Engagements
Closed 1h 20m
Engagements
63

Engagements NYC Reviews and Tickets

63%
(38 Reviews)
Positive
50%
Mixed
32%
Negative
18%
Members say
Cliched, Banal, Funny, Entertaining, Disappointing

About the Show

Second Stage Theatre presents Lucy Teitler's dark comedy about ugly feelings in an age of beautiful self-images.

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Member Reviews (38)

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59
Banal, Disappointing, Fluffy

See it if You like shallow plays about shallow people. They tried to make it good though.

Don't see it if It didn't live up to expectations. Didn't like or connect to any characters or themes... But also not worst thing I've seen.

65
Cliched, Fluffy, Indulgent, Disappointing, Mildly entertaining

See it if you're intrigued by the banality & misbehavior of privileged 20-somethings. Some decent, realistic performances elevate the material.

Don't see it if you're not interested in "Lifestyles of the Rich and Millennial". Though amusing & mildly enjoyable, it's really just people behaving badly.

Critic Reviews (13)

The New York Times
August 4th, 2016

"A bitingly funny but overly sour comedy...Teitler writes tangy dialogue rich in sharp-witted repartee...The slim plot seems stretched thin by the end of the play, which runs only 80 minutes. And with principal characters as unrelievedly bitchy as Lauren and caddish as Mark, there’s little chance of the audience’s becoming emotionally engaged. Still, it has been crisply directed by Kimberly Senior and the cast members bring a bright sheen to their performances that energizes the proceedings."
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Time Out New York
August 4th, 2016

“Finger-food theater: tasty enough in nibbles but leaves you wanting more and is forgotten soon after eating...Teitler’s bitchy banter and metatheatrical asides strive for wit and pathos but mainly prod along an ordinary tale of epigram-spouting narcissists who behave badly and learn to own their damage. During the scene changes in Kimberly Senior’s leaden production, the actors groove to DJ standards. Those dance sequences look like the most fun they have all night.”
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Variety
August 6th, 2016

"The acting is polished. The direction is smart. The production values are excellent. But all this well-crafted effort seems wasted on showcasing this deadly comedy by Lucy Teitler about the childish antics of a group of shallow people with nothing better to do than knife each other in the back...While the scribe does have a modest gift for snarky dialogue, she’s squandered it on an aimless play about deeply unlikable characters that give their generation a very bad name."
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Theatermania
August 4th, 2016

"There is something classical about Teitler's style, a trait that director Kimberly Senior takes full advantage of...'Engagements' is a fascinating mess, overflowing with big ideas that are only half-conveyed. Formally, it cannot quite decide what it wants to be. By the second half, the plot seems to jump the tracks. Still, it is never boring. On top of that, by the end Teitler takes a loathsome protagonist and makes us actually like her (or at least understand her)."
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Lighting & Sound America
August 10th, 2016

"'Engagements' is little more than 90 minutes of snark posing as wit…The director, Kimberly Senior, manages to establish a hard, artificial style, but she can't supply the missing humor or character interest…A fair amount of talent is being put to extremely trivial use...'Engagements' wants to be an acid-washed study of modern sexual manners, but it ends up being a reverse etiquette guide, a study in rudeness that quickly wears out its welcome."
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Talkin' Broadway
August 4th, 2016

"'Engagements' is both deeper than you might expect and shallower than you might hope for...Despite the abundance of fine detail in the writing, much of the dialogue has a stilted, scripted quality that dispels a fair amount of the contemporary magic the play otherwise works so hard to generate. Even so, Kimberly Senior has directed with sharpness and an ear for comedy, and the actors generally follow her lead."
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Theater Pizzazz
August 8th, 2016

“Teitler’s concept is a clever one. ‘Engagements’ cruises along at a clipper pace when it sticks to its basic premise, but when it tries to work in Ryan and Catherine it slows to a crawl...The witty banter becomes a one-way street, making it a lot less witty. Director Kimberly Senior has not figured out how to attain equilibrium when Ryan and Catherine are onstage...At its best, ‘Engagements’ is outrageously funny, but as it progresses it shows less and less of its best.”
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CurtainUp
August 5th, 2016

"Teitler invites you to see the darker side of romantic relationships and how marriage commitments can be undone in a wink...The play comes off, largely because of the creative acting and directing...Kimberly Senior, who helms this production, knows how to move things along, and executes seamless transitions from one scene to the next...This New York mounting is excellent. By all means, go with a date, or go alone to this provocative play."
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Front Row Center
August 9th, 2016

"In lesser hands this would not be of interest, but this more than competent cast and director are stealthy in their approach. The action is simple because everything underneath it is so complicated...There are some stunning gems in this play, and there are some equally obscure clunkers. But the production itself is buoyed by the cast and director...This play deserves a closer look. Ms. Teitler could not ask for a better production from which to take lessons and plunge forward."
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C
August 5th, 2016

"The pair spend...many minutes exchanging the kind of love-hate banter reserved for second-rate sitcoms and rom-coms; some of it is very funny, but who really thinks that quickly? Still, there can be little question that there’s more chemistry between these two...Which doesn’t mean their actions are justifiable, or even completely interesting for an entire 85-minute play, despite some very funny one-liners...Director Kimberly Senior tries to gussy up this obviously slight script when she can."
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Village Voice
August 10th, 2016

"We get it: Love is a battlefield. But such well-trodden territory demands a fresh approach, and Teitler flounders trying to mold this quirky satire into a theatrical event…There's a whiff of 'Heathers' in 'Engagements'' female rivalries, and the suggestion of political critique in its contempt for the boring, wealthy khaki-wearers of this world. But neither of these elements fully takes shape, leaving the guest at Teitler's party wishing she could abscond with a few jalapeño poppers and leave."
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Reviewing The Drama
August 4th, 2016

“It is a tidy and engaging play, well-written and well-executed. Though literary allusions abound, the dialogue sounds natural, and the detours into inner-monolgue-land offer fun and funny diversions. (Also fun diversions: the on-stage dance parties during scene transitions.) I like that Teitler is unafraid to show women behaving badly, reminding us that it's OK to be complicated; to not have it all figured out; to be a little messy.”
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Epoch Times
August 11th, 2016

"A remarkable, taut, spicy satire of contemporary manners...The ultimate solution of the mystery throws the whole set of characters into free fall, with a resulting unexpected and striking changing of partners. Just like sometimes happens in real life. To some of us. Along the way we are treated to some terrific and imaginative staging by director Kimberly Senior, including several sharp and beautifully executed dance sequences by the cast."
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