Already closed | 1h 45m | East Village

Women of a Certain Age: Election Year in the Life of One Family, Play Three

From 71 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Absorbing, Relevant, Great writing, Intelligent

About the show

Tony Award-winning playwright and director Richard Nelson returns to the Public Theater with the final chapter his new three-play cycle about the Gabriels of Rhinebeck, New York. More…

Once again, we're back in the kitchen of the Gabriel family as they await the results of the presidential election on November 8, 2016. 'Women of a Certain Age' takes place in the course of a single night, eight months after we first met the clan. Patricia, the family matriarch, joins her children and daughters-in-law as they prepare a meal from the past and consider the future of their country, town, and home. Paying tribute to the difficult year behind them, the Gabriels compare notes on the search for empathy and authenticity at a time when the game seems rigged and the rules are forever changing.

1h 45m | Already closed | Public Theater (East Village)

Member Reviews (71)

MEMBERS SAY:

Great acting, Absorbing, Relevant, Great writing, Intelligent
86
Avg Score

85
Clever, Great writing, Great acting, Profound, Touching

See it if you enjoy kitchensink dramas; the trilogy is a great example. I preferred the 3 plays to Chekhov; the issues are relevant, the humanity deep

Don't see it if you want a happy ending. Life can be brutal. I didn't like the misguided seance talk, but otherwise all 3 boast outstanding writing.

Also Bravo (mostly brava!) to the actors for the impressive feat of present... Read more Read less

66
Banal, Cliched, Pointless, Great acting, Slow

See it if you are a completionist and must see all 3 parts of this trilogy. Well acted. You relate to severely passionless family interactions.

Don't see it if it feels myopic & aimless. Characters go through the same life transition at the same time in the same way. Not microcosm but a microscope.

Also Dialogues many times feel contrived and unrealistic. ... Read more Read less

64
Slow, Overrated, Disappointing, Boring, Dull

See it if You would enjoy being a fly on the wall of typical family conversations, that aren't necessarily all that interesting.

Don't see it if You dislike slow shows or need strong story, action, or conflict. It moves along at a snails pace & not a lot happens.

92
Enchanting, Exquisite, Great writing, Great acting, Resonant

See it if you like plays that have a quiet beauty. This play says so much without ever saying anything directly. It's an incredible peak at ourselves.

Don't see it if you can't appreciate nuance or if you don't like sentiment. This is a beautiful portrait of a slice of real life.

90
Great acting, Great writing, Absorbing, Resonant, Exquisite

See it if you love feeling like a fly on the wall.

Don't see it if you need a show with a traditional plot.

78
Ambitious, Disappointing, Great acting, Resonant, Absorbing

See it if you want to see the finest, most realistic acting in town; you've seen parts 1 & 2 and want to see the family through to their latest act.

Don't see it if you expect any new revelations or timely lessons about the effects of the 2016 campaign; you haven't seen the 2 previous plays in the cycle.

Also Notwithstanding the stellar acting, relatable characters, absorbing st... Read more Read less

90
Absorbing, Ambitious, Great acting, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if you've seen the other two plays in the Gabriel Family cycle, enjoy understated but terrific acting, like literate takes on current issues

Don't see it if a family's quiet but interesting conversations would bore you, you don't like slice of life realism, don't want to reflect on modern issues

83
Richard nelson is gradually becoming our chekhov, finding the pain and yearning roiling beneath the surface of family life

See it if /4 fine ensemble who through small gestures/revelations show how middle class family has been worn down by age, burden of being "happy"

Don't see it if /since this play in focusing on what "Hillary-ness" means to mature women, misses the looming Trumpian cloud

97
Absorbing, Great acting, Great staging, Great writing, Ambitious

See it if You enjoy thoughtful, intelligent works. This is an amazingly realist drama. You can literally smell the food cooking throughout the play!

Don't see it if You don't like intimate dramas (with humor). Best if seen after the two previous plays in the trilogy although this could stand alone.

84
Great acting, Great writing, Resonant, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if You are a fan of the Gabriel family series and need closure; to watch masterful actors follow everyday life during uncertain times.

Don't see it if You need fast action, costumes, sound effects; Have no idea who the Gabriel family is and dislike too much quiet conversation in a play.

85
Absorbing, Great acting, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Great staging

See it if you want to how the ordinary problems of one family are a microcosm of the state of the nation. Also if you enjoy superb ensemble acting.

Don't see it if you like a linear plot and lots of action or if you have not seen at least the second play of this trilogy,

Also A fitting conclusion to an engrossing trilogy.

89
Great acting, Great staging, Great writing, Intelligent, Intimate

See it if you enjoy great ensemble acting; family dynamics, though not of the dysfunctional kind; you like intimate settings

Don't see it if you crave lots of physical action on stage; you enjoy occasional fits of loud talking, yelling and debating - this show is spoken quietly.

88
Absorbing, Delightful, Relevant, Great acting

See it if you're interested in seeing superb and realistic acting—after 3 plays it feels like you really know these people; a lens into America 2016

Don't see it if you want to avoid all politics after the election as well as other social issues in America regarding finances, aging, and a changing world

Also This is a very well done and appropriate ending to the 3 play cycle. Y... Read more Read less

88
Moving, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Riveting

See it if you saw the first two plays or are interested in seeing something written up until the last minute of Election Night 2016.

Don't see it if you're uninterested in political plays. See this if you're trying to comprehend the election.

Also This play was my favorite of the three. It was touching and a little h... Read more Read less

90
Absorbing, Relevant, Intelligent, Masterful

See it if You appreciate nuanced theater that helps you understand people better

Don't see it if You like a lot of action or a clear resolution.

65
Ambitious, Disappointing, Great acting, Excruciating, Indulgent

See it if You love these election-centric trilogies

Don't see it if you something better to do

92
A gem, Tender, Truthful, Intelligent, Humane

See it if Yes, a functional family faces disappointments and loneliness, too. So touchingly laid open for us and so insightful about women's lives...

Don't see it if ...as well as family relationships, it's breathtaking. We need this family who accept one another's foibles and pain with love and grace.

90
Great writing, Relevant, Great acting, Intelligent, Absorbing

See it if you want an intimate look at a family with timely economic, social, political issues told in a slow pace with quiet, realistic dialogue

Don't see it if you want an action play or a cheery one; you want no mention of politics (but with its great characters this is mostly about a family coping

Also Helpful although not necessary to have seen the other plays in the tri... Read more Read less

95
Great acting, Funny, Great staging, Great writing, Resonant

See it if If you like plays that invite you into a close intimate night of theater. You know these people...and you feel for them and with them.

Don't see it if If you want to see a that's more traditional.

75
Banal, Slow

See it if You saw the first two of the trilogy. This one resolves and give significantly more rewarding moments. You have to like the cast.

Don't see it if You like things to happen. These shows are exceedingly quotidian, which is not a bad thing, but more resulting insight would help.

82
Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Resonant, Masterful

See it if You want great, naturalistic performances evoking the feelings and actions of real people struggling to make sense of their world in 2016.

Don't see it if You expect something flashy or "dramatic." In this quiet and moving play, the drama comes from the power of the characters and their words.

90
Riveting, Nuanced, Resonant, Great acting, Intelligent

See it if you want to be a fly on the wall, watching a family doing their best to cope with life's problems.

Don't see it if you dislike quiet plays.

79
Absorbing, Disappointing, Great acting, Great writing, Relevant

See it if you saw the other two. You like family plays, talky plays, or very contemporary plays.

Don't see it if You think the idea of watching a family in Rhinebeck talk about their emotions is the worst thing ever. You're still raw from Election Night

Also Set on Election Night, it's clear the writer (or maybe just the family... Read more Read less

93
Absorbing, Ambitious, Great acting, Great staging, Intelligent

See it if You liked the first two in this series. You appreciate amazing ensemble acting. You are drawn to contemporary family stories.

Don't see it if You need action and flash. Current events and complex family dynamics bore you.

Also This is a terrific finish to this wonderful trio of GABRIELS plays dur... Read more Read less

85
Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent, Profound

See it if you want to see the perfect capstone to the Gabriel plays, a beautifully written, literary exploration of life, loss, art and resilience

Don't see it if you are expecting a full exploration of the political issues in this election - it is background noise and indirectly woven into the play


November 9th, 2016
"The Gabriels are the tenderly wrought creations of the playwright Richard Nelson...As we listen to its members talk, even on trivial subjects like the decoration of cookies, we feel the far-reaching tremors of a scared country that has come down with a rattling case of identity crisis...Before y...
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November 11th, 2016
"Certain notes of hubris in the project, like much self-referential preening about art, were already jarring on election night. Imagine them now. Some people find reassurance in the cast’s palpable warmth; some find Nelson’s Chekhovian languor a balm. But I’m troubled at how 'The Gabriels' assume...
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November 9th, 2016
"Even if it weren’t so despairing about some of the largest issues we face today, the astonishingly full and fine-grained performances of the six-person cast, under Nelson’s direction, are almost too much to handle...Despite that drollness, and the frequent laughs, the tone of 'Women of a Certain...
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November 9th, 2016
"It's an interlude swollen near to bursting with sorrow and comfort, with losses absorbed and yet-to-come, with crushing disappointments but also with stubborn strains of humor and humanity...Although the Gabriel plays are inextricably political, they are also profoundly human and personal. Not o...
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