Smart Blonde
Closed 1h 30m
Smart Blonde
78

Smart Blonde NYC Reviews and Tickets

78%
(35 Ratings)
Positive
83%
Mixed
11%
Negative
6%
Members say
Great acting, Entertaining, Great singing, Delightful, Absorbing

About the Show

In this new play with music, Judy Holliday lays down a series of tracks about her rise to fame amidst the politics of the 1950s.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (35)

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783 Reviews | 148 Followers
100
Great acting, Delightful, Entertaining, Great singing, Absorbing

See it if Know who Judy Holliday is or a fan of older movies or love older Hollywood.

Don't see it if If you want her whole life story. It just some moments. Read more

135 Reviews | 36 Followers
100
Intelligent, Great singing, Funny, Clever

See it if you want to enjoy the tremendously talented Andrea Burns. You want to learn more about the complex and fascinating Judy Holiday.

Don't see it if you have no interest in show business in the mid-20th century. Prefer a lavish Broadway-style production.

264 Reviews | 26 Followers
93
Well done, Informative, Entertaining, Engaging,, Refreshing

See it if you want to see a dynamite actress playing a dynamic woman; you remember Judy Holliday and want to know more about her

Don't see it if you only like big splashy musicals

63 Reviews | 14 Followers
93
Intelligent, Entertaining, Great acting, Delightful, Absorbing

See it if you are interested in Judy Holliday or just want to see a top-notch actress/singer get inside the truth of a historical person

Don't see it if you don't like show-biz bio-plays Read more

271 Reviews | 66 Followers
92
Versatile performances, Absorbing, Delightful, Fast-paced, Entertaining

See it if you love Judy Holliday or movies, theater, and songs from the '50s.

Don't see it if you don't know who she is and don't care to learn. Read more

93 Reviews | 16 Followers
90
Clever, Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Great staging, Great acting

See it if You love TCM and are an old movie buff, especially of rom-coms, musicals. Terrific presentation of Judy Holliday, her era, sexism, politics.

Don't see it if You haven't a clue as to who Judy Holliday was and the ethos of the 1950's to early 1960's. You only seek big budget musicals, or revivals. Read more

57 Reviews | 3 Followers
89
Relatively upbeat, Great singing, Dizzying, Confusing, Absorbing

See it if If you want to learn about Holliday. If you like music & musicals. If you enjoy dizzyingly paced characters & vignettes played by same actor

Don't see it if If you get confused by flashbacks and one actor playing multiple roles with minute costume changes as signals. Read more

143 Reviews | 35 Followers
85
Great singing, Great acting, Entertaining, Delightful

See it if It was very enjoyable to see four great actors at works, especially Andrea Burns, she sings and acts smartly.

Don't see it if You are looking for a linear story telling of Judy Holiday and feel 90 minutes is not enough to cover such a remarkable actress.

Critic Reviews (21)

The New York Times
March 26th, 2019

“As disjointed as Mr. Holtzman’s script is, Ms. Burns, who created the part in the play’s 2014 premiere, holds the production together...Burns captures Holliday’s vocal mannerisms, wit and comic timing. But she also connects with Holliday’s vulnerability. When Ms. Burns, who, refreshingly, does not wear a body microphone, melts into ‘What’ll I Do’ or ‘It must be Christmas’, it’s easy to forget who is singing. And that is not an impersonation, but a performance.”
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The Hollywood Reporter
March 26th, 2019

“The frustratingly sketchy and episodic play somehow leaves you wanting more and less at the same time...A plethora of biographical material is dealt with in just 90 minutes, making it more inexplicable that the playwright also felt the need to musicalize the proceedings...Burns superbly conveys Holliday's charm, comic gifts and emotional complexity. And the supporting players handle their multiple assignments with protean skill."
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BroadwayWorld
March 28th, 2019

"Will keep you enthralled from the first minute to the last...Get your tickets now for this unforgettable theatrical and musical experience...The score is wonderfully performed and perfectly designed to bring the story of 'Smart Blonde' full circle...The Design Team has done a top job of bringing the mood of the 1950's and 60's to the stage."
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Lighting & Sound America
March 27th, 2019

“’Smart Blonde’ is a collection of sound bites trying to pass as biographical drama...Trouble is, so much happens so quickly that none of it has any impact...The script's many factoids are presented without sufficient context...Burns creates a plausible version of the sometimes-troubled woman...It's a fascinating performance, filled with eccentric gestures that would seem false or bizarre on any other performer, but which on her are incontrovertibly right.”
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Talkin' Broadway
March 26th, 2019

“Holtzman's sketchy by-the-numbers bio play...Leaves us wanting more...Directed at a fast pace but without much ingenuity...The play is made up of short scenes about Holliday's life...’Smart Blonde’ touches upon much that begs for a richer and fuller treatment than what we are getting here...There is plenty of material to command a strong play or musical about Judy Holliday. Regrettably, this isn't it.”
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New York Stage Review
March 26th, 2019

"The actress does not offer a precise catalogue of Holliday’s attributes nor a step-by-step impersonation, but she smoothly and convincingly (and entertainingly) brings to life this representation...Instead of creating a compelling play, he offers episodes from the life of Judy Holliday. Many are highly amusing, especially as staged by Peter Flynn and breezily performed by three versatile actors who cover all bases...Burns is constantly and unflaggingly winning."
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Theater News Online
April 1st, 2019

"Holliday’s learning how – and why – to inhabit the role of the dumb blonde is a strong throughline up to this point, but it falls short of effectively delineating all of Holliday’s complex life, and that structural flaw leaves this play less satisfying than Holliday deserves. Under the direction of Peter Flynn, the cast performances, however, do much to make up for this drawback."
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TheaterScene.net
March 31st, 2019

“Willy Holtzman has written ‘Smart Blonde’ to amend this situation. ‘Smart Blonde’ takes on, perhaps, too much, telling Holliday's entire life in ultimately unsatisfactory tiny chunks, never digging deep enough, but held together by its hardworking star, Andréa Burns (who was just as terrific in ‘On Your Feet’ and ‘In the Heights’).”
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