VSG

Long Island City | Female
About:  I've been called a "culture vulture" by some, and my tastes run the gamut. No genre of theater is excepted, but being a Virgo, I do tend to appreciate excellence regardless of category. I admit to having a weakness for "schmaltzy" fare as well and have a pronounced romantic streak. Love the bal... Read more Read less
Reviews (181)
88
During previews
Relevant, Must see, Intelligent, Intense, Edgy

See it if you want to see truly original perspective on core themes of dominance/submission, gender and race and be captivated by acting & production.

Don't see it if You might find simulated sexuality of various kinds unpleasant, won't like the bifurcated structure of the play -depicts and then analyzes.

Also This was one of the most surprising,interesting and provocative experi... Read more Read less

79
Relevant, Intense, Cliched, Clever, Great acting

See it if you are interested in the power/racial dynamics between a nerdy white director and a strapping African-American who is type cast as Othello

Don't see it if if you expect anything new being brought to the conversation; although the concept is clever and acting superlative, t text is repetitive.

75
Quirky, Refreshing, Confusing, Delightful, Clever

See it if Clever, quirky, message inflected musical might be your cup o'-shows what talent and imagination can yield without necessity of gazillions.

Don't see it if You want a totally polished production-this is antithesis of Bway blockbuster in every way, yet could end up with wide audience if sharpened

Also There was so much pleasure to be found in this meandering, unfocused, ... Read more Read less

84
Ambitious, Intense, Relevant, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if u are looking for one white guy's experience at 92% black and latino Rikers Island as he awaits release after having killed while DUI

Don't see it if u want an indictment of entire criminal justice system or deep insight into race relations & white privilege in largest penal colony n world

Also The piece for what it is, a first person monologue about a life changi... Read more Read less

70
The Exes
Midtown W
Insipid, Fluffy, Disappointing, Funny, Entertaining

See it if you can imagine what this potentially campy and farcical romp might have been had the writing been sharper and the execution better.

Don't see it if you expect to find this play funnier than it actually is, don't like old-fashioned situation comedy, can overlook the differences in talent.

Also Kudos to the "house manager" actor and the set designer. I actually wa... Read more Read less

88
Funny, Absorbing, Refreshing, Entertaining, Delightful

See it if you have a thing for 30's and 40's movies, the star systems exploitation of female actors esp in light of current mores, terrific 1 wmn show

Don't see it if you don't care about BD, strong women who survive in male dominated world, think BD was childish when she lost 1940 Oscar to Vivien Leigh.

Also I saw this show almost a year ago and thoroughly enjoyed myself. I tri... Read more Read less

83
Little Gem
Chelsea
Resonant, Great writing, Great acting, Funny, Clever

See it if interested in three generations of Irish women telling interrelated monologs mostly about their relationships with men during "their" times.

Don't see it if you don't want to fill in the blanks about their relationships with each other because these are "serial" stories which although well told..

Also are still monologues. The acting is great especially Marsha Mason, but... Read more Read less

82
The Rolling Stone
Upper W Side
Thought-provoking, Intense, Great acting, Disappointing, Relevant

See it if you are interested in the demonization and oppression of those who differ from the dominant culture whether political or religious in origin

Don't see it if you can't imagine that this play is about more than the persecution of gay men in Uganda, but about all considered to be "outsiders"

Also the script is the weakest element here and the ending as others have p... Read more Read less

50
Insipid, Indulgent, Disappointing

See it if U must see every show that deals with paranormal experiences, abusive childhoods, coming out, justifications for criminality soaked in camp

Don't see it if U want serious exploration of any of the above topics, instead of pathetic unprofessional presentation by someone who claims unique talents.

Also I do tend towards acceptance of psychic phenomena, reincarnation ,and ... Read more Read less

83
Preexisting Conditions
East Village
Quirky, Relevant, Funny, Great acting, Clever

See it if you'd like to see a piece where the way to deal with lack of health care is to get married. Skewers many major social issues of our times.

Don't see it if u are tired of Bachelor/Bachelorette themes, even w a twist and don't like small productions even if clever & well acted; quirky take on Now

85
During previews
No One is Forgotten
West Village
Thought-provoking, Riveting, Intelligent, Intense, Great acting

See it if u want to see excellent acting by two women playing captors in an unknown place and situation doing what any two might do in such conditions

Don't see it if you can't deal with "raw" and "intense" and need to know where and why they are imprisoned - for me the play was aiming for the universal.

Also To a certain extent, according to this playwright, we are all imprison... Read more Read less

80
All My Sons
Midtown W
Overrated, Relevant, Dated, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if you like everything Miller and can't imagine Bening and Letts being anything less than fabulous - the material is second rate Miller, &B &L.

Don't see it if you might find the whole production too pat, too un-nuanced and the color-blind casting confusing and disorienting esp. given time & place.

Also I love the actors but this is not one of Miller's best. The usual mora... Read more Read less

83
Disappointing, Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Entertaining, Clever

See it if you enjoy (mostly) one woman shows, this one detailing the debating career of Ms, Schreck who paid for college by participating.

Don't see it if you are uninterested in the foundation upon which our country has been built, are anti-feminist or not into a mock debate w a high-schooler.

Also Heidi Schreck's presumably autobiographical material is quite interest... Read more Read less

88
Resonant, Intelligent, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you are an O'Casey fan, are amenable to Irish historical material, enjoy great acting esp. Plunkett who is a joy, overall fine production.

Don't see it if you are up to your eyeballs in revivals of classical Irish plays, can't manage varying degrees of brogue, have no compassion for the poor.

85
Thought-provoking, Intense, Intelligent, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if u want to witness the life of a young Hassidic schizophrenic boy and his relationship with a secular Jewish social worker who tries to help.

Don't see it if You are averse to seeing a lot of primitive behavior acted out, or do not wish to engage with beliefs and lifestyle of a closed community.

Also The author and woman who plays the social worker obviously has had som... Read more Read less

95
Brilliant, Profound, Relevant, Hilarious, Great acting

See it if You grok the "down-town" sensibility of the great Taylor Mac, and would enjoy a brilliantly acted, ribald farce w profound pacifist thrust.

Don't see it if you don't want to pay close attention to every word, have no appreciation for couplets and rhyme and are offended by comedy about sex &death

Also I was surprised by how much I liked this play, given that I generally ... Read more Read less

80
Banal, Entertaining, Clever, Disappointing, Great acting

See it if enjoy a brilliant performance from Laurie Metcalf and an excellent one from John Lithgow in a fantasy re: the outcome of 2008 election.

Don't see it if you have strong opinions about why Hillary lost and aren't interested in re-examining the subject from an alternative perspective/Universe.

Also Far from Hnath's best work, the conceit in this play is actually quite... Read more Read less

70
Overrated, Intense, Relevant, Disappointing, Ambitious

See it if you like your musicals to be loud, intense, and overproduced despite the good choice to retell the classic Greek Myth-too much is not enough

Don't see it if if you prefer subtlety and innuendo over high tech, want your leads to be charismatic and have chemistry, don't like fusion of musical genre

Also I totally appreciate the attempt of Chavkin, et al. to create "modern ... Read more Read less

75
During previews
Slow, Delightful, Entertaining

See it if You're an admirer of the many things the Mint does well-costume, sets, choice of material, acting. Here acting and material not their best

Don't see it if 100 y.o. plays dealing with moral and philosophical issues not your thing-still an enjoyable polemic of $ vs. other values-always relevant

76
Moving Bodies
East Village
Absorbing, Ambitious, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Relevant

See it if you would like to see how women scientists have been overlooked in history and particularly the obstacles faced during the Enlightenment

Don't see it if You find Newton, Voltaire, Leibniz and their concerns too esoteric-much of play is theoretical discussion of physics, rest is romantic tngl

86
Alexandria
West Village
Absorbing, Intelligent, Intense, Profound, Thought-provoking

See it if Co-joining of people in small southern town who have wildly different world views but are "friends" with excellent presentation of opp POVs

Don't see it if U can't muster sympathy for a conservative Christian or a foul mouthed lesbian activist,or might find play's apocalyptic close too extreme

75
During previews
Mary Page Marlowe
Midtown W
Confusing, Disappointing, Intelligent, Great acting, Thought-provoking

See it if your idea of fun is creating a narrative from puzzling fragmented scenes of a woman's life played w 6 actors portraying her at 6 ages

Don't see it if the conceit of creating a linear story with cause and effect sounds like work especially given that the protagonist is not that interesting

Also I am a counselor/therapist and the play reminded me of how a life may ... Read more Read less

77
In & Of Itself
Gramercy
Clever, Slow, Quirky, Overrated, Indulgent

See it if you might enjoy confessional story-telling which may be truth or illusion leading up to 6 acts of magic or illusion with a wow ending.

Don't see it if you dislike one handers and slow pace, if you might be bored by long lead-up to the tricks, or a sometimes sullen sometimes cocky performer.

Also I think this show needs to be more focused and better directed. There ... Read more Read less

70
During previews
Lonesome Blues
Midtown E
Great singing, Confusing, Disappointing, Slow, Great blues guitar

See it if you might like a one man show about blues sensation Blind Lemon Jefferson portrayed and sung with great skill by Akin Babatunde.

Don't see it if you won't enjoy sitting through a slow, meandering rendition of an important blues-man's life despite Babatunde's excellent acting, singing.

Also As others have mentioned, the elevator not working is a real drag-4 fl... Read more Read less

84
Dido of Idaho
Midtown W
Absorbing, Ambitious, Clever, Edgy, Entertaining

See it if You like Dido and Anaeis tale/baroque opera and want to see contemporary take on theme of love triangle-great acting, scenic design. writing

Don't see it if You might feel the production is a bit histrionic, and a fight scene too violent and graphic, but this is an interesting new play-go anyway.

85
During previews
Entertaining, Refreshing, Great acting, Funny, Delightful

See it if you would like to be steeped in Shaw's world view with delightful performances of historical characters/events to make philosophical points

Don't see it if you don't appreciate Shavian POV, can't get past the fact that this was never primo Shaw, cast is of varying ability and text is altered.

Also I found the piece to be absolutely true to the intention of Shaw despi... Read more Read less

94
Eureka Day
Soho/Tribeca
Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great writing, Great acting, Funny

See it if you have ever experienced trying to reach consensus in a group and realized that even like-minded folks can hold very divergent POV's

Don't see it if you think CA left leaning parents dealing with issue of mandatory vaccination is beyond tedious and endless parsing of the subject boring

Also I found this play excellent in every way. Wonderful writing albeit gar... Read more Read less

82
Tootsie (NYC)
Midtown W
Disappointing, Dated, Great singing, Funny, Entertaining

See it if willing to see a show about which you are likely to be ambivalent -singing, acting, lyrics wonderful, but very dated and cliched.

Don't see it if you can't forget the mediocre score, the dated and problematic premise, and be entertained to the hilt by the amazing talent on stage. I was

Also The sexual politics don't work here as many others have pointed out, a... Read more Read less

69
Indulgent, Cliched, Disappointing, Confusing, Quirky

See it if you want to see late TW in an experimental mood in a semi-autobiographical play based on his real life relationship with his mad sister

Don't see it if you want to see everything Williams wrote despite the failure of this piece to impress audiences or critics; well acted despite C- material

69
Talent is Sexy
Midtown W
Marred by over-the-top acting, Relevant, Disappointing, Slow

See it if you want to support community level theater, and don't mind that two of the actors scream their lines; subject matter is real, needs work

Don't see it if don't want to be subjected to over-acting and slow but obvious denouement; sensitive situation of how & when to shatter illusions of others

79
Indulgent, Awful book, Great staging, Great singing, Entertaining

See it if You need to kick start your inner Temptations discography though you won't hear a single complete song, and and want to remember their moves

Don't see it if You detest jukebox musicals, might resent that this is a vanity piece for the only original Temptation alive, Otis Williams, who is'''godly"

Also The talent onstage is enormous in both singing and dancing departments... Read more Read less

87
Rinse, Repeat
Midtown W
Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you are interested in the many ways that dysfunctionality can express itself in upper middle class families-anorexia being just one of them.

Don't see it if you don't like "kitchen table" (literally) psychological dramas, dilemmas of the privileged, transference of pathology through generations.

Also This is a very reality based play and the writing has the ring of trut... Read more Read less

93
Slow (in a good way), Thought-provoking, Riveting, Intense, Brilliant writing, brilliant acting, masterful in every way

See it if McNally's poetic exploration of desire for intimacy and fear and resistance to it-raw, honest, universal, &relevant despite current mores.

Don't see it if You don't want to go deep or object to frank sex talk, or if you want to miss the beauty of the dance between Frankie and Johnny. Must see

Also Despite having been written in the '80s, McNally's text gets beneath a... Read more Read less

85
During previews
I Spy a Spy
Midtown W
Refreshing, Great singing, Entertaining, Silly

See it if you want a charming, overlong, tuneful, madcap experience of immigrants in the Big A - at first paranoia abounds, then is resolved in Act 2.

Don't see it if you want a finished work, although this has potential if trimmed by a third, and sad that if it should transfer leads who aren't names won't

80
The Comedian's Tragedy
Soho/Tribeca
Intelligent, Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Clever

See it if you like Greek mythology with a twist, fantastic acting (Amendt and Menzel) and verbal sparring asking what if Aris(tophanes) wrote tragedy

Don't see it if you don't know some Greek mythology, can't appreciate ingenious staging on a shoestring, can't sit for 2.5+ hours in sauna-like conditions.

85
Octet
Midtown W
Intense, Relevant, Great singing, Entertaining, Clever

See it if you want to hear some of the best a cappella music ever and might find addiction to internet a suitable subject for such exquisite sounds.

Don't see it if you have no patience for 12-step like recovery as material, low budget staging and some overlong monologues. Otherwise this piece compels.

72
Working: A Musical
Midtown W
Relevant, Disappointing, Dated, Cliched, Banal

See it if you appreciate the desire to revive a musical from the original Studs Terkel book of the same name, and you want to support the 99% who work

Don't see it if you expect wonderful music, or performances - these were just okay - and find the attempt to modernize and update this tired piece to fail.

Also While it was interesting to hear from folks who work in various capaci... Read more Read less

85
Ink
Midtown W
Relevant, Thought-provoking, Intense, Great staging, Great acting

See it if you are interested in difference between true journalism and the rise of tabloid newspapers courtesy of Murdoch and his hires, great acting

Don't see it if You find Murdoch too repugnant to want to be in his world for 2hrs45; you are a Fox fan or a NY Post devotee; you are sensitive to screaming

Also So much to appreciate in this production: ingenious staging which almo... Read more Read less

88
Thought-provoking, Riveting, Intense, Great writing, Absorbing

See it if you like one person's creative, interesting retelling of difficult childhood and how impact of events led him to relative freedom as adult

Don't see it if you are averse to depictions of dysfunctional family life, might find the piece indulgent (I didn't), Cale's singing and music tangential.

Also This is a very well conceived piece of autobiographical story-telling,... Read more Read less

87
Ambitious, Clever, Dizzying, Thought-provoking, Entertaining

See it if You like a multi-talented. multi-lingual young woman trying to find direction in her artistic life and her relationship to her Jewish roots.

Don't see it if You don't like one person shows, have no patience with many-faceted young people trying to be authentic and find a career path that fits.

Also Lea Kalisch is one extraordinary ball of fire full of ambition and gut... Read more Read less

75
Ambitious, Dizzying, Indulgent, Funny, Clever

See it if you like your Chekov on the wild side with characterizations exaggerated, extremely physical as might have been performed in the time of AC.

Don't see it if you expect cohesiveness to come from similar acting ability, accents creating a sense of ensemble rather than a rag-tag group of individuals

Also I realize that my comments above are diametrically opposed to those th... Read more Read less

91
Intense, Riveting, Intelligent, Great writing, Great acting

See it if you enjoy exploration of human emotions where a student-teacher relationship is explored through scene work involving Shakespeare characters

Don't see it if uncomfortable with Shakespearian language, not interested in power and gender issues , don't like talky "meta" theater or minimal production

Also This was one of the best acted, most interesting and complex plays I h... Read more Read less

62
The Fat Lady Sings
East Village
Dizzying, Disappointing, Confusing, Excruciating

See it if You want to see what Jean-Claude van Itallie is up to these days and you'd like to hear a bona fide opera singer in a PC anti-Trump piece.

Don't see it if You remember creativity of Van Itallie in his prime. I do and was hoping to see a glimmer of his genius; unfortunately this effort failed.

Also Kudos to all the talent who were involved in this ambitious production... Read more Read less

60
The games people play(ed), Excruciating

See it if You want to be exhausted by the cat and mouse game of romantic love in one of Strindberg's densest and least successful plays.

Don't see it if You want to sit in a cavernous, hot, black box straining to get every tick and twist of plot- could possibly come alive with the right cast.

Also The Strindberg play has some interesting ideas about marriage and the ... Read more Read less

85
Delightful, Enchanting, Entertaining, Great singing, Refreshing

See it if you like old musicals, scaled fit a tiny stage with great tunes and a somewhat hokey (to most)book- t'was a sincere exploration for Lerner.

Don't see it if You feel antipathy towards hypnosis, ESP, reincarnation, pint sized productions with meager production values, but lovely score and singing.

74
During previews
Beloved
Midtown W
Great acting, Edgy, Intense, Confusing, Raunchy

See it if you like 1 handers exploring coming of age not just sexually, but intellectually and philosophically with literary speech mixed w vulgarity

Don't see it if you don't like the f-bomb mingling with abstract ideas and rarefied references; formidable, nuanced acting but poor articulation a problem.

Also Very helpful if you feel that classical music and philosophical inquir... Read more Read less

94
Conflict
Midtown W
Delightful, Great acting, Great staging, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if you love the work of the Mint and appreciate great farce, fine acting and production values in which theme of privilege resonates today. A+

Don't see it if If you don't like English plays of yore, and don't appreciate plays where characters actually discuss things and feelings in depth not texts

Also Feel so grateful that the Mint keeps unearthing wonderful vehicles to ... Read more Read less

97
Mesmerizing, Fantastic dancing, Exquisite, Enchanting, Intelligent

See it if brilliant music by Kander, choreography by Stroman, exquisite dancing by Yazbeck and Dvorovenko -inspired by H. James novella is your cup 'o

Don't see it if you are "dance blind", unsympathetic to inner wounds that might prohibit commitment and deep love, if you are anti-romantic and need lyrics.

Also This is one of the most affecting and beautiful pieces of theater I ha... Read more Read less

89
The Metromaniacs
Midtown W
Delightful, Entertaining, Hilarious, Intelligent, Great writing

See it if If you are tickled by word play and want to see a tres silly piece that is guaranteed to float you away from the the world's woes, go now.

Don't see it if If you abhor the farcical and the fey, and don't realize that a nonsensical plot exists solely as scaffolding for Ives' brilliant word play.

75
During previews
Feeding the Dragon
West Village
Great staging, Entertaining, Disappointing, Banal

See it if Sharon Washington's lovely presence and animated physicality forgive the rather superficial telling of her story and poor direction.

Don't see it if you will be disappointed by a lost opportunity to tell the fascinating story of a family living above a library on UWS-far from deep enough.

Also This piece could be so much more if it were allowed to be more profoun... Read more Read less