A Touch of the Poet
Closed 2h 40m
A Touch of the Poet
80

A Touch of the Poet NYC Reviews and Tickets

80%
(43 Reviews)
Positive
93%
Mixed
5%
Negative
2%
Members say
Great acting, Absorbing, Intense, Great staging, Great writing

O’Neill’s tragic tale about an immigrant’s experience and generational aspiration.

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Member Reviews (43)

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612 Reviews | 125 Followers
80
Absorbing, Great staging, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if Family drama, great acting. If you like Eugene O'NEAL

Don't see it if If you want a happy show.

435 Reviews | 117 Followers
90
Powerful, well-acted o'neill drama of toxic masculinity

See it if O'Neill's alcohol-fueled drama of a prideful womanizer. Robert Cuccioli nails the character, backed by a great supporting cast. Devastating

Don't see it if Though it's a mid-20th century play set in the early 1800s, it couldn't be more up-to-date in its portrayal of male ego. An Irish Rep winner

414 Reviews | 74 Followers
84
Great acting, Great staging, Intense, Intelligent, Absorbing

See it if O'Neill plays with his dysfunctional families; a deluded main character with excessive pride who lives in the past (well acte by Cuccoli)*

Don't see it if Long.** Some verbose dialogue at the ends of both halves (especially at end of play). Don't want to see abusive relationships. Read more

330 Reviews | 103 Followers
82
Long, Thought-provoking, Resonant, Great acting

See it if You would enjoy a long winded Eugene O’Neill play. Well acted, especially the lead Robert Cuccioli as Con Melody.

Don't see it if You are not interested in the Irish immigrant experience in Boston or in a dysfunctional family.

312 Reviews | 44 Followers
80
Intense, Uneven, Great writing, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if you enjoy O'Neill angst. Cuccioli gives it full rein and it works for the most part. Generally well-acted, with one unfortunate exception.

Don't see it if you don't have patience for long, talky plays about unhappy people. It can be tough to take, but I found it engaging and worth the effort

262 Reviews | 67 Followers
80
Resonant, Relevant, Great writing

See it if Eugene O'Neill's play about a dysfunctional Irish family in Massachusetts. Very well done typical of Irish rep Productions. A Long play

Don't see it if thou stretched over 2 hours and 40 minutes. Could use a little trimming but definitely kept my attention.

227 Reviews | 49 Followers
90
Riveting, Refreshing, Masterful, Great staging, Great acting

See it if Riveting performance, totally enjoyed this wonderful revival with great actors. Eugene O' Neil actually kept me awake. Go see it

Don't see it if Long O'Neil plays are not your thing

203 Reviews | 49 Followers
90
Entertaining, Great writing, Intelligent, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you like a very well-done classic play. Wonderful acting!

Don't see it if you only like modern plays or musicals.

Critic Reviews (10)

New Yorker
March 11th, 2022

"At the Irish Rep, the director, Ciarán O’Reilly, splendidly evokes both the period and the universality of the story, and Cuccioli simmers, sneers, blusters, and bellows in a masterly tragicomic performance."
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Lighting & Sound America
March 21st, 2022

You are invited to see a man's soul stripped bare. It's a methodical process, a kind of psychological surgery conducted with alcohol (albeit plenty of it) as the only anesthetic. The result is appalling, even grotesque, and yet I defy you to look away. A Touch of the Poet is often dismissed as second-rank Eugene O'Neill and yet, under Ciarán O'Reilly's muscular, pitiless direction, it emerges as one of the playwright's strongest statements on the illusions by which so many of us live -- the opiate nature that makes them essential and the havoc wreaked when they are proven false.
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Theater Pizzazz
March 24th, 2022

"Possesses a vigor and passion evoked by director Ciaran O’Reilly who finds energy in the constant movement on stage. There is a sense of violence just below the surface that keeps the audience in suspense of when and where it will explode. He succeeds in drawing out nuanced performances from most of his cast, suggesting there are even more complexities to the characters than we are privy to. Leading the cast, Cuccioli continues to demonstrate that he is one of the finest actors performing on New York stages today."
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T
March 14th, 2022

A Touch of the Poet is not perfect O’Neill. And this is far from a perfect production. But less-than-perfect O’Neill can still be nourishing. Given the famine of serious drama available at the moment, it will provide audiences hungry to sink their teeth into something meaty with a decent dramatic meal.
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T
March 16th, 2022

"4/5 stars...After seasons of watching streaming TV series, it’s restorative to hear O’Neil’s dialogue. While the production isn’t Aaron Sorkin speed, the play moves smoothly and quickly. More importantly, O’Neill’s relevance speaks to us...It’s unusual to find two hours and forty minutes in the theater so entirely engrossing. It’s even more unusual when it’s a rarely produced drama set in the early 19th century. But it is a great pleasure to see this work by Eugene O’Neill performed by such steadfast actors."
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T
March 19th, 2022

"3/5 stars...'A Touch of the Poet' is not one of Eugene O’Neill’s best dramas yet it does have some memorable characters and some sharp honest theatrical scenes. One of the reasons its flawed is O’Neill’s insistence of dragging out every scene beyond a reasonable length...Mr. Cuccioli has not not learned how to turn as swiftly as Con does from raging accusations against his humble wife or his fiercely proud daughter to sudden brief remorse. Nevertheless, he gets most of Con Melody on the stage as does the rest of the cast acting the shriveled souls of O’Neill’s dark world."
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Theatermania
March 8th, 2022

"Strictly speaking, 'A Touch of the Poet' is not a very good play, both in general and for Eugene O'Neill. While he famously railed against American melodrama, this play is steeped in it...To make matters worse, this is a not particularly good production of a not particularly good play. Director (and Irish Rep co-founder) Ciarán O'Reilly appears unable to make sense of the play...As for the company, they come across as under-directed, and they all feel like they're in their own play."
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Talkin' Broadway
March 8th, 2022

"As Sara, a critical role in 'Poet', Belle Aykroyd Is uncomfortably miscast...Fortunately, the rest of the 'Poet' cast is superb. As Con's wife Nora, Kate Forbes gives a luminous, riveting performance which becomes the heart of this revival...Interestingly, the director of this production, Ciarán O'Reilly, appeared as Dan Roche in the 2005 Roundabout revival, so he knows the play well. His direction here is tight and focused, but it can't correct the uneven performances of Cuccioli and Aykroyd in the pivotal leading roles."
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