Turn Me Loose
Closed 1h 30m
Turn Me Loose
93

Turn Me Loose NYC Reviews and Tickets

93%
(71 Ratings)
Positive
99%
Mixed
1%
Negative
0%
Members say
Great acting, Absorbing, Entertaining, Funny, Thought-provoking

About the Show

Westside Theatre presents a bio-show about the explosive life and career of Dick Gregory ('Scandal's' Joe Morton), the first African-American comedian to expose white audiences to racially charged humor.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (71)

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67 Reviews | 21 Followers
100
Absorbing, Great acting, Masterful, Thought-provoking, Funny

See it if You love great socially concious plays with incredible acting!

Don't see it if Youre a not an opened minded person.

631 Reviews | 152 Followers
98
Absorbing, Entertaining, Great acting, Great writing, Relevant

See it if you want to see a brilliant, tour de force performance by Joe Morton, providing insight into the life, wit and passions of Dick Gregory.

Don't see it if you are uncomfortable with activism and racially charged themes. Even so, this is a performance not to be missed.

157 Reviews | 63 Followers
97
Great acting, Funny, Great writing, Must see, Profound

See it if You want to see a funny and moving play about the comedian and social activist. Dick Gregory. Morton is great. Very relevant today.

Don't see it if You don't like plays about politics or social cchange.

133 Reviews | 35 Followers
97
Great acting, Funny, Clever, Absorbing

See it if Beautifully acted by Joe Morton, brilliantly conceived, pungent and stimulating. Important themes!

Don't see it if A polemic about race relations and inequality do not interest you.

181 Reviews | 54 Followers
96
Great acting, Relevant, Must see, Thought-provoking, Absorbing

See it if You are/not familiar with Dick Gregory. If you want to learn what he stood for and how he expressed it. A fan of John Morton

Don't see it if You are an ignorant racist. Nah your the one thst should see it.

366 Reviews | 76 Followers
96
Absorbing, Entertaining, Great acting, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if You want to know more about Dick Gregory, and if you want to see that formidable man from Scandal in real live action. It's brief and great

Don't see it if I can't think of any reason to not see it, except if you go to theatre for pure escapism.

509 Reviews | 338 Followers
96
Absorbing, Great acting, Edgy, Intense, Masterful

See it if You want to see an absolutely incredible performance and to learn about Dick Gregory. Totally enthralling. Amazingly topical.

Don't see it if You'd rather not think about hard issues. Very intense but funny too. Totally worth seeing.

89 Reviews | 37 Followers
95
Mesmerizing, Masterful performance by joe morton as old and young dick gregory, Edgy, Intelligent, Original

See it if You want to go back in time to hear the impact of Dick Gregory 's words in the 1960's so fitting for this moment in time. Stellar Joe Morton

Don't see it if You are uncomfortable with confrontation about black and white racist attitudes in the U.S. If you don't want to think!!

Critic Reviews (23)

The New York Times
May 19th, 2016

“The show feels as raw, vital and funny as any stand-up set you’re likely to find in New York today. Some jokes feel so topical it’s hard to believe they date from decades ago...When Mr. Morton’s Gregory takes the stage, it’s as if a wrecking ball suddenly shattered the back of the theater. He’s sharp, pointed, tearing into material about racism with a fearless bite that still takes your breath away — or would, if you weren’t already wheezing from laughter.”
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Time Out New York
June 8th, 2016

"Even if you know the routines of Dick Gregory by heart, 'Turn Me Loose' still has the power to surprise, shock and galvanize. That's in part due to his insightful and uncomfortably hilarious views on our country's race and class problems...His scathingly accurate analysis wouldn't land with such force without Joe Morton's revelatory performance...Law distills his 83 years into 90 potent minutes...This slyly entertaining evening is a call to action, too."
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Deadline
May 22nd, 2016

"In one of the most astonishing performances of this or any season, Joe Morton plays the enduring comedian, activist, gadfly and author with a warmth and precision that has nothing to do with versimilitude and everything to do with passion, knowledge and chops…The intimate play is expertly staged by John Gould Rubin…Morton plays — no, inhabits — the life force that is Dick Gregory with passion, authority and astonishing power...It’s an unforgettable portrayal of an unforgettable man."
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New York Daily News
May 19th, 2016

"Since his 'Brother from Another Planet' days Joe Morton’s been giving memorable performances. But his current star turn is out of this world. He plays Dick Gregory, a pioneering black stand-up comic and activist who wove jokes about racism and bigotry into his act 50 years ago...Gretchen Law’s fine play toggles between the 1960s and today...There are a few awkward spots, mostly when Gregory addresses himself. But that doesn’t lessen this vivid portrait."
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The Hollywood Reporter
May 19th, 2016

“It's certainly a tour-de-force vehicle for its star...Morton doesn't deliver an exact impression but certainly channels his subject's biting delivery and sharp comic timing...The play, which touches on the many phases of Gregory's career, may be slightly too esoteric for non-fans. But even those not particularly interested in Dick Gregory would be foolish to pass up the opportunity to witness the remarkable performance by the play's star whose energy doesn't lag for a single moment.”
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New York Post
May 19th, 2016

“Gretchen Law’s play isn’t a traditional biopic, focusing instead on Gregory’s stand-up and activism, and how the two melded. Morton is utterly charismatic, working the mike like a man on a mission — which Gregory was, after all...Among the show’s highlights is the comedian/agitator’s first appearance at Chicago’s Playboy Club in 1961, when he was heckled by visiting Southerners. It’s equally funny and chilling, and time doesn’t make the exchange go down any easier."
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Theatermania
May 19th, 2016

“Morton gives a committed (and sweaty) performance as Gregory, convincingly embodying the stand-up in various stages of his life. This is despite a somewhat messy script...It feels like a promising first draft...Morton makes these overwrought and underexplained moments work. He's a master monologist...Admirably, ‘Turn Me Loose’ is not a whitewash. Nor is it as impactful as it could be. The end result is a fuzzy portrait of a complicated figure.”
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BroadwayWorld
May 23rd, 2016

“Morton seamlessly segues from an energetic youth who uses gags to combat hate to an elderly sage who demands attention when speaking out on the issues of the day. As convincing as Morton is playing the character of Dick Gregory, he's just as convincing as a stand-up comic, playing routines to the theatre audience with a sharp ear for their reactions and a jaunty aggressive confidence.”
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