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The 4th Graders Present an Unnamed Love Suicide

From 28 member  reviews
Members say: Thought-provoking, Relevant, Quirky, Great acting, Entertaining

About the show

Inspired by the love-suicide plays of Kabuki theatre, this disturbingly comedic piece explores trauma through the eyes of a child. More…

When 4th grader Johnny shoots himself, he leaves behind a play as a suicide note that the kids in his class are forced to perform as a memorial. As friends and bullies assume the roles of Johnny and his classmates, a heartbreaking, darkly curious story emerges, offering a glimpse into the motivation behind Johnny's actions.


Member Reviews (28)

MEMBERS SAY:

Thought-provoking, Relevant, Quirky, Great acting, Entertaining
75
Avg Score

92
Poignant, Delightful, Dizzying, Edgy, Resonant

See it if you want to see the issue of bullying in schools engaged with an immediacy that is only possible in the theater.

Don't see it if the idea of adults playing children committing deeply hurtful & even violent acts against each other makes you nervous.

Also In “The 4th Graders…” playwright Ken Graney doesn’t so much mimic the ... Read more Read less

80
Ambitious, Clever, Funny, Intense, Relevant

See it if You want a play that deals w/school violence in a stylized, theatrical manner. You like dark comedies.

Don't see it if You're uncomfortable w/violence depicted onstage. You don't like stylized theatre formats. You prefer light comedies.

79
Lovechild of kabuki & grade school pageant, Quirky, Ocasionally funny, Talented cast, Thought-provoking

See it if hybrid forms of presentation, examination of dealing with trauma, bullying & life, grade school pageantry, + talented cast intrigue you

Don't see it if viewing trauma thru eyes of 4th graders, embracing Kabuki/Noh stylings, climbing many stairs, waiting 4 comedy to manifest itself R not 4 U

37
Overrated

See it if You want to see older actors playing cute and adorable fourth grade students

Don't see it if You are expecting a full length play this play doesn’t even run one hour

Also The play tries to be funny but also moving and emotional at the same t... Read more Read less

72
Enchanting, Relevant

See it if You enjoy “play within a play” type shows and comedy derived from kids playing serious adults.

Don't see it if You expect to see more of the backstory that comes before the Play. I craved learning more about what happened and its reverberations.

73
Delightful, Entertaining, Great acting, Insipid, Great staging

See it if fun, well-acted and well-staged

Don't see it if you want to see theater of the absurd. It takes an absurd notion and justifies it. Not nearly as dark as it should be.

79
Clever, Great singing, Thought-provoking, Experimental understandable and with a point

See it if You want to see an experimental work that really makes sense and has some cute moments

Don't see it if You really can’t take experimental theater

60
Ambitious, Confusing, Disappointing, Great writing, Indulgent

See it if You want to explore tragedy from a child's perspective.

Don't see it if You have high hopes for the treatment of this perspective to feel authentic.

57
An important subject presented in an unusual way

See it if the worthiness of the subject of elementary schoolers committing suicide is enough to make you attend.

Don't see it if you want a compelling drama to deal with this sensitive subject.

Also The idea of a kabuki-like show as a vehicle to explore this subject so... Read more Read less

80
Clever, Original, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Resonant

See it if You’re interested in issues, relationships and hierarchies that kids deal with, the severity of which might not be known to parents.

Don't see it if You cannot deal with topics of violence on many levels as they relate to kids

Also This was a cleverly staged production with adult actors who really com... Read more Read less

88
Funny, Great acting, Relevant, Resonant, Thought-provoking

See it if you enjoy fables with an important message about bullying in schools and the importance of respectful communication set in modern day.

Don't see it if If you don't like when adults are portraying children on stage and if you prefer more intellectual theatre.

Also The hour went by quickly with really engaging characters portrayed by ... Read more Read less

68
Thought-provoking

See it if You like a Short realistic juvenile show.

Don't see it if You don't Get offended my suicide and violence .

79
Ambitious, Clever, Entertaining, Quirky

See it if You enjoy quirky, off-kilter plays with a lot of imagination and with relevant issues presented in an unusual, intimate, entertaining format

Don't see it if You don't like Off-Broadway or broad humor or a playful approach to a tragedy will strong impact in the end; can't climb up 6 flights

Also This is a quirky and often effective piece of theater with one especia... Read more Read less

74
Indulgent, Cliched, Entertaining

See it if You want a short show that is well acted with committed actors

Don't see it if You have a problem with violence

Also The hardest part about this show is that it's a great start to somethi... Read more Read less

91
Quirky, Thought-provoking, Edgy, Entertaining, Relevant

See it if You want to be challenged about difficult current topics. You are open minded and want an entertaining evening.

Don't see it if You don't want to see adults playing 9 year olds. .You don't like Small off Broadway productions.

Also Fresh, and important!

73
Great staging, Entertaining, Quirky, Relevant, Ambitious

See it if Great staging. Johnny is a very good actor. Great singing.

Don't see it if You dont enjoy adults playing 4th graders.

69
Indulgent, Quirky, Relevant, Slow, Great singing

See it if - You want an intermission snack (they hand out juice boxes and granola bars!) - For the amazingly beautiful operatic moments!

Don't see it if - You're bothered by adults playing 4th graders (because you will be).

Also This show would be a 100% more resonant if it were told by actual chil... Read more Read less

70
Great acting

See it if Like Young romance

Don't see it if N/A

65
Disappointing, Quirky, Slow, Relevant

See it if You are interested in the topics of bullying or Suicide. I was impressed with the acting of the young man in the lead role.

Don't see it if You are looking for a lite, fun entertainment or a highly professional production.

95
Great singing, Great acting, Profound, Relevant, Enchanting

See it if You want to see theater that is thought provoking as well as entertaining.

Don't see it if You are sensitive to intense subject matter involving children.

Also The original music (by Tom Lee) was absolutely breathtaking. It took a... Read more Read less

50
Indulgent, Great singing

See it if You like opera and intelligent sound design, you like cool props

Don't see it if You don't like adult actors trying very hard to play young

96
Funny, Edgy, Intelligent, Great staging, Thought-provoking

See it if You are interested in kabuki-influenced staging. I loved the performances and the fun intermission.

Don't see it if You hate walk-up theaters. Don’t worry there’s and elevator down!!

92
Absorbing, Edgy, Funny, Great acting, Quirky

See it if You are drawn to dark humor that makes a commentary on modern society and enjoy laughing at the comedy of real life tragedy.

Don't see it if You are very sensitive and do not understand the subtlety of Kabuki style theater.

100
Entertaining, Absorbing, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Riveting

See it if You enjoy great theater.

Don't see it if You aren’t into dark shows.

85
Enchanting, Great acting, Intense, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if you enjoy a well-designed & well-directed tragedy with tear-jerking performances, hauntingly beautiful music, and charming comedic moments.

Don't see it if you can't handle a rollercoaster of comedy & tragedy, you don't like to feel emotions, you aren't imaginative enough to see adults as kids.

Also The performance I saw was wonderful, with several gut-wrenching perfor... Read more Read less


“The 4th Graders Present an Unnamed Love Suicide” hasn't been reviewed by any Critics (yet!)

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