Manhattan Theatre Works presents David Stallings' existential comedy imagining the impact the celebrated diarist would have on other famous women in the afterlife. More…
'Anaïs Nin Goes to Hell' features some of the most powerful and memorable women in history—Queen Victoria, Cleopatra, Andromeda, Heloise, Joan of Arc—as they wait on an island in the river Styx for the final leg of their journeys to eternal peace or damnation. Their monotonous afterlife is shaken up when women’s lib icon and erotica writer, Anaïs Nin arrives, planting seeds of change.
"A salacious, complex satire on women’s rights, desires, and society’s expectations of the female sex...Although a comedy, this play portrays all too real problems with the expectations of woman in society. The company of actors was flawless in their delivery in lines, emotions, and dialects...'Anais Nin Goes to Hell' is enjoyable and a must-see. The company is fantastic in their honest, bold, and emotional roles from women in history." Full Review
"A deliciously decadent new theater piece...Campy fun, with a seemingly infinite number of priceless comedic lines by a diverse, talented cast. There are also an equal number of ageless words of wisdom courtesy of our Ms. Nin...Underneath the comedy, there are serious themes about female empowerment...'Anais Nin Goes to Hell' is bolstered by energetic direction by Minino and fabulous costumes...This is a trip to Hell worth going to, in a hand-basket or otherwise." Full Review
"Stallings’s potentially gimmicky concept, directed by Antonio Minino with equal parts gravitas and wit, flowers into a richly imagined garden of passions, philosophy, and humor...Manhattan Theatre Works goes out in style with this, its final production, with a fine creative team and an excellent cast. Amanda Jones is especially commanding as Nin, but each cast member brings her own strengths...Minino skillfully paces and focuses the action while drawing on the actors’ strengths." Full Review
"A moving, existential comedy of female power and heartbreak...Stallings and director Antonio Minino wisely keep the production grounded in emotional reality and well of sadness that lies in all of the characters’ hearts. The play is wildly funny to be sure...I appreciated the honesty with which Stallings confronts how difficult it is as women to hold our own power. Sometimes we need someone else to push us to awaken those new feelings and horizons in ourselves." Full Review
"'Anaïs Nin Goes to Hell' is an intellectually charged play with the potential to be a masterpiece on the awakening of feminism. One must applaud the amount of research that has gone into this story...Playwright David Stallings certainly has a way with capturing the essence of his characters. However, although an admirable attempt to send a feminist message, the play spends much time displaying the characters' vulnerabilities and how they are defined by the men they await." Full Review
See it if A witty existential female driven comedy full of delicious language and epic characters. Well written, acted, directed, and designed.
Don't see it if You don't like language plays.
See it if Hilarious sendup of 5 archetypal women who seek to find themselves in a world without men. Almost campy, but dealing with important issues.
Don't see it if You should see it! It is intelligent and entertaining, well acted and funny as hell. Much to think about here....Highly recommended.
See it if you like your comedy over-the-top and outrageous, and mixed with messages about female empowerment and relationships between women.
Don't see it if you don't have a sense of humor
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