Encores! presents a concert version of Cole Porter’s 1930 musical, an evening of sophisticated Depression-era madness. More…
Bullets fly and bathtub gin flows in this gleefully amoral celebration of speakeasies, gangsters, society dames, and the great city they love. The show centers on featherbrained socialite Alice Wentworth, whose bootlegger beau leads her on a madcap romp from Park Avenue to Sing Sing and back again. Although 'The New Yorkers' produced a number of standards—'I Happen to Like New York,' 'Love for Sale'—much of the original material has been lost, making this Encores!’s most ambitious musical reconstruction ever.
“Rando’s direction cunningly keeps a sense of giddy intoxication bubbling through the proceedings…The scintillating Porter songs, played with masterful appreciation by the 29-piece orchestra, are the production’s raison d’être. The script ties them together in fanciful, if sometimes inane, fashion, and it’s also heavily peppered with scattershot jokes. Many of them land, some of them don’t. But when they don’t, it’s no calamity. The performers move happily on, taking the audience with them.” Full Review
“The highly talented cast of 31 players acts, sings, and dances through an effervescent tale…‘The New Yorkers’ is hilarious, extremely clever, and filled with spectacular wordplay and some of the most sparkling lyrics in recent memory…The 30-piece Encores! orchestra beautifully performs Porter’s sophisticated melodies and lush, new arrangements…This is a splashy entertainment for fans of musical comedy and the Great American Songbook." Full Review
"Directed by John Rando, with a choice cast of singing shtick artists, 'The New Yorkers' makes the most puerile silliness seem deeply sophisticated and high sophistication look sublimely silly...This blithe and boozy production is a product of painstaking theater archaeology...Porter’s impeccable tongue-twisting lyrics have been mastered with style by all involved." Full Review
"It’s an eyeful and an earful, a total delight...Freed from their usual commitment to restoring forgotten musicals to their original form, Viertel, along with director John Rando, music director Rob Berman, choreographer Chris Bailey and a design team run riot get larcenous not only with the Porter catalogue but with the jokester’s playbook as well." Full Review
"Even the best attempt at reconstructing 'The New Yorkers' from what's left leaves holes to be filled...So while director John Rando's giddy and effervescent new mounting is an adaptation by artistic director Viertel that sports some new dialogue and additional Cole Porter numbers from the era, there's no attempt to make any sense of the proceedings. The new 'The New Yorkers' is just as delightfully flimsy and nonsensical as the original surely was." Full Review
“Unapologetically silly, but refreshingly tuneful…Despite its obvious shortcomings, ‘The New Yorkers’ wound up being a lark and a half…Damned if this one isn’t genuinely funny, or perhaps it was the stellar cast of Broadway regulars here who really seemed to know how to make the hoary jokes work…Part of the fun of this version of ‘The New Yorkers’ lay in the fact that the cast knew exactly how ridiculous the show was, and acted accordingly." Full Review
"It’s one of the loosest 'book musicals' ever...The Fields book, dealing with some fourteen principal characters...is somewhat hard to follow. But it’s full of comical surprises and serves perfectly well in supporting Cole Porter’s 18 songs...Of course, with such flimsy structure, it required a top-notch cast to keep it afloat and, once again, casting directors Binder and Bohon have rounded up a superb group of gifted artists." Full Review
“A lark of a racy musical…Not meant to be one of the series’ immaculately reconstructed reclamations. Given the unforced spirit of director John Rando’s frolic and the preposterous vaudeville numbers interrupting what exists of a story, authenticity is hardly a concern here…The importance, besides the surprise of such casual debauchery in 1930, is the music…Mostly, we can revel in the cleverness of Porter’s lyrics.” Full Review
"Essentially a highly polished cubic zirconia...But not even their A-plus efforts can really transform this silly and overlong piece into a must-see musical...The odds that you’ll actually care what happens to any of the characters is probably 100 to 1. What counts here, naturally, is the score, which is primarily comprised of unknown Porter songs—here augmented by some of his biggest hits...'The New Yorkers' only intermittently really takes off." Full Review
“A long, two and half hours that’s strictly for hardcore musical theater devotees curious about Cole Porter’s ‘lost’ 1930 show. It’s a fossil of its time that has been poorly revised…Stale, musty and flat…Director John Rando’s polished staging injects as much flashiness and fun as possible. Mr. Rando commendably strives to elevate the arch material...This Encores! reconstruction has not unearthed a forgotten masterpiece, or an entertaining trifle, but reveals a dated curio of mild interest." Full Review
"Don’t let the lovely silvery MGM draperies fool you, nor the silky gorgeousness of the orchestrations: 'The New Yorkers' is a clumsy, instructive, disorganized, high-tone, low-tone, witty, ridiculous mess...What 'The New Yorkers' is really about is seeing what, if anything, will stick. Not much really does...The pacing and stage pictures by director John Rando and choreographer Chris Bailey are as leaden and clumsy as the vocal arrangements by Rob Berman are featherweight." Full Review
"The resulting product — made up mostly of second-tier selections from the Porter catalog, sprightly dance sequences, ancient jokes and a dragging, labored, outright idiotic book — was probably not worth the effort, especially since all of the songs can easily be enjoyed outside the context of the show in revue, a nightclub format or on audio...The production also exhibits a roughness and aimlessness that is rare for anything from the characteristically polished Encores! series." Full Review
"The series' weakest offering in several seasons. It falls flat as a pancake when it really needs to bubble like champagne...The plot is only barely decipherable at best, and Fields' original book, with hoary old 'New Yorker'-style bon mots and sexual innuendo up the wazoo, hasn't aged well even a little bit...Rando's production is unusually slow-moving and far too reliant on props...Only supporting players Burton and Chamberlin really managed to fire on all cylinders." Full Review
See it if You want to see another revival of a show that hasn't been seen for years. The cast were flawless, and the story's theme is still relevant
Don't see it if You are expecting a contemporary musical like Hamilton!
See it if You love Cole Porter, great dancing, singing,costumes, corny period pieces
Don't see it if You don't like period 30s shows , corny dialogue, stereotyped characters like bootleggers and floozies but great fun
Also Amazing backstory of research to pull together this old chestnut
See it if you want a break from many of the downers currently popular on stage. This is a mindless confection which is a relief from the news.
Don't see it if you don't care about the history of our greatest art form, the American Musical. If you're looking for meaning, plot, or takeaway, don't go
See it if You love Cole Porter's music, and you like shows that are pure entertainment.
Don't see it if You want a show that deals with serious issues, or you want a show with elaborate sets.
See it if You love Cole Porter's music & will enjoy a revival/reworking of as "lost" work, set at the end of Prohibition. Great music & great lyrics!
Don't see it if You will be offended by a work that makes light of adultery, gangsters, & molls. There is not a lavish set, but the orchestra is on stage.
See it if you enjoy Cole Porter, tap dancing dames, sultry jazz babes, Busby Berkley turkey legs, sequins, martinis, Durante...isn't that everyone?
Don't see it if you need a plot you can nail down. If you thought you bought tickets to "Hamilton." If you wonder, "If 'Bees do It,' what are they doing?"
See it if you like Cole Porter, appreciate corny humor, and enjoy fun, fast-paced, musical numbers preformed by a talented cast. Just delightful.
Don't see it if only like serious theater or deep meaning. Worth seeing just for the glorious Encores orchestra.
See it if You are among the people who happen to like New York, and want to see an over-the-top comedy about some 1930s New Yorkers.
Don't see it if You haven't the patience for old musicals, don't like NYC.
See it if you love the American Song Book or enjoy music that makes you want to sing along, tap your feet & leave the theater feeling great.
Don't see it if you hate musicals. The plot makes no sense being an excuse to sing and dance with no redeeming social value.
See it if 1930 is back again. the patter song. the topsy turvy the corny jokes,the songs the era.. all brought back in true Encores tradition...
Don't see it if if you need the here and now. This is for those who remember or want to. The Audience was enthralled
See it if You love Cole Porter, are curious about musicals from the 30s, love great singing and dancing, want to laugh and experience some giddiness.
Don't see it if You're a musical theatre purist, as it's a reconstruction that had to be fairly freely reinvented; if you don't like topical references.
See it if You want to see Encores doing exactly what it was created to do- rescue old shows lost to time. Fabulous cast and orchestra.
Don't see it if You expect a great book or aren't interested in seeing an old show, warts and all. The Jimmy Durante songs are head scratchers . .
See it if you want to step back in time to 1930 with a purely entertaining musical romp. Lots of Cole Porter tunes, beautiful costumes, & tons of tap!
Don't see it if you hate good times and good feels. Encores! enlivens the lost shows of great artists - this one hasn't been performed in 87 years! So fun!
See it if you like Cole Porter, clever satire, and a crazy madcap story. Very loose plot of high society and bootleggers. A perfect Encores! night.
Don't see it if you're expecting a show that makes sense. Expect nothing more than escaping reality and being entertained by a wonderful cast!
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