The Book of Merman
Closed 1h 30m
The Book of Merman
76

The Book of Merman NYC Reviews and Tickets

76%
(143 Reviews)
Positive
79%
Mixed
18%
Negative
3%
Members say
Entertaining, Funny, Great singing, Clever, Quirky

About the Show

Two Mormon missionaries ring the doorbell of Ethel Merman in this new musical comedy. A diva-driven journey featuring original songs and show-stopping ballads. 

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Member Reviews (143)

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84
Clever, Entertaining, Funny, Great singing

See it if you enjoy a parody of Book of Mormon which includes Ethel Merman. The songs were very good and lyrics were excellent. I liked the story line

Don't see it if you like drama or musicals with big sets. Read more

72
Great singing, Entertaining, Fun

See it if An Ethel Merman impersonator belts it out with the help of a couple of clean-cut guys in white shirts and ties. Familiar sounding songs.

Don't see it if You would slam the door on a small-scale musical that promises a little bit of entertaining off-Broadway fun with rewritten songs and lyrics

73
Great singing, Ambitious, Cliched, Quirky

See it if Great singing with some good tunes. Most jokes fall flat. Cast tries hard and delivers.

Don't see it if Do not see if you dislike small off Broadway budget musicals .

50
Wretched, Disappointing, Cliched, Fluffy, Excruciating

See it if your devotion to Ethel is not strong enough to hold you back from this disgrace to her memory. Wait for Merman's Apprentice to return.

Don't see it if seeing Ethel portrayed badly is upsetting, and if the memory of her Disco album induces a headache.

76
Clever, Disappointing, Fluffy, Insipid, Silly

See it if you get a free ticket like I did. The actors work really hard and sing nicely. The Merman impression is quite good. It is a mild diversion.

Don't see it if you expect a full-length musical that makes sense. This doesn't. And many of the songs are blatant rip-offs of other songs. Amateurish show.

94
Clever, Delightful, Entertaining, Great singing, Fun

See it if you enjoy intimate theaters; you like outstanding vocal talent; you're familiar with both Book of Mormon and Ethel Merman

Don't see it if you never saw Book of Mormon, you don't know who Ethel Merman was; you don't like theaters with chairs all on one level, no rise at all

68
Funny, Fluffy, Disappointing, Good acting, Silly

See it if You like parodies of Broadway shows, or Broadway songs, or want to see something silly and fun.

Don't see it if You don’t like raunchy humor, need refined/sophisticated staging and props.

93
Delightful, Entertaining, Great singing, Hilarious, Refreshing

See it if you believe there's a "Merman" inside everyone! Zippy tunes, delightful lyrics, and some very funny lines make this a wonderful musical.

Don't see it if you don't believe that we should never give up who we are to make others happy. The missionaries in this merry musical will convert you!

Critic Reviews (7)

New York Stage Review
October 22nd, 2018

"Neither bookwriters Leo Schwartz and DC Cathro nor songwriter Schwartz have made anything engaging of the notion they must have had a swell time laughing over when it occurred to them...Before the 90 minutes it takes the misguided tuner to run its uninspired course, you’ll be thinking you’ve croaked, too, and been assigned to some unforgiving purgatory...Wilkinson brings a modicum of charm to his wide-eyed role and Sakolove belts well in the still inimitable Merman style."
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TheaterScene.net
November 7th, 2018

“The witty score with music and lyrics by Schwartz is a collection of both pastiche songs based on numbers Merman made famous and new ones that fit her style that suggest other famous songs. Directed and choreographed by Joe Langworth in a brisk and breezy fashion, ‘The Book of Merman’ is a diverting, entertaining show that will be best enjoyed by musical comedy aficionados who know their Merman from their Mary Martin as there are a great many in-jokes.”
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Theater Pizzazz
October 21st, 2018

“The premise of this silly, fun show is somehow Mormon missionaries and ‘The Merm’ meet, with wonderful consequences...The show frolics through parodies of the recognizable classics...But it’s the original songs that tickle and are moving...Throughout the show Burns, Wilkinson and Sakalove mug, dance, and sing up a storm; each one of them have incredible voices and comedic timing that add to the persona of their characters and to the fun of the production.”
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Front Mezz Junkies
November 5th, 2018

"The talented cast sings strong and wonderfully joyful...The main problem with the show, is that it just isn’t as funny as it should be...The show stays solidly in the cute category...Both the book and the lyrics could really use some more satirical juice...The direction and choreography never feels tight or inspiring...It’s a shame, because with a smarter book and lyrics this show could rise up to the level these three performers deserve.”
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Times Square Chronicles
October 24th, 2018

"Burris and Wilkinson are terrific as the Mormons and both have fabulous voices. They are perfectly cast. Sakolove, can act and sing, but she never to me sounded like Merman. Together the three sing wonderful harmonies and move well...Langworth, directed and choreographed this piece with ridiculous camp, which kept the show moving. His choreography was quite wonderful...A clever premise, has a great message, but I just did not find any of this funny.”
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DC Metro Theater Arts
October 21st, 2018

"The lively fast-paced show is filled with spot-on spoofs of its famous sources, silly send-ups of their familiar songs, clever pop-culture references, and campy humor, delivered by the terrific trio...All three bring high-spirited energy, powerhouse vocals, and sidesplitting characterizations to their distinctive roles...Outrageously funny and impressively well sung, performed, and designed...One parody that could make you a convert to the entertaining realm of musical theater!"
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B
November 12th, 2018

"A parody of a parody, it is fresh from the first moment the two Mormon Elders, who are very young indeed, start knocking on doors in the theater district of New York...Sakolove belts her numbers like Merman, loud, exposed, perhaps shrill. Yet incredibly exciting. She cut through orchestras without a microphone...Leo Schwartz and D.C. Cathro have put together this bubbling confection, inspired by other Mormons on Broadway, yet very much its own piece."
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