New York City | 35-49 | Male
About:  Tech evangelist, James Beard maniac, Baseball aficionado. Arts lover and patron
Reviews (200)
Profound, Great staging, Edgy, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if Advanced Placement musical theatre +10 points = 98 points for veteran theatregoers; crackerjack and versatile cast

Don't see it if Occasionally an acid trip and real rather than romantic - 10 = 78 points for novice theatregoers who should never choose this as 1st musical

Resonant, Intense, Masterful, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if Strong three leads and supporting cast; great set; intelligent direction

Don't see it if Does not quite solve the pinball nature of George in Act II

Intense, Great staging, Great singing, Exquisite, Absorbing

See it if Epic story told with great love and care; superb casting top to bottom; multiple instances of tears of joy and sorrow for audience

Don't see it if Basis of story is a self-spoiler - singer-songwriter style may not be to everyone's liking

Funny, Great acting, Dizzying, Confusing, Ambitious

See it if Guare's humor and expertise in fashioning complicated threads is unmatched; precision casting for comedy is accomplished

Don't see it if The white upper class experience of this memory play could have limited resonance and limit empathy for characters

Masterful, Great singing, Enchanting, Entertaining, Ambitious

See it if Kelli O'Hara is a national treasure and can own a piece that may be incorrectly assumed is not in her wheelhouse. Amazing dancing & cast

Don't see it if does not measure up as a whole to the prior Mazzie/Mitchell production

Relevant, Great acting, Great writing, Entertaining, Delightful

See it if Smartly written and very funny; joyously getting to a more or less expected end; superb ensemble cast with wonderful chemistry

Don't see it if Largely predictable; while measured and equal in theory, playwright has an obvious viewpoint

Clever, Ambitious, Great staging, Masterful, Resonant

See it if Good production for Sondheim/Prince completists as the crackerjack Fiasco does a Doyle-ization of MERRILLY which is more hits than misses

Don't see it if More a commentary on what can be done with six multitool actors than what should be done for a definitive MERRILLY production

Ambitious, Great staging, Dizzying, Indulgent, Astounding

See it if Christiani Pitts and King Kong are amazing and rise above the material; engaging for younger audiences; more similar to Cirque shows

Don't see it if Music serves purpose as belting vehicle for Pitts but otherwise forgettable and varying styles are jarring; amusement park musical on sroids

Ambitious, Great acting, Great singing, Great staging, Epic

See it if Original 3 Chers are epic and well cast; Cher fans will be brought back to all her eras; smartly conceived in 3-5 minute scenes

Don't see it if Broadway orchestrated Gregg Allman started Act 2 problems in book and concept that served Act 1 so well

During previews
Ambitious, Great staging, Intense, Relevant, Riveting

See it if PREVIEW-Volatile and explosive cast up to the task of the physicality of the MISS JULIE play

Don't see it if PREVIEW-pacing for the first 1/3rd is uneven and South African accent often makes the dialogue difficult to understand

Clever, Delightful, Excruciating, Quirky, Thought-provoking

See it if The true nature of the guest actor is revealed and hopefully it is positive; the underlying premise and story is very heartfelt

Don't see it if Moments of audience participation can run long and are often excruciating and frustrating; not choosing guest actor will be a mistake

Ambitious, Disappointing, Great staging, Great singing, Great dancing

See it if Dove Cameron SHINES in her NYC stage debut as Cher; casting, cast chemistry, singing and dancing chops uplift with a handful of scenes

Don't see it if ROCK OF AGES creatives have a more difficult time managing tone and humor; many awkward scene endings; more song misses due to new lyrics

Absorbing, Entertaining, Great acting, Great staging, Profound

See it if So good that it respectfully makes you less interested in the controversy with Lee's estate; strong supporting cast powers with Daniels

Don't see it if Other than the structure there are no surprises for devotees; Greek chorus structure may seem a curious choice to some

Absorbing, Entertaining, Thought-provoking, Masterful, Great writing

See it if Superb ensemble cast; rich multidimensional characters; closing MacGuffin will not be guessed

Don't see it if You have a small bladder as there is one intermission and one pause in 3 hours and 15 minutes; interest in 1970s Ireland is helpful

Ambitious, Great acting, Great staging, Indulgent, Must see

See it if Titanic McTeer perfectly embodies Berhardt with lush physicality and spans the spectrum of emotions; strong supporting cast and lush set

Don't see it if Historical drama unfolds as one would expect with minimal surprises; characters need for adjusted Hamlet seems silly with current reality

Absorbing, Ambitious, Dated, Great singing, Resonant

See it if Remarkable casting; rich storytelling; smart use and styling of the Dylan song material

Don't see it if Most popular Dylan songs inspired audience members around me to sing along which is an obvious distraction; heavy story not for everyone

Ambitious, Intelligent, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Difficult

See it if you are open minded and see a normalization of LGBTQ work as a necessary first step in this two hander

Don't see it if you desire a traditional play or cannot understand or empathize with the layer of complexity of LGBTQ relationships (as seen in my audience)

During previews
Clever, Ambitious, Great acting, Great staging, Resonant

See it if already at full speed for 1st performance at Duke; exceptional work by cast who are adept at all the twists and speed changes

Don't see it if five people to my left departed at intermission shows relentless satire and symbolism my not be everyone's cup of tea

Silly, Irreverant, Funny, Entertaining, Quirky

See it if Anything goes in this borderline plausible dramedy set in the (who-knew) high stakes snooker universe; strong performances all around

Don't see it if (sort of spoiler alert) One loud noise in Act 1 caused someone in the mezzanine to yelp out in terror so be forewarned

Ambitious, Disappointing, Dated, Banal, Great acting

See it if Kristine Nielsen is a wonder (as usual) bouncing between pathos and hilarity; as close to a 1st class production as you will see

Don't see it if Awful acoustics mars the zippy dialogue typical of TW; at best and worst mirrors a bad Kardashians (assumed) episode; minor work

Ambitious, Exquisite, Great singing, Thought-provoking, Resonant

See it if Stylish revival with an emphasis on Justin Peck's inventive choreography and stellar singing by the principal cast

Don't see it if Authentic northeast accent is occasionally a challenge to the audience

Ambitious, Entertaining, Great singing, Hilarious, Refreshing

See it if Refreshingly comedic; exceedingly romantic; selfish indulgence of Melissa Errico and Ben Davis in the lead roles with equally lush cast

Don't see it if Problematic story remains a problem; limited space and production only makes attempting to solve plot problems even worse

Clever, Funny, Great acting, Relevant, Quirky

See it if Deftly constructed in different layers that gives each major and minor character their own dimension; all attitudes and actions are plausibl

Don't see it if Resorts to a shrill bitchiness at the beginning for comic effect

Absorbing, Ambitious, Great acting, Great staging, Great writing

See it if The multiple Mary device works well and the cast delivers across the board; Letts manipulates well with reveals at every scene

Don't see it if Reflection of a flawed and tragic life may not be the cup of tea asked for a visit to the theatre

Ambitious, Great acting, Great staging, Masterful, Funny

See it if Masterful casting as each actor plays to their strength; superb set and staging; hilarous, shocking and moving throughout

Don't see it if Second half drags midway as we drag to an inevitable conclusion; some characters are richer than others; few plot surprises

Funny, Hilarious, Great singing, Dizzying, Ambitious

See it if Best lead and support cast and all are given numbers which highlight their strengths; often laugh out loud funny

Don't see it if Amount of plot needed to complete story leads to a relentless frenetic energy without an organic path; Arguably assumes you saw movie

Great writing, Great staging, Dated, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if literally unbelievable set piece; strong performances by all; reflective of current tabloid news times

Don't see it if Inside-the-beltway subject matter would make it a waste of an evening to those who hate the subject of the play

Delightful, Hilarious, Indulgent, Entertaining, Funny

See it if Best comedy book of a musical; superb casting up and down; adjustment of plot from movie was a smart choice

Don't see it if lyrics propel story forward but bet you cannot remember a song when you leave the theatre, no suspense due to movie

Refreshing, Hilarious, Entertaining, Delightful, Clever

See it if Each cast member is expertly cast and gets a chance to hit their number out of the park

Don't see it if Like eating dessert for 3 courses it can be a bit much madcap and double-entendre; similarCasey's direction of another high school angst sho

Intense, Great writing, Great acting, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if Masterful turns by Sturridge and Gyllenhaal with the challenging task of recounting troubling life events as a solo piece

Don't see it if Narratives seamlessly bounce back and forth in both pieces which can be confusing if one is not paying attention

Profound, Great staging, Great acting, Confusing, Ambitious

See it if Current most talented ensemble cast in NYC expertly navigates scenes which range in time period and physical location

Don't see it if Like a series of fever dreams in a blender; requires audience will care enough to reflect upon all the scenes as a whole

Entertaining, Great acting, Funny, Great writing, Delightful

See it if Surprisingly breezy and funny production of the Shepherd staple ably acted by Hawke Dano & supporting cast

Don't see it if The bickering between the brothers can be a bit much at multiple points of the script

Absorbing, Ambitious, Great singing, Resonant, Thought-provoking

See it if richly written and sharply taut performances by an ensemble cast with believable high school characters coming of age

Don't see it if melodramatic moments are occasionally self-indulgent and it is often hard to hear Mr. Pendelton in the mezzanine

During previews
Ambitious, Etherial, Great acting, Great concept, Rabid-fan-ready

See it if The text of LMM is evocatively conveyed by a superb Ali Ewoldt; each character unique and heartfelt; ready for AofGG complete-ists

Don't see it if the concept of the four "greek chorus" dancers is conceptually interesting but ultimately a distraction in its current incarnation

Ambitious, Timely, Riveting, Edgy, Intense

See it if Cast is uniformly good; set up is designed to provoke discussion and avoid easy rote answers

Don't see it if Set up is purposefully in gray area which made feel more contrived and unsurprising in conclusion

Clever, Epic, Great acting, Great staging, Profound

See it if Lead and supporting cast excellence; explosive "Act I" is most engaging first hour; relevant to current events

Don't see it if story cannot sustain fiery pace; devotees of director Van Hove will see self-plagarization of staging techniques previously used

Great singing, Epic, Excruciating, Face-palming, Remote-seeking

See it if Ruben, Clay and the talented 5 supporting cast will blow past every musical expectation you may have set upon entering; music score = 100

Don't see it if Variety show fails miserably in Act 1 and has you reaching for the remote to change the channel; mercifully reduced schmaltz in Act 2

Absorbing, Ambitious, Dated, Funny, Great acting

See it if Scoring for 3 acts is 75, 85, 95 with more weight to superbly nuanced 3rd act which makes this a must see for cast and script

Don't see it if so many over the top jokes in acts 1 and 2 almost make it seem like a different piece than the superb act 3

Ambitious, Banal, Entertaining, Disappointing, Dated

See it if Leads and support (Barks, Karl, Orfeh, Anderson) are individually spectacular; essentially a must-see for zealous fans of the movie

Don't see it if Script with zero surprises; Bryan Adams fans will recognize songwriting hooks which are hit or miss; audience seemed at most amused

During previews
Clever, Delightful, Funny, Hilarious, Must see

See it if Birbiglia is clearly a pro at solo show format; marries both storytelling with callback technique used by comics

Don't see it if Requires audience to have empathy for Birbiglia and his current story (no spoilers) which may not be as universal as producers may hope

Ambitious, Great acting, Historical, Timely, Thought-provoking

See it if Wonderful performances by all actors; best use of a limited set on an assumed limited budget; timely topics of bias; expert play construct

Don't see it if assumes working knowledge of Wagner and his works; barely compelling for those with Wagnerian knowledge

Absorbing, Great acting, Edgy, Masterful, Must see

See it if Pitch-perfect Channing and Dancy with strong support peel layers away from their armor as play develops

Don't see it if Family dysfunction may hit close to home; intellectual play as some #FirstWorldProblems connotations

Enchanting, Ambitious, Great acting, Great staging, Masterful

See it if Imaginative resolvement of simple setup; superb performances across the board; frequent gasps by completist HP fans; magical setup and stage

Don't see it if unimaginative setup (later resolved) some magic tricks are more impressive than others; spoilers everywhere for in-progress HP fans

Compelling, Timely, Absorbing, Profound, Resonant

See it if Compelling and timely due to current events surrounding the Kavanaugh confirmation; heartfelt, funny, shocking but always engaging

Don't see it if Can seem scattershot or unstructured at times; while counterpoints are always offered the political views are left of center or more

Ambitious, Entertaining, Funny, Hilarious, Fluffy

See it if Most every supporting character has a rich backstory and spot to shine; Brandon Williams & Garth Kravits mine every laugh always

Don't see it if The main "couple" has the most vanilla storyline; Mitchell Jarvis & Kelli Barrett underutilization keeps it from soaring

Clever, Entertaining, Great acting, Relevant, Resonant

See it if Broadway star casting raises the entertainment level and adjusts balance of play from its off-Bway run at the Public

Don't see it if Broadway star casting can be a distraction from the story; the adjusted balance of the play as a result is not always positive

Ambitious, Entertaining, Great acting, Refreshing, Fluffy

See it if Fizzy laughs, fun dialogue and Durand and Socha getting well-deserved originating roles amongst a talented cast makes for a fun theater slot

Don't see it if True to originating story so sudden seriousness almost implodes the fun; catchy Go-Gos tunes uneven in quality and relevance to story

Pulsating, Featherlight, Tribute-band-ish, Questionable, Performer-driven

See it if Music (all faithful renditions) and 3-Donnas rate a 96; approached as an uber-talented tribute-band performance, it cannot be beat

Don't see it if Plot is crepe-paper thin, each scene is never more than ten lines of dialogue and in retrospect questionable whether bio was worth a musical

Enchanting, Great staging, Clever, Entertaining, Epic

See it if 4th visit; first time in 11 years and it holds up well as everyone is on point

Don't see it if Mixture of Bway stalwarts and newbies may make this more of a tourist show for first timers than returning Wicked veterans

Delightful, Entertaining, Enchanting, Masterful, Great staging

See it if a masterful ensemble dazzle in ballads and all-encompassing group sing and dance numbers; Glover shows great intelligence in staging

Don't see it if Tap is only of many tools despite Glover participation; truly an ensemble show without generally known stars