Imperfect Love NYC Reviews and Tickets

(30 Ratings)
Members say
Slow, Great acting, Great staging, Funny, Disappointing

About the Show

A story of love and betrayal, set just over 100 years ago, between an actress  and her playwright lover. Inspired by the real-life relationship between the great Eleanora Duse and the poet D’Annunzio.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (30)

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5 Reviews | 2 Followers
Absorbing, Exquisite, Must see, Refreshing, Artful

See it if you enjoy plays spectacular sets and costumes.

Don't see it if you prefer musicals. Read more

1 Review | 0 Followers
Epic, Great acting, Masterful, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if You want to be entertained and enjoy excellent acting by an extraordinary ensemble and enjoy moderate pacing in story telling.

Don't see it if You want a fast and one dimensional comedy experience. Read more

79 Reviews | 17 Followers
During previews
Clever, Great acting, Great staging, Quirky, Well researched

See it if You enjoy theater history and historical characters, if you are interested in the period when modern theater was about to begin.

Don't see it if You are more interested in music and entertainment than in a more complex plot. Read more

168 Reviews | 24 Followers
During previews
Clever, Entertaining, Refreshing, Thought-provoking

See it if you like old-fashioned theater, highly energized actors, interesting history.

Don't see it if you expect a very comedic production, there are funny moments but it is not a comedy in spite of the clowns.

524 Reviews | 133 Followers
During previews
Ibsen at his heels, italian playwright yields to modernism

See it if you love theater history. Italy's leading actress and playwright/lover pressured to improve the play, or producer will go with Ibsen instead

Don't see it if you have no interest in how theater is made. Script is talky but it suits the fine Irish actors. The set is a coup de theatre in itself.

287 Reviews | 32 Followers
During previews
Quirky, Ambitious, Great acting, Great staging, Interesting costumes

See it if you enjoy shows about theatre and like to laugh at "inside" jokes.

Don't see it if ensemble performances don't appeal to you.

683 Reviews | 161 Followers
During previews
Clever, Entertaining, Slow, Romantic, Dated

See it if you are interested in play that look at the mechanics of putting on a play, or in late 19th century European culture.

Don't see it if you find plays that examine the business of playmaking too inbred to be of interest except to theater professionals Read more

245 Reviews | 37 Followers
During previews
Ambitious, Absorbing, Funny, Overrated, Insipid

See it if I liked part 1. It was funny and quirky. Still a work a process but enjoyed the direction it was going in. The set up took a bit long though

Don't see it if You need a polished play with finished edges.

Critic Reviews (13)

February 4th, 2018

"Cole's ambitious but rambling script is just one of the problems troubling this wobbly production...Over the course of two hours, director Michael Di Jiacomo fails to raise the emotional stakes between Rosa and Gabriele one iota...Part of the blame also lies in the melodramatic, repetitive, cliché-laden dialogue...Thankfully, there are some bright spots. Malone and O'Hara prove somewhat effective clowns...But these moments are not enough to offset 'Imperfect Love's' imperfections."
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Lighting & Sound America
February 5th, 2018

"Whatever else one might say about 'Imperfect Love,' it looks like a billion lire...The characters are trapped in a script so flaccid and uninvolving as to be beyond repair. It's a marathon talkfest...A little wit would help, but most of playwright Brandon Cole's dialogue reads like a foreign film with badly translated subtitles...Under the direction of Michael Di Jiacomo, the actors consistently opt for the most superficial line reading possible."
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Talkin' Broadway
February 4th, 2018

"As a celebration of theater and an exploration of how the form absorbs or fails to absorb change, 'Imperfect Love' is diverting. There just isn't a whole lot else going on...The theatrical and romantic squabbles can be entertaining, and it's set at a fascinating moment in theatrical history...Cole just doesn't have much to say about it...Still, if you're partial to theatrical atmosphere and shop talk, you could do a lot worse than this one."
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February 7th, 2018

“Don't go expecting to learn about the life and careers of actress Eleonora Duse and poet and playwright Gabriele D'Annunzio who had a passionate nine year affair at the turn of the last century. Although Cole's program note indicates that he has done a great deal of research on these real people and Italian theater of their times, they come off as generic characters with few biographical details. Strangely, the play has had a previous New York production in 2000.”
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February 4th, 2018

"An intriguing picture of the celebrated couple, Eleonora Duse and Gabriele D'Annunzio...While 'Imperfect Love' gives you a fascinating backstage look at the love affair of a famous couple, it has some structural problems...It's a poignant story that captures the competing styles of theater in fin de siècle Italy...Though flawed, 'Imperfect Love' is sensitively directed by Michael Di Jiacomo and finely acted by the entire ensemble...This is a bittersweet valentine."
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Theater Pizzazz
February 6th, 2018

"Inspired by the relationship between Eleonora Duse and Gabriele D'Annunzio...Cole mines the fields of their passion. He constructs an intriguing comedy in which the strains and jealousies of their relationship collide with their professional company’s well being...Michael Di Jiacomo manages to strike a balance between comedic tones and the irony of actors playing parts that are more about living truth than mannered, overblown performances in an antique style."
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Stage Buddy
February 4th, 2018

"Spina shines here as the brightest of stars, the zenith of our theatrical stratosphere...It’s a compelling conflict beautifully researched by Brandon Cole...All of this gorgeous production occurs under the sagacious helm of Michael Di Jiacomo. There is an air of authenticity in the text...However, the rather dizzying conflation of sources sets the actors adrift onstage, sometimes landing with precision, sometimes not. The overall effect is still impressive though."
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Theatre's Leiter Side
February 4th, 2018

“Even had Cole called them D'Annunzio and Duse…the play reflects their real identities in only the broadest fashion, offering just a few historical crumbs that those familiar with one or the other person might appreciate…The action rambles along with very few of its attempts at humor hitting their mark. A lugubrious air hovers over the frequent, repetitive squabbling…Too often the play seems to be spinning its wheels, with frequently plodding dialogue unrelieved by wit.”
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