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"Alex Timbers’s exceedingly high-spirited revival of this 1975 musical will not be to everyone’s liking. But even those allergic to Southern-fried shtick are unlikely to go away feeling entirely empty. Mr. Timbers uses visual wit and gleefully macabre gags to provide awakening jolts during this sustained singing hayride...'The Robber Bridegroom' is not asking you to think deep. Mostly, it just clomps, two-steps and square dances along its relentlessly exuberant way." Full Review
"Set to a wonderfully catchy country-bluegrass score this 'Mississippi fairy tale' is the kind of show where a talking head is kept in a box...[Director] Timbers goes to town, piling up the gags, and setting a breakneck pace — while giving the slower, more serious songs space to breathe...The cast rises to the challenge, including Pasquale. But even he’s eclipsed by Leslie Kritzer’s gold-tooth-flashing wicked stepmother. She gleefully goes over the top, and then over the top of the top." Full Review
"Despite an enjoyable production from director Alex Timbers, we can understand why this Mississippi fairy tale isn't often rehashed...While levity reigns, it is difficult to ignore some of the more questionable passages...Timbers wisely mitigates this ick factor by keeping everything light and irreverent...The result is a snappy, concertlike revival...Even if 'Bridegroom' causes you to cringe at certain moments, it's saved by a cast of talented musicians and the incomparable Kritzer." Full Review
"With director Alex Timbers' rollicking and sexy new Off-Broadway production, this underappreciated gem should prove popular with audiences looking for a swell time...An ensemble of present-day players and musicians gather to tell the story of their Mississippi ancestors along the Trace, using broad-stroke comedy, inventively basic stage craft and the occasional accents of slapstick...'The Robber Bridegroom' will steal your heart, and definitely do it with style." Full Review
"Having fun shouldn’t be as exhausting as director Alex Timbers makes it out to be in his overly antic production of 'The Robber Bridegroom'...The show is so overdirected, the unassuming charm of the humble material is crushed like a bug...Having started from the premise that more is more, Timbers won’t stop with anything less than comic overkill. The characters gain nothing, however, and actually squander their appeal when overplayed in a style so broad it becomes total caricature." Full Review
"There’s nary a lull in Alex Timbers’s exuberant revival of 'The Robber Bridegroom', a raucous hootenanny set in a fanciful version of 18th-century Mississippi...It is a delightfully inventive reimagining of Alfred Uhry and Robert Waldman’s 1975 musical...Like many of Timbers’s previous projects, including 'Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson' and 'Peter and the Starcatcher', 'The Robber Bridegroom' loves putting on a show." Full Review
"'The Robber Bridegroom' is refreshingly frisky. Robert Waldman’s twangy, jangly music lends itself to sprightly dance and slapstick comedy...Alex Timbers’ giddy staging makes use of a tireless ensemble and onstage band for maximum foot-stomping, skirt-twirling joy...Who knows if 'Robber Bridegroom' will enter the canon of great American musicals, but it’s a rip-snorting hoedown, one guaranteed to steal your heart." Full Review
"Timbers draws from his usual bag of magic tricks, prop jokes, and winking meta-theatricality to keep the eye and attention engaged at all times. Even so, the story, having been pulled away from any real engagement with its dark fundamentals, now seems like an excuse instead of the point. That inversion makes for some very uncomfortable juxtapositions...I’m not sure that story should have been made into musical comedy in 1975; making it a better one now only makes it worse." Full Review
"For ninety minutes of banjo-twangin', thigh-slappin', gut-bustin', down-home fun, head over to 'The Robber Bridegroom'...The score is pleasantly tuneful with a country twang, with some true beauties mixed in with an assortment of delights. And the cast does them full justice...The production offers a continuous stream of laughs and sight gags, some of which threaten to knock you out of your seat...'Bridegroom' is an inventive, unconventional, corn-full delight." Full Review
"The actors and musicians occasionally seem to be having more fun performing than some of us do watching...Despite the director’s missteps, and the show’s occasionally cringe-worthy attitudes towards women, Timbers deserves credit for turning 'The Robber Bridegroom' revival into a trim 90 minutes of country music heaven, featuring a jaunty five-piece band that sounds contemporary enough so that you can tap your toe without feeling like a hayseed." Full Review
"'The Robber Bridegroom' is a slender, foolish entertainment that, even at a mere 90 minutes, suffers from the curse of overmusicalization...Because the score is largely delightful, the problem is understandable, but, given that the starting point is too much of a good thing, it is unnecessary and inadvisable to lay on the gags with the overcaffeinated gusto that marks Timbers' production...In the end, 'The Robber Bridegroom' doesn't entertain; it exhausts." Full Review
"Dubbed a Mississippi fairytale, the off-Broadway revival at the Laura Pels Theater boasts a lively bluegrass score and Alex Timbers’ trademark frenetic direction....You get a sweet, somewhat hokey show. Admittedly, it’s a thin premise, but its hardworking cast delivers on the entertainment front. 'A Robber Bridegroom' makes up for in energy what it lacks in sensibility." Full Review
"Combining hyperkinetic rowdiness and spirited self-mockery with the larkish low-tech Story Theater tricks, the production imposes the director's signature wink-wink style on the material to a suffocating degree. The show boasts a hardworking cast, a rousing five-piece band and gorgeous design elements. But this twangy 1975 bluegrass musical comedy works way too hard at stealing hearts." Full Review
"'The Robber Bridegroom,' which bills itself as 'a Mississippi fairy tale,' is not so much a standard musical as it is a rollicking barroom jamboree where a bunch of storytellers and musicians come together to fool around and have a good time...The chaotic storytelling offers unexpected insight into the freedoms found in role-playing and the cultural identity of the South. The production is directed with atmospheric flair and nonstop playfulness by Alex Timbers." Full Review
"The South...certainly still seems like a place where miracles can happen regularly. And the two biggest of those, amid a production that otherwise has no shortage, go by the names of Alex Timbers and Leslie Kritzer....Kritzer is the heart, soul, and fullest embodiment of the aesthetic that Timbers's ' Bridegroom' celebrates, and the main reason it seems like a musical-comedy curative than a quaint, antiquated curiosity." Full Review
"Steven Pasquale, as Jamie, brings the heat. He is every woman’s bad boy—at once hot and funny…While the plot is predictable, the action is salted with some raucous characters…Alex Timbers’s slick directorial hand polishes up this 'Robber Bridegroom' with humor and precision. When the lights come up, you realize you are exhausted and wondering how the performers are still on their feet." Full Review
"The rollicking new production of the 1975 Broadway musical offers numerous delights. One of them is the bluegrassy score. The bouncy music, performed by an onstage band, is just right for a frisky backwoods Mississippi fairy tale. Director Alex Timbers and the design team fashion a cheeky theatrical world...Leslie Kritzer’s antics as Rosamund’s scheming step-mother, Salome, is another blast...The rest of the cast playing ne’er-do-wells and knuckleheads are all terrific." Full Review
"The Roundabout’s exceptionally charming revival of 'The Robber Bridegroom' is exactly the kind of intimate extravaganza you would expect from Alex Timbers, among the most inventive young directors working today...'The Robber Bridegroom' is a highlight of a season that’s fast becoming a landmark for musicals...The score is fun if not exactly memorable. The show rests on committed performances and an atmosphere that inches up to cute without diving into it whole hog." Full Review
"I truly believe you can be shticky and yet smart and witty all at the same time. I confess I did not find that magical combination with 'Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson' and I don’t find it with 'The Robber Bridegroom.' But hey, I am all for people going to live theatre when they visit New York, and if they don’t demand much more than 90 minutes of pure escapism, more power to them." Full Review
"A bit of a hokey side show of a show, but I took it as if it was a traveling actor troop rolling into a small town to entertain us with this funny tall tale...like a wild and raunchy jamboree party is just beginning and a wild ride of a story is about to be told in a big hilarious way...Condensed into a fast and furious 90-min honky-tonk musical and my guess is that this length suits this show perfectly. It’s just the right amount of silliness and fun, without wearing us down." Full Review
"The revival amounts to 90 minutes of icky-sweet, grating, perky tedium that not even the major gifts of omnipresent TV star Steven Pasquale can redeem...Director Alex Timbers has turned genres gleefully on their edges. Right now, however, he is back in his sappy mood, with manic characters creating props in faux Story Theater style and a humor that, except for the raunchy bits, seems more like a show for children than — what’s the cliché? — for the child within us all." Full Review
"This adaptation of a novella by Eudora Welty has been given the full Alex Timbers treatment...Everything is geared to being relentlessly entertaining and the effort shows. A Mississippi folk tale of a gentleman by day/robber by night turns into little more than an animated cartoon set to loud bluegrass music...Maybe I just got up on the wrong side of bed, but I found the entire production tedious. It was a long 90 minutes and I had a headache when it was finally over." Full Review
"'The Robber Bridegroom' isn’t a very good musical, frankly. Uhry’s book is not only slight, it’s a mess. Timbers stages 'Bridegroom' as a show within a show, but there’s no story for the first 20 minutes, which is a problem for a musical that’s only 90 minutes long...Except for Pasquale, the cast appears to have come down with a bad case of 'Hee-Haw.'" Full Review
"Timbers has managed to bring visual flair, superb storytelling ability, and first-rate acting work to the stage consistently so that any piece can sparkle in its brightest light. And now he’s done it again with 'The Robber Bridegroom' turning this lesser-known 1975 folk-musical into what I suspect will be one of the biggest crowd-pleasers of 2016...It will steal your heart." Full Review
"It's a show that you'll probably like or not depending on which side you stand on the whimsy issue...I'm in the anti-whimsy camp. And I did, indeed, find the show, with the exception of several appealing melodies, jokey, tiresome, and offering little reason to try to follow its convoluted story. However — there were more than a few people in the audience who seemed to having a great time. So, there's that." Full Review
See it if you want a total escape from sophistication. This could be staged by Hee-Haw high school. Lots of elbow-in-the-gut humor.
Don't see it if you like professional productions off broadway.
See it if you want a fun night of light entertainment. This musical is nice and has some funny moments, but it's nothing exquisite either.
Don't see it if you don't like bluegrass inspired music or find some cliche, banal humor unbearable.
See it if you enjoy an offbeat, rare treat. The score is charming and the performances were very fun.
Don't see it if you don't like country-style scores, or adult humor. There's a bit of slapstick, and a bit of crude humor, which make for a fun evening.
See it if you're in for a total delight-- witty staging, a bouncy score, and charismatic, glowing performances from a skilled ensemble
Don't see it if you'll be bothered by the dated gender politics, sensitively and humanely challenged as they are by this sly and sharp revival
See it if To see a rarely produced musical with Alex Timbers updates, for Leslie Kritzer's set mastication, the joy of Greg Hildreth and ensemble
Don't see it if Dislike modern touches in old school musicals, find plot/mistaken identities ridiculous, don't want to go deaf from screaming SP fangirls