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"An affecting drama, one that truly captures the emotions of people who are dealing with an indescribable tragedy...'No Wake' is an honest depiction of how people cope in the aftermath of death, yet it also shows the humorous moments that occur in everyday life...The actors are excellent in their portrayals of the play's complex characters...It is a show about relationships that is poignant, relatable, and very memorable." Full Review
“Donnelly leaks out the details of his play in tantalizing microdoses… Director Brady and designer Buderwitz, perhaps constrained by the dimensions of 59E59’s miniscule Theater C, short-shrift the atmosphere by suggesting a generic motel in lieu of the country inn specified in the script. Still, the tight quarters make for a thrilling and ultimately hilarious physical tussle the morning after. Astutely threaded throughout ‘No Wake‘ is the intentionally sketchy tragedy of the lost child.” Full Review
“It seems to take forever for the play's rambling dialogue to bring its crises into focus... Too much of Veronica Brady's direction keeps the intensity accelerator somewhere between tedious and plodding, despite occasional outbursts of (to me) inexplicable laughter. Perhaps a more magnetic cast might have drawn out the play's emotional truths better than this one. The unit set…helps not at all, with unadorned, two-tone walls painted in the dreariest of institutional colors.” Full Review
“While neither the playwright or director Veronica Brady manage to make the glib banter and more painful undercurrents always mesh fluidly, there is a lot that's heart-touching and compelling...As Edward and Rebecca unpack their painful memories, and Roger lets us see the needy man beneath the glib exterior, Donnelly takes us deep into all their hearts and souls. To make all this work requires actors skilled at navigating between the darker and lighter interchanges." Full Review
“As directed by Veronica Brady with an edge to humorous and real interplay, ‘No Wake’ is layered with authentic and touching moments flowing through the undercurrent. Even with the disappointment to come in the final ten minutes, the characters are soaked in authentic reactions and attachment…The three try hard not to be dragged out into the sea by the strong undertow, and through the actors solid and human approach to each other, they generally succeed.” Full Review
"Constrained by their underwritten characters and banal dialogue, the charming and talented Stef Tovar and Tricia Small flail around earnestly. With such poor material and a confined playing area, all director Veronica Brady can do is skillfully position the actors and keep the pace up...'No Wake' is an off-kilter and dull blend of farce, tragedy and boulevard comedy." Full Review
"'No Wake' begins just after a memorial service...But while the expected companions of grief, blame, and self-recrimination are certainly on hand, the play takes a surprising turn and becomes a funny, sad, messy love story...Thanks to excellent performances by the three cast members under Veronica Brady's knowing direction, the production does a fine job of bringing out both the pain and the human comedy of it all." Full Review
"It’s difficult to fairly gauge the quality of a play when one of only three performers doesn’t weigh in. Though William Donnelly’s piece is predictable, it’s also well written and would certainly be more successful if otherwise cast...Except for brief parentheses, Tricia Small never inhabits the role. Even her listening is vague...Director Veronica Brady might have done more to alleviate this situation. As it stands, the actors reflect good direction, the actress does not." Full Review
"'No Wake' lumbers through a harrowing situation of loss and humanity. The atmosphere is bleak...Their connection is still fractured after a difficult divorce and years of their only child's emotional instability and detachment from them, lonely battles with despair and relief, memories, and guilt...Ransom as Roger is the most likeable character, delivering Roger's discomfort with perception...'No Wake' presents the possibility of this lost couple moving on and taking risks, but will they?" Full Review
“What could easily have been a Lifetime movie of the week, becomes much more in the capable hands of the show’s creative team. Donnelly’s text deftly switches from comic to dramatic and back again…None of the characters feel in any way contrived…Brady’s direction shows a real feel for the story. The moments, scenes, and emotions shift effortlessly from one to the next to the ending which feels totally right. Touching, powerful, and above all, honest.” Full Review
See it if you like shows about relationships.The acting was quite good. Writing was excellent.Interesting story of a love triangle at a funeral.
Don't see it if you want all the bells and whistles.The set is very good.Makes good use of a small black box space.I found characters & situation believable
See it if Even given that the dialogue is supposed to be awkward, you can be engaged by conversation which never rings true.
Don't see it if In a play which deals with death and grieving, you would hope to be able to suspend disbelief, and engage with the characters as real people
See it if You want to see a divorced couple and the ex-wife's new husband struggle to deal with a family tragedy.
Don't see it if It would pain you to watch a divorced couple attempt to deal with the suicide of their (mentally ill?) adult child, plus marital infidelity.
See it if You want to watch 3 terrific actors as they unburden their hearts + souls in a new drama about unexpected consequences of coping wi grief.
Don't see it if You can't deal with deep emotions sometimes expressed through physical fighting. The subject of grief is not one you want to see staged.
See it if You like exploring dynamics of relationships and mourning.
Don't see it if You need a satisfying ending. It's a tad disappointing that the ending comes without much closure
See it if You have a high boredom threshold, since the first half was excruciatingly slow and tedious.
Don't see it if You have a low boredom threshold, since the first half was excruciatingly slow and tedious.
See it if you've never lost a child. you might be able to ignore the emotionless performances.
Don't see it if you'd like to see a bit more realism incorporated into an extremely sad storyline.
See it if If you want to see a couple with unresolved issues get together after a long time and fall on the same old sad routine with no maturing
Don't see it if you think you will hear a great tragedy unearth buried feelings & brings people closer. This has insultingly little to do with the tragedy
See it if you want an intimate night of theatre. Small space - can really feel the emotions of the actors. Hard subject to tackle, but well done.
Don't see it if do not want to deal with the subject of suicide or have a troubled relationship with your children. The beginning was a little slow.
See it if for complex relationships between characters and results of these interactions
Don't see it if expecting detailed characterization and compassion between the characters.
See it if It's an interesting subject and Tovar is giving a good performance. Parents who have lost children might feel connected to the material.
Don't see it if I was interested in what was happening most of the time but It didn't leave an impact, good or bad.
See it if You want to see a great example of a show that’s done really well. Well written, acted and staged. It just doesn’t seem to have a real end.
Don't see it if If you like your stories all wrapped up and delivered for you. This one leaves you with a lot of questions.
See it if A story about the aftermath of grief that oddly evinces little of the emotion. What ensues is possible, but I didn't buy it. A rather hot-
Don't see it if headed response to tragedy seems unlikely given the characters' pasts but if that what the playwright intended you be the judge!
See it if You Want to see a good drama with some comedy in a nice small intimate space
Don't see it if You are looking for a complex drama with lots of fireworks. This is a very simple plot
See it if you want to see a well-written and acted play about the messiness of life with grief and love and loss, while getting in a few laughs.
Don't see it if you want to see something light with a neat and tidy bow at the end.
See it if You enjoy plays that confront loss, indecision and relationships without challenging the viewer with new ideas.
Don't see it if You seek well-written dialogue or hope to gain a fresh perspective on how grief and loss can affect families.