The Rape of the Sabine Women, By Grace B. Matthias
Closed 1h 40m
The Rape of the Sabine Women, By Grace B. Matthias
76

The Rape of the Sabine Women, By Grace B. Matthias NYC Reviews and Tickets

76%
(99 Ratings)
Positive
78%
Mixed
15%
Negative
7%
Members say
Thought-provoking, Great acting, Relevant, Clever, Ambitious

About the Show

Playwrights Realm presents this world premiere, a complex collision of satire and dark comedy exploring rape culture in America.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (99)

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506 Reviews | 1010 Followers
85
Absorbing, Intelligent, Intense, Relevant

See it if want to be aware of the many versions and diversions re: rape. Very good acting esp. Susannah Perkins, Andy Lucien and Doug Harris

Don't see it if you are easily upset with a delicate subject. It is not a Greek/Roman drama This is not a musical extravaganza. No intermission.100+ minutes

1179 Reviews | 466 Followers
83
Clever, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great acting, Great staging

See it if You want to see a contemporary play about serious issues that finds a way to deal with them in about a humorous a way as you probably could.

Don't see it if You don't like shows that seem to make little sense till the end when you find out what it's all about.

117 Reviews | 23 Followers
81
Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Masterful, Intelligent, Great writing

See it if a unique script that beautifully employs history, metaphor, repeated motifs, and story in a powerful exploration of rape culture appeals.

Don't see it if caricatures/heavily hammed up/hyper acting bothers you. (Actually, still see it: this usually bothers me too but it mostly worked here.)

77 Reviews | 8 Followers
81
Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Clever, Great acting, Edgy

See it if You're interested in play addressing rape from a more honest/atypical vantage point. Humor, shows how Society/culture cultivate this crime

Don't see it if You're offended by nudity, sensitive to the topic of rape in general. (Though some rape victims Really appreciated this work)

98 Reviews | 38 Followers
80
Resonant, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Intense, Great acting

See it if you want to see a serious piece of theatre and have some intense discussions afterwards.

Don't see it if there are some sensitive topics that can be difficult for some. Do your research on the show and know what you are about to see.

132 Reviews | 43 Followers
80
Absorbing, Great acting, Intense

See it if you enjoy plays about topical issues that are well staged and well acted (particularly by the female lead).

Don't see it if you are at all bothered by heavy-handed moments; this play does have a few. Or if you find nudity upsetting.

575 Reviews | 140 Followers
79
Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Edgy, Issue driven, Confronts the audience

See it if issue driven theater is your liking, uses humor to make the unspeakable watchable

Don't see it if sexual assault is not a topic you want to think about

579 Reviews | 362 Followers
79
Ambitious, Quirky, Relevant, Resonant, Thought-provoking

See it if you are open to a serio-comic take on the subject of rape. A wonderful lead performance by Susannah Perkins.

Don't see it if you are uncomfortable with the satirical comic treatment of a serious subject. Read more

Critic Reviews (17)

The New York Times
September 10th, 2017

"A serious effort to dramatize a rape and its repercussions, it also dares itself to be a satire, a high school comedy, and a coming-of-age story...That’s a lot for a play to be, and the mix is not always comfortable...That Grace emerges as a well-rounded character is partly the result of the touching conviction Perkins imbues her with...The meant-to-be-funny material is too unsophisticated...That’s a shame because other elements, sticking closer to the main story, remain fresh and challenging."
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Time Out New York
September 11th, 2017

"A superb rape comedy—yes, you read that right...Grace’s story is shifting parts comedy, tragedy, horror and even—your skin crawls to recall it—romance...The skilled playwright's absurdist wit tossing off sparks that sometimes turn into fires. Crowley and Rafaeli’s tricky tonal balancing act requires high-wire nerve, but they manage it. The secret is Perkins, who gets weightier as the show goes on, becoming its calm and certain center."
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Theatermania
September 10th, 2017

"As a man calling into question centuries of female narratives written by other men, Crowley puts himself and his work in the hot seat...With delicate direction by Rafaeli, Crowley reaps the rewards of that risk by subverting the 'cautionary tale,' the 'victim story' and all other tropes...What makes Grace and her story so compelling are her confusing internal contradictions, made completely understandable in Perkins's detailed performance."
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Lighting & Sound America
September 11th, 2017

"The scenes featuring Grace, Bobby, and Jeff are tautly written and filled with tension, but Crowley tries to play everything else for laughs...There's little that the director, Tyne Rafaeli, can do to resolve these tonal contradictions, but she does get three first-rate performances from her leads...This altogether perplexing effort is best filed away as a daring—but only partially successful—attempt by a gifted writer at dealing creatively with white-hot subject matter."
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Talkin' Broadway
September 10th, 2017

"Crowley employs, with mixed success, the conventions of satire to take on the issue of rape culture...Relying rather heavily on familiar stereotypes and easy targets for its cartoonish humor, the play meanders along too many tangents to be completely effective. However, the production itself is well served by the rapid-fire direction and in the performances by the excellent ensemble...The play needs a great deal of trimming and reshaping to keep the message from being lost in the silly bits."
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CurtainUp
September 14th, 2017

"It's a flawed but fascinating play thanks to lively staging and an emotionally potent performance by Perkins...The satirical misfires and metaphorical overkill notwithstanding, director Rafaeli makes very effective use of Maldonado's spare auditorium set...Rafaeli also helps the various ensemble members smoothly transition into double-cast roles. However, the one really rounded and real character is Grace and Perkins is the undisputed star of this enterprise."
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TheaterScene.net
September 16th, 2017

“The awkwardly titled ‘The Rape of the Sabine Women, by Grace B. Matthias' has problems beyond its nomenclature. What, if anything, is it ultimately about? Though it claims to be a ‘satirical’ look at the subject of rape, any satire is lost in the mixed results of the presentation. If anything, the play seems too subtle and nuanced for its own good.”
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Theatre is Easy
September 10th, 2017

"I appreciate artists who take risks, and Crowley does that with his unconventional approach. However, the satire only sometimes comes through loud and clear; other times he seems to be going for a more straightforward narrative, so the tone is not consistent...Within this abstract world, Perkins delivers a realistic performance of a shy teenager often confused by the world around her...The last scene is powerful and moving, and almost makes up for the unevenness of what comes before."
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