The Layover
Closed 1h 30m
The Layover
69

The Layover NYC Reviews and Tickets

69%
(144 Reviews)
Positive
56%
Mixed
33%
Negative
11%
Members say
Great acting, Disappointing, Absorbing, Great staging, Entertaining

About the Show

Second Stage Theatre presents Leslye Headland's new play about strangers connecting during an unanticipated layover.

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Member Reviews (144)

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706 Reviews | 214 Followers
80
Original, Profound, Challenging, Hilarious, Satirical

See it if You like dark comedy and dramatic irony. The writer pokes fun at people doing ridiculous things to take a break from their commitments.

Don't see it if You don't like satirical relationship scenes. The play rambles a bit, but is mostly witty while posing serious questions.

480 Reviews | 715 Followers
60
Confusing, Disappointing, Insipid, Boring, Forgettable

See it if adultery is a theme that interests you.

Don't see it if you're looking for something fresh or just generally well written (this is not).

481 Reviews | 316 Followers
82
Great acting, Quirky, Entertaining, Dark, Absorbing

See it if You want to see a diverting and entertaining show. All of the performances were excellent.

Don't see it if You want to see a light comedic show. This is pretty is pretty serious and depressing although there are laughs along the way.

469 Reviews | 258 Followers
30
First section is good then it's all downhill, Slow, Confusing, Poorly written

See it if you want to experience how 90 minutes can feel like an eternity. Why didn't the director or the dramaturge assist the writer?

Don't see it if you have other plays to see. This one is not memorable.

470 Reviews | 71 Followers
60
Cliched, Disappointing, Yawn

See it if you have nothing else to do. The staging is interesting. Some of the acting is good. There are some great lines, but....

Don't see it if you expect more from this gifted playwright. Don't see it if actors who cannot deliver lines without making faces annoy you.

406 Reviews | 188 Followers
85
Absorbing, Great acting, Edgy, Thought-provoking, Entertaining

See it if Like couples' dramas about betrayal; have ever wanted to escape a humdrum life and seek adventure and face unexpected consequences

Don't see it if You are very moral and dislike plays with sexual overtones; Recently broke up a relationship; Cannot watch elder abuse Have trust issues

431 Reviews | 115 Followers
79
Absorbing thriller with lame ending

See it if Had me on the edge of my seat at times. Complicated set was effective. Sexy chemistry between Rothenberg and Parisse - her last perf, tho

Don't see it if Cliched ending spoiled the fun -- and Headland's twisty imagination. Overlapping scenes of two families mostly worked. Overall, a good play

432 Reviews | 93 Followers
70
Ambitious, Clever, Great acting, Edgy, Intelligent

See it if You enjoy solid acting in a great linear story that keeps you guessing as to what might happen and shocks you at the end.

Don't see it if You don't like stories that feel real. Or don't feel like being taken for a ride that is going to dump you somewhere other then you thought.

Critic Reviews (26)

The New York Times
August 25th, 2016

"Has anyone ever enjoyed a layover? Either it is nerve-janglingly short or grindingly long. 'The Layover,' a disappointing new play by Leslye Headland, achieves the novel feat of being both at the same time. Running a little more than 90 minutes, it doesn’t succeed in bringing us deeply into the lives of its principal characters. And yet we don’t exactly leave pining for more of their company...Ms. Headland has muffled her comic verve almost completely in this play."
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Time Out New York
August 25th, 2016

"Trip Cullman’s gorgeous-looking and boldly acted production delivers the play in optimal form: racy laughs that suddenly trail into passages of eloquent pain and loss...True, the character contrivances required by her plot may rankle afterward—and might have been mitigated by retroactive exposition or a more fragmented performance by Parisse...But with Headland, even when the roof caves in, that seems part of the design—and the fun."
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New York Magazine / Vulture
August 25th, 2016

"The plot becomes etiolated as it scrambles after excuses for itself, and, worse, the characters, constantly reshaped to support a crumbling conceit, wind up resembling, despite the best efforts of the actors Adam Rothenberg and Annie Parisse, no human form. Under Trip Cullman’s direction the supporting cast, given some truly vile material to carry off, doesn’t...The Hitchcockian concept, compounded by its weak execution, reveals a problem: a greater interest in ideas than in people."
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The Hollywood Reporter
August 25th, 2016

"The author's ambitions slip out of her grasp as she attempts to riff on the kind of adulterous intrigue that was the domain of Patricia Highsmith...The result is a play that resembles a hijacked flight, taking too many jerky detours before crashing…The play's logic has begun to crumble well before its misjudged final scene...Nothing that comes before suggests that was the story Headland set out to tell, making 'The Layover' seem both ill-conceived and thematically incoherent."
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Variety
August 25th, 2016

"Leslye Headland’s attempt to write a neo-noir erotic thriller comes up lame in 'The Layover.' Despite the fine sexual chemistry generated by Annie Parisse and Adam Rothenberg, the play can’t overcome the scribe’s clumsy reworking of the vintage formula. Lacking those generic plot thrills, this half-baked erotic teaser is no more than mildly entertaining."
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Deadline
August 25th, 2016

"Headland writes snappy, caustic dialogue—the repartee here is pretty great—yet I found much of what was being said defied credibility...Shellie and Dex seem, ultimately, more like an author’s conceit than actual characters. The abrupt shocker that concludes the play only confirmed my sense that Headland wasn’t in control of the story and, by the end, simply threw in the towel. Or maybe I just didn’t get it. Still, the show was never boring."
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NY1
August 25th, 2016

"This is a case of style over substance...While Headland is clearly a smart writer, it feels as if she's over-reaching with this story, contriving more depth than the narrative can handle...Cullman’s compelling staging compensates for the play’s weaknesses with excellent technical designs and a splendid cast. Annie Parisse and Adam Rothenberg engage us from start to finish, even as the play veers off course. Bottom line: it’s a first class production of an economy class play."
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Theatermania
August 25th, 2016

"A beguiling and unsettling new play…By adopting and then slowly subverting this well-worn genre, Headland slyly exposes just how toxic our societal narratives of ‘love at first sight’ and the grand gesture can be…Headland asks some very important questions about the incongruity between reality and the stories we tell ourselves…These questions will nag you as you leave the theater and beyond."
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