Closed 2h 15m
Enter Laughing: The Musical
Midtown E
87

Enter Laughing: The Musical NYC Reviews and Tickets

87%
(206 Reviews)
Positive
99%
Mixed
1%
Negative
0%
Members say
Funny, Entertaining, Delightful, Great singing, Great acting

About the Show

Based on Carl Reiner’s semi-autobiographical novel and Joseph Stein’s stage adaptation, this comic musical careens through the misadventures of a star-struck, stage-struck, woman-struck teenager in 1930s New York.

Member Reviews (206)

84
Great staging, Great singing, Dated, Funny, Flimsy, frothy fluff

See it if you want to escape. EL is more a revue than a musical. Lots of songs, most of them good. Strg perfs, esply lead Chris Dwan. Clever staging.

Don't see it if you want substance. EL is light-as-air. Songs don't move plot...just fun interruptions. Women outdated stereotypes. Gd music by piano/bass.

87
Dated, Fluffy, Clever, Funny, Entertaining

See it if You’re in the mood for a very well done, silly, old fashioned, farcical, toe tapper. Full of talent and heart and jokes that make you groan.

Don't see it if You’re looking for high brow art. This is fun stuff not really crude but not exactly what you’d call sophisticated either. Read more

Critic Reviews (21)

May 30th, 2019

“Feast of musical-comedy comfort food...It comes across a little too bland, despite a terrific ensemble and several numbers that really pop. The most delightful comedy here is in the musical moments...There is a bagginess to that first act, and a flatness to the climax of the second. That has to do with some of the book scenes...Even so, it’s a likable, easy show. Whatever went wrong with it on Broadway, a whole lot has gone right this time."
Read more

May 16th, 2019

"Borscht Belt silliness...Some nostalgia for juvenile, pre-PC shenanigans is admittedly required...Stein's gag-filled book and Daniels' klezmer-meets-musical-comedy score flirt with raunchiness, but it’s pretty innocent stuff...Dwan isn't a farce of nature like his predecessor in the role, Josh Grisetti; he's certainly amusing, especially in the second act, but he doesn't steal every scene, which gives others a chance to shtick it out of the park."
Read more

May 17th, 2019

“A shameless hokefest that crossbreeds 1930s nostalgia, Jewish domestic comedy, and backstage farce to often-irresistible effect...It stares you down, daring you not to laugh, knowing full well that it holds the winning hand...With an impeccable pedigree of two great comedy writers and a bouncy score by a songwriter who also wrote for many leading sitcoms, it should keep the York's audience in stitches for the length of its run."
Read more

May 16th, 2019

"It's a simple comic idea that goes on for many, maybe too many, verses...The comic possibilities in such a framework are bountiful enough, and this production makes the most of them, with a splendid cast and fine direction, by Stuart Ross, that teases out and amplifies the laughs...It's perfectly cast, expertly staged, so why am I holding back the love? Well, the story is small, the characters on the simplistic side, and two and a half hours a long time to spend with them."
Read more

May 16th, 2019

"You’re bound to get a few good giggles from this old-fashioned–and–proud musical...Daniels’ lyrics are 'Enter Laughing’s' best asset. (Joseph Stein’s book, based on his own 1963 play, which in turn is based on Carl Reiner’s semiautobiographical novel, is serviceable but a trifle stale.)"
Read more

May 29th, 2019

"This fifth production again directed by Ross has to compete with memories of the utterly hilarious 2008-9 production which included George S. Irving, Jill Eikenberry, Michael Tucker, Ray DeMattis and made a star of newcomer Josh Grisetti as young David. The current cast is not quite as accomplished as the previous York company but the show remains a winning piece of musical comedy entertainment."
Read more

May 16th, 2019

“Successfully and charmingly revived...This expert cast is genuinely effervescent and highly entertaining as directed with fizzy wizardry by Stuart Ross. Sophisticated it isn’t, but it sure is funny. Although ‘Enter Laughing’ is undeniably a product of its era, the jokes still land, thanks to the gifted cast...And every player gets a chance to shine...There’s plenty to entertain theatergoers of all ages.”
Read more

May 20th, 2019

"Chris Dwan, an endearingly rubber-faced and agile young performer is a pleasure to watch and root for...Unlike many a new musical, all the songs are tuneful and typical of a passé genre in the best way...The costumes by Tyler M. Holland are mostly a hoot while the lighting by Ken Billington and Jason Kantrowitz contribute to make 'Enter Laughing' a wonderful mix of old-fashioned musical comedy, fantasy and honesty."
Read more

May 17th, 2019

“’Enter Laughing’ is a modernized version of the original Broadway play, masterfully crafted by Stuart Ross...Often when plays are updated and brought to our current cultural sensibilities they lose their flair and the production falls flat. This one shines...One liners abound throughout. A special treat is James Morgan the producing artistic director as Harry Hamburger...You are guaranteed to leave laughing.”
Read more

June 15th, 2019

“A good old-fashioned musical comedy drenched with broad humor...The plot is predictable, the characters are stereotypical, and some of the humor is questionable in the present...It is just harmless fun...with no underlying message but created for pure entertainment...This production works better than the original because it is scaled down...The downside is that it is difficult to keep the energy up without those big numbers and the weak book becomes more front and center."
Read more

May 16th, 2019

"A generally diverting (if slightly problematic) show…David's naivete inspires laughs but his ignorance needs a natural comedian to make it seem plausible… In contrast to what I'd heard, I found the book weaker than the score. Funny as it often is, the script is simply too silly and overstated, while each of the 15 songs is musically catchy, with cleverly entertaining lyrics… Whether or not you enter or leave laughing, there's enough comic material here to get your yocks off in between."
Read more

May 16th, 2019

"A well-directed production with a solid cast of pros...The York production gives it new life and laughs...It’s terrible, ridiculous, terrific – far funnier than it should be...Much of the rest of the musical shows its age, in various ways. Some of this is harmless...The ideas behind many of Daniels’ 15 songs are cleverer than the actual lyrics and catchier than the melodies."
Read more

May 16th, 2019

"As with many York musicals, it makes up for very modest production values with lots of enthusiasm, flair, and excellent casting...Jennifer Paulson-Lee manages to create some clever dance numbers that fit York’s tiny stage...Stuart Ross’s direction rarely lets the pace flag. The trio of piano, bass and drums is fine for the relatively small York space. Some of the songs are quite clever."
Read more

May 17th, 2019

"Ranks among the company’s best productions...It is superbly cast and directed, filled with laughs and colorful renditions of the songs, whether comic or romantic...The new mounting of ‘Enter Laughing’ in such entertaining fashion is an indication of why that work has longevity. The laughs, the clever songs and the colorful roles still hold up.”
Read more

May 17th, 2019

“When was the last time you were able to park your troubles outside and enjoy innocence on stage? The craft able to sustain a show like this where ham contributes instead of diminishing is rare. Story and characters are cliche, but captivating, and cozy as a home-cooked meal. Direction sparkles. The production is a welcome tonic. By all rights, you should one day be able to brag you saw actor Chris Dwan early on, before he was recognized a star.”
Read more

May 27th, 2019

“The York Theatre Company presents a top-notch revival of ‘Enter Laughing: The Musical’ that is easily among the best musicals to have played New York all year. A tuneful 1930s period piece about a girl-crazy boy from the Bronx taking his first, comically misadventurous steps into the world of theatre, this once-forgotten gem is sure to have you exit laughing, and remembering why you love musicals.”
Read more

May 17th, 2019

“The show retains most of its charm...Most of the jokes and musical numbers land. Even the sexist comic business seem relatively inoffensive within the current #MeToo movement. Revisiting the show, however, is like seeing a better-than-competent replacement cast...In fact, all of the performers are strong, but missing from the evening is a laugh-till-it-hurts level of lunacy...’Enter Laughing’ may have lost some of its sparkle, but the show remains a musical-comedy treasure.”
Read more

May 21st, 2019

“I definitely exited the theater laughing at the sheer comic genius of the actors and artistic team. The production, script and score of this show is the stuff that corn-fed dreams are made of...Utterly delightful actors and singers all...Inventive and deliciously funny...Upon leaving the show I felt I’d just seen a two-and-a-half hour musicalized version of the 'Carol Burnett Show,' and folks, that’s the greatest compliment I could give to any comedic piece of musical theater.”
Read more

May 16th, 2019

“The musical version of the show is at least as funny if not even funnier than the original. Songs...sound amusing when you just hear the titles, and they are so much more so when you actually hear them. Even songs that sound like they would be perfectly typical musical theater songs...are given a crazy spin in this show. Even the premise of this show...sounds full of comic potential, and plays even funnier than it sounds. You may not enter the theater laughing, but you will most likely leave laughing.”
Read more

May 16th, 2019

“Ross ratchets up the screwball elements. The entire 2 1/2 hours are filled with high energy...The comedy is so big and broad you can practically hear the rimshots. Fortunately, the flexible cast handles the pratfalls and double takes with ease...Though short on plot...‘Enter Laughing’ is long on heart, smiles, and quality song styling. A lighthearted escape from these thornier times, the piece also incorporates a lovely message that each generation has something to teach the other.”
Read more

May 17th, 2019

“This is a musical for people who love musicals...The exuberant cast is in fine voice and play off each other well. Dwan anchors the show well, endearing through all of David’s mishaps...The songs are cheerful and catchy...This show is light on character and plot, a confection rather than a hearty meal. But if you are looking for something lighthearted to make you laugh and forget about everything going on in the world, then this is the show for you...You will definitely exit laughing."
Read more

Watch This Next (15)

97
Must See!
10K+ Reviews
Opens Sep 14
NYC: Midtown W

This hip-hop infused tuner about America's founding fathers won 11 Tony Awards inc. Best Musical.

Buy
93
Must See!
20K+ Reviews
Opens Sep 14
NYC: Midtown W

In its 17th year, this all-ages musical spectacle tells the untold true story of the Witches of Oz.

Buy
92
Must See!
3K+ Reviews
Opens Sep 21
NYC: Midtown W

A charming true story of a tiny Canadian town that cared for 7000 grounded travelers post-9/11.

Buy