Ends Sep 01 | 2h 0m | Midtown W

Life Sucks.

From 285 member reviews
Members say: Clever, Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Great writing

About the show

Wheelhouse Theater Company presents the New York premiere of Aaron Posner’s reimagining of Chekhov’s timeless classic, "Uncle Vanya."

It’s Chekhov without the birch trees. After taking aim at "The Seagull" with "Stupid F*cking Bird," Aaron Posner is back with an irreverent contemporary remix of "Uncle Vanya." Egos clash, hearts hunger, and souls cry out for meaning. Life staggers. Life confounds. Life is beautiful. 

Member Reviews (285)


Clever, Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Great writing
Avg Score

Quirky, Intelligent, Great writing, Funny, Delightful

See it if See a great cast of characters delightfully bemoan their lives in a smartly written play that doesn't take itself quite so seriously. Fun!

Don't see it if You don't want to hear characters talk about why their lives "suck," characters breaking the 4th wall to consult the audience, curse words

Great acting, Enchanting, Entertaining, Clever, Delightful

See it if if you like Uncle Vanya and want a great fun evening in the theater

Don't see it if you do not like shows that break the fourth wall

Relatable, Well-directed, Funny, Original

See it if you want to see a fresh, funny adaptation of a classic play, which grapples with life's complexities but remains inventive and engaging.

Don't see it if you don't have patience for a talky play. This could have been maybe 15 minutes shorter.

Also Better than Posner's Seagull adaptation, Stupid F***ing Bird, which I ... Read more Read less

Banal, Insipid, Disappointing

See it if any version of a Chekhov play intrigues you.

Don't see it if you are expecting a coherent updating of Uncle Vanya.

Also We went because we loved the same playwright's Stupid F***cking Bird a... Read more Read less

Entertaining, Great acting, Great writing, Funny, Clever

See it if you want to see "Uncle Vanya" but interpreted in a much more enjoyable version. Funny but still thought-provoking as Chekhov would want.

Don't see it if you don't like plays that break the 4th wall. Or if you love Chekhov and don't want his plays messed with.

Also I saw a classical presentation of "Uncle Vanya" and I did not care for... Read more Read less

Great acting, Intelligent, Entertaining

See it if you like: an enjoyable take on Chekhov's "Uncle Vanya"; great acting a show in an intimate setting with some deep (unanswered) questions.

Don't see it if you don't like: a longish show (the second act ran 10-15 minutes too long); actors breaking the 4th wall; adapatation of a Chekhov classic

Also Would have been 10 points higher if the second act didn't drag at time... Read more Read less

Refreshing, Quirky, Funny, Entertaining, Clever

See it if You enjoy quirky , yet well acted productions. To see a take on Chekov with a dose of humor. To support off Broadway productions.

Don't see it if You Wouldn’t think of giving a Chekov play humor. Don't enjoy shows that break the 4th wall.

Slow, Overrated, Indulgent, Disappointing, Clever

See it if like modern adaptations of classic plays.

Don't see it if if you are not familiar with Uncle Vanya, or don't like actors breaking the forth wall.

Also Parts of this were clever and amusing yet those parts were spread out ... Read more Read less

Great set, different, Clever

See it if u want 2c a fantastic performance by austin pendleton/ therapy from stage/some big laughs/like being part of the show/

Don't see it if if you are a Checkov purist/do not like experimental theater or long shows

Also this play is bitter sweet ... funny but also very sad may bring to pla... Read more Read less

Hilarious, Great staging, Great acting, Delightful, Clever

See it if you like non-traditional staging and dramatic comedy...you love stories about life.

Don't see it if you want traditional drama.

Entertaining, Great acting, Intelligent, Ambitious, Clever

See it if Chekhov's characters in Uncle Vanya shown as contemporary people. No need to know the original to understand fun & pain of unrequited love

Don't see it if You don’t like heightened romantic intrigues or having 4th wall broken. Bit long and repetitious. Talky but worthy drama-comedy.

Ambitious, Quirky, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Clever

See it if you would like a great ensemble cast riffing off a Chekhov masterpiece.

Don't see it if you do not like of a lot of characters talking without much happening.

Pretty much a lark

See it if you desire to see yet another variation on the themes in Uncle Vanya, which seem to be limitless.

Don't see it if you have little patience for having the fourth wall broken often, with a soupcon of audience participation on the side.

Also Aaron Posner can write! After stellar Christopher Durang and Richard N... Read more Read less

Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Delightful, Clever

See it if What fun this play is. Lot of laughs especially the audience participation. Excellent acting and the two and a half hours just flew by

Don't see it if Can't really think of a reason not to see this

Enchanting, Entertaining, Clever, Absorbing

See it if you enjoy plays about friends

Don't see it if you want happy endings

Thought-provoking, Clever, Great writing, Great acting

See it if you want a direct, thoughtful, funny look at real life and the the common voices in our heads.

Don't see it if strong language offends you, you don't want to look in the mirror or be reminded that while life isn't really that bad, it sometimes sucks.

Great theater, Great writing, Great acting, Refreshing, Intelligent

See it if you like extremely inventive, creative reimagining of Chekhov. Very alive and engaging. Great evening in the theater.

Don't see it if you want something traditional

Entertaining, Clever, Refreshing

See it if you'd like a very agile and fairly lighthearted evening. The 2+ hours never felt long.

Don't see it if you expect to see Uncle Vanya. The plot is based on the Chekhov's play and retains some of the scenes but this is by no means that play.

Also Having quite a few scenes from Chekhov's script staged almost verbatim... Read more Read less

Edgy, Intelligent, Great writing, Entertaining, Absorbing

See it if you love intelligent writing, coupled with a great cast and profound and complex existential issues

Don't see it if you have no patience for intellectual forays into one's psyche

An exhilarating nught at the theater, Funny, Great acting, Delightful, Absorbing

See it if You enjoy originality, clever dialogue ang wonderful performances (yes, it’s loosely based on Uncle Vanya, but still highly original).

Don't see it if You have no sense of humor

Also It’s hilarious at times, and quite moving at others. I left the theate... Read more Read less

Quirky, Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Clever

See it if You like unusual takes on classic plays like Uncle Vanya. You like intelligent comedy.

Don't see it if You prefer a Broadway musical. You don’t like it when the actors interact with the audience.

If you love real theatre, go, go,go!

See it if You have grown up as a theatre goer loving the real thing: this is it.

Don't see it if You are going to have a snit that the F word is used, or you feel Chekhov-Inspired works are not for you. But you will be missing out.

Also The acting (Nadia Bowers, Kim Chatterjee, Kevin Isola, Barbara Kingsle... Read more Read less

Resonant, Fluffy, Disappointing, Entertaining

See it if you want to see a modern adaptation of Chekhov's Uncle Vanya about enduring life even though it usually never goes the way we want it to

Don't see it if you don't like Chekhov's humor

Also I was a little disappointed. Posner is a good writer and I felt like m... Read more Read less

Thought-provoking, Resonant, Profound, Great acting, Delightful

See it if you need to ease into Chekhov (and who doesn't?!?

Don't see it if you think the classics should not be tinkered with.

Great writing, Great acting, Funny, Clever, Absorbing

See it if you want to see a hysterically funny and simultaneously poignant modern version of Uncle Vanya.

Don't see it if You don't like good writing or acting.

April 1st, 2019
"Bitingly funny, unexpectedly touching play...The characters and basic plot will be familiar to 'Uncle Vanya' fiends. But at the same time, 'Life Sucks,' will be familiar to just about anybody...Briskly directed by Jeff Wise for the Wheelhouse company, the production keeps finding perceptive ways...
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April 7th, 2019
"Posner may have borrowed Chekhov’s kaleidoscopic love pentangle, but he’s updated events to the present day and salted the evening with postmodern hijinks, which include frequent check-ins with the audience and a theaterwide show-of-hands about regret...It helps that one could mount a superb 'Va...
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June 23rd, 2019
"Aaron Posner's LIFE SUCKS. Urges Chekhov and His Characters To Get To The Point"
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July 11th, 2019
"Posner acts rather like a tailor, undoing the original script's seams and opening it out, providing room for a form of hilarity grounded in existential sorrow…Jeff Wise skillfully guides his cast through one mortifying situation after another…For all that Posner builds his work on another artist...
read more

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Cast & Creatives (4)