Members say: Entertaining, Great singing, Delightful, Funny, Dated

About the show

Encores! presents a concert version of Cole Porter’s 1930 musical, an evening of sophisticated Depression-era madness.

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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.

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See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews

National 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

Musical Theater Review

“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 New York Times

"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

DC Metro Theater Arts

"It’s one of the loosest 'book musicals' ever...The Fields book, dealing with some fourteen principal 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

Theater Pizzazz

"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

AM New York

"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

New York Magazine / Vulture

"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 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: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews

Ambitious, Banal, Disappointing, Excruciating, Cliched

See it if you enjoy a bad evening of musical theater.

Don't see it if you have something better to do with two and a half hours of time and the money to spend on a better theatrical experience.

Interesting, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if you are interested in New York characters in the 30s and want an enjoyable musical with good singing.

Don't see it if you do not like period pieces or are not particularly interested in NY stories.

Funny, Dated, Entertaining, Great singing, Great staging

See it if It's gone now, but, cross fingers, there will be a recording. Two number were outstanding w/ sublime orchestrations: "Love for Sale" and

Don't see it if "Let's Fly Away." Cyrille Aimée scored a major success as "A Lady of the Evening" and Scarlett Strallen stood out as a "strong" ingenue.+++


See it if If you like Cole Porter. This show was one of the most entertaining musicals in years!

Don't see it if na

Funny, Clever, Entertaining

See it if you enjoy the history of musicals and want to see what the old ones were like even if they aren't classics

Don't see it if you have no context for something from 1930; it might feel bewilderingly silly

Also The choreography was excellent. I love this kind of archaeology so I c... Read more Read less

Funny, Ambitious, Disappointing, Entertaining, Fluffy

See it if you'd like a take on Jimmy Durante or just hearing NIGHT AND DAY, but

Don't see it if you expect a string of hit songs. A disappointing choice by ENCORES.

Funny, Ambitious, Delightful

See it if you love classic American Musical Theatre in its early form--crazy fun and at times illogical.

Don't see it if you can't have fun. Or want to see HAMILTON.

Funny, Romantic, Dated, Great singing, Great staging

See it if you want a fun evening with true camp.

Don't see it if You want intensity or you don't like traditional musicals

Banal, Disappointing, Insipid, Dated, Artificial

See it if you want to experience old-fashioned musicals for the tired business man.

Don't see it if you want to be challenged intellectually, inspired by great theatre or wowed by genius.

Also I was disappointed that there were a lot of interpolations and reworki... Read more Read less

Funny, Delightful, Entertaining, Great singing, Fluffy

See it if you like classic musical comedies. A beautiful production of a rarely produced show. Lighter fare, pure entertainment.

Don't see it if you are not a fan of old-fashioned humor or don't like period shows. It's a comedy satire, so the characters aren't fully drawn out.

Funny, Delightful, Entertaining, Forthy, 30's musical

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.

Ambitious, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if you enjoy great old chestnut musicals

Don't see it if you don't

Delightful, Enchanting, Great everything!

See it if You were lucky enough to catch this amazing revival...such a great Show, loaded with an Amazingly Talented Cast!!!

Don't see it if Period Musicals or Cole Porter isn't your thing!

Funny, Delightful, Refreshing, Entertaining, Fluffy

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.

Ambitious, Delightful, Enchanting, Entertaining

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?"

Delightful, Enchanting, Refreshing, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if Encore Series shows have only a brief run. Unfortunately the last performance of The New Yorkers was last night.

Don't see it if Anyone who likes Cole Porter style music and musicals would love this show.

Insipid, Slow, Dated, Great singing, Fluffy

See it if you like an old-fashioned show with a parade of great songs and terrific singing, and you don't mind a mess of a silly book.

Don't see it if you like coherent logical musical theater.

Funny, Dated, Entertaining, Great singing, Fluffy

See it if like old-fashioned musicals; it's middle of the road Cole Porter; cast does what it can with a weak script; songs are good, some classics

Don't see it if want the usual Cole Porter wit and sophistication

Ambitious, Delightful, Enchanting, Entertaining

See it if You want to experience an entertaining 1930's review. You want to discover some great new musical talents: Stratten, Mutu, Burton & Aimee.

Don't see it if You require a plot to bear a relationship to reality. You don't like Cole Porter. You want your theater to be "serious".

Funny, Clever, Delightful, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if you're a fan of Cole Porter and have an interest in rare shows.

Don't see it if you only see message musicals. If so, your loss.

Also This is irrelevant now, since tonight's performance was the last. It w... Read more Read less

Clever, Dated, Entertaining, Great singing, Fluffy

See it if You love classic Cole Porter, great voices, silly schtick and great dancing and if you have affection for prohibition era style.

Don't see it if You want believable plot, actually witty dialogue and characters you are invested in or if you want anything more than an extended review.

Delightful, Refreshing, Great singing, Great dancing, A good time

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.

A fresh quaff of champagne - brings to life the glittering world of cole porter, fred astaire and ginger rogers

See it if almost perfectly realized 1930s musical, featuring slick dancing, beautiful ballads, clever lyrics, and very hammy acting

Don't see it if though a great period piece, this is ultimately no more than escapism; like champagne bubbles, it just floats away

Ambitious, Delightful, Refreshing, Fluffy

See it if You appreciate what Encores wants to accomplish restoring forgotten works

Don't see it if You want to see cutting edge modern

Disappointing, Dated, Some delicious songs

See it if you like old musicals with singing and dancing. A couple of songs are worth it; otherwise, it is a silly show. Though, others enjoyed it.

Don't see it if want something relevant and that keeps you interested. Songs are just put in; they do not move the plot.

Also Excellent costumes and fine dancing. "Love for Sale" was beautifully d... Read more Read less

Cast & Creatives (37)