New York | 2h 0m | Already closed

The Glen

From 3 critic and 31 member reviews
Members say: Absorbing, Slow, Great acting, Confusing, Ambitious

About the show

In this new play, Dale Olsen grows up as the adopted son of a sheltered Grass Valley family until, in 1951 he is drafted into the Army and embarks on a journey of self-discovery, while at home a mystery awaits. More…

"The Glen" follows Dale’s journey by way of present day action and flashbacks, from innocence to maturity, tracking his uncertain path as a private falsely accused of insubordination by an underhanded army major, through his affair with a possible spy in 1950s Berlin and back to his ultimate confrontation with his unforgiving mother and the secret she has hidden from him all his life. "The Glen" is dramatic and comic, an epic journey of memory, secrets, love, humor and self-discovery.

On Stage Blog

"A very heartwarming and sometimes, tragic story that many can relate...This play, at its core is about Dale discovering who he is and what places, people, and things make that up. The nonlinear use of time allowed for these discoveries to been seen with a perspective that would not have been achieved using linear time...'The Glen' was a lovely coming of age story that had me walking out of the theatre with tears in my eyes and smile on my face." Full Review

Theatre Criticism

"A ‘must see’ play...With all of the jumping back and forth from year to year and from one location to another, the play does get a bit confusing as to where we are at any given moment...Mercifully the actors, as well as the writing, both so wonderful, quickly bring us back to our senses, even as we uncross our eyes...There are a number of extremely moving scenes beautifully executed by the actors, all of which hit home." Full Review


"There’s a cavalcade of colorful characters and many compelling incidents but redundancy and vagueness abound. It’s possible that fashioning the skillful dialogue into more exposition could streamline this morass into a work of momentum. Instead, the crammed play maddeningly drags on for two and half hours absent selectivity or a disciplined structure, ultimately making little impact...If viewed as a workshop does succeed in revealing its virtues amidst its defects." Full Review

Absorbing, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if you enjoy intelligently written drama.

Don't see it if you need an elaborate set to understand what is happening.

Great acting, Slow, Could have been done in one act not two

See it if could have been done in one act - theme was self discovery but divided timelines were a bit too much

Don't see it if if you don't like small plays in a small space and where you can hear other shows going on around you during the performance

Absorbing, Intelligent, Relevant, Resonant

See it if Sequence of events work well with the "scattering" of times of the events Esp. good work by Matthew Dalton Lynch & Daniel Stompor. (ALSO)

Don't see it if Small theater(a plus too)ergo limited seating.One role needs more time to get the lines ( viewed very early) Lead had his stripe before ..

Also Stripe before the promotion........ Read more Read less

Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent

See it if You like family intrigues, this one is a whopper.

Don't see it if You’re looking for a quick fix of entertainment The Glen is a bit long.

Great acting, Thought-provoking, Fascinating

See it if You like small cast, interesting character study piece dealing with adoption identity, sexual orientation, the military and family.

Don't see it if You want a straightforward storyline where actors don’t play multiple characters.

Clever, Thought-provoking

See it if I loved this low-key show about a naive country boy trying prove himself in life. Great actors who made a show out of air!

Don't see it if Not into slow paced performances.

Absorbing, Great acting, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if You appreciate a well told coming of age story that explores emerging sexuality and gender issues.

Don't see it if You prefer straight and linear exposition.

Also Good use of flashbacks to provide exposition and backstory. Excellent ... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Great acting, Entertaining, Great writing, Great staging

See it if You want to see a play about a family and their son and his coming of age. You want to see some great acting performed in a small space.

Don't see it if You need an elaborate production. You are not interested in seeing a play about a family and their issues and the coming of age of the son.

Intelligent, Resonant, Absorbing, Slow, Entertaining

See it if you are interested in the tensions at play in the 1950's for orphans, gay men, the Korean conflict, financial struggles, well acted & staged

Don't see it if you are easily confused by many scenes in two acts that change time periods to tell the story. Editing and tightening would make this shine.

Intelligent, Resonant, Intense

See it if You enjoy a look back at LGBT life in the 40s/50s.

Don't see it if You require a straight-line narrative.

Confusing, Great acting, Slow, Absorbing

See it if Young man coming of age story.

Don't see it if Its 2 hr 20 minutes. Not fast paced.

Also At first I was little confusing for parts of the play is the past and ... Read more Read less

Confusing, Mostly well acted, Slow, Needs work

See it if interested in coming of age story of a confused young man, his family & it's secrets, & time in army during Korean war years.

Don't see it if you don't like non linear story line, many short scenes sometimes confusing in time shifts. Slow moving.

Also Promising premise but needs tightening & editing.

Absorbing, Quirky, Thought-provoking, Clever

See it if You enjoy non-linear stories revealed through many short scenes. It’s like a series of someone’s memories washing over you gradually.

Don't see it if You need a linear story.

Absorbing, Profound, Intense, Confusing

See it if Issues surrounding a man's quest for his background amid issues of sexual identity, family dysfunction and secrecy might pique your interest

Don't see it if If you have trouble following time sequences which go back and forth throughout. Can be confusing at times. But story is compelling

Also Very small venue with a simultaneously staged and loud play next door ... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Cliched, Confusing, Ambitious, Thought-provoking

See it if you enjoy new work, time-jumping plots, family secrets, military experiences, gay coming of age tales, mother-son relationships,

Don't see it if expect full-scale production values, uncomfortable with gay story lines, non-linear plotting, frustrating military stories, naive hero

Clever, Entertaining, Ambitious, Epic, Resonant

See it if you enjoy epic complex dramas with shifting timelines and just enough intrigue.

Don't see it if you prefer big polished productions. This is a little show with a big cast that does a great job with a tough script.

Also If you're interested in this show for its gay theming, be aware that i... Read more Read less

Ambitious, Slow, Thought-provoking

See it if you like to watch plays that revolve around LGBTQ topics in regards to life and life in the US military

Don't see it if you aren't interested in LGBTQ topics, or like faster paced plays

Confusing, Great acting, Great writing, Indulgent

See it if you enjoy coming of age stories you like intimate blackbox theater you like family stories and revelations of family secrets

Don't see it if you get confused by backstories and flashbacks

Great acting, Thought-provoking, Confusing

See it if you would like to see a play that has potential. deals with gay issues in the military from way back. a bit long.

Don't see it if none of that interest you.

Entertaining, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if you enjoy a work in progress. THE GLEN needs a dramaturge to winnow down four acts and twenty-seven scenes. The story is worth it.

Don't see it if you expect a polished tale or if you prefer a director who is not the playwright.

Quirky, Ambitious, Slow

See it if You want to see individual actors playing multi rolls well

Don't see it if You’re impatient and don’t want to see a short story told in long version

Confusing, Dated, Slow

See it if you'd like a story with not much story behind it. Gay man comes of age in small town and in army from 1920-50's.

Don't see it if you want a strong story. Play jumps between '20s and 50's. At first confusingly, it becomes distracting w/ too many short scenes.

Ambitious, Confusing, Quirky

See it if you want to feel the sadness of another.

Don't see it if you do not like to feel the pain of others.

Disappointing, Confusing, Too long

See it if You are interested in a naive boy discovering his sexuality for 2 1/2 hours with no surprises or drama

Don't see it if You want a fast paced linear plot with effective acting that builds to dramatic conclusion

Disappointing, Insipid

See it if If you are in the mood for a show that is "fantastic" in the truest meaning of the word.

Don't see it if if you want a show where the writer demonstrates at least some familiarity with historical reality.

Also Only the protagonist's relationship with his adopted mother and his 2n... Read more Read less

Cast & Creatives (10)