Already closed | 1h 35m | East Village

AdA: Author Directing Author

From 49 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Absorbing, Great writing, Relevant, Entertaining

About the show

Playwrights Neil LaBute, Marco Calvani, and Marta Buchaca direct each other's work in the third installment of La MaMa's annual series.  More…

Together, they present the world premiere of three one-acts inspired by the theme of power. 

'I don’t know what I can save you from' by Neil LaBute, directed by Marco Calvani
An estranged father and daughter meet to negotiate a new relationship. Old wounds surface and new ones appear as they grapple with the past, present, and future of their complicated bond.

'After the Dark' by Marco Calvani, directed by Marta Buchaca
A designer is on a business trip with her young assistant. Late in their hotel after a night of drinking, the boss (eager to boost her company sales), and her underling (who has other plans for the evening), play a cruel game that reveals their respective fragilities.

'Summit' by Marta Buchaca, directed by Neil LaBute
After a decade in office, a male city mayor is defeated by the left-wing female candidate. A conservative who can’t bear the idea of a progressive woman taking over his seat, the outgoing mayor is in no hurry to leave, even when his successor arrives to assume power.

Member Reviews (49)


Great acting, Absorbing, Great writing, Relevant, Entertaining
Avg Score

Clever, Delightful, Funny, Great acting

See it if It is a great concept. and so well done. Each author directs one of the one act skits written by another in a sequence of couple

Don't see it if only if you abhor short plays. (these are winners)

Also confrontations, Each one is better than the previous plays. The final ... Read more Read less

Great acting, Intense, Intelligent, Great writing, Resonant

See it if You want the unique opportunity to see 3 short, intense character pieces by noted writers, each directing 1 of the other's work.

Don't see it if You don't like 1-act plays. You want a play w/elaborate sets & costumes.

Edgy, Great acting, Great staging, Unexpected, Must see

See it if Theatre with a Capital T, what an evening in the theatre should be, engrossing, thought provoking, involving, can't forget you've been there

Don't see it if you require "huge" production values to disguise the fact you're in world of play & conflict, other people's problems/conflicts = boredom 2u

Three vastly different one act-ers with vastly different mood

See it if You like the short form. Short, self contained unrelated one act-ers each on a minimalist stage.

Don't see it if You want a more "complete" theater going experience with scenery and proscenium stage. You want your plays intertwined.

Also There were moments in each of these plays in which I was enthralled bu... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Clever, Great acting

See it if you love Richard Kind, Victor Slezak and Margaret Colin. Super acting. Two of the three plays riveting. Neil La Bute's play the best. Go!

Don't see it if you don't like short plays. if you find tight seats (no arms) on bleachers uncomfortable.

Entertaining, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Great writing

See it if You want to see plays about a father daughter relationship, a woman who becomes the mayor and a designer going out on a limb.

Don't see it if You need elaborate staging. You don't like short plays. You are too serious and can't sit back, relax and enjoy the shows.

Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if you appreciate short sketches with minimal sets, small casts and intense drama focused upon relationships and perspectives tensions/changes

Don't see it if you prefer comedies, musicals, light or simplistic themes or longer dramatic works with complex set and costume design

Tedious, Slow

See it if You can tolerate two very weak shows to get to La Bute's, which surprisingly is the best, due to exciting acting by Gia Crovatin.

Don't see it if You have anything better to do.

Relevant, Disturbing, Edgy, Intense, Original

See it if you like one-act compilations with central theme (here, power), terrific acting, minimalist production, intimate staging, complex characters

Don't see it if you're not a Neil LaBute fan or are looking for traditional two-act play, elaborate production, likeable characters (fiercely portrayed)

Also I'd never seen Neil LaBute's work; his one-act is disturbing and will ... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Edgy, Intelligent, Intense, Relevant

See it if Eternal issue of power dynamics interests you. Three two-handers tackle various situations focused on dominance/ submission. LaBute best.

Don't see it if You don't care for minimalist staging, two handers or intense situations, or are looking for fluff. Barring these caveats, you should go.

Entertaining, Great acting, Great writing

See it if you enjoy three short plays with only two characters in each; great acting to go along with the good scripts

Don't see it if you want a full length play; are offended by adult language and themes

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

See it if You enjoy short and thought-provoking plays. The actors are superb, literally.

Don't see it if You'd rather enjoy a longer play.

Also Today is the day of premiere, had a fantastic talk with the actors and... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Great acting

See it if You like to see short, not fully formed plays that have major flaws in terms of plot and dialog, but are well acted.

Don't see it if You want to see well constructed plays that motivationally make sense.

Absorbing, Edgy, Great writing, Must see, Resonant

See it if Explorations of the theme "power" are timely, uncomfortably real and resonant. Must see!

Don't see it if If you don't enjoy scaled back staging and one acts.

Funny, Edgy, Great writing, Relevant

See it if you like one-act non-musical well-actedcharacter-driven plays. The 3rd play alone is by itself a must-see, the other 2 are more like B+ / A-

Don't see it if you are looking for fully-staged works or plot-driven theater -- these have rudimentary sets and are character-driven pieces

Funny, Disappointing

See it if you want to see three new one-act plays.

Don't see it if you're expecting highly polished/superbly crafted characters and plays.

Absorbing, Great writing, Entertaining

See it if As short-play collections go, this one delivers with a triptych of two-handers exploring long-term bitter feelings among rival.

Don't see it if As you might expect from a production at La Mama, spare sets and uncomfortable seats, but they make the most of what they've got here.

Uneven, Indulgent

See it if Want to see work by a master playwright contrasted head-to-head with work by less established authors, for plays examining how power shifts

Don't see it if Looking for narrative driven or uplifting fare, want a full program of equal quality

Cliched, Great acting, Entertaining, Slow, Thought-provoking

See it if You are interested in new works, like short plays, enjoy great acting.

Don't see it if Having two misses out of three (in terms of writing) would spoil the experience.

Also There were three short plays - first two were somewhat banal and lacke... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Clever, Delightful, Great acting

See it if You have a good sense of humor and enjoy watching power struggles play out

Don't see it if You don't enjoy some dark humor similar to Edward Albee's plays

Also The last act was worth the price of admission. It had a great storylin... Read more Read less

Ambitious, Entertaining, Great acting, Intelligent, Resonant

See it if You are interested in new, short plays that explore the concept of power and its affect on relationships. You like intimate settings.

Don't see it if You prefer familiar shows in large, traditional theater settings. You do not want to explore uncomfortable aspects of human interaction.

Banal, Great writing, Poor directing

See it if you like short plays

Don't see it if you like dramatic intensity (except the last play)

Ambitious, Edgy, Funny, Cliched

See it if you love to watch productions that are truly collaborative

Don't see it if You want a night of theatre that is cohesive. This sadly left me wanting more.

Also The night was entertaining but at the same time felt to me a bit flat.... Read more Read less

Entertaining, Great acting

See it if The three plays are somewhat uneven but mostly decent; none of the three is spectacular though LaBute's piece has potential if developed.

Don't see it if It's not a bad evening of plays by any measure and the acting is mostly very solid.

Clever, Intelligent

See it if You're a fan of the three playwrights and don't want to miss out on their latest work.

Don't see it if You're looking for provoking or meaningful work for this day and age.

Also Uneven quality across the three plays - worth checking out if you're a... Read more Read less

January 27th, 2017
"'After the Dark:' Under Ms. Buchaca’s direction, many of the shifts in dynamic compel, although an unthinking equation of sexual desirability and power needs more scrutiny...'Summit:' Absorbing...Under Neil LaBute’s direction, a few details feel off...Ms. Buchaca’s play is so topical that it res...
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January 23rd, 2017
"An intriguing evening of one-acts...Innovatively and minimally staged...’I don’t know what I can save you from,’ the last one-act, is the most astounding and manifests a fitting ‘boom’ to the evening. Calvani’s superb direction of the wonderful Crovatin and the equally amazing and versatile Kind...
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January 27th, 2017
"'After Dark:' While at first this seems to be pretty much Colin's show, Jessie turns out to be more than just a sounding board for a tour-de-force monologue...'Summit:' Despite LaBute's pacey direction and the author's smart dialogue, the play's super timeliness exacerbates that it comes off as ...
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January 24th, 2017
"The direction is strong, each playwright making the most out of a fellow artist’s somewhat mundane material. These are three lugubrious stories with rather unlikable people. Each play has two characters in a power play, in which the person seemingly in charge is one-upped by his/her victim…The m...
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