Closed 1h 5m
Every Brilliant Thing
West Village
90

Every Brilliant Thing NYC Reviews and Tickets

90%
(15 Reviews)
Positive
100%
Mixed
0%
Negative
0%
Members say
Profound, Clever, Absorbing, Funny, Resonant

About the Show

Barrow Street presents the story of a young boy who attempts to cure his mother's depression by finding the best things in life.

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Member Reviews (15)

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75
Absorbing, Clever, Poignant, Resonant, Endearing

See it if you like being reminded of what makes life worth living. EBT is touching, but not terribly profound or original. The acting was solid.

Don't see it if you want traditional theater. EBT is more like a lecture w/audience participation. It was captivating, but not ambitious. Not really a play. Read more

93
Ambitious, Absorbing, Clever, Intelligent, Edgy

See it if you want to see a really unique, wonderful one man show. It's funny and heartbreaking. Very memorable.

Don't see it if don't want to see a play about depression, even a funny one.

Critic Reviews (12)

December 14th, 2014

"The reconfigured in-the-round theater exudes the intimacy of an informal living room. Mr. Donahoe presides over it as a host who is skilled in the art of disarming; he generates the illusion that he is somehow our acquaintance of long standing. This acuity and affability isn’t nearly as effortless as Mr. Donahoe makes it appear. The script walks a fine line with unobtrusive artistry."
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December 14th, 2014

"A theatrical candy cane: very sweet but tempered by sharpness and striped with bright nostalgia...Canes made of candy, it turns out, provide only so much support. But Macmillan’s slim, hour-long show works a gentle magic, thanks to Donahoe’s skill as a host."
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December 14th, 2014

"The two words I least want to hear in conjunction with a show I’m about to attend are audience participation...Every Brilliant Thing, a touching and unusual new work at the Barrow Street Theatre, is the exception that proves the rule."
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December 14th, 2014

"The two words I least want to hear in conjunction with a show I’m about to attend are audience participation...Every Brilliant Thing, a touching and unusual new work at the Barrow Street Theatre, is the exception that proves the rule."
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December 14th, 2014

"Donahoe is a warm and personable performer — so warm and personable, he doesn’t even seem to be performing as much as taking the audience into his confidence. Not only is his emotionally damaged character willing to share his precepts for a happy life with his audience, it’s actually mandatory that the audience become collaborators (or is it enablers?) in his story."
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December 14th, 2014

"Every Brilliant Thing is far more a communal experience — bordering on group therapy — than a passively absorbed theatrical presentation. Donahoe, however, with his genuine demeanor and infectious smile, succeeds in turning a piece about the grave subject of suicide into the most joyful session you'll ever attend. "
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December 14th, 2014

"Every Brilliant Thing is far more a communal experience — bordering on group therapy — than a passively absorbed theatrical presentation. Donahoe, however, with his genuine demeanor and infectious smile, succeeds in turning a piece about the grave subject of suicide into the most joyful session you'll ever attend. "
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December 14th, 2014

"Every Brilliant Thing becomes not just affecting, but about as brilliant as theatre can get."
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December 12th, 2014

"The familiar music, touching premise, and Mr. Donahoe’s winning personality combine to create an hour of theatre that, in spite of its look at depression and suicide, manages in its life-affirming optimism to be both humorous and moving, while steering clear of undue schmaltziness."
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December 18th, 2014

"What Macmillan and Donahoe have constructed is a participatory theatrical experience that works because everyone feels secure. The success of "Every Brilliant Thing" hinges on the ability of a roomful of strangers to drop their collective guard and trust Donahoe, the leading player. This charismatic comic has no trouble getting people on his side, fast."
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December 14th, 2014

"The focus of the play is a list of good things that a young boy creates to cheer up his depressed mother, starting with ice cream…The items on the list are often very funny and the play is ultimately life-affirming, as one would hope, even though it bravely faces the realization that you may not be able to make the people happy that you love."
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T
December 16th, 2014

"Crucially, Donahoe’s feisty performance makes this play about depression and suicide feel buoyant and nuanced, not viciously dark or cheaply optimistic. As Macmillan says, “There’s a way of talking about it that’s sincere and funny and accessible and tries to communicate the complexity of the issue without being mawkish about it. That’s the tightrope walk.”
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Trailer

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