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ChipandGus (FringeNYC)

From 7 critic and 53 member reviews
Members say: Clever, Great acting, Funny, Intelligent, Entertaining

About the show

A FringeNYC Encore: Two oddball acquaintances meet once a month over a Ping-Pong table. But this night is different. This night there is something else in the room. A fast, furious, surprising comedy with balls. More…

'ChipandGus' is co-created and performed by John Ahlin (seen on Broadway in 'Journey’s End' and 'Waiting for Godot') and Christopher Patrick Mullen (busy regional theater actor.) In addition to being a FringeNYC favorite, the play has also delighted audiences at Baltimore’s Center Stage, where it was performed in an actual bar, as well as at Centenary Stage’s Black Box Festival, the Parkside Lounge, and at Proctors Theaters in Schenectady, New York. 

DC Metro Theater Arts

"As the actors volley back and forth with balls and words, they never miss a beat in their non-stop dialogue or the real-time game they play. They distinctly capture the two disparate personalities with fluid naturalism, while developing their characters...'ChipandGus' is at once intelligent, funny, exasperating, and poignant, and the FringeNYC award and encore presentation of this self-described 'comedy with balls' are well deserved." Full Review

Theatre Reviews Limited

for a previous production "A remarkable two-hander one act play…It is written by John Ahlin (Gus) and Christopher Patrick Mullen (Chip), who also credit themselves with the adroit direction. They are a perfect team, amiable opponents that manage to play with rather than against each other. Their chemistry is not an experiment but an explosion that can only be accomplished when combining two incredibly skilled actors together in a clever and precarious script…They are a pleasure to watch and intriguing to hear." Full Review

Theatre is Easy

for a previous production "The tiny nuances of thought that Mullen and Ahlin share are simultaneously entertaining and thought-provoking. Perhaps their ease of executing this comedy is a result of having written and directed the show themselves. Whereas the lack of an outside perspective can often be detrimental, it's quite the opposite here. This insightful comedy incorporates witty banter with philosophical humor. The ridiculous yet clever ideas sewn into the dialogue are wonderful." Full Review

NY Theatre Guide

for a previous production "Ahlin and Mullen are friends in life and have specifically developed this piece together...The play began through their love of the game and grew into a profound and heart-wrenching play. The work is evident and the two gel together on stage with an ease that can only come from years of camaraderie and mutual respect. 'ChipandGus' is funny, real, sad, and surprising...If you’re passionate about ping pong or simply an evening of human connection, look no further." Full Review


for a previous production "Thanks to the perfectly matched Christopher Patrick Mullen (Chip) and John Ahlin (Gus), 'ChipandGus' gracefully withstands the tension with thoughtful character development and a barrage of witty dialogue that flows as easily as Ahlin and Mullen's impressive volleys…For a play so light on plot, the pace of this downhill tumble is a little too creeping. But along the way, Mullen and Ahlin hit a few genuinely poignant notes on love and friendship." Full Review


for a previous production "There's propulsion under their chatter. Their verbal badinage is a surface sport, a kind of screen that keeps troubling little things from falling through...Although the talk ranges all over the place, it's a tight play with a ping-pong kind of metronome behind it. Ahlin and Mullen, who bring their star quality to the acting, collaborated on the writing of 'ChipandGus.' You don't have to be a member of the intelligentsia to enjoy this lively play, but it wouldn't hurt!" Full Review

Time Out New York

for a previous production “Writer-director-performers Christopher Patrick Mullen and John Ahlin are seasoned actors who know how to deftly reveal character, all while keeping their ball in play...Together, they quaff beer, swing their paddles, crack jokes and resolve long-held resentments with humor, wit and pathos...Bright, funny and cathartic: an emotionally resonant buddy comedy for thinking audiences. As the banter accelerates, so does the game.” Full Review

Clever, Entertaining, Great writing, Great acting

See it if You want to see older men who teach at an out-of-the way college play ping pong and talk about their joys and problems in a roundabout way.

Don't see it if It is a fantastic show and descriptions don't do it justice. You don't need to be an expert in philosophy or music to enjoy.

Witty, Great acting, Great staging, Great writing, Fun

See it if you enjoy well done theater. It's wonderful. The two actors play off each other so well. Great concept.

Don't see it if you don't like witty banter. I found it charming.

Clever, Funny, Great acting, Epic, Hilarious

See it if you like quick, snappy, hilarious dialogue; a bit of pathos in your story; ping pong!

Don't see it if You're hard of hearing, as the dialogue goes quick and sometimes unintelligible due to the set up; you want a slower play.

Absorbing, Clever, Delightful, Profound, Original

See it if You enjoy quick, witty repartée that demands you pay attention. Or if you like wordplay. This show is an intellectual humorist's dream.

Don't see it if You're feeling mentally lazy. This show is incredible, but only if you're willing to actively listen.

Ambitious, Intelligent, Must see

See it if You like smart, funny theatre with original characters and a twist.

Don't see it if If you don't like smart theatre or ping pong balls.

Absorbing, Clever, Funny, Great writing, Thought-provoking

See it if you enjoy theater that builds by layers using subtle clever dialog. The play is funny too.

Don't see it if you don't have the patience to watch the characters reveal themselves.

Clever, Entertaining, Epic, Great acting, Delightful

See it if you would enjoy a clever, funny, sometimes touching well-acted Off Off Broadway show with 2 actors who are totally in tune with one another.

Don't see it if you expecte all theater in New York to be big splashy Broadway productions and can"t appreciate fine acting, a clever script and simple set.

Great acting, Intelligent, Original, Funny, Great writing

See it if You like snappy, intelligent dialogue and humor and characters who, while perhaps not like you, are very relatable.

Don't see it if You don't like ping pong, two-handers, or plays that emphasize characters over plot.

Clever, Great acting, Ambitious, Great staging, Intelligent

See it if you want somethig quirky. I was impressed with the actors' concentration to pull off such dense dialog while keeping the ping pong going.

Don't see it if heat stroke is a concern. I sat next to a fan but the AC was not working well, if at all, in this small 4th floor performance space.

Must see, Hilarious, Delightful, Intelligent

See it if you want to see two brilliant minds face off with great wordplay, backed by the constant movement of ping pong that adds a real dynamism.

Don't see it if you're uncomfortable watching two grown men sweat through their wardrobe.

Entertaining, Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent, Must see

See it if you enjoy being entertained with an intelligent, yet hilarious show whose plot unfolds like a flower. This is not just table tennis!

Don't see it if you are not very educated and won't understand the many interesting and funny barbs which go back and forth between the characters.

Also Sadly, last night was the final performance of this show. If you see i... Read more Read less

Clever, Entertaining, Great acting, Original, Quirky

See it if you want to experience 2 terrific performances in one of the most original plays on the boards right now.

Don't see it if clever dialogue shooting at you faster than a speeding bullet is not your thing.

Entertaining, Absorbing, Quirky, Intelligent, Clever

See it if you like character study plays. These are both interesting guys that give us lots to think about while we find out what they're telling us.

Don't see it if you're expecting a lot of action, beyond ping pong that is. It's ping pong and conversation but its rapid fire, top notch form of all three.

Clever, Funny, Great acting, Great writing, Original

See it if You like fast dialogue, interesting story lines and great acting. Absorbing story and linear plot.

Don't see it if You prefer a slower paced show or don't enjoy straight dialogue.

Clever, Funny, Ambitious, Intelligent, Absorbing

See it if Loved it-- just wish I understood more of the references.

Don't see it if You do not like talky show

Clever, Delightful, Entertaining, Funny, Hilarious

See it if you enjoy laughing.This show is hilarious,but has some sad elements.It certainly is original! The characters were believable. I enjoyed it.

Don't see it if watching 2 men play ping pong for 90 minutes would drive you nuts. That is what the action in the play consists of. You prefer edgy drama.

Absorbing, Great acting, Original, Thought-provoking, Quirky

See it if Is you like character driven shows and great acting - all while playing ping pong! My Dinner with Andre sport version

Don't see it if If you like big shows which pander to anti intellectual audiences. A couple of interesting story choices might confuse some

Ambitious, Entertaining, Thought-provoking

See it if you like buddy pictures or a story that involves ping pong

Don't see it if ping pong playing will distract you or you want fancy sets and a lot of characters

Great acting, Original, Intense, Funny, Entertaining

See it if you like quick fire intelligent jokes, comedy, and bursts of intense drama. Or if you like buddy stories

Don't see it if you don't like ping pong?

Funny, Original, Engaging, Emotional

See it if you enjoy philosophical discourse, unusual characters, engaging stories about bromances or ping-pong.

Don't see it if you like big production or are bothered by non-traditional characters and plots.

Absorbing, Clever, Intense, Quirky, Fun

See it if You want to see a game of ping pong develop into a lot more.

Don't see it if You prefer a bigger production.

Clever, Entertaining, Funny, Great acting

See it if you enjoy quick banter, faced paced and quirky dialogue

Don't see it if you don't like straight dialogue

Absorbing, Ambitious, Funny, Entertaining, Great acting

See it if You like wit, sparkling dialogue, believable caharcters and ping pong

Don't see it if If you want conventional story-telling and get confused watching​ a ping pong game.

Absorbing, Clever, Funny, Great acting, Intelligent

See it if Intelligent banter and great acting

Don't see it if You want a straightforward and simple storyline

Absorbing, Clever, Great acting, Great staging, Quirky

See it if You like intimate stories with phenomenal dialogue, interesting characters, and brilliant staging.

Don't see it if You don't like small stories that revolves around slow-burn stories that deliver beautifully at the end.

Cast & Creatives (9)