Richard 129440

New York City | 50-64 | Male
About:  Why not read my column to pass the time? The minutes will fly like hours.
Reviews (99)
79
Relevant, Raunchy, Great acting, Edgy, Cliched
May 23rd, 2022

See it if Silverman's potty-mouthed, quasi-autobiographical musical dramedy generally hits pay dirt B'way vets Neuwirth, Levy & Goldstein stand out

Don't see it if There's poignancy in the Silverman/Harmon book yet evening feels like an over extended SNL skit (despite Kauffman's directorial flourishes)

82
Wedding Band
Brooklyn
Slow, Great acting, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Absorbing
May 23rd, 2022

See it if Childress' drama of early 20th century interracial love still packs a punch Timpo's taut direction is only enhanced by Bradford & Sadoski

Don't see it if Childress tends to overstuff her narratives & does so here Scenes from "black life" play out around the love story often splitting our focus

84
Hangmen (Broadway)
Midtown W
Slow, Edgy, Great staging, Thought-provoking, Absorbing
May 23rd, 2022

See it if McDonagh's pitch-black, male bonding drama focuses on executions (via hanging) Excellent ensemble delivers on Dunster's whiplash staging

Don't see it if McDonagh's Act 1 exposition takes far too long; lingering on barroom comaraderie over action often leaving Act 2's omnipresent danger rushed

78
During previews
Belfast Girls
Chelsea
Disappointing, Absorbing, Intelligent, Slow, Thought-provoking
May 18th, 2022

See it if Murphy's historical melodrama reaches for a feminist revisionism that's often very successful Fine ensemble covers the more glaring cliches

Don't see it if Drama is derailed in the 2nd Act with an unearned, clumsy 'Lord of the Flies' like turn of events; yet the solid work of the actors prevail

94
SIX (Broadway)
Midtown W
Great singing, Entertaining, Resonant, Great staging, Delightful
May 17th, 2022

See it if Enormously entertaining popretta/theatrical concert performed with zest, panache & "mean girl" vibe as Henry VIII's VI get revenge via song

Don't see it if Its rock concert volume can be problematic because it tends to drown out the witty, emo lyrics that the queens dish out & these dames rock!

76
Quirky, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Confusing, Ambitious
May 11th, 2022

See it if Draper's musical fantasia about two (kindred?) women bonding over whales & caregiving Acapella folk music & acoustics abound...Otherworldly

Don't see it if The non-linear plot is difficult to follow complicated by heavy Scottish accents & multiple role playing Still an ethereal quality pervades

79
During previews
Golden Shield
Midtown W
Absorbing, Intelligent, Slow, Thought-provoking, Ambitious
May 11th, 2022

See it if King's techno-drama mixes corporate greed, familial trauma & cultural identity in a heady stew Adrales' sturdy direction keeps us focused

Don't see it if Both plots - corporal malfeasance & sibling rivalry/duty hold interest but never meld together Fang Du steals the show as our "Translator"

90
Thought-provoking, Slow, Great writing, Absorbing, Ambitious
May 8th, 2022

See it if McPherson's book is the star of the evening: skillfully & poignantly weaving itself around Dylan's songbook w/solid ensemble led by Sanders

Don't see it if McPherson's direction is the drawback of the evening: often a little slow & clunky moving thru vignettes yet its mournful quality pervades

90
Slow, Great acting, Great singing, Thought-provoking, Entertaining
May 8th, 2022

See it if This 'Proud Mary' keeps on rollin' despite pandemic closure Solid musical bio-drama led by Hall/Ketelaar & Prins' book and dynamic choreo

Don't see it if Tina's early life & career rise w/Ike takes most of Act 1 often slowing momentum Tina's all important conversion to Buddhism is shortchanged

73
POTUS
Midtown W
Great acting, Raunchy, Resonant, Dizzying, Cliched
May 4th, 2022

See it if Peerless ensemble work (esp White & Williams) keep this relentless gag-fest afloat Stroman's drill sergeant direction also keeps us alert

Don't see it if Fillinger's interesting premise is all but buried under the inexorable onslaught of one-liners & farcical situations w/exhaustion setting in

87
Masterful, Thought-provoking, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing
May 4th, 2022

See it if Hunter's two-hander about male bonding of opposites is poignant, clear headed & compassionate Sensational performances from Brill & Beltran

Don't see it if It's Hunter working in a minor key but still powerful and searching Cromer's laconic direction allows the viewer to find there own way in

87
Great acting, Relevant, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Absorbing
May 2nd, 2022

See it if Orlandersmith's gripping recreation of the Michael Brown slaying by the residents of Ferguson, Mo is must see drama/oral poetry Profound

Don't see it if The video recreation does capture the artist in close-up nuance but looses the in person chemistry of performance It's an eloquent trade-off

76
Indulgent, Great acting, Cliched, Dated, Entertaining
April 29th, 2022

See it if A theatrical reboot of the 1992 film, it's ALL Billy Crystal; ALL the time! Dramatically, the story holds up; the jokes are hoary but funny

Don't see it if But NO ONE can sing....except Bean (who seems tampered down!) Green's lyrics are pedestrian while Brown's music is serviceable at best..Why?

84
Relevant, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Absorbing, Ambitious
April 29th, 2022

See it if Brown's staging (direction/choreo) of Shange's paean to black women is tighter, stronger & more vibrant since moving to B'way Great ensemble

Don't see it if At times, the piece can drift & the dancing can feel like filler but the intensity level is high Savaging of the black male is problematic

92
Resonant, Thought-provoking, Edgy, Dizzying, Ambitious
April 27th, 2022

See it if Jackson's quasi-autobiographical ironic meta-musical is one of the most exhilarating, disturbing & brutally honest works around Ensemble A+

Don't see it if Sexually graphic, verbally shocking & bluntly in-your-face racial situations not to everyone's taste Still humor abounds (in its dark way)

76
¡Americano!
Midtown W
Indulgent, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Cliched, Ambitious
April 26th, 2022

See it if Heartfelt & pertinent, lively & sentimental this musical about immigrant dreamers is a cri de coeur for political action Good performances

Don't see it if Despite its political content, its still a family saga of good intentions getting waylaid Alternately maudlin or preachy, it's still moving

79
Resonant, Indulgent, Slow, Thought-provoking, Absorbing
April 23rd, 2022

See it if Felicia Curry is the dynamic, compelling pulse in this drama of a girls journey into womanhood during the nascent civil rights movement

Don't see it if Drama is a little inert until the events of the civil rights movement come into play in the young girls life Her awakening fuels the show

60
Quirky, Ambitious, Indulgent, Disappointing, Confusing
April 22nd, 2022

See it if Despite a surfeit of dazzling production values (esp aerial feats), this Prince is definitely not so princely A game effort by crew & cast

Don't see it if Fans of the book will be the most disappointed as the plot barely skims over its source There's a "much ado over nothing-ness" quality to it

84
Great acting, Intelligent, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Absorbing
April 22nd, 2022

See it if Greenberg's "gay" baseball drama is so much more that just that; bringing race, inclusion, class & most importantly male bonding into focus

Don't see it if Greenberg has never been able to satisfactorily end his plays; no exception here Darren, Kippy & Shane all come off as misguided & clueless

79
Entertaining, Clever, Fluffy, Quirky, Great singing
April 18th, 2022

See it if An entertaining, clever DIY-ish musical the York is famous for Kellogg & Weiner's plot revolves around Penelope's loooong wait for Odysseus

Don't see it if Clever can easily become cloying and often threatens to do so but the fabulous male harmonic chorus continually saves it Odd feminist ending

82
The Patsy
Lower E Side
Dizzying, Great acting, Slow, Absorbing, Ambitious
April 16th, 2022

See it if The charismatic downtown icon David Greenspan is a comedic delight as all four members of the Harrington family (+ 2 boyfriends) Amazing job

Don't see it if Despite its 80 minute length, Connors' comedy can get a little lethargic Its also very folksy but Greenspan always hits pay dirt throughout

82
Harmony
Financial
Great singing, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Ambitious
April 14th, 2022

See it if Manilow/Sussman's factually based bio-musical about a group of comedic singers in 30's Germany is uplifting & heart-rendering Well acted

Don't see it if As good as they can be, there are too many songs (clocking in at 3hrs) & plotting can get repetitious (esp in 1st Act) yet powerful finale

77
During previews
Resonant, Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Confusing, Ambitious
April 14th, 2022

See it if Wilder's epic study of humanity gets a modernist re-look by director Blain-Cruz Vivid, eye-popping production can't hide all the dead air

Don't see it if Blain-Cruz's woke mise en scene and superior acting by Ruff & Beans may aid accessibility but only a major cut of material would help drama

79
Coal Country
West Village
Intense, Relevant, Slow, Thought-provoking, Absorbing
April 13th, 2022

See it if A docu-drama w/music about a mining disaster paints a devastating portrait of greed, generational poverty & rural solidarity is quite moving

Don't see it if Despite a grim structure & inherent slowness the actors (using verbatim testimony) move the evening towards a transcendent human experience

70
During previews
To My Girls
Midtown W
Indulgent, Raunchy, Disappointing, Funny, Cliched
April 11th, 2022

See it if Lee's "the way we are now" dramedy of millennial gay life has spurts of comedic campiness (esp from Pancholy & Johnson) but often falls flat

Don't see it if The bitchy one-liners come so fast & furious they soon loose their string and quickly bury any of the serious statements Lee tries to make

84
Intense, Great writing, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Absorbing
April 8th, 2022

See it if GP's sharp production of Morisseau's multi-faceted look as a young black man navigates the educational system Leads Clarke & Djombana shine

Don't see it if Morisseau tries to cover a lot of bases & sometimes falters but always on the side of interesting Mother/son conflict retains our focus

90
Resonant, Great acting, Great writing, Thought-provoking, Absorbing
April 5th, 2022

See it if Vogel's haunting drama has grown more relevant with age Brokaw's superb production is anchored by brilliant performances from Parker & Morse

Don't see it if Despite the gimlet-eyed leading actors, it's Vogel's dazzling dramatic set up that keeps us keenly attentive despite knowing the inevitable

75
Man Cave
East Village
Intense, Thought-provoking, Confusing, Absorbing, Ambitious
March 31st, 2022

See it if Caswell's horror-noir drama packs spooky atmospherics & domestic predicaments in true soap opera fashion Well acted with an A+ production

Don't see it if As in all domestic fright dramas, there's one plot line too many and too many false endings (3 in this case) for comfort Confusion insues

69
During previews
Quirky, Resonant, Slow, Disappointing, Banal
March 29th, 2022

See it if Debra Messing & company try hard (very hard! Bravo!) to breathe life into Haidle's sentimental, Hallmark card saga of a life well lived

Don't see it if Because of the quick, Kodak moment-like structure of the dramedy, we never get any meaningful depth of character or situations

93
Confederates
Midtown W
Relevant, Thought-provoking, Great writing, Absorbing, Ambitious
March 27th, 2022

See it if Morisseau's best work to date; an intelligent & complex look at black women's struggles thru the centuries Devastating look at similarities

Don't see it if Can get a little confusing with the early time travelling but soon becomes clarified Academia section can veer into stereotypes at times

78
During previews
Indulgent, Disappointing, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Ambitious
March 27th, 2022

See it if This historical pageant dressed up as a musical has a lot going for it: good acting (esp Kalukango), robust choreo & a absorbing plot line

Don't see it if Unfortunately, nothing seems to gel into a cohesive whole making the lengthy evening feel longer Sadly, Bill T Jones' choreo a major culprit

75
The Jury
Midtown W
Resonant, Slow, Thought-provoking, Cliched, Ambitious
March 27th, 2022

See it if Bauerfeld/Kendall's new musical about an earthly jury deciding the fate of a recently deceased drug addict Well acted & sung but anemic

Don't see it if Music/lyrics while heartfelt are somewhat cliched (except Heroin Hotel - showstopper) and lack depth Hard working actors hold our interest

75
Heartland (59e59)
Midtown E
Absorbing, Resonant, Slow, Thought-provoking, Disappointing
March 23rd, 2022

See it if Yousefzadeh's personalizes the 1980's Russian occupation of Afghanistan with mixed results Solid acting (esp Ahmed) can't cover messy plot

Don't see it if A major, late plot twist throws the show into questionable territory; what was an interesting character study becomes a political treatise

76
Through the Fire
Midtown E
Well acted, Edgy, Slow, Thought-provoking, Ambitious
March 20th, 2022

See it if LAByrinth member Victor Almanzar's solo autobiographical show is a little rough on the edges but is carried by the author's big heartedness

Don't see it if The workshop production needs a little fine-tuning Almanzar's original Hip-Hop infused music provides a nice counterpoint to the drama

65
The Life
Midtown W
Indulgent, Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Cliched, Ambitious
March 20th, 2022

See it if While Porter deserves credit for attempting a more insightful look into the 'street life' of 1980's NYC, the outcome is a depressing polemic

Don't see it if It's not all the wasted talent that is disturbing as much as the rejiggering of the Coleman music The infusion of hip hop is just dissonance

90
Great staging, Intelligent, Quirky, Thought-provoking, Entertaining
March 20th, 2022

See it if Byrne's Utopia is a captivating mash-up of concert & performance art A snazzy production & sharp staging allow Byrne's music/lyrics to shine

Don't see it if A passing knowledge of Byrne's songbook/oeuvre is helpful but not necessary His charismatic presence carries the evening's cavalcade of hope

65
Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Banal, Relevant, Slow
March 14th, 2022

See it if The adage 'No good deed goes unstoned' gets a bland rendering as a talented cast work hard to defuse a virtuous career choice from occurring

Don't see it if The dramedy is defeated not so much by the glib dialogue as the lack of any in depth characterization Garbayo's Jamie almost escapes intact

85
Company (Broadway)
Midtown W
Great acting, Great writing, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Entertaining
March 7th, 2022

See it if Early, problematic Sondheim still shines like a diamond in the rough Great ensemble w/LuPone, Fitzgerald & Doyle standouts Lenk is miscast

Don't see it if Link plays like a deer in headlights (or neon lights!) but isn't as intrusive as Elliott's brittle staging But that book/lyrics can take it!

78
Resonant, Slow, Thought-provoking, Intense, Absorbing
February 28th, 2022

See it if Mint's usual craftsmanship on display w/ D H Lawrence's drama of class warfare via the sexes with the women besting the men Well acted

Don't see it if A little slow and wordy at times esp during the 1st Act's exposition but comes ferociously alive as Minnie fights to keep her husband

79
Raunchy, Slow, Intense, Great acting, Ambitious
February 28th, 2022

See it if A tour de force for Aedin Moloney as Molly, James Joyce's mistress immortalized in Ulysses Despite the thick accent, she's riveting to watch

Don't see it if Familiarity with the novel a plus (esp the stream of consciousness) Works better on video than in the theatre Feels less claustrophobic

84
Intimate Apparel
Upper W Side
Resonant, Slow, Great writing, Disappointing, Ambitious
February 26th, 2022

See it if Nottage's libretto (from her play) holds the greatest attention in this operatic version Gordon's music suits the drama well w/o excitement

Don't see it if A sluggish, exposition-heavy 1st Act threatens to doom the proceedings The 2nd Act ignites dramatically (esp the music) to salvage the piece

77
During previews
English
Chelsea
Slow, Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Absorbing, Ambitious
February 21st, 2022

See it if Interesting drama concerning the use of English as "The" world language Author Toossi gets a lot of of mileage out of the classroom locale

Don't see it if The various subplots never quite connect (one just disappears) making for a diffusive quality not helped by Adams' somnambulant direction

75
Absorbing, Quirky, Slow, Great acting, Disappointing
February 21st, 2022

See it if Falling somewhere between an audio performance and a TED talk, Hand owes it's appeal mainly due to the two consummate Irish stage actors

Don't see it if Despite the valiant efforts of Molloy and Crowley, the drama cannot shake it's Masterpiece Theatre roots Duncan's poems often work too hard

72
BAROCOCO (2022)
Midtown E
Indulgent, Entertaining, Fluffy, Slow, Banal
February 19th, 2022

See it if This amuse-bouche mash-up of Baroque & Rococo styles succeeds only fitfully; relying on it's sumptuous costumes and lively, mannered acting

Don't see it if With little and often no dialogue, its difficult to get ones bearings Yet the metaphor of a dying society via indulgence comes home clearly

76
Edgy, Well written, Relevant, Great acting, Intense
February 19th, 2022

See it if Tyler's audio play about childhood friends dealing with pandemic stress on their adult situations is drawn w/sharp, edgy dramatic strokes

Don't see it if At 35 minutes, not too much can be giving over to depth of characterization but the actors (esp Ronald Emile) execute admirably

79
Wolf Play
Soho/Tribeca
Great acting, Intense, Thought-provoking, Edgy, Ambitious
February 18th, 2022

See it if Jung's absorbing, absurdist look at parenting and familial bonding Dynamic acting (esp Jouley's Ash) keeps drama grounded as it spins astray

Don't see it if The adaption 'premise' constantly upends the play even more so than the feral puppet at the center Still, important themes are well played

86
Great acting, Riveting, Intense, Great writing, Absorbing
February 16th, 2022

See it if McPherson's best play is given a 4 star digital production via O'Reilly's taut direction & a superb ensemble cast Spellbindingly creepy!

Don't see it if Very, very little to take issue with Sometimes the actors feel detached from the image / bar room but not often enough to harm

74
Fugitive Colors
Brooklyn
Well acted, Resonant, Slow, Cliched, Absorbing
February 13th, 2022

See it if Anderson's domestic dramedy of four friends meeting regularly hits a snag when dementia enters the story Well played out on a nifty set

Don't see it if Often cliched riddled with each woman representing a known type A number of "women's issues" addressed but not in depth Needs another draft

80
Shipwreck
Virtual
Resonant, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Ambitious
February 13th, 2022

See it if Washburn's audio play regarding events around & about Trump's election is a stunner with an great vocal ensemble via Ali's taut direction

Don't see it if However, it's also preaching to the choir Also a visual medium would bring the fantasia elements to greater life as well providing clarity

83
Great staging, Slow, Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Ambitious
February 12th, 2022

See it if Harmon's latest drama about anti-Semitism (then & now) is well appointed & acted but any success is due to Cromer's insightful direction

Don't see it if Harmon's strengths (razor sharp dialogue, familial bonding) & weaknesses (overblown, hectoring dialogue, repetitive scenes) on full display