See it if You would enjoy an entertaining play on words and history, with clever characters and relationships.
Don't see it if You're not interested in the civil war setting.
See it if you enjoy a gallon of humor with your history lesson. It is a very well acted, well written play about a serious subject. Well done!
Don't see it if you feel history must be conveyed in the usual dry, textbook manner or if you do not enjoy non fiction.
See it if you enjoy historical plays with a dash of humor! It is very relevant to today's world.
Don't see it if you don't enjoy historical plays.
See it if Like historical shows. It could use some editing, especially in the first scene.
Don't see it if you are expecting something serious. Actors need to toe a fine line between humor and farce. In the first scene, they go into farce.
See it if You want to learn more about a little known important piece of history. Play is entertaining and clever, never preachy
Don't see it if You are put off by good characters who do not act in expected ways.
See it if you like a serious subject done in a humorous way. It is a very funny play about real-life Civil War characters; yet it's also very touching
Don't see it if you don't want Civil War & slavery presented humorously no matter how moving; you don't like plays based on historical events
See it if you like great writing well acted. I did not know of Butler prior to seeing this performance, and was very pleasantly surprised.
Don't see it if You don't like period pieces, or prefer musicals. (I saw at 59E59 August 2016)
See it if you want to see a little known story of the war, have a Civil War fetish
Don't see it if you expect relevance and insight, this is all rather predictable
"As delightfully engaging as it is astonishingly true…Its charm comes from playwright Richard Strand’s amusingly nuanced characterizations…The excellent cast are period perfect. Best of all, Ames Adamson's irascible Butler and John G.Williams scrappy Mallory emerge quite convincingly as kindred spirits. Directed by Discher with an eye for comedy and drama, 'Butler' is quite a marvelous feat - a boffo character study and suspense yarn spun from little more than a loophole in the law."
"Richard Strand's 'Butler' might just be the funniest play ever written about Civil War-era slavery...'Butler' tackles a serious subject in a way that is simultaneously thought-provoking and sidesplitting...In his own humorous and very watchable way, Strand hits at a larger truth: specifically, that the arc of the moral universe is often bent toward justice by the sophistry of prickly, stubborn individuals."
“With an extraordinary, artful script by Richard Strand, meticulous direction by Joseph Discher and four excellent actors, the show is a wonderfully staged, unforgettable story of humanity...More than an entertaining show, it is a significant piece of theater and a timeless exploration of social conscience and individual responsibility. In the current climate of political discord, it is a refreshing look at how men of very different backgrounds find a sense of commonality.”
“The director can't do much with the interminable early scenes, but, under the limitations imposed here, his handling of the second act is fairly solid...Throughout, there's a nagging question of taste: Is this racially fraught moment really the right time for a reassuring comic fairy tale about the ugliest mass crime in American history? I will add that the audience at my performance-which was 99% white-ate it all up with a spoon. I suspect that a black audience wouldn't be nearly as amused.”
"The playwright has accomplished two fairly remarkable things. First, he has taken an actual historic event and characters and turned it into an engrossing, non-pedantic play…More surprising, the play is delightfully funny, packed with wit, farce, and slapstick…Each of the characters is splendidly realized, and the production is first-rate all around...All told, this is a terrific show for history buffs and for anyone who can appreciate the savvy mixture of a serious topic with a comic touch."
“‘Butler’ is a tale of conscience, courage and transcendence. As Major General Benjamin Butler, Ames
Adamson has risen to power but is faced with a decision that could change the
game for slavery in America. Many of the themes surrounding a nation
divided such as injustice, prejudice and lack of understanding remain extremely
relevant today. Instead of ignoring the issues or using power as the only weapon,
‘Butler’ uses empathy and understanding as a means to
"'Butler's' amazingly talented writer Richard Strand makes great use of such spectacular attention to the detailed specificity of language. Every word is included for a reason…Adamson, Sterling, Williams, and Sitler all are masters at their craft...Each component of the production works seamlessly together, from the clever script and these wonderful actors, to director Joseph Discher, who displays their gifts in the best possible light."
"Strand’s set-up in the extremely capable hands of the director and talented actors provides the foundation for the play’s humor, characterizations, future thematic tropes and key issues…Strand’s brilliant writing configures the steps that show how Butler arrives at the logic to override the Fugitive Slave Law. Though we know the ultimate conclusion, it is how Strand takes us there that is surprising and magnificent…The production is just stunning! 'Butler' is marvelous theater."