Idiot NYC Reviews and Tickets

57%
(77 Reviews)
Positive
32%
Mixed
39%
Negative
29%
Members say
Confusing, Quirky, Ambitious, Great staging, Disappointing

About the Show

Robert Lyons' new play is inspired by Dostoyevsky's novel of the same name, and staged by HERE artistic director Kristin Marting.

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Member Reviews (77)

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876 Reviews | 906 Followers
69
Performatic, Quirky, Ambitious, Enjoyable, Great staging

See it if you like perfomance pieces with your dialogue. Very creative staging/projections. Good distillation of the original for 75 min. Solid acting

Don't see it if you want more theater & less "art". The performance pieces should be shortened to be more illustrative than demonstrative. Niche style.

851 Reviews | 1007 Followers
72
Creative, Great staging, Entertaining, Confusing, Fun

See it if You enjoy immersive staging. It's a fun experience but it's primarily due to the creative and engaging staging.

Don't see it if It's confusing at times & at only 75 minutes the show could benefit from cutting 10-15 mins. That being said, I stil had a good time.

MJK
677 Reviews | 187 Followers
29
Messy, Banal, Excruciating, Disappointing, Slow

See it if you have a masochistic streak. This is tough to sit through! Although minimized (in time, story & impact) to 75 min, it feels interminable.

Don't see it if you are a Dostoevsky purist. His compelling, complex novel has been distilled to a messy multi-media teen soap opera/reality show.

563 Reviews | 194 Followers
45
Odd staging does nothing to enhance the story, Good idea, poor execution, Good script sabotaged with terrible acting, Ambitious, Excruciating

See it if You're familiar with Russian literature. You want non-traditional staging. You've had a few drinks pre-show. You need to kill time.

Don't see it if You value good acting. You're sober. You don't know anything about Russian literature.

464 Reviews | 128 Followers
64
Disappointing, Great staging, Original, Slow, Boring

See it if You are curious about how a musical can be made based on the famous Russian novel. Good sets and creative staging are enough for you.

Don't see it if You get bored easily. You don't care for plays with basically a one sentence plot. You can't deal with loud noise. It's a 75 minute play.

433 Reviews | 93 Followers
50
Confusing, Quirky, Original, Excruciating, Great staging

See it if You are a fan of Experimental theater with interesting media components and you don't mind a loose weave story.

Don't see it if You like straight forward stories without odd dance/song breaks. Or if you don't like being confused, or on purpose over the top acting

374 Reviews | 69 Followers
35
Confusing, Different, Quirky

See it if You enjoy different quifky multimedia shows.

Don't see it if if you like more traditional sequential and logical stories.

337 Reviews | 87 Followers
72
Clever, Visually inviting, Original, Well cast, Slow

See it if Alternative theatrical approaches to stripped-down Russian classics interest. Engaging cast, set & audio but loses steam & doesn't resolve.

Don't see it if Russian drama or experimental, interactive plays with long speeches, strobe lights or techno music are issues.

Critic Reviews (11)

The New York Times
May 3rd, 2016

"Something crucial is missing...a sense that we have entered a version of that fictional world, no matter how it is refracted...There’s no palpable social critique, none of Dostoyevsky’s disgust with the ruling class; no real sense of the prince as a Christian paragon. Which might be fine — this is, after all, a response to Dostoyevsky — except that 'Idiot' doesn’t offer anything coherent in their place. The party here never really gets started."
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Time Out New York
May 9th, 2016

“An unwieldy mess. The theatrical medium and the literary content never gel, so while Robert Lyons and Kristin Marting's attempt is noble, it seems doomed from the outset…‘Idiot’ avoids most of the common adaptation mistakes...But these solutions create their own problems...By extracting just the 'I love you! You love him! He loves me!' bits, Lyons turns the source into a soap-operatic supercut...All Dostoevsky's heartbroken critique vanishes into the noise.”
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Theatermania
May 7th, 2016

"Everything about this production is tepid, sedate, and leaves you wanting some caffeine...Doesn't quite feel formed enough to be a considered a compelling work of experimental theater...This show shouldn't be as dull as it is. Unfortunately, the impressive technical elements do little to distract from a dry script and overly cautious performances. There may be a brilliant immersive experience in 'The Idiot,' but in order to find it, Lyons and Marting might want to go back to page one."
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Lighting & Sound America
May 6th, 2016

“They have taken a complex, psychologically detailed, and deeply philosophical work and reduced it to a four-way lover's spat...Billed as being ‘a response’ to the novel, it remains a strange effort...Its method is largely subtractive, providing too little to compensate from all that has been taken away. It provides a good illustration of the dictum that even a piece with a short running time can seem interminable if nothing seems to be happening.”
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TheaterScene.net
May 6th, 2016

"Playfully hi-tech and well performed, the show is overall enjoyable and interesting but the perpetual sensory bombardment at times overwhelms the experience of following the plot and characters...Director and choreographer Kristin Marting masterfully coordinates everything into a spectacle with sensational movement and dance. Robert Lyons has done a skillful, flavorful and faithful distillation...The spirit of Dostoyevsky does come through despite all of the technological tangents."
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Theatre is Easy
May 7th, 2016

“The casting of Kublick in the role of the Prince is a big part of what works in this production...His performance is warm, childlike, and captivating...There are several scenes including music...They’re fun to watch, but I cannot honestly tell you what the dramatic purpose was of any of those moments. They seemed to unnecessarily lengthen the run time...Maybe those who are more familiar with Dostoyevsky will find more to love in this show than I did.”
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Theatre's Leiter Side
May 11th, 2016

"What occurs over Dostoevsky’s complex course of events has been condensed into a simplified—but ambiguous—narrative with a vaguely outlined time span. The thinly dramatized characters express their feelings in contradictory ways that offer little insight into what they really mean, the transitions seem arbitrary, there are philosophical and religious digressions that add little of interest...and by the time the piece ends you feel as if years have passed, not a mere hour and a quarter."
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The Huffington Post
May 4th, 2016

"Who can say what Dostoyevsky would make of the brazen liberties taken with his famous work? But somehow the enterprise is so unexpected and astonishing—and the players so committed to what’s asked of them as they sometimes weave through, and address, the dropped-jawed patrons—that it’s difficult to laugh off the proceedings outright. Sometimes something so gleefully bold in nature deserves a succumbing respect."
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