Karen 6302

New York City
About:  I'm an avid theater-goer who does a lot of volunteer ushering. I've been going to the theater since 1954 -- Peter Pan with Mary Martin.
Reviews (311)
77
You Will Get Sick
Midtown W
Thought-provoking, Quirky, Great staging, Ambitious
November 23rd, 2022

See it if you are willing to accept the premise and the highly improbable events that follow. Some fine acting by Linda Lavin & Daniel Isaac.

Don't see it if you need to be grounded in real-life drama or the unreality of musical theater. This play has a message, & I accepted all that went with it.

78
Edgy, Disappointing, Ambitious, Absorbing
November 20th, 2022

See it if you want to see a rarely produced and very important play. Some terrific acting and a still relevant story.

Don't see it if you object to important changes being made to a play: added character, different ending, changes in staging.

88
A Man of No Importance
East Village
Intimate, Great staging, Great singing, Entertaining
November 8th, 2022

See it if you're a fan of John Doyle's intimate, personal productions. I am and I loved being close to the actors & enjoyed the production.

Don't see it if you need big. The smallish cast does a wonderful job -- acting and singing and dancing to the great Ahrens & Flaherty score.

80
The Unbelieving
Midtown E
Thought-provoking, Relevant, Intelligent, Absorbing
November 5th, 2022

See it if you want to enter the minds of clergy who are reordering the structure of their belief systems. Some fine acting. Quite insightful.

Don't see it if you want a fully dramatized lengthy drama. This is short (70 mins.) and we just get snippets of their stories.

65
During previews
Monologues and music don't always mesh, Confusing
October 28th, 2022

See it if you want to hear 2 stories which come together at the end. It's a long trip to reach that conclusion. Actors are fine & inhabit their roles.

Don't see it if you want a production that really holds together. The music and the stories didn't form a cohesive whole (for me).

85
Chester Bailey
Chelsea
Moving, Great acting, Absorbing
October 19th, 2022

See it if you want to see great acting from this father-son duo. Some of the scenes are stunning in their intensity. I found it completely believable.

Don't see it if you need a larger cast. I too wish there were more showing, less telling. But it all worked for me and I was moved.

69
During previews
Some good performances, Beautiful set, Disappointing
October 15th, 2022

See it if you want to see Shaw's response to A Doll's House. Unlike Nora, Candida stays in her house (after much talk).

Don't see it if you're put off by uneven acting styles. Some of the performances were a bit overdone and there are times when the play drags.

70
I’m Revolting
Chelsea
Slow, Relevant, Disappointing
October 12th, 2022

See it if you're interested in seeing slice of life (pun unintended) vignettes of skin cancer patients and family members in a hospital waiting room.

Don't see it if you're looking for a play that holds together as a cohesive whole. Too much for some stories; not enough for others.

89
During previews
Riveting, Intense, Great acting, Edgy
October 7th, 2022

See it if you want to see 2 actors completely inhabit their roles from beginning to end in a spell-binding play by Suzan-Lori Parks.

Don't see it if violence, coarse language & a look into the uglier side of life turn you off. It's impossible to watch this performance and not be moved.

Also I find it interesting that this is third play I've re-seen recently af... Read more Read less

85
Intense, Great acting, Moving, Ambitious
October 2nd, 2022

See it if you want to witness the multi-generational saga of a family in Vienna. This is an intense, involving experience with an excellent cast.

Don't see it if you're not willing to focus for over 2 hours as the 56 year saga unfolds. I had some trouble keeping track of the relationships.

Also When I got home and checked the Playbill with the family tree, the rel... Read more Read less

89
During previews
Relevant, Masterful, Great acting, Absorbing
September 18th, 2022

See it if you want to witness 4 superb actors creating believable, moving interludes. They brought their characters to life.

Don't see it if you're uncomfortable with with intimacy and nudity. Some of the proceedings are quite dark and yet, so real. And yes, there is humor, too.

66
During previews
This Beautiful Future
West Village
Slow, Indulgent, Disappointing, Confusing
September 15th, 2022

See it if you're curious to see how combining musical interludes & a pair of characters at 2 different time periods doesn't really work (for me).

Don't see it if you're looking for a cohesive, gripping theatrical experience.

94
Oresteia
Upper E Side
Masterful, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing
July 31st, 2022

See it if you want to see how a play written in the 5th century B.C. can be meaningful and moving today. Clever, innovative staging & superb acting.

Don't see it if you can't sit for 3.5 hours. No laughs, but some musical interludes. It's a very convoluted plot, so reading up on it might be helpful.

Also As others have mentioned, I too felt the final act (Orestes's trial) d... Read more Read less

80
During previews
The Butcher Boy
Chelsea
Refreshing, Dizzying, Edgy, Clever
July 23rd, 2022

See it if you would like a new, way out musical. A strange story about a strange boy & his comic/manic/piggy/violent world. Some good musical numbers.

Don't see it if you're put off by violence, mental illness. You might have problems hearing every line, as the sound system, coupled w/accents, is tricky.

Also Nicholas Barasch is terrific in a very demanding role, as he was in Sh... Read more Read less

83
Thought-provoking, Profound, Absorbing, Slow
July 23rd, 2022

See it if you want to see how the source material is handled on stage. Terrific musical percussion accompaniment throughout.

Don't see it if you don't care for story-telling. Amir has many monologues, where dramatizations might have been more effective.

86
Between The Lines
Midtown W
Great staging, Funny, Entertaining, Clever
July 23rd, 2022

See it if you like happily ever after. I guess that was a spoiler. Some great performances in an imaginatively staged fairy tale. Very enjoyable.

Don't see it if you're looking for a big musical or if you don't want to go on a trip to the not-so-real world.

Also Based on the YA novel, this is geared to the younger set. But this way... Read more Read less

85
Quirky, Funny, Entertaining, Clever
June 12th, 2022

See it if you're a fan of Sarah's or just want to be entertained. Some good songs and a pleasure to see Bebe. A poignant story well-told & well-sung.

Don't see it if you're offended by some very raunchy language. Dirty jokes galore & some tragic history retold, yet humor & a sympathetic voice win out.

65
During previews
Epiphany
Upper W Side
Disappointing, Indulgent, Slow, Great staging
June 7th, 2022

See it if you want to see some talented actors perform for two hours in a play that really doesn't hold together and is at times difficult to hear.

Don't see it if you want a cohesive plot structure that fills in gaps and doesn't leave the audience guessing at the relationships and missing links.

80
Belfast Girls
Chelsea
Thought-provoking, Intense, Great acting, Absorbing
May 21st, 2022

See it if you would like to see a dramatic depiction of an historical event - young women sent from Belfast to Australia under false pretenses.

Don't see it if you have trouble understanding accented speech. I missed some of the dialogue and now I want to read the play.

90
During previews
Innovative, Great singing, Funny, Entertaining
May 12th, 2022

See it if you want to spend a couple of hours with a talented cast in an original musical set in 1960 Brooklyn -- and a bit in Verona.

Don't see it if you don't like your Shakespeare light. SPOILER: Much happier ending than Romeo and Juliet or West Side Story.

90
Great acting, Great singing, Clever
May 6th, 2022

See it if you want to see some marvelous performers with great singing and acting skills present a Sondheim classic -- with the best Milky White.

Don't see it if you need extensive scenery & a huge cast. This staging allows us to use our imagination so we can focus on the haunting melodies & lyrics.

90
Two by Synge
Chelsea
Masterful, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting
April 24th, 2022

See it if you like Irish theater and delight in watching talented and committed actors perform the words of J.M. Synge.

Don't see it if you have a problem with accented speech. But in the intimate setting of this theater, we're close enough to the actors to understand them.

Also And there's music, too!

85
Refreshing, Funny, Entertaining, Clever
April 14th, 2022

See it if you want to find out what really happened with Odysseus and Penelope. Very entertaining with some great harmonies and exuberant actors.

Don't see it if you like your history straight up and serious. A small cast that really delivers.

86
Great writing, Relevant, Great acting, Absorbing
March 22nd, 2022

See it if you want to see an ensemble cast performing beautifully together and doing justice to Richard Greenberg's profound play.

Don't see it if as almost everyone has mentioned, seeing naked men on stage is not your cup of tea. All of the nudity was appropriate and not done to shock.

Also Having seen the play 20 years ago, I went in with fond memories of the... Read more Read less

86
The Baker’s Wife
Midtown W
Great set, Lovely score, Great singing, Great staging, Great acting
March 12th, 2022

See it if you would like to see a show that never made it to Broadway, but it should have. Beautifully told, with some wonderful performances.

Don't see it if you demand a show with lots of dancing, not much here. Another intimate musical in a small theater that draws the audience in.

Also Stephen Schwartz mentioned in the talkback that this show does not hav... Read more Read less

90
Great singing, Great staging, Entertaining, Delightful
February 19th, 2022

See it if you like musical theater. Some terrific performances & a great score. Extra enjoyable for theater buffs who will recognize real people.

Don't see it if theater has to be big for you to enjoy it. Much to be said for intimate performances with unamplified sound in a small space.

85
During previews
Made by God
Chelsea
Intense, Great staging, Edgy, Great acting, Absorbing
February 12th, 2022

See it if you want to become completely involved in a relevant topic. The content is disturbing & sometimes difficult to watch in this intimate space.

Don't see it if you don't want to see a small cast of excellent actors tackle a controversial topic. Beautifully staged with some gut-wrenching scenes.

85
During previews
Intimate Apparel
Upper W Side
Absorbing chamber opera, Great staging, Great singing
January 21st, 2022

See it if you want to experience a retelling of Lynn Nottage's play with an eclectic score by Ricky Ian Gordon. Involving with talented cast.

Don't see it if you actively dislike sung-through productions. Even those who dislike opera may enjoy this moving, well-sung production.

84
During previews
Refreshing, Great staging, Great singing
December 9th, 2021

See it if If you want to see some fine actors/singers in this tale of long ago NYC. The story is still relevant.

Don't see it if Small-scale productions are not for you. In this small theater, it was easy to become completely engrossed.

Also So refreshing to hear singing and a small band without heavy amplifica... Read more Read less

78
Some great dancing, Visually stunning, Ambitious
December 1st, 2021

See it if If you're willing to explore a very strange mind trip. Acting, singing, dancing are superb and the staging and projections are stunning.

Don't see it if You don't want to sit for almost 3 hrs & walk out humming the scenery. Some cutting would definitely help -- the swimming scene does go on.

70
Morning Sun
Midtown W
Ambitious, Unusual, Disappointing
November 29th, 2021

See it if There is some great acting and some terrific monologues, especially by Edie Falco at the end. It just didn't hold together for me.

Don't see it if You don't want to give it your complete focus for over 90 minutes. Plot and characterizations can be confusing and sometimes hard to hear.

84
During previews
Kimberly Akimbo
Chelsea
Moving, Great writing, Entertaining
November 29th, 2021

See it if A wonderful musical expansion of the 2000 off-Broadway Lindsay-Abaire play. Victoria Clark's characterization is so vivid and moving.

Don't see it if You're not into stories with characters who are often unfeeling. There is a real poignancy in this work and the music is terrific.

85
For a previous production
Great choreography and dancing, Entertaining, Delightful
November 29th, 2021

See it if Just delightful revue with a talented cast of six (and some great musicians). Some lovely Irving Berlin melodies mixed with anecdotes.

Don't see it if You want big. This is an intimate revue that holds together and brings a smile.

83
Moving, Entertaining, Absorbing
November 8th, 2021

See it if You're open to hearing an inspirational story. Ruben speaks from the heart about this amazing woman who loved him.

Don't see it if You need more than two talented people on stage.

85
Incantata
Chelsea
Great staging, Powerful, Riveting, Great acting, Ambitious
March 12th, 2020

See it if you want to see a mournful poem come to life. I had read the poem several times before the play which made his enactment more meaningful.

Don't see it if you're not a poetry fan and prefer more subdued (this performance isn't understated) theatrics.

78
Drift
Midtown W
Intense, Great staging, Great acting, Edgy
March 11th, 2020

See it if you want to see an interesting story of family relationships unfold. Some of the past events were a bit confusing.

Don't see it if you don't want to hear actors screaming at each other -- a lot of yelling, as the whole play was presented at a fever pitch.

90
Dana H.
Gramercy
Intense, Riveting, Masterful, Edgy, Absorbing
March 11th, 2020

See it if you want to see an amazing piece of theatrical skill. Dana's story is fascinating and Dierdre O'Connell fully inhabits the role.

Don't see it if you need stage action. Seated, she is telling a story -- and what a story it is! Not usually a fan of one-person shows, I was captivated.

79
We're Gonna Die
Midtown W
Refreshing, Great staging, Great singing, Quirky, Clever
March 7th, 2020

See it if if you want to see a great performance by Janelle McDermoth, a true life-force in a show about death. Some great staging and a terrific band

Don't see it if you're looking for a full-fledged play. Only 60 minutes, more like a cabaret act.

Also A bit of inconsistency with the audience singalong lyrics, "We're goin... Read more Read less

78
Some good moments, Great acting
February 29th, 2020

See it if you want to see a bravura performance from Laura Linney. The play is not worthy of her exquisite characterizations.

Don't see it if you're not a fan of one-person shows. Although, Linney's ability to create two different characters is praise-worthy.

63
During previews
The Perplexed
Midtown W
Good actors doing the best they can with a script not worthy of them, Great set, Convoluted and confusing
February 29th, 2020

See it if you want to see a set that you want to move into. Not nearly up to Richard Greenberg's past successes.

Don't see it if you want to see a believable plot. And it's much too long. I understand that 5 minutes have been cut -- not nearly enough.

88
During previews
Delightful, Beth malone is terrific, Great staging, Entertaining, Great singing
February 23rd, 2020

See it if you're looking for a rarely-done Meredith Willson (with some changes) score. Small theater, but beautifully done.

Don't see it if you need a big production. Small cast playing multiple roles and a small but excellent band.

Also Disclaimer: My critical skills may be somewhat muted as I was so pleas... Read more Read less

75
During previews
Francis hue is mesmerizing, Intense, Edgy, Ambitious
February 22nd, 2020

See it if you're up for a concert (as indicated in the title) mixed with some harrowing scenes of torture circa the Khmer Rouge regime.

Don't see it if you don't care for loud rock concerts. I found the juxtaposition between the music scenes and the dramatic scenes disconcerting.

89
Mack & Mabel
Midtown W
Marvelous orchestrations, Great singing, Great choreography, Terrific score, Entertaining
February 20th, 2020

See it if you want to see Jerry Herman's tuneful score come to life. Some great acting, singing and dancing.

Don't see it if you would be troubled by the much revised, still troublesome book. This is not a happy story, but it's beautifully performed by a great cast

71
Look Back In Anger
East Village
Intense, Profound, Edgy, Great writing, Ambitious
February 15th, 2020

See it if you're a fan of Osborne's writing and want to visit (or revisit) the world of the angry young men of British drama.

Don't see it if you have little tolerance for yelling and mild violence. The volatile relationships are intense and rapidly change from moment to moment.

Also I liked the first act more than the second, hence my lowered grade. Th... Read more Read less

60
During previews
72 Miles to Go...
Midtown W
Slow, Relevant, Confusing, Disjointed, Early preview
February 15th, 2020

See it if you want to see a depiction of the effects of a family member being deported. It's a relevant topic calling for a more cohesive presentation

Don't see it if you want to understand all the dialogue. Sounds were muffled, especially phone calls. Almost 2 hours without an intermission.

89
During previews
Masterful, Great writing, Great acting, Entertaining, Absorbing
February 13th, 2020

See it if you love theater & Irish history. Beautiful retelling of the important role Lady Gregory played. And you get to meet Yeats, Synge, O'Casey.

Don't see it if you don't like "talky" plays. But you'll be missing a fascinating history lesson and 2 excerpts from Lady G's plays.

76
Some funny moments, Entertaining, Clever, Beautiful costumes
February 12th, 2020

See it if you're a Charles Busch fan. Lucky to be sitting up close and watching his facial expressions was a treat. A tad too long.

Don't see it if campy parodies of old movies are not your cup of tea. Watching everyone over-act does does become tiresome after a while.

78
Absorbing, Relevant, Great set
February 12th, 2020

See it if you want to see Len Cariou give a realistic performance, playing a very interesting character. Some lovely moments.

Don't see it if you don't like discussions about aging, failing health, and difficult father-son moments.

85
Darling Grenadine
Midtown W
Great staging, Poignant, Interesting story, Great singing, Clever
February 10th, 2020

See it if you're up to see a new work with some good songs and interesting characters. Clever staging and projections. Small cast does great job.

Don't see it if you want big -- large cast, orchestra, scenery. This is an intimate piece in a very small (black box) theater and the audience was involved.

Also This could use some judicious cuts.

70
During previews
Lovely incidental music, Interesting plots, Some good acting, Slow
February 8th, 2020

See it if if you like the Chekhov/Tolstoy stories and want to see them brought to life.

Don't see it if you need a more complete presentation. These are really slices of life enactments.

Also Some of the dialogue in Chekhov was difficult to hear.