"Ms. Piper is in her comfort zone with the funny stuff, of course, and the comedic high points are delicious. She’s less successful when she turns serious, trying for a poignancy that requires more acting skill than she possesses; several segments are more maudlin than moving…But she smartly never lets them go on for long and is quick to lighten the room just when things are in danger of becoming too heavy." Full Review
"Piper's acclaim and sheer reliability is likely why the show has come to the Big Apple, but 'Not That Jewish' can't shake the feeling that it belongs more in a synagogue social hall...Her Old World-style jokes, just on the cusp of dirty, go down easy and earn friendly chuckles. But Piper's presentational style and director Mark Waldrop's artificial production undercut the show's more emotional moments...They're still moving, but not as poignant as they could be." Full Review
"Piper, who can ram home a punch line with the best of them, is, most of the time, a relaxed, affable presence, and she doesn't shy away from the sorrows in her life story...The darker the subject matter, the funnier Piper is...'Not That Jewish' is warm, funny, and grounded in plenty of gritty detail...Waldrop has directed with a light hand, and has also provided his star with a better-than-usual design...Even if you aren't that Jewish, you should find some solid laughs and honest sentiment." Full Review
“Through it all, she finds the laughter beneath life's ups and downs. Many of the jokes are Jewish-inflected and familiar to anyone who's seen, let's say, Jackie Mason's routines. Every now and then, a word floats by to spur the next sequence in the show. Despite its theme, the play is for everyone who has a Jewish heart, much as those old Levy's Jewish rye bread ads used to imply; still, folks who laugh at Yiddishisms will soak up just a bit more of its ethnic gravy than everyone else.” Full Review
"What you get is not a stand-up routine, but a standard-issue bio play with, perhaps, an above-average number of laughs...Piper has taken the unusual avenue of not trying to split your sides, even though she's clearly capable of doing so, and instead taken the attack straight to your heart...'Not That Jewish' isn't as funny as you think it will be, but it's far moving, and the good time you get when you go, even if it's not the kind you expect, will not leave you feeling deprived at all." Full Review
"Piper brings back the days of the Borscht Belt, Old World-style jokes and a time gone by. She is witty and full of life. Director Mark Waldrop ties everything together. Part of the joy of watching this show is the laughter that rolls out and through the audience. In a time when laughter has been replaced with stress and fear thanks to this abominable election, it is nice to hear this sound ringing out around you." Full Review
"I’m laughing and relating, mostly..."'Not That Jewish' needs a good bit of trimming, and another hook to hang its hat on. As it stands now, she’s trying to force the narrative of her life into the framework of how she relates to her Judaism...The whole 'I don’t go to temple so I have to prove to myself I’m Jewish' thing? Not so resonant with me...Being a single mother and beating breast cancer? That’s something to talk about." Full Review
"She emits such sincerity that one gladly accepts whatever she is telling us. She also has the gift of being able to turn the corner and stir emotions between the laughs...Piper knows how to get to you. Piper is an excellent actress...Director Mark Waldrop has kept the show smooth as she moves about at the right moments...It all comes down to the intimacy she is able to establish with her audience in this generously entertaining and often moving performance." Full Review
"Piper delivers an intimate performance within the large proscenium at New World Stages. Through all the teary moments in the audience, Piper manages to bring a smile back with one of her jokes and expert physical comedy. In some moments, it is easy to eagerly await the next punch line, like watching a stand-up comic's routine, while in others, Piper captures true theatre and creates a tangible stillness in the crowd as she, herself, struggles to find the right words." Full Review
"'Not That Jewish' positions its storyteller front and center in its narrative. Since Piper is an adept performer and writer who knows how to land a joke, that’s not all bad. But it does get a little awkward during the not infrequent spurts of self-adulation...She is a smart woman with a quick wit and that magical ingredient known as comic timing. Yet wit and timing get bogged down considerably as she wades through the treacly landscape of her family history, rendering her not that funny." Full Review
"The title of this zany, entertaining show comes from playwright and performer Monica Piper’s early childhood experience of being told by a playmate that she 'wasn’t that Jewish'...Piper got over it...You don’t have to be Jewish to enjoy this show. Piper is a winning performer able to make very clear any of the Yiddish-isms she spouts. I recommend the show for anyone who wants to enjoy hearty laughs in a comfortable, cozy setting." Full Review
"I adore this show not because it is hilarious but because it is a moving show of the acclaimed writer/comedienne's life...There is not one moment in this show where you will be bored...In a world that every day seems meaner, especially during this election, Monica Piper’s 'Not That Jewish' is a reminder that there are some sweet personalities in this world that can still give you some great laughs...'Not that Jewish' is for every age, every religion, and practically every human being." Full Review
for a previous production "A wonderful evening of entertainment and laughs…I don't remember any show I have seen with my Mom where we both laughed so much and had such a good time being in an audience. It is certainly understandable why people come back with new groups of friends to experience the show over and over again. See it for yourself and you will certainly understand why - and what it takes to have a Jewish heart." Full Review
for a previous production "Piper’s performance is as much a stand up piece as it is a bona fide play…However, it’s hard to blame her – one thing Piper knows is comedy…The play is like being present for a classic comedy act, and if you take the show in that spirit, it’s delightful...What elevates the show above being a merely reflexive comedy routine is the awareness that Piper’s comic spirit arises from an inner existential sadness…Piper herself cuts an extremely likable portrait on stage." Full Review
for a previous production "Brilliantly delivered…It is a multifaceted, deeply human story that includes all the elements of the human condition…Monica self-examines her life with honesty, and though told with humor, one feels her pain…There are many laugh-out-loud moments in this flawless production…What you’re getting is Monica Piper’s undiluted excellence, in a wonderful show…What’s there to complain about? Don’t miss this one!" Full Review
See it if you enjoy watching a one act, one woman show about the life story of a Jewish stand-up comic and TV script writer
Don't see it if you don't enjoy cabaret style shows; the show has some nice moments, but it seems like one long stand up routine with a lot of punch lines
See it if you want to see one of the best one person shows ever. Monica Piper is funny, moving and creates a fascinating experience for us.
Don't see it if you don't like one person shows although I think you should make an exception for this one. Don't miss it.
See it if You like to hear a life story, told in a funny way
Don't see it if You don't care for Jewish topics, want a big snow, a musical, or something more than someone's musings about their life
See it if You like humor mixed with philosophy. If you want to leave the theater feeling good. You like to laugh.
Don't see it if You don't like one-person plays. You don't care for Jewish themes.
See it if you enjoy solo shows & are Jewish. This wouldn't play well to non-Jews, but all NYers are honorary MOTs. Poignancy of cancer and adoption.
Don't see it if broad humor annoys you. Piper is big-hearted and as her dad told her, "You're funny, kid." Not everything lands, but enough does.
See it if You're Jewish; you know at least 1 Jew; or you know that Jewish people exist in the world. You like a One-Woman Show. You like Jewish humor.
Don't see it if You don't like seeing one-person performances. You don't have a sense of humor. You like to see more traditional "Stand-Up-Comedy" Shows ;~)
See it if You enjoy hearing warm human life stories told with humor and intelligence. This is a delightful theatre experience!
Don't see it if You don't like one woman shows that make you laugh and cry.
See it if you like one woman shows, comedy, learning about the life of a professional comedian/TV show writer & surprisingly poignant endings.
Don't see it if you don't like solo shows, autobiographical shows, comedy.
See it if Monica Piper is a favorite of yours. For 80 minutes she talks about her childhood, family, dreams and life. Sometimes she's funny.
Don't see it if you are expecting hilarity or a play. The performance is monolog biography with a few very funny lines but long spaces between.
See it if You enjoy listening to an autobiography. The highs and the lows told in an open and honest manner.
Don't see it if You want a fantasy. You don't want to hear someone else talk about their lives, warts and all.
See it if You like watching a Solo show from an entertaining comedian who tells her life story with much laughter and a little sadness
Don't see it if If you prefer a grander show with entertainment value greater than listening to simple facts of one's life
See it if You want an uneventful soft mildly funny show to pass the time. You are not tired of 70's&80's new feminist bio. all too familiar
Don't see it if You expect real hilarious standup intense laughter or really funny Jewish humor ala Joan Rivers, Rodney Dangerfield, or Catskills' style.
See it if You have ever pondered what being Jewish really is, for Jews and non-Jews alike. Enjoy life narratives with pathos, humor and heart.
Don't see it if You want thigh slapping hilarity...this is much sweeter and gentler. Have no interest in Jewish culture - how is that possible?
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