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Indian Summer

Members say: Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Delightful, Romantic
78
Critics
66
24 reviews
Members
80
128 reviews
 

Playwrights Horizons presents this new romantic comedy about two 16-year-olds who forge an unlikely friendship amidst the class warfare in a small Rhode Island town.

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Abandoned by his wayward mom, 16-year-old Daniel is consigned to spend summer with his widower granddad in a Rhode Island beach town, where the locals don’t look kindly on city kids. But his hapless vacation turns around when he meets Izzy: tough-acting, back-sassing, beguiling, and taken. The impulsive Sicilian-American girl is determined to defend her territory from this prep school invader. Gregory S. Moss’s feisty romantic comedy follows a passing fling that could last a lifetime—as impossible and charmed as an Indian summer.

 

Cast & Creatives (11)



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Reviews (152)

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
66
Avg Score

55
The New York Times

"Although the play’s four characters are given sensitive readings by the fine cast, Mr. Moss’s play remains so muted that it feels like an overcast day at the shore...It feels vaguely formulaic, as if assembled from a kit to create, well, the kind of delicate-hued, funny-sad plays that Annie Baker specializes in. All the talk of the ocean brings to mind the play’s flaws: it has a washed-out, watery quality, and the characters, while agreeable company, are not exactly bottomlessly interesting." Full Review

60
Theatermania

"A complex (and somewhat sleepy) meditation on lost opportunities…Moss has some important insights about the nature of relationships, the injustice of circumstance, and the cruelty of time, but those observations would be a lot more impactful in a better-edited play. Presently, watching 'Indian Summer' feels a lot like hunting for a lost wedding ring in a watery cloud of sand and seaweed: We know something truly valuable is there, but it is hard to discern through all the muck." Full Review

75
BroadwayWorld

"A genial, if rather standard, coming-of-age play…There's some lovely writing when Daniel and Izzy start indirectly expressing affection for each other, and a bit of weirdness when George asks the teenage girl to put on one of his deceased wife's dresses and have a conversation with his as if she were her, but director Carolyn Cantor's strong cast is charming and 'Indian Summer' is a sweet bit of romantic nostalgia." Full Review

80
Time Out New York

"A warm and gently breezy new play about teenage love on the Rhode Island seashore…The touchingly tentative coming-of-age dialogue of the first act is not quite matched by that of the second, but the engaging cast puts the play’s cosmic mildness across. Although Moss dips his toe into the dark and vast waters of the ocean, he doesn’t let it linger there for long. He’s more interested in what the tide brings in, however briefly, before washing it away along with who knows what else." Full Review

90
The Huffington Post

"Sweet and breezy and delectable…Playwright Moss—apparently making his New York debut—mixes his plot strands and sifts his sands in a thoroughly winning manner. Indian Summer is at once charming and evocative, tender and funny; it even wets its toes in the mystical. Most crucially, though, Moss quickly wins over his audience and never loses them. 'Indian Summer' should have a healthy afterlife, in part because it’s just so likable." Full Review

75
New York Theater

"'Indian Summer,' about a teen romance at the Rhode Island seashore, is certainly warm, largely thanks to the charming, just-right four-member cast…The playwright’s effort to invest his sandy scenes with a profound context doesn’t detract from 'Indian Summer,' but it’s the shoal-deep interplay on the beach that most engages us." Full Review

80
Lighting & Sound America

"'Indian Summer' is an odd, but affecting, one - a romantic comedy and a meditation on loss, a tough-minded look at the fragility of relationships, and a sometimes illogically plotted tale that nevertheless makes clear how small choices can lead to unexpected results. The production benefits enormously from the sensitive performances of its cast...Moss doesn't go in for dramatic fireworks; instead he understands that the most profound effects are felt beneath the surface." Full Review

60
Front Row Center

“Things don’t turn out the way you think they will, which is refreshing. And this is an absolute crackerjack cast. Watching these actors maneuver through the long shadows of summer, of young love and old lonely times, of small town desperation and teenage dreams - a total pleasure. Still, the good intentions and talent are not enough to get this play out of idle and into second gear.” Full Review

60
Theatre's Leiter Side

"The ensemble performs enthusiastically under Carolyn Cantor’s direction but the result is more external than internal...‘Indian Summer’ touches on themes of growing up, sexuality, love, death, belonging, identity, and grief but little of it resonates beyond what we’ve seen in so many other plays. George’s occasional commentaries on the mysteries of life, particularly of the ocean, add to the insistent poetic mood,...but not much to the progress of the plot." Full Review

45
Talkin' Broadway

"A lot of fraught talk about vague things and half-realized emotions, which results in what is, however comfy, a fraught, vague, and half-realized play…The conflicting notions of what the play is prevent it from ever fully cohering...The acting, though honest, is on the befuddled side…Daniel and Izzy's final scene together is a powerful tribute to the dying art of subtext. But as a whole, 'Indian Summer' fails because it wants everything but is willing to compromise on nothing." Full Review

35
Times Square Chronicles

"We get this is about all the stages of love, but does that in itself make a watchable play? Campbell is blasé and we never really care about him. Ms. Kibler manages to layer her role, with no help from the playwright. Mr. Tippett is muscled to perfection and adds some of the most touching and real moments and Mr Hadary is witty and perfectly cast. Carolyn Cantor’s direction makes this play move, but the story is lacking in any kind of depth that it is hard to hold our concentration." Full Review

50
New York Daily News

"Life’s a beach in Gregory Moss’s coming-of-age dramedy. Abandoned by his mom, 16-year-old Daniel (Campbell) clicks with 17-year-old Izzy (Kibler), a local girl with an attitude and a beefy older boyfriend Jeremy (Tippett)...After a promising start, the play crumbles sandcastle-style due to cartoonish characters, an over-explanation of its themes and plot detours." Full Review

65
Bob's Theater Blog

"Moss’s new play has a lot going for it -- three appealing young actors and a first-rate production…Jeremy is played by Tippett, who brings humanity to a cartoonish role...What starts as a simple summer idyll goes seriously off course in the second act with a bizarre scene between George and Izzy. George’s hijacking of the play’s ending is the final misstep that wiped out my early good feelings." Full Review

80
Theater Pizzazz

"A deceptively bittersweet comedy…Izzy unveils a poetic streak and a surprising command of language that doesn’t always seem true to her character, but Kibler pulls off whatever Moss hands to her with aplomb. Despite its setting, the events that unfold in 'Indian Summer' turn out not to be the proverbial 'day at the beach' — for either its characters or the audience. But it’s definitely worth making the trip." Full Review

40
NorthJersey.com

"'Indian Summer' has abrupt shifts in tone, making it hard to understand what we’re intended to feel. A bigger issue, though, is that the whole thing isn’t very believable. You’re always conscious of the author manipulating the characters...There are a few scenes that have the charm of adolescent authenticity. But most of the time, 'Indian Summer' is too contrived to elicit much feeling for the people on stage." Full Review

45
Broadway & Me

"A few parts of 'Indian Summer' do work. Kibler makes a feisty and attractive Izzy. Campbell is sweetly awkward as Daniel. And the energy level soars whenever Tippett's Jeremy appears. But most of the humor is derived from Izzy and Jeremy's working-class accents or their social ineptness. And I felt uncomfortable sitting in a room full of people affluent enough to enjoy a night out at the theater who were spending it laughing at people who wouldn't have the money to do so." Full Review

85
TheaterScene.net

"Gregory S. Moss’ 'Indian Summer' at Playwrights Horizons is an uneasy mix of two stories, the first about the doomed romantic encounter between two teens and the second concerning the quiet existential suffering of an elderly man. Despite sudden shifts of tone, Moss manages to leave the audience feeling deeply for each of these characters." Full Review

55
Act Three - The Reviews

"Gregory S. Moss is indeed a talented playwright...The grandfather was a disturbing and incongruous character with a creepy effect. Maybe this was what Mr. Moss was going for...What I do know is that the play is slow. Very slow...The extremely talented young actor, Owen Campbell, is an adorable, smart young man…It wasn't a zinger, wasn't a thriller, and wasn't memorable. It was, perhaps, like a summer read of the latest by Mary Higgins Clark on the beach. Mindless. Easy. Forgettable." Full Review

80
CurtainUp

"It's touching without being sentimental...With shifting moods that ought to be disorienting but turn out to be emotionally satisfying. The cast of four assists the playwright by lending a stylistic consistency to his blend of naturalism and gentle absurdist wit…The aggregate effect of the designers' work is sense-filling and evocative of what's most pleasurable to remember about past summers. The same, in fact, may be said for Moss's play and the production as a whole." Full Review

90
Manhattan Digest

"After the first act I was amused, but sort of questioned the point...The payoff, however, was well worth it by the end and the food for thought that Moss prepared was deeply satisfying…Cantor’s subtle direction allows her impeccable cast to grasp the essence of Moss’s language…Moss has found the perfect balance between superficial simplicities of beach life and the layered complexities of human nature, creating a work that is as beautiful and deep as the ocean itself." Full Review

70
Village Voice

"Enjoyable but slight…Moss seems to want his Rhode Island locals to serve as paragons of authenticity...In doing so, he risks condescending to them, suggesting that it might be news to us that meatheads have feelings or that intelligence and privilege are not necessarily aligned...Despite all this, 'Indian Summer' is enjoyable to watch. Moss's characters are endearingly familiar, his banter is crisply composed, and it's hard not to root for Daniel and Izzy's friendship." Full Review

70
Epoch Times

“Although not always clear, the play does have some lovely moments...Owen Campbell’s sensitive Daniel, and Elise Kibler’s alternately feisty and dreamy Izzy. Joe Tippett’s Jeremy, though brimming with enthusiasm, is a bit over the top at times and could use some toning down. Less might prove more for him...Director Carolyn Cantor has done a fine job of coordinating all the elements and keeping the pacing moving along smoothly.” Full Review

90
New York Theatre Guide

"'Indian Summer' is a gem of a script that contrasts the gorgeously bittersweet throes of young summer romance with the melancholy ache of being elderly and alone...Moss has written a story that masterfully absorbs the viewer into the journey...Director Carolyn Cantor does a brilliant job staging the action and empowering the actors to play to their strengths. The cast is superlative and perfectly placed in their roles." Full Review

75
Our Theater Blog

"George’s monologues are instructive and amusing, but seem beside the point– until they don’t. The small ensemble is ably directed by Carolyn Cantor. Kaye Voyce’s costumes are casual, cute and carefree, as you’d expect of summer attire. What could have been a sweet little story turns bittesweet. Sometimes a story takes a detour, as 'Indian Summer' does. Is the unexpected zigzag for better or for worse? You decide." Full Review

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
80
Avg Score

81
Funny, Profound, Refreshing, Great writing, Youthful

See it if You have ever been that awkward high schooler looking to make a few friends. New play. Great talent. Go!

Don't see it if Well... I think it's kind of for everyone. No one sings, though. So if you like singing, you won't find it here

76
Relevant, Resonant, Entertaining

See it if you want a rom com that still has classic Playwrights Horizons quirk with larger social ramifications.

Don't see it if you want excellent rather than quite good.

58
Clever, Great acting, Indulgent

See it if You enjoy nicely paced rom-coms.

Don't see it if You're looking for a deeper examination of the bonds we build.

84
Slow, Entertaining, Great staging, Great set, Talented cast

See it if You have lived in or are familiar with the New England lifestyle, this show really brings you into Rhode Island & stays consistent.

Don't see it if You want easy answers and happy endings. You prefer rom-coms or big-budget spectacles.

71
Great acting, Resonant, Entertaining, Great staging

See it if You enjoy coming of age stories

Don't see it if You don't like unresolved threads at the end of a play

78
Original, Intelligent, Refreshing, Great writing, Great staging

See it if you like Playwrights Horizons and the new voices they bring to their very comfortable theatre

Don't see it if you don't like to see shows before they are moved to Broadway

75
Funny, Absorbing, Delightful, Refreshing, Cliched

See it if you want to be taken right back to being on the beach when you were 16, hanging out with that cute person and trying to figure things out.

Don't see it if You're looking for something heavier than featherweight.

77
Absorbing, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Slow

See it if you like good acting by solid cast. I was more interested in its observations about death than it as a rom/com which is how its being sold.

Don't see it if you're going to complain that you could've stayed home and watched HBO. You could. But if you love small stories in a theatre, it's good.

70
Disappointing, Amusing

See it if teenagers in love, from different cultural and social and economic backgrounds is new territory.

Don't see it if this scenario has been rehashed by many playwrights and you're tired of it.

50
Disappointing, Insipid, Slow, Ordinary, Waste of a talented cast

See it if you like very ordinary theatre. Not worth going out of your way to see.

Don't see it if you want something special in your theatre-going experience.

80
Enchanting, Great acting, Romantic, Great writing, Entertaining

See it if you like intelligent romantic stories and nicely drawn characters

Don't see it if you are unhappy with stories that lack resolution.

88
Funny, Great acting, Refreshing, Slow, Entertaining

See it if You want to see pitch perfect acting by all 4 principals in a touching & funny play about young love and how it doesn't always run smoothly.

Don't see it if You can't get by certain inconsistencies in tone & logic. I could due to the superb cast.

85
Delightful, Must see, Resonant, Romantic, Fluffy

See it if You enjoy rom-coms, YA novels, John Hughes movies. If you remember what summers were like when you were a teen, full of time and possibility

Don't see it if You're an old fart with no patience for teens. If you'll be too irked by narration that throws off pacing in a vain attempt at profundity.

75
Disappointing, Overrated, Slow

See it if I was disappointed.. The acting was ok but it was drawn out

Don't see it if other's reviews are similar

76
Romantic, Entertaining

See it if You want an entertaining evening with engaging characters

Don't see it if You prefer profound, original scripts.

95
Funny, Delightful, Enchanting, Exquisite, Great acting

See it if you'd enjoy a breezy-profound romantic comedy-drama with gorgeous performances

Don't see it if nothing about the above appeals to you.

93
Absorbing, Clever, Great acting, Intelligent, Entertaining

See it if You appreciate wonderful acting and an engrossing story. A very enjoyable play, emotional but lots of laughs too!

Don't see it if You'd prefer a Broadway show with a big cast.

68
Slow

See it if You must see a show based on the title

Don't see it if Restless

80
Romantic, Disappointing, Cliched

See it if you like traditional stories.

Don't see it if you want a twist on a story.

88
Funny, Original, Great acting, Great writing

See it if you enjoy a fun show with depth and meaning, as well as terrific performances.

Don't see it if you're turned off by New England accents.

79
Clever, Intelligent, Refreshing, Romantic, Entertaining

See it if Very watchable. Clever, original characters. Funny and insightful. The cast is also easy on the eyes. A pleasant diversion.

Don't see it if Doesn't add up to that much. Tries to be heavy, but fails in that. Kinda fluffy, in the end.

70
Charming, Entertaining, Interesting characters, So-so writing, Deep or pretentious?

See it if You want a charming coming of age love story with entertaining characters and a hint of serious issues

Don't see it if You value strongly written dialogue, if you don't like exaggerated character archetypes, if you want something groundbreaking and ambitious

92
Enchanting, Quirky, Great staging, Fluffy

See it if You want to see a smart little show that will make you feel good about summer time. Everyone in the cast is outstanding.

Don't see it if Heteronormative relationships annoy you- this is fun but very white and straight.

79
Homage to "our town": beautiful presentation of human rituals - first love, loss of spouse - as cosmically profound

See it if poetic script exalts/pokes fun at everyday rituals, shows chameleon-like teen behavior; fine J. Hadary "stage manager", vital E. Kibler

Don't see it if at times tragic/comic script feels formulaic, older airhead boyfriend character discordantly out of place, missing backstory 4 teen boy

84
Funny, Delightful, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if If you like good acting and a show that gets you to laugh.

Don't see it if You want a musical or a deep drama.