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The Treasurer

From 129 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Slow, Intelligent

About the show

Playwrights Horizons presents a darkly comic, sharply intimate character study that chronicles the strained ties between a son (Tony nominee Peter Friedman) and his aging mother (Tony winner Deanna Dunagan). More…

Ida Armstrong is broke, lonely, and fading fast. And she’s spending all of her children’s money, forcing her son to assume the unwanted role of the Treasurer: an arrangement that becomes untenable the more he questions his devotion to her. 

Member Reviews (129)


Great acting, Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Slow, Intelligent
Avg Score

Disappointing, Unfocused, Superficial, Well acted, Slow

See it if you can't get enough of dysfunctional family dramedies, esply those using the worn device of memory narration. Solid acting (Dunagan!)

Don't see it if you want a coherent story in which people grow. The vignettes added up to nothing. Pace was slow. Cromer had people eat a surprise

Also Why is the premise that for failing to love an unworthy mother, the so... Read more Read less

Baffling, Slow, Messy, Bastion for victimhood, Juvenile

See it if The acting is the only saving grace. But there's only so much good actors can do with a bad script.

Don't see it if you are a psychologically healthy individual with no mommy issues you want to exacerbate. You don't care about bizarre plots

Also This play is pathological in its treatment of guilt over not fulfillin... Read more Read less

Intense, Slow, Conflicted, Sad, Disturbing

See it if Cautionary tale about not being able to forgive and be kind after circumstances have changed. Ironically, treasurer: one who treasures.

Don't see it if You don’t want to watch someone suffer because they are so weighed down with emotional baggage that they cannot love a demented old woman.

Ambitious, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Troubling

See it if To see work by young writer, encounter quirky, clever staging, explore mother-son relationship complete with guilt, manipulation & grief

Don't see it if You don't like somewhat cryptic staging in a memory play, can't deal with aging, dementia, guilt, obligation, death, grief & notions of hell

Also This play is never less than fascinating with two excellent actors in ... Read more Read less

Challenges the audience but too abstract to care deeply

See it if very clever/funny riff on Glass Menagerie where central question becomes what responsibility does son have 2 impossible mother; strong leads

Don't see it if Amanda Wingfield character unbelievably irresponsible, ending in purgatory, a misstep; ultimately you don't care enough about characters

Funny, Great acting, Resonant, Slow

See it if you enjoy shows about family relations, or want to see some remarkable performances.

Don't see it if the subject of a parent’s aging and mortality make you uncomfortable, or you prefer something “high tempo.” This may be a downer for some.

Absorbing, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Intense, Relevant

See it if You want to see great acting by all. Very impressive in that respect. Peter Friedman is always compelling. Others were excellent too.

Don't see it if You want to see something light. This is intense. It is about a parent descending into dementia. Hard to watch at times.

Intelligent, Resonant, Great acting, Slow, Disappointing

See it if Friedman is wonderful as is Dunagan. Another dysfunctional family with son full of resentment for mom, perhaps wishing otherwise.

Don't see it if At times I found the play boring, at other times poignant. Very mixed feelings, I was expecting more.

Also Dementia is not a favorite topic of mine, especially when used as a ve... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Beautiful performances by the two leads, Max posner—another writer to keep your eye on, Intelligent, Slow

See it if you want to see two wonderful actors—the always reliable Peter Friedman and Deanna Dunagan at the top of their game.

Don't see it if you don't like plays about family relationships or plays dealing with Alzheimer's.

Disappointing, Overrated, Fluffy

See it if All you care about is seeing two pretty good acting performances

Don't see it if you are expecting something with meat and substance.

Also Once again the show score reviews have let me down. When I first heard... Read more Read less

Funny, Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if You want to see a slice of life Drama that literally could happen in any family in our country today. It is heart-wrenching and very funny !

Don't see it if You can't deal with plots that encompass the ups and downs of aging. You are looking for a totally feel good evening of theatre.

Absorbing, Sensitive direction and acting, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if Want to see extraordinary performances in complex subject/play. It's funny, sad, touching, complicated, as good family dramas are.

Don't see it if Can't see distant family grapple w effects of aging, dementia, in controlling parent, want traditional set, don't like breaking 4th wall.

Also The cast of four are all superb, with breathtaking performances by Pet... Read more Read less

Great acting, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Relevant

See it if you like family dramas that aren't sugar coated.Friedman and Dunagan are at the top of their game, See it for that if nothing else.Worth it

Don't see it if you want a light piece of fluff.Play has a lot to say about taking care of aging parents, even those who weren't good parents.Well staged.

Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if you enjoy complex stories that explore nuanced family relationships where the characters are not clearly good or bad.

Don't see it if you prefer entertaining, light theater.

Overrated, Slow, Disappointing

See it if You like Peter Friedman. If you like a rambling story about dementia, this is for you.

Don't see it if You want sets or if you want interesting characters or if you want good drama. This show lacks all of what makes a good play.

Clever, Great staging, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if You are interested in parent/adult children relationships that are complicated by dementia. Liked the frankness of the story.

Don't see it if Dementia or issues aging parents disturb you. I felt a lot of honest feelings were expressed- life is not always a picture perfect movie.

Entertaining, Great acting, Resonant, Thought-provoking

See it if you relish superb acting in an original story. Peter Friedman's monologues were especially fine.

Don't see it if you find plays about aging depressing.

Great staging, Great writing, Resonant

See it if You enjoy clever pieces investigating familial ties.

Don't see it if You need dynamic action. You want a classic drama.

Great acting, Intelligent, Intense, Profound, Thought-provoking

See it if You want to see a well written play by a young, emerging playwright whose writing shows great promise.

Don't see it if Dealing with aging and dementia issues are not your thing.

Great acting, Intense, Ambitious, Disappointing, Overrated

See it if you want to see masterful performances by Friedman and Dunagan. They really are great as mother and son dealing with dementia.

Don't see it if you are looking for a finished, well written script. The structure of the play doesn't really work and the end is weak. Staging isn't great.

Great acting, Absorbing, Cliched, Intense, Resonant

See it if you want a fairly standard family drama with some fantastical elements and clever design

Don't see it if you need a play to have something really groundbreaking to say

Enlightening, Disturbing

See it if You're interested in the issues of aging, care-taking and family baggage with a fine cast.

Don't see it if If the realities of senescence get you down. If your kids don't love you. If you're looking for a break from reality.

Also This may be how our world ends, like the man said," not with a bang bu... Read more Read less

Great acting, Great dialogue, Thought-provoking, Confusing, Memento mori

See it if you enjoy slightly unpolished works by new playwrights, absorbing looks into aging and guilt, truly outstanding acting/brilliant dialogue

Don't see it if you already have nightmares about getting old (one older audience member behind us said "my worst nightmare", with a laugh)

Also We happily picked up the transcript of an interview with the playwrigh... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Great storytelling, Confusing, Intelligent, Quirky

See it if you like Deanna Dunnigan. You like family drama and stories about family conflict.

Don't see it if you don't like stories that have people losing their marbles, don't like stories about old people, don't like family conflict and drama.

Disappointing, Intelligent, Resonant, Relatable, Angry

See it if you're interested in a difficult family drama involving financial dependence of a senior in decline.

Don't see it if you're looking for a play dealing with dementia and its impact on a family. This doesn't quite fill that bill.

September 26th, 2017
"An emotionally dense play...Mr. Posner’s writing is often effectively double-edged, an amalgam of 21st-century casualness and cadenced lyricism. He is blessed in his director, Mr. Cromer...and his cast. Mr. Friedman is marvelous in evoking a rational man being steadily consumed by a cancerous gu...
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September 26th, 2017
"'The Treasurer' ultimately feels emotional and personal, balancing the inevitability of Ida’s decline with unexpected swerves in the Son’s complex reactions. David Cromer’s precise, unsentimental staging gives the play the room it needs to breathe and the actors fill the space he gives them. I w...
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September 26th, 2017
"A quiet revelation...It makes boundaries porous, creates a space that blends the mundane and the mystic, that slips between the life of the moment and the life of the mind, even obscures the border between life and whatever comes after...A ravishing slow burn, with layers that quietly unpeel as ...
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September 26th, 2017
"Featuring superb performances by Friedman and Dunagan, 'Treasurer' tackles its difficult subject matter with sensitivity and flights of lyricism. Unfortunately, the play doesn't live up to its considerable ambitions. Diffuse and unfocused, it provokes as much impatience as feeling...Cromer's st...
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