Kurtal

Hell's Kitchen | 35-49 | Male
About:  Theatre junkie who works in higher education.
Reviews (267)
64
Rock of Ages
Midtown W
Indulgent, Fluffy, Cliched, Dated

See it if you're a fan of jukebox musicals or '80s rock

Don't see it if you want any real originality

91
During previews
The Hot Wing King
Midtown W
Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great acting, Funny, Entertaining

See it if I LOVED THIS SHOW SO MUCH! The acting was uniformly spectacular. The writing was occasionally uneven, and the pacing felt off here and...

Don't see it if there, but this story moved me immensely. It is so incredibly rare to see a diverse range of fully-formed black queer characters living...

Also their everyday lives, navigating love, loss, complexity, and daily str... Read more Read less

81
During previews
Thought-provoking, Resonant, Intense, Absorbing

See it if you want a glimpse into life in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge; you appreciate Asian American representation; you like rock music

Don't see it if you don't like stories about the ravages of war; you need all musical moments to move the plot; you're expecting a revolutionary plot

Also While I saw pretty much every plot point coming a mile away, I was sti... Read more Read less

78
During previews
Slow, Long, Great acting

See it if you want to see Ruth Negga give a brilliant performance as Hamlet; you're a Shakespeare aficionado

Don't see it if you get easily frustrated with uneven pacing; you hate a droning underscore; you get particularly antsy after 3.5 hours

Also This is 100% worth seeing for Ruth Negga's performance alone. But oh m... Read more Read less

72
Slow, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if you want to see Laura Linney give a phenomenal performance with some subpar material

Don't see it if you aren't convinced that this novel should be a one-woman show; it felt uncomfortably between an audiobook and a play

73
Ambitious, Great acting, Dated

See it if you want to see a fairly interesting take on the complexities of black racial identity with some phenomenal performances

Don't see it if you want a murder mystery with a satisfying payoff; you are a white person unwilling to accept that this play wasn't written for you

Also In some ways, I recognize that I should not be judging this show, whic... Read more Read less

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

77
Six
Midtown W
Fluffy, Fun, Great singing

See it if several great pop numbers in a concert-style musical reimagining the fates of the wives of Henry VIII. although for a show purporting to

Don't see it if rewrite history, it fell short...it wasn't nearly as smart or as subversive as it claims (and clearly desperately wants) to be...that said,

Also it was a lot of fun, and I've been humming a few of the songs since I ... Read more Read less

84
Medea (BAM)
Brooklyn
Intense, Great staging, Absorbing, Great acting

See it if you want a modern updating of the Greek tragedy; you want to be surprised by Rose Byrne's chops; you like minimalist staging

Don't see it if you're uncomfortable with ambiguous motivation or violence; you don't like the use of projection/video

Also This was everything Betrayal tried to be but so much better! I was cap... Read more Read less

75
During previews
Too many damn plotlines, Overly complicated, Slow, Disappointing, Great singing

See it if you want to see Dylan's music beautifully adapted and sung; you want to see some excellent performances from a great cast

Don't see it if you want a tight, well-written book; you have trouble following multiple story lines

Also This show could completely change the dynamic by reframing the narrato... Read more Read less

84
During previews
We're Gonna Die
Midtown W
Profound, Enchanting, Great singing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you want to see a brief and poignant reflection on life and the inevitability of death; you don't need conventionality in your theatre

Don't see it if you want a fully developed plot; this is more of a performance art/concert/storytelling session. But my gosh it works...I wanted more!

83
Grand Horizons
Midtown W
Resonant, Refreshing, Funny, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if you want to see an off-beat tale of the last gasps of a 50-year marriage; you are comfortable with ambiguous endings

Don't see it if you are uninterested in the lives of people older than 50; you will mind occasional melodrama and overacting

Also I went into this show with absolutely no expectations and was very ple... Read more Read less

73
But still not great, Better than expected, Great singing, Funny, Surprising

See it if you can overlook a silly premise and find a show that actually has a lot of heart and some decent songs behind it

Don't see it if you want your emojis to stay in your phone.

Also I'll be interested to see what this songwriting team can do when they'... Read more Read less

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