bring a little-known but relevant historical character to life; if you're interested in racial justice.

Don't see it if you dislike historical plays or one-man shows.

Also As a true labor of love, Royal Shakespeare Company actor Paterson Jose... Read more Read less

80
Pygmalion
East Village
Absorbing, Ambitious, Fresh, Smart, Updated

See it if you like a new twist on a classic; if you like Shaw. If you want to see one of the best performances by an actress this year.

Don't see it if you prefer shows with a large cast and lavish production.

Also This streamlined version of the play hits most of its marks but fumble... Read more Read less

75
Feeding the Dragon
West Village
Thought-provoking, Great staging, Relevant, Appealing, Personal

See it if you like thoughtful one-person shows about growing up in unusual circumstances, as well as some exploration of race and class.

Don't see it if you find personal reminiscences boring.

Also Charming and unusual memoir about growing up in an apartment above the... Read more Read less

75
Informative, well-organized, lively, revealing

See it if you're interested in how large entertainment companies select films to adapt for Broadway, and how the show is "positioned" for the audience

Don't see it if the "Mean Girls" movie is too lowbrow for you.

Also Well-run event in the attractive small cinema at the School for Visual... Read more Read less

95
During previews
Relevant, Masterful, Thought-provoking, Impeccable, Nuanced

See it if you appreciate subtle acting with lots of dialogue (a game of wits); if you are interested in geopolitics.

Don't see it if you prefer plays with a lot of action.

Also Elegant from start to finish. Well-written and beautifully acted play ... Read more Read less

70
Party Face
Midtown W
Insipid, Raunchy, Disappointing, Broad

See it if you are a fan of Hayley Mills or if you like broad, sitcom-like comedy.

Don't see it if you like much wit or subtlety or expect to learn anything about Ireland.

Also Formulaic story includes the Big Revelation/Truthtelling moment about ... Read more Read less

87
Enchanting, Funny, Fluffy, Entertaining

See it if you're looking for light entertainment, especially strong physical comedy.

Don't see it if you want a serious presentation of Chekhov.

Also Charming little show. The two romantic leads do an elegant job with th... Read more Read less

80
Relevant, Clever, Ambitious, Hilarious

See it if you enjoy satirical works about African-American culture and race relations.

Don't see it if you expect a completely polished play.

Also The show is a series of skits, some more successful than others. The w... Read more Read less

80
Counting Sheep
Financial
Ambitious, Intense, Epic, Relevant, Educational

See it if you're interested in political revolutions and enjoy immersive, participatory theater.

Don't see it if you aren't interested in geopolitics, or if you like to stay in your seat.

Also Exciting and educational piece of "immersive" theater for the playgoer... Read more Read less

65
Thin story lacks drama; good supporting actors

See it if you don't mind seeing something in which the character has no flaws.

Don't see it if you want a strong concept and story.

Also When we got to intermission I was still wondering what the story was a... Read more Read less

84
Daniel's Husband
Midtown W
Great topic, Play has depth, Lags in places, Recommended, Avoid spoilers!

See it if you're interested in the topic of gay marriage, or marriage in general. A bookend to Bright Colors & Bold Patterns, though goes beyond that.

Don't see it if you can't handle a show that takes a turn for the dark and agonizing. Audience was engrossed. I ate it up!

Also Well-thought-out play on the meaning of marriage that explores both cu... Read more Read less

78
Heartbreak House
Midtown W
Entertaining, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Clever, Slow

See it if you like British plays with lovely costumes, flirtations, clever lines, or you relish Shaw's timeless morality

Don't see it if you can't sit in your seat for 3 hours, or if you need acting/tone to be really consistent

Also Picked this up on the spur of the moment walking around the Theatre Di... Read more Read less

55
During previews
Disappointing, Slow, The pieces are there; needs shaping and emphasis

See it if you're a fan of Janet McTeer, enjoy behind-the-scenes history of iconic Shakespeare productions, want to see women breaking down barriers

Don't see it if I saw it in previews. If you can't reshape the pieces of this show in your head, don't see it in previews; wait till it opens.

Also *Spoilers* I'm a fan of both the magnificent Janet McTeer (so charisma... Read more Read less

80
Strong feminist play, beautiful production, skim the subtitles

See it if you're interested in historic plays with strong female leads.

Don't see it if you don't speak Spanish and need to rely heavily on English subtitles.

Also A noblewoman who has been seduced and abandoned dresses as a man to tr... Read more Read less

55
Pie Shop Play
East Village
Disappointing, Quirky, Original, had potential

See it if you want to support emerging women playwrights and can be *very* indulgent about a play's flaws.

Don't see it if you want all the pieces to add up to a whole pie.

Also In the setting of a pie shop run by two mysterious sisters, the playwr... Read more Read less

75
MUMMENSCHANZ: you & me
Upper W Side
Dated, Funny, Unusual, one of those things you should experience once in your life

See it if you enjoy mime and "physical theater," you have attentive kids aged 8-12, or if you would like Symphonie Fantastique with no sound.

Don't see it if you have a short attention/concentration span. This show works best if you take a deep dive into it, achieving an almost meditative state.

Also Iconic Swiss mime/physical theater troupe uses oversized puppets, cons... Read more Read less

85
During previews
Funny, Entertaining, Clever, Delightful, Great singing

See it if you like silly, campy, over-the-top musicals with a royal or Elizabethan setting. If you liked Spamalot or Into the Woods.

Don't see it if you're uncomfortable with sexual jokes and characters exploring/questioning their sexuality. Theme contributes to the show's energy.

Also "O brave new world, That has such people in't!" Madcap, spiritually ge... Read more Read less

80
Conflict
Midtown W
Absorbing, Relevant, Intelligent, Eye-candy sets/costumes, strong female character

See it if you liked "Hindle Wakes" at same theater, you're interested in economic inequality, you'd appreciate a strong character arc for female lead.

Don't see it if you don't want to concentrate on following a slowly developing story. Most of the physical drama is in the opening.

Also Compelling, well-focused story of former university classmates with di... Read more Read less

86
Terrific instructor, clear themes and takeaways

See it if you'd like to see how Jewish music and experience created the American musical. Lecture is accompanied by PowerPoint slides, video clips.

Don't see it if you don't like taking classes. I love that Show Score offers these.

Also Substantive and well-paced class stuck to the topic and made a couple ... Read more Read less

87
Tense, harrowing look at bereavement and sexuality

See it if you like tense, explicit, uncomfortable dramas and are interested in how cultural values cause teen girls to be sexualized at an early age.

Don't see it if you can't handle a play that keeps you on edge for two hours with very few laughs to ease the tension.

Also When a fifteen-year-old girl loses her mother and has no one else to p... Read more Read less

66
Dan Cody's Yacht
Midtown W
Disappointing, Polished production but flawed script

See it if you're interested in programmatic plays about money, such as Junk.

Don't see it if you care whether the storyline holds together.

Also Another play about money from the same director as Lincoln Center's Ju... Read more Read less

85
Great staging, Great singing, Delightful, Must-see performance by katrina lenk

See it if you like Middle Eastern music, great singing and innovative staging. If a mood of romance, yearning, and melancholy appeals to you.

Don't see it if you're bothered by a problematic sound system. You like shows with big song/dance numbers. (This cast COULD dance but generally doesn't.)

Also When an Egyptian military band is marooned in a small Israeli town, th... Read more Read less

55
The Sea Concerto
Midtown W
Nicely staged show with flawed writing

See it if you like classic American works by Miller, O'Neill, Wilder and would enjoy seeing a flawed but ambitious new play along such lines.

Don't see it if you have high standards for playwriting.

Also With similarities to "Death of a Salesman" and "Our Town," and nicely ... Read more Read less

76
We Live by the Sea
Midtown E
Great acting, Great staging, Intense, Ambitious, Disappointing

See it if you're interested in families dealing with mental illness or disabilities; you like shows with a single tour de force performance.

Don't see it if you prefer a show with a balanced ensemble of performances; you are a proponent of casting actors with disabilities.

Also Beautifully staged show with terrific music, sound effects, and visual... Read more Read less

77
Detained
WaHi/Inwood
Absorbing, Touching, topical, horrifying

See it if you want a living, detailed picture of how, why, and where the U.S. detains undocumented immigrants.

Don't see it if you want lighter fare; if you believe in building a wall and are not willing to change your mind.

Also Two families---a mother and daughter from Venezuela and an Iranian-Can... Read more Read less

93
Lush, heartbreaking, historic, controversial

See it if you want to experience a classic, extravagantly produced Broadway musical that is heavy on singing and dancing.

Don't see it if you prefer older works to be updated for contemporary times. Other than the first of a black actor in the lead role, not much is new here.

Also Having lived in New England (and like the lead characters, fallen in l... Read more Read less

87
Symphonie Fantastique
Soho/Tribeca
Quirky, Exquisite, Enchanting, Unique

See it if you're interested in visual art, puppetry, or classical music.

Don't see it if you come to Show-Score for plays only; if you need a plot, story or narrative to make your evening worthwhile.

Also In this genre-expanding puppet show, a team of five unseen puppeteers ... Read more Read less

78
Later Life
Midtown W
Funny, Entertaining, Clever, Nostalgic, revealing

See it if you like A.R. Gurney, Old Boston, or Henry James's story "The Beast in the Jungle."

Don't see it if you have no interest in old-money New England WASPs.

Also Touching and amusing high-concept play by WASP chronicler Gurney depic... Read more Read less

78
Poignant, informative, with tone problems

See it if you're interested in LGBT rights (sometimes known as human rights), gay history, coming-out stories, and generational differences.

Don't see it if clunky lyrics and an inconsistent tone would ruin the night for you.

Also Slight, tender 90-minute musical lacks conflict and focus for the firs... Read more Read less

80
Fresh, Relevant, Great staging, Edgy

See it if you are stimulated by updatings of classic Greek plays.

Don't see it if you prefer something lighter or have a problem with graphic violence.

Also In this updating, Troy has been destroyed by a nuclear blast. Playwrig... Read more Read less

78
[PORTO]
Upper W Side
Entertaining, Banal, Great acting

See it if you enjoyed Lena Dunham's GIRLS or other plays/movies/TV shows about single professionals in Brooklyn.

Don't see it if you're hoping for new insight or an intense theatrical experience.

Also Lots of creative and clever parts don't add up to a satisfying whole. ... Read more Read less

90
Riveting, Intense, Masterful, Must see

See it if you are interested in the plays of Adrienne Kennedy and like stark, contemporary staging.

Don't see it if you prefer traditional staging and the cadence of conversation.

Also Very short, gripping two-character play about how racism destroys a lo... Read more Read less

80
Clever, Entertaining, Hilarious, Excruciating, Unusual

See it if you're interested in mental illness, mysteries, and detective stories, and you like one-person shows.

Don't see it if mental instability holds no fascination for you.

Also Anne Stockton, an actress/psychiatrist who often works with police dep... Read more Read less

65
Dated, Disappointing, Banal, Superficial, Derivative

See it if you want an evening of song and dance similar to what would take place in your own living room.

Don't see it if you want fresh context for popular song.

Also Well-intended revue blends progress in American women's rights with a ... Read more Read less