Ends Jul 14

Bastard Jones

Members say: Entertaining, Great singing, Clever, Funny, Delightful
7 reviews
47 reviews

The Cell presents a new rock musical based on Henry Fielding’s bawdy 18th-century novel "The History of Tom Jones." A rollicking adventure of deception, misunderstanding, and bed-hopping.

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‘Bastard Jones’ centers on Tom Jones, a bastard-born charmer with a heart of gold and a knack for trouble, looking for love in all the wrong places. Tom gets banished from the only home he knows simply for expressing his true self, leading him to conscription in the army, a half-naked romp at a country inn, and a stint as the boy toy to an aristocrat.

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Cast & Creatives (19)

Reviews (54)

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
Avg Score

Time Out New York

"'Bastard Jones' is randy yet ingenuous; it’s like a very bawdy Disney movie, with hummable pop music to match. Staged with few frills, it relies mainly on the talents of its diverse and impressive cast of nine...If this smartly plotted and irrepressible musical moves beyond the Cell, there is work to be done in beefing up the characters and polishing the jokes. But the show has legitimate potential." Full Review

Theatre's Leiter Side

“Musical comedy is actually far too tame a way to describe what goes way beyond even musical farce in its rowdy, hellzapoppin approach, throwing realism to the winds and—although there's no nudity per se—letting it all hang out…A carefully calibrated cacophony of door slamming, head banging, and otherwise free-swinging mayhem, supplemented by…vibrantly energetic choreography…The show's biggest drawback is its sophomoric humor.” Full Review

Off Off Online

"A vibrant 21st-century creation, utilizing rock, ballads, and the occasional reverb...Ruggiero displays indomitable athleticism...The cast works tirelessly to keep the story going, and the inn at Upton approximates the door-slamming farce in the film...Overall, though, high comedy has lost to low on several fronts...What 'Bastard Jones' needs is the class-conscious, tongue-in-cheekiness of 'A Gentlemen’s Guide to Love and Murder.' Too often what was playfully bawdy is now merely vulgar." Full Review

Reviews Off Broadway

“I was blown away by this amazing cast, witty script, good songs and one of the most fun evenings I have had in the theater in a long time. It is the story of Tom Jones - a bastard raised in the home of a country squire. Written as a response to the hypocritical puritans of King George the III's time, it can be considered quite bawdy or extremely raunchy, depending on your puritanical moral compass. Staged in a tiny theater, with minimal props, it is an unexpected surprise (if a bit long).” Full Review

Talkin' Broadway

“The shaggy and generally endearing new rock musical comedy captures the raucous spirit of the original novel while gently targeting 21st century issues…Ruggiero carries the musical with ease, and he is charming, sexy, and innocently goofy in equal measure…Acito has done an outstanding job synthesizing the expansive plot and episodes of the original source material…Acito's lyrics are rather less distinctive...Similarly, Engelhardt's music is often pleasant but not memorable.” Full Review

The Reviews Hub

“Acito does a great job of bringing every cast member’s uniqueness forward. Wang delivers a flawless vocal performance as the childhood friend that has captured Tom’s heart…Engelhardt’s music is tastefully varied, making bold choices even in comedic numbers. The lyrics seem to inject adrenaline into the satire of yesteryear, adding a little modern obscenity to keep things fresh...This adaptation highlights the joy of sexuality, and leads by example with a talented, diverse cast." Full Review

Secco Recit

"All the same, there is much fun to be had. Most of the comedy, for me at least, came in the form of the puns, quips, and one-liners delivered primarily by Partridge, but also many of the other characters. (As an example, one particularly groan-worthy joke, uttered in a ball scene, I must echo here: ‘What are you doing here?’ ‘The minuet!’) There was also a good deal of slapstick, but never to the point that it felt overdone." Full Review

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
Avg Score

Funny, Clever, Resonant, Entertaining, Great staging

See it if Some standout numbers satisfy you with this unique new take of an old tale

Don't see it if You expect a standard literary treatment of JONES.

Clever, Entertaining, Great singing, Great staging

See it if you enjoy a musical based on the novel Tom Jones. Witty lyrics, catchy songs and a very talented cast. Great staging in small theater.

Don't see it if you like serious drama or dignified musicals. This has plenty of risqué humor but it's all in fun.

Also I would like to see this musical in a larger theater to do more justic... Read more Read less

Ambitious, Clever, Relevant, Fun, Smart

See it if You like social relevance in the style of Peter And The Starcatcher. Also, 50 seats in Chelsea in a classy environment!

Don't see it if You don't like a few actors playing many parts.

Ambitious, Confusing, Slow, Entertaining, Well acted & sung

See it if Boisterous musical adapt of Fielding's epic novel Small ensemble play multiple parts causing confusion Ruggiero's exuberant Tom carries show

Don't see it if Far too many songs drag show's momentum & cause fatigue Sightlines often hindered by tight stage but directed w/ vigor by lyricist Acito

Funny, Great acting, Great writing, Great singing, Great staging

See it if You love clever, fast-moving entertainment , well-written and perfectly pitched performances.

Don't see it if You seek realistic representational theater- or don't have a sense of humor! Or don't like rock and roll...

Delightful, Masterful, Hilarious, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if You want to see a great small musical that could become a big one with a fantastic cast especially male lead.

Don't see it if Can't appreciate a diamond in the rough.

Dizzying, Confusing, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if You want to see a truly amazing performance by a young man named Evan Ruggiero, who lost a leg to cancer. He is a real inspiration.

Don't see it if More contemporary musicals are your thing. This is a take off on Tom Jones. If you're not a fan of the story, you may not enjoy this.

Also The actors do a great job, although the multiple parts played by them ... Read more Read less

Ambitious, Quirky, Entertaining

See it if you want to feel like your friends are putting on a silly show in their living room; an admirable effort at acting, directing and composing.

Don't see it if you want a fully developed show in a traditional setting, you are in the mood for serious theater.

Delightful, Must see, Raunchy, Hilarious, Great staging

See it if you like light farcical comedy, close-up view of some tremendous performing talent, innovative use of tiny space & minor props, diverse cast

Don't see it if raunchy humor does not appeal to you; you have an issue with small space and not very comfortable seating (such as bar stools)

Also GO SEE THIS SHOW! you'll enjoy it even if you don't like musicals: it'... Read more Read less

Clever, Edgy, Raunchy, Hilarious, Entertaining

See it if You love Ave Q edgy style musicals , just more hard edge

Don't see it if Dramatic shows are what you are looking for that night.

Entertaining, Talented cast, Creative staging

See it if you like a crazy funny musical w/ a lot of simulated sex on stage for art's sake! It reminds me of sexy fun of Avenue Q but w/o the puppets!

Don't see it if you feel prudish about sex on stage & in music ...but if you'll keep an open mind, ears & eyes, you will not regret any second of this show!

Quirky, Raunchy, Great singing

See it if You like crazy weird sloppy theater

Don't see it if You expect high production values

Funny, Absorbing, Delightful, Hilarious, Entertaining

See it if You love absurd musical comedies that have great singing, dancing, and farce. Incredibly funny and dirty, you'll really enjoy yourself!

Don't see it if You're looking for a nice; wholesome family show. Or if you don't like inappropriate humor and situations.

Clever, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if you want to see a raucous, rocking, re-telling of a classic tale told by a sexy/funny/talented cast in a unique style with a ton of heart.

Don't see it if you don't like pop rock musicals or you think you need to know the source material (which you don't!)

Also See it before it inevitably heads uptown. This piece has serious talen... Read more Read less

Ambitious, Clever, Delightful, Hilarious, Great singing

See it if you want to see an amazing new show with more energy and talent per square foot than any show I've ever seen!

Don't see it if you're easily offended by 18th century novels.

During previews
Funny, Delightful, Quirky, Raunchy, Entertaining

See it if If you like inappropriate humor with catchy songs and a story that'll remind you of the side plot to "something rotten".

Don't see it if If you can't handle sex jokes or if you don't like open seating like me.

Also In a small theater like The Cell, open seating wasn't so great. A lot ... Read more Read less

During previews
Clever, Delightful, Great acting, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if You want to see how a small theater company can create a great show with very little. Excellent singing, staging and acting. Bawdy & fun!

Don't see it if Bawdiness offends you, you need elaborate sets, or a big theater.

Also It's amazing how this cast was able to pull off a show with so little.... Read more Read less

During previews
Absorbing, Clever, Great acting, Entertaining, Great staging

See it if Clever use of nothing.. Great talent. My 95 and partners 85. Great interaction Great timing for stunts.Super use of small stage & balcony.

Don't see it if if you do not like to have fun more space needed at the site.

During previews
Delightful, Entertaining, Great singing, Great staging, Delivers broadway quality musical on a tiny stage. amazing!

See it if You love musical comedies with great acting, great singing, great staging. See it now so you can brag that you saw the original production.

Don't see it if There's no reason not to see this wonderful show. It deserves to be moved uptown for a long Broadway run.

During previews
Raunchy, Disappointing, Fluffy, Good singing

See it if you like your entertainment broad, campy, and raunchy...and without intelligence.

Don't see it if you're looking for a new musical whose writing matches the skills and talents of its performers.

During previews
Great singing, Great staging, Bawdy, Fringelike, Great music/lyrics

See it if picaresque, pop/rock musical adaptation of TomJones laced with bawdy humor, given life by talented ensemble & fiercely gifted lead please U

Don't see it if 2 1/2 hours, pop/rock, simulated sex, tap dancing with peg leg, low budget creative staging, would drive you insane

During previews
Bawdy, Endearingly upbeat, Great singing talent, Needs firm editing, Fine example of off off bdwy

See it if A musical treatment of Tom Jones, so expect broad comedy, raunchiness & the picaresque. Clever staging, remarkable singing, especially...

Don't see it if ...Elena Wang. The lyrics can be repetitive & some actors swallow words but several first rate songs. Henry Fielding would enjoy it!

During previews
Funny, Clever, Great acting, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if You want to see a fun, light farce. It's a new show in a small space with a great cast and good book and score.

Don't see it if You are expecting a broadway finished production. They did a great job with a shoestring budget.

Also I would love to see this again when they have polished it some more an... Read more Read less

During previews
Raunchy, Indulgent, Disappointing, Good acting

See it if you want to see some good acting and singing by a talented cast; don't mind super campy over the top shows; don't mind raunchy shows

Don't see it if you don't think raunchy is automatically funny;dislike being lead like a cruise ship passenger; think campiness should be kept in bounds.

Also The venue is a small. Performers are only a few feet from the audience... Read more Read less

During previews
Confusing, Slow

See it if Great songs, spirited cast including the lead who lost his leg due to cancer.

Don't see it if Boring, slow, incomprehensible book with actors playing many parts. Couldn't make any sense of plot. Way too long at 2 hours 30 minutes.