Office Hour
Closed 1h 30m
Office Hour
74

Office Hour NYC Reviews and Tickets

74%
(124 Reviews)
Positive
71%
Mixed
27%
Negative
2%
Members say
Intense, Great acting, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Absorbing

About the Show

Playwright Julia Cho ('The Language Archive') returns to the Public with the New York premiere of this taut drama about a teacher and student desperate to change the narrative of who they are and how their story ends.

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Member Reviews (124)

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MJK
677 Reviews | 187 Followers
79
Intense, Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Powerful, Relevant

See it if you seek a tense, eloquent, well-acted take on the timely topic of school shooting that also explores compassion, loneliness & misjudgment.

Don't see it if you expect any concrete conclusions to a complex topic. [The show asks more questions than it answers.]; you're uncomfortable with violence.

605 Reviews | 226 Followers
84
Absorbing, Edgy, Intense, Relevant, Riveting

See it if You enjoy highly relevant, topical thrillers, especially those that toy with both the audience’s and the characters’ perceptions of reality.

Don't see it if You can’t stand edge-of-your-seat, intense plays where you’re constantly waiting for a gun to go off.

501 Reviews | 103 Followers
79
Clever, Profound

See it if You want to see an intense show about a very touchy subject

Don't see it if Seeing a play about gun violence is going to bother you. Read more

470 Reviews | 112 Followers
90
Great acting, Great writing, Relevant

See it if You'd want to watch one teacher try to get through to a troubled student and all the things she really tries. 90 minutes flies by.

Don't see it if You don't have earplugs, as there is a particularly loud moment (that goes on for a while) towards the end.

449 Reviews | 116 Followers
62
Resonant, Ambitious, Intense, Misguided, Absorbing

See it if you are an admirer of Julia Cho or Sue Jean Kim.

Don't see it if you expect a serious commentary on gun violence in America. Read more

406 Reviews | 188 Followers
80
Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Thought-provoking, Startling

See it if You are interested in the role of teachers as moral coaches for teenage students. Are they trained professionals?

Don't see it if You are not interested in the current problem of student safety in schools. You shock easily. Read more

433 Reviews | 93 Followers
56
Ambitious, Edgy, Quirky, Relevant, Resonant

See it if You want a look at a potentially volatile situation and how it may be dealt with. Or want to see the inner workings of a troubled mind.

Don't see it if Gun violence is a trigger, or watching an agonizingly slow conversation drag on, while constantly waiting for the shoe to drop.

435 Reviews | 61 Followers
70
Absorbing, Great acting, Relevant, Resonant, Slow

See it if You can tolerate gun shots and violence in a university office.

Don't see it if You’re looking for a pleasant and comfortable experience.

Critic Reviews (25)

The New York Times
November 8th, 2017

“If you remove from the story the threat of violence and its fulfillment, there’s very little story left...Cho tries to finesse this structural problem by introducing a meta-theatrical game of three-card monte...It’s hard to pay attention either way, because so many of the vignettes end in varieties of violence..Technically, the production is extremely skillful — you might even say cunning — at producing that response...But the question remains: effective to what end?”
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Time Out New York
November 8th, 2017

“'Office Hour' is physically difficult to sit through. Part of that reaction is a judgment on its quality...But you may also be experiencing something like a literal fight-or-flight response...Cho’s 'All in the Timing'–style conceit spirals into absurdity, and the audience laughs uncertainly...If this horror were in the service of penetrating insights about school shootings, it might be valuable, even necessary. But ’Office Hour’ doesn’t earn its ending; it has nothing to teach."
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New York Magazine / Vulture
November 8th, 2017

“Has moments that feel vital, honest, and valuable. It’s also built around a scenario that I find deeply questionable, perhaps even irresponsible...At its most effective moments, 'Office Hour' is interested not only in the question of gun violence, but in the painful, isolating struggle faced by the children of immigrant parents in this country...The climax overwhelms the rest of the play to a destructive degree. It feels like a cruel trick on an audience who came willing to listen."
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The Hollywood Reporter
November 8th, 2017

“The dialogue too often feels contrived and artificial, designed to make sociological points rather than convey three-dimensional characters...The playwright indulges too often in the sort of narrative fake-outs that are certainly shocking but eventually prove wearisome in their repetitiveness. ‘Office Hour’ is most incisive in its quieter, subtler moments...May not tell us anything we don't already know...But it certainly makes you feel like you've been in the presence of one.”
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Variety
November 9th, 2017

"Sue Jean Kim gives a remarkably controlled performance...Cho is a confident writer, Gina is a gutsy character and Kim is a self-possessed performer...Cho’s smart, civilized dialogue occasionally seems tone deaf. Unless director Neel Keller is deliberately playing against the written text and reaching for the subtext."
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Deadline
November 9th, 2017

"Couldn’t be more timely...Cho seems more interested in a conventional teacher-with-a-savior-complex melodrama than a serious exploration of the larger issue, and that’s where 'Office Hour' comes up short...Unfortunately, even as played by the very game Kim, Gina is, to put it kindly, a flibbertigibbet with boundary issues who could probably drive Bambi to violence. The inevitable Armageddon seems both tasteless and dramatically unearned."
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Theatermania
November 8th, 2017

“Disappointingly, ‘Office Hour’ begins to resemble a therapy session...Everyone onstage has a good cry and we tear up a bit from sheer boredom. It feels like an easy way out...We are briefly jolted to attention by a sequence of rapid-fire scenes imagining all the horrible ways a shooting could happen...Then something incredible happens: We get used to it...Whether by design or not, our reaction to what should be a traumatizing scene is the most disturbing revelation of the play."
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BroadwayWorld
November 9th, 2017

"A tense and extremely well thought out play...Both Kim and Lee are excellent. The playwright allows for gradual connections to be made between them...What is so gripping about the play and the production is the ever-present fear of horrific violence that permeates the space, even as sympathy grows for Dennis...Cho effectively calls for compassion and outreach from a society that commonly creates violent loners out of troubled children."
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