Ends Jul 28 | 1h 45m | Midtown W

A Strange Loop

From 189 member reviews
Members say: Ambitious, Great singing, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Absorbing

About the show

Playwrights Horizons and Page 73's new musical follows a young artist at war with a host of demons — not least of which, his own punishing thoughts — in an attempt to capture and understand his own strange loop. More…

Usher is a black, queer writer, working a day job he hates while writing his original musical: a piece about a black, queer writer, working a day job he hates while writing his original musical.


Member Reviews (189)

MEMBERS SAY:

Ambitious, Great singing, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Absorbing
85
Avg Score

During previews
94
Relevant, Great singing, Great writing, Must see, Thought-provoking

See it if you appreciate less fluffy musical theater that reveals something important about experiences different from your own.

Don't see it if you too skirmish to handle X-rated language and provocative content

Also I usually steer off musical theatre because most of it is fluff - but ... Read more Read less

During previews
89
Relevant, Thought-provoking, Intense, Great writing, Absorbing

See it if You can relate to being & feeling different, and having the thoughts from things people say, especially those you love, undercut who you are

Don't see it if You want a light, fluffy material. The material is dark, albeit entertaining, with lots of intense scenes, especially the onstage sex scene

Also I thought this was a great show, about an overweight, black, gay playw... Read more Read less

During previews
69
Repetitive, Nice moments towards the end, "title of show" did this better, "meta" parts don't work, Unnecessarily vulgar

See it if want to see a powerful song where a mother's comforting love curdles into a diatribe against homosexuality. The show hits its stride here.

Don't see it if Meta "how to write a show about me" conceit is tiresome. PH should've helped shape this promising piece and put it in their smaller theater

During previews
85
Relevant, Indulgent, Thought-provoking, Raunchy, Provocative

See it if you want to see a provocative work by a new voice highlighting the personal journey of a young, gay, black man. Great cast.

Don't see it if you will not enjoy heartfelt portrayal of one young gay black man's journey told bluntly and often crudely.

During previews
85
Great staging, Great singing, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if into a current musical about personal experiences and inner voices

Don't see it if uncomfortable with blatant gay sexuality

Also This is a fabulous meta-musical about writing a musical; all while fig... Read more Read less

During previews
86
Raunchy, Thought-provoking, Clever, Relevant, Edgy

See it if you want to see a new voice talking about topics that are normally hidden from the world's view and hear great music at the same time.

Don't see it if you are easily offended or don't want to have your world view challenged. It's a thought provoking show with great music.

During previews
99
Intelligent, Absorbing, Great singing, Masterful, Relevant

See it if Dealing with the life of an intelligent young black thick gay man who tells his story in a musical he has written. It’s emotionally charged

Don't see it if Don’t see it if sexuality in all it encompasses is difficult for you to see.

Also This guy Michael jackson is SO talented. I think it’s a must see if yo... Read more Read less

During previews
100
Great singing, Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Absorbing

See it if You enjoy seeing new musicals with extremely talented singer/actor/dancers and challenging subject matter

Don't see it if (Don't get offended: there are people like this) you are not interested in works featuring all black ensembles & (some racy) lgbtq topics

Also I was truly blown away. I was alternately laughing raucously and cryin... Read more Read less

During previews
95
Funny, Edgy, Entertaining, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if want to see something that both challenges musical conventions and transforms them into something utterly new and epic.

Don't see it if you want a traditional musical or narrative. This is meta-fiction/memoir on steroids.

During previews
90
Great staging, Must see, Profound, Refreshing, Resonant

See it if you want a refreshing take on many of the LGBTQ issues facing queer POCs, from an unapologetically black fem queer point of view.

Don't see it if you don't want stories that challenge you, or think that black writers should only write about slavery and police brutality.

During previews
93
Great singing, Clever, Great acting, Funny, Entertaining

See it if You want to see the big public birth of a major new talent.

Don't see it if Queer themes bother you.

During previews
100
Refreshing, Hilarious, Absorbing, Intelligent, Masterful

See it if you're looking for meaningful, emotional, AND darkly comedic musical theater. This show is groundbreaking and embodies vulnerability.

Don't see it if you're looking only for "classical" musical theater. This musical is courageous and experimental.

During previews
73
Ambitious, Great singing

See it if It's a good show and the writing and performances feel very personal in a good way.

Don't see it if I'm not sure if this really worked as a musical- A lot of the songs felt repetitive (I guess the title calls for it) and it was quite wordy

During previews
97
Great acting, Relevant, Refreshing, Must see, Absorbing

See it if you like original musicals that defy convention and focus on personal journeys. It refreshingly brings black gay stories to the stage

Don't see it if you are easily offended by language or are a fan of traditional, old style musicals. Or you dislike seeing black or queer stories

During previews
95
Great staging, Great singing, Must see, Ambitious, Edgy

See it if you want to be completely reinvigorated about musical theatre. This is simply the best show I've seen in YEARS! Don't miss.

Don't see it if you've recently moved from NYC. That's really the only excuse to miss this show.

During previews
80
Resonant, Intelligent, Dizzying, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if You like new inventive musical theater that is musically innovative and centers on black queer experiences.

Don't see it if You want something light-hearted, easy, and doesn’t make you think too hard.

During previews
92
Great acting, Great singing, Funny, Entertaining, Clever

See it if You like fantastic gay black musicals with great acting and great singing.

Don't see it if you are uncomfortable with homosexuality.

During previews
75
Clever, Refreshing, Resonant, Raunchy, Ambitious

See it if you're interested in provocative works by new voices that have not been heard in musical theater. This is truly an original work.

Don't see it if you can't deal with explicit sexual/queer references.

Also Second preview and this feels like a work in progress. The cast is ver... Read more Read less

During previews
71
Relevant, Edgy, Dizzying, Thought-provoking, Raunchy

See it if u want a refreshing, brutally honest take on being a gay black theatre maker. Literally, there are no soft blows here, only cold hard facts.

Don't see it if you want a cohesive piece of theatre-- the show takes place in a mind, and like a mind, there's no logical connection btwn some scene jumps

During previews
92
Raunchy, Great writing, Dizzying, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if You like a black ass, queer ass, American Broadway.

Don't see it if You want an easy to digest piece of theatre. A Strange Loop will stay with you and leave you with more questions than answers.

During previews
75
Resonant, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if You like biographies and are interested in the inner life of a black gay man trying to find his place in life and career.

Don't see it if you prefer big, showy musicals or don’t like work that challenges your beliefs about race and gender.

During previews
85
Relevant, Raunchy, Intense, Dizzying, Ambitious

See it if you are interested in the human experience (maybe different from yours) presented in a semi-gospel style by a very talented cast.

Don't see it if you are not open to new ideas and do not like explicit sexual content.

Also The show is almost entirely sung. It veers from funny to heartbreaking... Read more Read less

During previews
97
Epic, Must see, Profound

See it if if you like leaving the theatre feeling moved. See if if you enjoy laughing, crying, and doing both at the same time. This show rocked me.

Don't see it if you're offended by sex/language.

Also Go see this show to witness an incredible performance by Larry Owens ~... Read more Read less

During previews
100
Great staging, Great acting, Great writing, Riveting, Refreshing

See it if You're interested in a bold, personal look at what it means to be black & gay. See it if you enjoy powerful, hilarious, emotional musicals.

Don't see it if You're only interested in traditional musicals or stories you're already familiar with.

During previews
95
Thought-provoking, Profound, Masterful, Intelligent, Ambitious

See it if You're interested in new voices, perspectives, and experimental MT

Don't see it if If you want a linear plot or are offended by vulgar language or sexual themes


June 17th, 2019
"Whether you are delighted, appalled or annoyed by the resulting production — and the odds are you will experience all of these responses — you can’t deny that it is uncompromisingly, exactly what it claims to be. Directed with admirable clarity by Brackett, with fabulously inventive choreography...
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June 17th, 2019
"The first 20 minutes are an exhilarating cocktail of hilarious lyrical complexity and Owens’s Idina Menzel belt; even after the rage begins to mount, Jackson—abetted by a bravura ensemble and Brackett’s super direction—keeps extending what we can take with explosively funny asides. But 'A Strang...
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June 17th, 2019
"Jackson’s triumph with 'A Strange Loop' is that by diving into the excruciatingly personal, he finds the broadly human...If 'A Strange Loop' sometimes feels like an early play — like a writer trying to muscle through the 20s-dominating obsession with self so that he can break out and into the re...
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June 17th, 2019
"Sometimes exhilarating, sometimes exasperating...The loops and hoops that Usher has to go through in the show’s final quarter become entangled with careening themes and repetition...Still, both Usher’s journey and Jackson’s show offer bracing insights into the endless strata of conflicts faced b...
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Cast & Creatives (5)