Cross That River
Closed 2h 15m
Cross That River
74

Cross That River NYC Reviews and Tickets

74%
(71 Ratings)
Positive
76%
Mixed
20%
Negative
4%
Members say
Great singing, Entertaining, Absorbing, Ambitious, Slow

About the Show

A new musical that tells the story of Blue, a runaway slave who becomes a Black cowboy.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (66)

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253 Reviews | 46 Followers
90
It’s an original!, Great singing, Entertaining

See it if You want to see a musical which mixes various music genres in service of story-telling.

Don't see it if You prefer plays to musicals. Read more

64 Reviews | 24 Followers
90
Entertaining, Enchanting, Delightful, Clever, Absorbing

See it if The cast lead by Allan Harris was excellent.

Don't see it if I loved everything about it!

160 Reviews | 32 Followers
84
Riveting, Great music

See it if Phenomenal score and instrumentation. Great singing, interesting topic

Don't see it if Story is secondary to the wonderful music.

AJM
145 Reviews | 21 Followers
84
Ending a romanticized notion of this nation, Relevant but also reductive, Poignant & moving, Good singing and musicianship, Warm enjoyable yarn although some lyrics cliched

See it if Earnest, warm-hearted, concert staging story of a runaway slave escaping to the West and becoming a cowboy. Good singing & musicianship.

Don't see it if not into slavery/cowboy stories, prefer a traditional, full-fledged musical. This is concert staging of musical with little scenic design. Read more

78 Reviews | 19 Followers
84
Warm-hearted, Worthwhile, Well-crafted, Wholesome, Wild west

See it if You enjoy the cowboy and wild-west genre set to music and performed by talented musicians and actors. You love intimate staging.

Don't see it if You get antsy with longer productions...they could shave10-15 minutes to make it a bit tighter.

126 Reviews | 22 Followers
80
Relevant, Great singing, Entertaining

See it if You like life stories set to music. It is a snapshot of history from slavery to cowboys in the west.

Don't see it if You don't have the patience for the play to get around to it's resolution.

598 Reviews | 142 Followers
79
Talented actors & musicians, Medium well storytelling, Faulty lyrically, Exciting jazz stylings, Great musicianship

See it if intrigued by idea of black cowboy/runaway slave represented by an amalgam of jazz, country, Broadway stylings & concert storytelling

Don't see it if you feel uncomfortable hearing another person's take on slavery, the wild west and what a Broadway musical could be, you need big tech

144 Reviews | 25 Followers
79
Intimate staging, Absorbing, Ambitious, Dated, Cliched

See it if You're comfortable with more of a small concert/cabaret style show about a fascinating, albeit painful chapter in US history

Don't see it if You're seeking an elaborate, flashy musical. You're looking for something heavier on story/plot - the music is very much the focus here

Critic Reviews (13)

Off Off Online
September 21st, 2023

“...this latest iteration of ‘Cross That River’ is truly a showcase for Harris’s remarkable talent and a tribute to the black American cowboys of the Old West.”
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The New York Times
December 20th, 2017
For a previous production

“A showcase for its music above all else...As likable a yarn-spinner as Mr. Harris is, the yarn itself has its flaws. The show uses its songs as a framework then connects the dots in between, but the result is disjointed, with a story that presumes to be about Blue but veers off into other tales of the West. 'Cross That River' ends up presenting a historical fiction without engaging with the full context of that history...'Cross That River' goes too easy on the more complex story of America."
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Theatermania
December 7th, 2017
For a previous production

"The show's music is its strong point...The music's impact, however, is blunted by Allan and wife Pat's lyrics, which are cluttered with clichés...Thankfully, the lyrics' shortcomings don't stop the actors from singing with conviction...Still, all the virtuosity on display can't hide 'Cross That River's' unwieldiness. Characters barely have any personality beyond what the score's music supplies...Allan and Pat Harris's message rings false."
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BroadwayWorld
December 9th, 2017
For a previous production

"The show has a riveting story along with a fabulous score and the finest musical accompaniment...A passionate and inspiring piece of theatre portraying the spirit and courage that built America...The show presents fascinating historical facts with a narrative and each of the songs captures a chapter in Blue's compelling story...Immensely entertaining. It has a story that you will find enthralling with music that is absolutely superb...It is an extraordinary theatrical experience."
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Lighting & Sound America
December 7th, 2017
For a previous production

"The live equivalent of the concept albums that songwriters like Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice used to put out to popularize a score in advance of a production. The book is barely a book at all...The songs, which have some pleasant, MOR-style melodies by Allan Harris (too many in fact; they blur together), don't really advance the story, since there really is none...The cast does whatever can be done with such material."
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TheaterScene.net
December 7th, 2017
For a previous production

“Composed by Allan Harris, a noted jazz musician, the score starts off with an overture that's pure downtown cool, but, after the last funky rhythm subsides, Harris himself is on stage in a flannel-and-denim outfit as dusty as the range itself, donning a Stetson, and twanging a guitar. Incorporating country, jazz, blues, and gospel, what makes ‘Cross That River’ so instantly captivating is that from the get-go it looks and sounds like all of America, which is a wonderful place to begin.”
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Theater Pizzazz
December 6th, 2017
For a previous production

"Resounding with spirit and vitality...This is an extraordinary journey for Allan Harris having presented this at NYMF back in 2009 and now, after many rewrites and a new cast, brings this story of guts and blood and a Black West to new heights with a mix of jazz, blues, country, and R & B tunes...From my perspective, it’s a story that needs telling and perhaps this concert will come to fruition in a fully staged production sooner than later."
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Stage Buddy
December 12th, 2017
For a previous production

“The incredible story of a slave turned cowboy...A true paragon of the American musical...Just as fascinating as the tale, the musicianship of ‘Cross That River’ is rock solid...It’s nearly impossible to single out any one musician as they all stand out in their artistry. The band creates a rich tapestry onto which the impressive vocalists weave their gorgeous story. "
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