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How to Succeed as an Ethnically Ambiguous Actor

Members say: Entertaining, Great acting, Funny, Absorbing, Clever
81
Critics
78
4 reviews
Members
82
28 reviews
 

Hypokrit Theatre Company and the Castillo Theatre present Zenobia Shroff's autobiographical solo show about her life as an Indian-American actress.

... Read more

"What kinda name is that?" Zenobia has been battling this question and other microaggressions for the three decades she’s been an actor in New York City. She’s had some downs and she’s had some successes, but now she’s wondering was it all worth it? Leaving her family behind in India, giving up any chance of a normal life, and enduring audition after audition where no one could tell "what she is." 'How to Succeed' is a play about the paths we choose and the lives we don’t.

 

Cast & Creatives (6)


Reviews (32)

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
78
Avg Score

65
Theater Pizzazz

for a previous production "Although there’s an absence of effective directing in this piece, Zenobia transforms from one character and settles like fine moss into portraying another, with exquisite finesse...Zenobia commands the space quite admirably, engaging the audience with poignant humor and social commentary on inherent racial biases...Isn’t a riveting aspect in the liturgy of theatre. However, Zenobia’s show candidly explores the ethnically ambiguous terrain." Full Review

85
Stage Buddy

for a previous production "The play, written by Ms. Shroff and the show's director, Arpita Mukherjee, is smart, peppered with humor and filled with depth. It’s filled with meaningful exploration and loaded with charm. See it while it’s still running." Full Review

90
The Stewardship Report

for a previous production "It was absolutely remarkable, lively, and so much fun to watch...For Zenobia to be able to project her voice clearly and be able to interact with the audience gave an inviting feel all throughout the piece...What makes this piece so powerful is that it is relatable and that it addresses these problems through a story...Not only can art be used as a form of expression but also as a way to inform others about the different current issues faced in the world today." Full Review

90
Brown Girl Magazine

for a previous production "Phenomenal one-woman show...Broken into lessons, many of which are things we naturally know. But watching the horror story play out in front of us is decidedly different. Through Zenobia’s eyes, we learn the business...With Zenobia playing every single one of these characters to perfection (yes, even the bratty child), the show weaves in and out of these dilemmas towards the shining light in the distance: success...This is the opposite of failure, this is a success." Full Review

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
82
Avg Score

78
How to perform a solo show, Ethnically educational, Ambiguous towards the end, Successful mostly

See it if you like well-performed solo shows with both autobiographical and sociological insights. It's equal parts funny and perceptive.

Don't see it if you've had it with solo stage memoirs and can't abide something that gets muddy in its final third.

80
Funny, Clever, Great acting, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if you want to see Zenobia Shroff as she goes through the challenges of being an Indian actor in NY and in film. A moving story.

Don't see it if you don't enjoy solo performances, discriminatory challenges,

76
Clever, Relevant, Well acted, Clear characters

See it if You're interested in one actor's journey as she faces indifference,lack of understanding and mistreatment. Told with humor & effective story

Don't see it if she embodied the characters and portrayed some moving events and feelings, but it could have been more gripping.

60
Indulgent, Banal, Slow

See it if You enjoy reading memoirs, but surprisingly uninteresting for such a talented actress with such an unusual background.

Don't see it if you're looking for something really funny or profound or tortured or insightful.

72
Funny, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if you want to empathize with what it takes to "make it" as an actress in NYC; some good laughs; nice talent

Don't see it if you dislike solo performances; actresses playing multiple characters

95
Absorbing, Great acting, Masterful, Great writing, Great staging

See it if Zenobia Shroff, who is the writer and performer, made me laugh and cry. The story becomes more intense and personal,

Don't see it if you lack empathy

Also when one realizes that it is based on based on Zenobia Shroff own expe... Read more Read less

85
Funny, Ambitious, Indulgent, Great writing, Entertaining

See it if you want to be charmed by Zenobia Shroff as she switches between serious monologue and funny one-liners about race in American acting.

Don't see it if you don't enjoy solo performances that poke fun at race-related topics.

65
Disappointing, Cliched, Overrated, Fluffy

See it if You want to hear another actor's story about how hard it is to make it as an actor in NY.

Don't see it if You want something groundbreaking.

Also Didn't get the sense that succeeding as an ethnically ambiguous actor ... Read more Read less

72
Funny, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if you are interested in the immigrant experience or in the tribulations of aspiring actors, specifically of an ethnically ambiguous woman.

Don't see it if you do not like one woman shows or are not particularly interested in aspiring actors', women actors' or immigrant's experiences.

78
Clever, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Entertaining

See it if You relate to the prejudice in our society and how it affects those in the acting business. It has a serious message delivered with humor.

Don't see it if one person shows about the individual herself are not of interest.

75
Relevant, Resonant, Cliched, Earnest, Oscillating

See it if ethnic prejudice, ignorance and stereotyping of a woman striving to break through barriers and become successful

Don't see it if you expect to be riveted; it loses some steam when it vacillates between scenes

91
Funny, Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Resonant

See it if you want an in-depth look into what it takes to be an actor in NYC, the highs and the lows.

Don't see it if you aren't interested in other people's lives or you're bothered by one actor playing multiple roles.

78
Clever, Relevant, Confusing, Slow, Entertaining

See it if The title intrigues you and you want to see some great acting.

Don't see it if You need a fast-paced show or one that continually moves forward.

Also While I enjoyed Zenobia's stories and impressions, I found portions of... Read more Read less

92
Absorbing, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Entertaining

See it if You enjoy theatrical experiences filtered through the lens of an accomplished, riveting actor who skillfully peoples her solo show.

Don't see it if You don’t like your white/dominant culture challenged or dissected.

65
Relevant, Cliched, Entertaining

See it if Interested in an ethnic actress' experience in NY theater; moving story of author's struggles between personal and professional success

Don't see it if Uneasy with listening to highly personal experiences; stories often dramatized using stereotypes

90
Funny, Delightful, Great acting, Entertaining, Great staging

See it if seamless shifts in impersonations, funny mocking of cultural ignorance and exposure of the toll of an artist's way will inspire something.

Don't see it if you don't want your stereotypes challenged.

95
Clever, Delightful, Entertaining

See it if She brought to life all the sterotypes that INDIAN women have to deal with in a funny as well as a truthful manner.i enjoyed this very much.

Don't see it if if you don't like one woman theater telling you what non-white culture go through for jobs in the industry.very truthful and telling.

95
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Great writing, Hilarious

See it if You enjoy one-actor shows and themes about diversity in the U.S. Zenobia Shroff (recently in The Big Sick) is wonderful.

Don't see it if You don't enjoy one- actor plays with plain sets and few props or plays that explore issues of discrimination.

95
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Great writing, Entertaining

See it if you'd love a well-told, witty, one-woman paean to the joys & frequent heartbreaks of doggedly pursuing the dream of being a working actor

Don't see it if you hate theater (but in that case, why would you even be in a theater?)

Also Zenobia Shroff delights, both as herself and as the multiplicity of ch... Read more Read less

78
Funny, Clever, Entertaining

See it if You enjoy a one person show that is clever and entertaining

Don't see it if You want dazzle on a big stage with great sets and costumes. The show was a bit slow for me even though it was only 1 hour and 25 minutes.

96
Funny, Great acting, Profound, Resonant

See it if ...you ever have had doubts about your life choices and wondered "what if...". See it if you are value honesty, bravery and humor.

Don't see it if ...you have no interest in the life experience of other people.

Also The piece is charming, funny and smart, but doesn't stop there; it dig... Read more Read less

60
Funny, Clever, Confusing, Cliched

See it if you like solo show, talented actress playing multiple characters

Don't see it if you are easily confused if story isn't linear, or you have trouble distinguishing between characters

95
Absorbing, Delightful, Edgy

See it if you are looking for something different even edgy yet entertaining and funny

Don't see it if your looking for Broadway song and dance routines

100
Absorbing, Ambitious, Clever, Delightful, Enchanting

See it if This is a universally appealing show. The specifics of her experiences about the trials and tribulations of life are relatable to everyone

Don't see it if You are just looking for superficial entertainment

90
Funny, Edgy, Great acting, Masterful, Refreshing

See it if You're interested in engaging, vulnerable, funny, provocative entertaining theater.

Don't see it if You don't like one-person shows.