A New Brain
Closed 2h 15m
A New Brain

A New Brain NYC Reviews and Tickets

(29 Ratings)
Members say
Entertaining, Clever, Funny, Great acting, Great writing

About the Show

This autobiographical 1998 musical from Tony Award winner William Finn is a medical tragedy as seen through the lens of a Looney Tunes short.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (29)

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103 Reviews | 25 Followers
Clever, Entertaining, Thought-provoking, Refreshing, Profound

See it if You want to be amazed by William Finn's genius. You want a story of second chances. You want an original, witty musical.

Don't see it if The description says "through the lens of a Looney Tunes short," it's accurate. It's zany at times, and if zany isn't your thing, skip it.

100 Reviews | 50 Followers
Absorbing, Entertaining, Great acting

See it if You like William Finn musicals, you don't have any issues with the storyline.

Don't see it if You are turned off by quirky and different musicals.

721 Reviews | 253 Followers
Entertaining, Funny, Great writing, Romantic, Relevant

See it if You want to hear one of the best musical theater scores of the past 20 years.

Don't see it if You like shows with big production numbers.

98 Reviews | 18 Followers
Romantic, Original, Masterful, Entertaining, Great acting

See it if A great job done by actors putting 110%. Most of the music enjoyable. I appreciated this show as a medical professional.

Don't see it if Some numbers were just odd, but overall well done. Don't enjoy semi-stagged productions.

204 Reviews | 124 Followers
Great music, Absorbing, Interesting, Unique, Entertaining

See it if you're looking for biographical show that is a little unconventional & don't mind one that deals with some serious medical themes.

Don't see it if you're turned off by autobiographical shows or irreverent depictions of medial issues.

339 Reviews | 61 Followers
Great acting, Great staging, Enchanting

See it if you are a fan of the music (which you should be), you're interested in musicals that tell a unique story.

Don't see it if you're afraid of hospitals.

144 Reviews | 29 Followers
Miscast, Great writing, Great staging, Ambitious, Hilarious

See it if you love the work of Bill Finn

Don't see it if you want a Jonathan Groff Vehicle, he was completely miscast and unfortunately boring Read more

173 Reviews | 46 Followers
Absorbing, Great acting, Original

See it if you want a contemporary story & engaging likable, but complicated characters.

Don't see it if you're looking for catchy, epic music.

Critic Reviews (10)

The New York Times
June 25th, 2015

“An attractively abstract, shadow-filled production directed by Mr. Lapine, the show remains, as it was, what is essentially one long, harmonious thank-you note for second chances in life...'A New Brain' has been given a top-flight physical production...Both eccentrically individual and universal, these songs evoke the original, piquant talent of a composer whose singular style otherwise feels strangely absent."
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New York Magazine / Vulture
June 25th, 2015

"With its existential questions and probing narrative, 'A New Brain' suffers a bit from an unwillingness to prune away some of its revue-form roots: There are too many songs and, especially, too many wrap-it-up songs at the end. But the miracle is that the show is nevertheless terribly moving, making excellent use of what can, in other contexts, be Finn’s least successful tics...The authors have also fiddled with the material, sharpening and tightening it significantly."
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New York Daily News
June 25th, 2015

"A tuneful and chipper number in 'A New Brain' repeatedly points out that you need 'heart and music to survive.' The show heeds half that smart advice...This 'Brain' could use more heart...There’s an almost clinical detachment toward the characters."
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New York Post
June 25th, 2015

"Finn is an idiosyncratic lyricist/composer with a unique gift for nakedly emotional songs...Other parts of the show haven’t aged nearly as well, like the grating childlike vibe associated with Mr. Bungee...Though the musical is uneven, Groff effortlessly keeps the production together with his supple voice and low-key charm."
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AM New York
June 25th, 2015

"The unpredictable, often catchy score alternates between madcap, hallucinatory production numbers and gorgeous, tender ballads...The current production has very little scenery, which makes it look rather empty in the big theater. Nevertheless, the musical plows ahead without pause for 100 minutes and giddily sweeps the audience along."
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June 25th, 2015

"With 'A New Brain', Lapine proves once again how good he is at directing his own material, sending us on a dizzying voyage through the valley of the shadow of death that's as dark as it is lighthearted...Ultimately, this production proves that 'A New Brain' is one big affirmation of life, and a reminder that every day we have on this planet is a gift."
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Talkin' Broadway
June 24th, 2015

"Though tangible reality is essentially a character, and makes its presence keenly felt at certain points, its application represents the shakiest sections of the show's otherwise rock-solid concept...So, no, 'A New Brain' is not perfect. Still, such flaws hardly matter when the presentation and the casting are as elegant as they are here...With an artistry that is at once touching and objective. That elevates the show and transports us to the realm of insight and wonder only accessible by way of the best musicals — the best theatre."
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Theater Pizzazz
June 25th, 2015

"To some, 'A New Brain', William Finn’s autobiographically-based musical about his brief battle with a brain injury, will always seem like an odd, slightly self-indulgent curiosity. To others, myself included, the show is a moving testament to the power of love and hope, blessed with some of the most glorious and inventive music written for the theater in the past 20 years. And I suspect whichever side you may be on, you will never see a more perfectly cast production."
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Creative team