Kurtal

Hell's Kitchen | 35-49 | Male
About:  Theatre junkie who works in higher education.
Reviews (255)
45
During previews
Unnecessary, Dated, Disappointing, Slow

See it if you're a fan of any of the performers. They all show up and give solid performances with incredible subpar material.

Don't see it if you want to see a show that knows what it is and what it has to say. I can certainly imagine a show that engages with ideas of fidelity...

Also ...monogamy, and polyamory in a modern and relevant way, but this is n... Read more Read less

82
Is This A Room
Gramercy
Contemporary, Relevant, Great acting

See it if you are interested in the interrogation and capture of a central figure in the Russian interference investigation; you want to have your...

Don't see it if ...preconceived notions of Reality Winner blown up. The show is simple and straightforward, being a transcript of the first FBI interview

Also with the person who leaked documents confirming Russian interference i... Read more Read less

72
Thought-provoking, Edgy, Ambitious

See it if you're ready for a one-man show that engages with transphobia, racism, capitalism, and consumer culture in the South

Don't see it if you don't think that a White man should be telling the stories of people of color. Darkly has some really strong ideas, but I couldn't shake

Also the feeling that it wasn't his story to tell.

92
During previews
West Side Story
Midtown W
Resonant, Relevant, Profound, Intense, Edgy

See it if you want a reinvention of WSS that brings the show firmly into the 21st century; you aren't afraid of risk taking, reinventive theatre

Don't see it if you don't like large scale use of projections; you are a traditionalist; you think that WSS *isn't* about gun violence and police brutality

Also First preview, so some technical things to work out. This show is, lik... Read more Read less

79
Great staging, Entertaining, Ambitious

See it if you're a devotee of Christmas shows; you're looking for a solid take on a classic; your Grinchy heart needs to grow a few sizes

Don't see it if you are looking for a massive reinvention of the tale; you actively dislike gratuitous audience interaction

91
Great singing, Entertaining, Delightful

See it if you want to see a stellar cast taking on a classic piece; you want a Broadway quality production in a beautifully intimate space.

Don't see it if you will be distracted by flying spittle; you're not a fan of the show or the movie

66
Banal, Uninteresting, Quirky

See it if you're interested in what would happen if Hadestown and Be More Chill had a baby.

Don't see it if you aren't a huge fan of the books.

79
The Rose Tattoo
Midtown W
Funny, Confusing, Delightful

See it if you're interested in a dramedy-style take on a Tennessee Williams classic; you want to see Marisa Tomei in a scenery chewing role

Don't see it if you're uncomfortable with thick accents and broad comedy; you expect tonal consistency; you want age appropriate casting

Also This is a weird little show that floated between telenovela, high dram... Read more Read less

85
During previews
Relevant, Slow, Great singing, Confusing, Ambitious

See it if you want to support new and ambitious work. This show is a two hander that examines two important eras in race relations in the US. Act One

Don't see it if is tough to get through. The structure and content are confusing and require you to really focus. But Act Two is transcendent. Danyel

Also Fulton gives a star making performance. I really really hope that they... Read more Read less

33
During previews
Fur
East Village
Slow, Excruciating, Confusing

See it if you're a Migdalia Cruz devotee; you are okay with a complicated plot that never completely gels

Don't see it if you want performances or direction that can help you navigate this unnecessarily complex plot. The world isn't sufficiently built, and the

Also relationships don't feel earned.

83
During previews
Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent, Relevant, Engrossing

See it if Anna Deveare Smith is a legend. Go see her work immediately.

Don't see it if You're not interested in a fascinating one man show examining racial history in Brooklyn

74
Clever, Entertaining, Enjoyable

See it if you want a solid if fairly unsurprising magic/psychic/illusionist show. I enjoyed it more than I expected to, but I also saw right through

Don't see it if a couple of the bits. But ultimately it was an enjoyable night out. Don't go if you're expecting anything more than a magic show. There's

Also no deeper message to be found.

84
During previews
Soft Power
East Village
Uneven, Quirky, Relevant, Hilarious

See it if you want a sharp but somewhat uneven satire on American-Chinese relationships; you can embrace the occasionally ludicrous; you want to laugh

Don't see it if you're not keen on satire; you need your musical's book to make total sense; you don't want 80% of your show to be a dream sequence

64
During previews
Could be something with an overhaul, Disappointing, Poorly directed, Exhausting

See it if you're a fan of The National; you want to see a stellar cast doing its best with challenging material

Don't see it if you want songs that sound like they're from musicals; you want a show that knows what story it's telling; you want a lead that can sing

Also Ok, so this was the first preview, so maybe they'll work out some of t... Read more Read less

51
The Green Room
Midtown W
Promising?, Underdeveloped, Indulgent, Cliched

See it if you want to see a collection of okay songs performed by very earnest (and fairly talented) young actors.

Don't see it if you want a book that makes sense at all. The plot had more holes in it than a whorehouse. And most of the jokes were worse than that.

73
The New Englanders
Midtown W
Uneven, Could have been more, Great acting, Disappointing

See it if you want to see a queer family's journey in suburban New England. It's a pretty soapy drama, so if that's your thing, you'll be well set.

Don't see it if you want to feel like your characters' choices are earned; you want fully developed characters; you are interested in full resolution

78
Weirdo, Whacko, Immersive, Art installation, Quirky

See it if you're into a weird immersive art installation/theatre piece that is about dolls and art and art with dolls.

Don't see it if you're not into weirdo shit.

Also I actually dug this. It's underdeveloped and needs some work on the fl... Read more Read less

83
Fellatious, Smart as hell, Delightful, Great writing, Hilarious

See it if you want a (dare I say) feminist take on fellatio that is clever, literary, and inspired. This tight stand-up set may make Novak a star.

Don't see it if you're uncomfortable with frank and hilarious depictions of sexuality; you don't want to think of penises as little ladies.

81
During previews
Super fun, Entertaining, Delightful, Clever

See it if you like improv, hip hop, and an enjoyable night of entertainment. This takes "yes and..." to a whole new level.

Don't see it if you're looking for a traditional book musical or show. This is a pure improv show with a beatbox base. But don't be afraid to try...

Also ...something new. I mean, I never thought I would shed a tear at a fre... Read more Read less

60
Alice in Wonderland
Greenwich V
Amateur, Cuteish, Cheesy, Only for kids, For kids

See it if you've got kids and are looking for a cute, cheesy, and kinda mindless show.

Don't see it if you're looking for something professional or nuanced.

85
During previews
Cryptic, Ambiguous, Absorbing, Great acting, Haunting

See it if you're willing to be patient with a show that builds very slowly and doesn't resort to flash or gimmicks in its storytelling; you want to...

Don't see it if ...see two excellent performances in a play that is incredibly layered, intentionally ambiguous, and deceptively simple. This show has...

Also ...crawled inside my brain, and I'm going to be thinking about it for ... Read more Read less

67
The Talmud
Brooklyn
Confusing, Great staging, Ambitious

See it if you have a deep knowledge of the minutiae of Jewish scripture and are interested in seeing it brought to life... Kind of

Don't see it if you're looking for structure, plot, or interesting choreography. There was some cool production design here, and I can see how this might...

Also develop into a cooler piece, but, given that it was pitched as a mashu... Read more Read less

91
During previews
Uncomfortable, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Absorbing, Ambitious

See it if you're looking for a fascinating, uncomfortable, and hilarious look at racial and sexual dynamics; you're willing to be challenged by a show

Don't see it if you're uncomfortable with explicit sexual scenes; you need a perfectly polished show; you have a small bladder (>2hr w/o intermission)

Also This show is definitely not perfect. The second act in particular was ... Read more Read less

66
During previews
Opaque, Cast better than direction, Oddly staged, Disappointing

See it if you are a Bernard Shaw completist; you like shows that hover between history and comedy; you want to see a great cast...

Don't see it if ...that is so much better than this weird, uneven production. Maybe it was me, but I just didn't get it. It was too straight to be a good...

Also comedy and too broad to be a history. The cast was excellent, but it w... Read more Read less

49
Contact High
Midtown W
Rough edges, Overwrought, Confusing

See it if you want to support some up and coming theatre artists; you want to see some new young talent

Don't see it if you want to see this talent in a well developed show. The composers have some okay ideas, but they should step away from performing

70
Sing Street
East Village
Lots of potential, Uneven, Great singing, Ambitious

See it if you're a fan of the movie...you want to see a charming cast in a show that is still finding its feet...

Don't see it if you want a fully developed piece...you want your secondary characters to be fleshed out at all

86
Much better act two, Thought-provoking, Intense, Great singing

See it if you like your musicals to have a clear and modern point of view; you're a fan of Alanis; you like musicals about familial disintegration

Don't see it if you're fundamentally opposed to new shows built on existing music; you don't want to see sexual violence on stage; you don't like Alanis

Also I went in to this show with really high expectations. I'm exactly thei... Read more Read less

81
Amateur, Barebones, Relevant

See it if you're looking for a very solid community theatre production. I was most impressed by the dramaturgical choice to center the idea that

Don't see it if Pippin is about suicide and mental illness. It actually made me reconsider the entire meaning of the show - a show I know very well. The ...

Also production is a bit uneven overall, with wildly varying levels of tale... Read more Read less

82
Quirky, Hilarious, Great singing

See it if you want a super intimate updated take on a problematic musical from the early 80s; you want Alice Ripley to belt three feet from your face

Don't see it if you want a fully developed, interestingly staged site-specific piece. Don't get me wrong, this piece (both the show itself and this ...

Also production) is kind of a mess. But it's such a unique opportunity to b... Read more Read less

70
During previews
The Thin Place
Midtown W
Paranormal, Speculative fiction, Slow, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if you're looking for a very talky four-hander that explores life, death, and the spaces where they meet; you don't mind some trickery

Don't see it if you want your plays to show you things rather than tell you; you mind sudden darkness; you want a clear definitive answer

81
Dated, Dizzying, Great acting, Great singing

See it if you want to witness a star making performance by Adrienne Warren; you love Tina's music; you want to see a better than avg jukebox musical

Don't see it if frequent and casual violence against women and children bothers you; you're fundamentally opposed to jukebox musicals

77
During previews
Unsubtle, Uneven, Great acting

See it if you want to see two excellent actors overcome a fairly banal script. Francesca Faridany is good and Kate Mulgrew is transcendent in this.

Don't see it if you want anything more than a straightforward unsurprising biographical glimpse into two female scientists. The issues and ideas are wholly

Also expected and presented in standard ways. And the prologue and epilogue... Read more Read less

73
On brand for the playwright, Slow, Great acting

See it if you want to see a master class in acting from two of the finest of our generation ... Or if you liked The Father

Don't see it if you didn't like The Father. Or if you want any sense of closure or pathos from a script.

76
Not great direction, Uneven, Thought-provoking, Resonant, Great acting

See it if you want to see a solid but uneven production of this brilliant classic work. The cast is fantastic, and the text really holds up.

Don't see it if you want directorial choices that best highlight the text itself. I found a number of the staging and structural choices confusing and

Also distracting from the text itself.

77
During previews
Relevant, Thought-provoking, Confusing, Great acting, Dense

See it if you want to see a fantastic cast working with some complex and challenging material; you're willing to be patient with an ambitious and

Don't see it if uneven piece...it's overwrought and exhausting in places. But there's something brilliant in the unconventional structure and writing

80
Smart, Great singing, Entertaining, Delightful

See it if you enjoy Broadway spoofery with a talented cast

Don't see it if you're not into comedy or don't think you'll pick up on some deep cut Broadway jokes

87
During previews
The Inheritance
Midtown W
Long, Relevant, Must see, Epic, Absorbing

See it if you want to see a brilliant examination of life for gay men in the post-AIDS crisis world; you don't mind a story within a story construct

Don't see it if you want a tight, cohesive narrative. The show occasionally sprawls, gets a bit preachy at times, and is hella melodramatic. But the whole..

Also ...is much better than the sum of its parts.

79
Stupid F**king Bird
West Village
Unpolished, Quirky, Intelligent, Great writing

See it if you missed the 2016 production; you want to see if Posner's text holds up with no bells and whistles; you want to support some rising talent

Don't see it if you need a polished production or actors that know how to project. But the text really stands on its own.

69
The Wrong Man
Midtown W
Joshua henry is amazing, Needs workshops and a script doctor, Underdeveloped, Great singing, Ambitious

See it if you want to see a gorgeous cast singing and dancing their asses off. Some pieces of the show were fantastic, and Joshua Henry gave his all.

Don't see it if you want a book that makes any sense at all. You want a score that offers variety and lyrics that advance the plot.

Also A show about a wrongly-convicted black man with an R&B score really sh... Read more Read less

58
Great singing, Confusing, Dated

See it if So, I've seen hundreds of shows, but somehow I'd never seen Phantom. And now all I'm wondering is what it was like 30 years ago when the...

Don't see it if ...show was fresh and interesting and the cast cared. Because this has not aged well, and it felt like everyone was phoning it in.

59
LOVER
Midtown W
Disjointed, Disappointing, Cliched, Ambitious

See it if you're interested in one woman sharing her personal journey with love, sex, and life.

Don't see it if you need a cohesive structure. There were a lot of vignettes that, to me, didn't come together to be worth it overall.

68
During previews
(A)loft Modulation
Midtown W
Jazz, Great acting, Confusing, Dense, Ambitious

See it if you want a glimpse into late 50s/60s Manhattan; you enjoy pontifications on art and the creative process; you enjoy good live jazz

Don't see it if you need a linear plot; you want a play with a clear theme and mission; you mind simultaneous and overlapping scenes; you don't like jazz

Also There are some really brilliant moments in this show, and the acting i... Read more Read less

75
Visually arresting, Japanese, Slow, Great staging, Ambitious

See it if you want to see a fascinating Japanese Noh-inspired take on Greek tragedy. The staging is beautiful, and the structure is captivating.

Don't see it if you're looking for something super accessible or are unwilling to engage with different cultural styles of theatre.

Also You'll do best if you brush up on the plot of Antigone and on what the... Read more Read less

40
During previews
Linda Vista
Midtown W
Mediocre white guy alert, Frustrating, Overrated, Cliched, Great acting

See it if you're a fan of Tracy Letts or any of the cast members. The acting is great. But the story is infuriating.

Don't see it if you don't want to be yelled at by a mediocre old white guy or you're turned off by explicit sex scenes and nudity.

Also This show was "Old Man Yells at Clouds: The Tracy Letts Play". The las... Read more Read less

59
In progress, Disappointing, Ambitious

See it if you're super into Bette Davis and are interested in seeing a one woman show that's clearly still developing.

Don't see it if So, I'm going to say medium things. Everything that could have gone wrong at this performance did. Missed sound cues. Cell phones galore...

Also Dropped lines. So it's hard for me to begrudge the actor for the rough... Read more Read less

69
During previews
Sunday
Chelsea
Misses the mark, Uneven, They are gen z - not millennials

See it if you're interested in a take on Gen Z; you want to be told what to think; you are willing to endure an uneven show with some very odd choices

Don't see it if you want an authentic look at the lives of 20-somethings; you want fully fleshed out characters; it's any day other than Sunday

87
During previews
All the Rage
Midtown W
Heartfelt, Moving, Great writing, Absorbing

See it if you want to be reminded how to find compassion and centeredness in an occasionally tragic world; you don't mind a meandering one man show

Don't see it if you are uneasy with issues of trauma, abuse, and loss; you dislike intensely biographical one person shows

Also this show gut punched me. Martin Moran beautifully weaves stories of t... Read more Read less

60
During previews
The Great Society
Upper W Side
Exhausting, Superficial, Unnecessary, Dated, Cliched

See it if you're super into those cheesy decade based miniseries: "The 60s" "The 70s" etc. This is just like those but without the great music.

Don't see it if you're looking for nuanced or innovative storytelling or a new or interesting perspective on late '60s history.

Also This show would have done much better to focus on one or two events fr... Read more Read less

71
Make Believe
Midtown W
Plot twisty, Almost something great, Great acting, Disappointing, Ambitious

See it if you want to see a play that is a couple of rewrites away from something good; you don't mind child actors; you like unconventional structure

Don't see it if you want the plot devices to not pummel you over the head.

Also The things that pissed me off are major plot spoilers, so I won't air ... Read more Read less

94
During previews
Masterful, Must see, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Great acting

See it if you want to see a breathtaking tour de force dancing at the intersection of race, the theatre industry, Shakespeare, and personal reflection

Don't see it if you aren't interested in a deep dive on Othello and its relevance to American black male identity.