Gently Down the Stream
Closed 1h 40m
Gently Down the Stream

Gently Down the Stream NYC Reviews and Tickets

(217 Reviews)
Members say
Great acting, Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Entertaining

About the Show

The Public Theater presents Tony winner Harvey Fierstein in this world premiere drama about Beau, an expat pianist living in London who meets Rufus, a young lawyer, at the dawn of the Internet dating revolution.

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Member Reviews (217)

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53 Reviews | 10 Followers
Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Masterful, Intense

See it if You want to see the best....and anything Harvey. You want to be moved as well as entertained.

Don't see it if You don't believe in basic human rights and dignity for all.

57 Reviews | 39 Followers
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Relevant, Resonant

See it if Interested in Gay relationships, both friends & lovers, and historic progress of gay men in America, before and after Stonewall.

Don't see it if Gay male relationships and the intimacy of friends and lovers is not compelling subject matter. Read more

195 Reviews | 102 Followers
Great acting, Great writing, Great staging, Riveting, Relevant

See it if love Harvey Fierstein and want to experience a funny yet moving play presenting the heartbreaks and triumphs of gay rights through the ages.

Don't see it if you don't want to see a fantastic drama that mourns/celebrates those gay men in LGBT who have gone before us. I wept during many scenes.

455 Reviews | 83 Followers
Absorbing, Riveting, Romantic, Masterful, Great acting

See it if you enjoy a moving piece of theater.

Don't see it if aren't comfortable with allowing people to be themselves - faults and all. Read more

50 Reviews | 20 Followers
Absorbing, Resonant, Intelligent, Great writing

See it if Beautifully written and realized. Harvey Fierstein gives a deeply moving performance; every word he speaks rings true.

Don't see it if Weaker performances from supporting cast will affect your enjoyment or you are not interested in gay lifestyle

251 Reviews | 26 Followers
Intelligent, Slow, Thought-provoking, Refreshing, Ambitious

See it if you love Harvey Fierstein; you like plays involving gay men; you like plays that deal with past problems of the gay community

Don't see it if you don't like Harvey Fierstein - you must like him or you will not like the play; you need a play that zips right along

95 Reviews | 22 Followers
Great acting, Absorbing, Profound

See it if You are interested in the history of LGBT rights and how it progresses while enjoying great acting and on-stage chemistry.

Don't see it if You aren't progressive or open to LGBT rights.

100 Reviews | 9 Followers
Absorbing, Clever, Funny, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if want to see actors challenged to do their best work, new work that challenges the audience, or just see Harvey (Fierstein)

Don't see it if You're homophobic, cynical, or too critical.

Critic Reviews (29)

The New York Times
April 5th, 2017

"For a show about the transmission of gay culture, casting the creator of 'Torch Song Trilogy'...means that your lead actor’s baggage (in the best sense of the term) becomes an integral part of the story...This may all sound like peripheral information, but it’s impossible to ignore as it places the audience in a hall of mirrors that refracts and amplifies the new play’s modest charms. The show’s allure derives almost entirely from Fierstein’s fairly restrained, impeccably timed performance."
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Time Out New York
April 5th, 2017

“Since Beau is played by the marvelous Fierstein, the time we spend in his history is engaging—at least until Sherman places him, Forrest Gump–like, at the scene of a real-life 1970s tragedy. Will younger audiences to whom this cultural-preservationist work seems tacitly oriented—much of it will be familiar to older ones—find it interesting? I’d like to imagine so. But the play is essentially passive. It doesn’t sink or swim; for better or worse, it bobs in currents of the past.”
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New York Magazine / Vulture
April 5th, 2017

“Sadly unconvincing…The effervescent, compulsively ingratiating Fierstein is hardly credible as a dour downer…Hampering both performances further is Sherman’s dialogue, so stilted it lurches…At least the bits with Beau and Rufus bear some resemblance to drama, albeit a highly attenuated and bald form of it. What these bits alternate with is worse…Even at 100 minutes seems to take longer to rehash the history than it took to live it in the first place.”
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The Hollywood Reporter
April 5th, 2017

“A play rich in moments of pathos and humor…It's always wonderful to see Fierstein back on stage. But it's hard to shake the feeling that ‘Gently Down the Stream’ might have been a more satisfying play without him...Sherman's writing becomes pedantic as he shoehorns in chunks of historical perspective…The play is always engaging, and there's no doubting the sincerity of its intent. But it's too much of a structurally awkward, speechy patchwork to be dramaturgically convincing.”
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April 5th, 2017

“A tender, funny and unconventional romance…Directed with delicacy and grace by Sean Mathias...Fierstein offers one of his best—and most finely measured—performances...Not discounting how he lands every laugh with perfect delivery, Fierstein is most effective in his haunting monologues, especially in his benediction that speaks to remembering the past—its joys and its sorrows—while ultimately embracing a more hopeful and gentle future."
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April 5th, 2017

“‘Gently’ is a kind of memory play and a work of prodigious challenge to the actor playing Beau, who has several long, beautifully wrought narrative speeches. Under Sean Mathias’ exquisite direction this enormously moving play is a reminder, as if it were needed, of the depthless well of Fierstein’s talent…Here he is, acting up a storm with gentle sensitivity and passion.”
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April 5th, 2017

“Works like these have a tendency to feel clumsy, with the hand and opinions of the author often apparent in heavy, broad strokes. Admittedly, ‘Gently Down the Stream’ walks a tightrope between didactic and dramatic. But overall, it's a warm, lovely play about opening your heart, and Sean Mathias' production is gentle and absorbing. The same can be said of Fierstein's performance, his best ever…His quietly devastating, beautiful turn gives the play its gravity and its heart.”
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April 12th, 2017

“Harvey Fierstein gives an exceptionally warm, tender and dramatically textured performance…Gabriel Ebert has a playful charm and a casual sexiness as Rufus…As their relationship changes, performance artist Harry (appealingly cocky Christopher Sears) enters the picture…Director Sean Mathias' sensitively played production is set in designer McLane's depiction of Beau's comfortably stately flat, with towering bookshelves and framed vintage photos lending a sense of history.”
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