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In the Secret Sea

Members say: Thought-provoking, Intense, Disappointing, Absorbing, Banal
62
Critics
55
6 reviews
Members
62
54 reviews
 

Tony nominated director, Martin ('Annie') Charnin, helms this New York premiere about a newly married couple facing a life-changing decision.

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In this new American play by Cate Ryan, a young couple are confronted with a gut-wrenching decision, one that will impact their parents, their consciences, and the rest of their lives.

 

Cast & Creatives (11)


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Reviews (60)

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
55
Avg Score

15
Lighting & Sound America

“A tired rehash of the obvious talking points, served up with a minimum of nuance...A rare dramatic staging by Martin Charnin...and he handles this awkward script awkwardly. His cast clearly needs help...At least ‘Secret Sea’ has a polished design...But this is an especially dreary evening that tips its hand far too early yet still allows its characters to express their clichés at length. If you've ever wondered what ninety minutes of hand-wringing might be like, this is the show for you.” Full Review

60
Theatre's Leiter Side

"Cate Ryan has found a meaningfully engaging subject; her flawed but well-meaning characters and situations will move many theatregoers. You can argue with the clumsy infusions of personal tragedies each of the couples calls upon to justify their positions, or with the play’s egregiously sentimental epilogue, with its quote from Yeats's "The Stolen Child," but the core issue—for all the superficiality of its treatment—is affecting enough to keep you in your seat for the play's 80 minutes." Full Review

60
Talkin' Broadway

"More tolerance experiment than a traditional play, it asks that you confront your own beliefs and prejudices about when life begins and ends, and what it means in the interim...If it never completely succeeds, it's an admirable effort, and one of the most fearlessly serious and human plays I've ever seen. Its refusal to rely on tricks and tropes is refreshing, as is its eschewing the easy answers and tidy conclusions...I was not, however, moved in any way but intellectually, remotely. " Full Review

60
CurtainUp

"Under Martin Charnin's pacey direction...The actors do their best to downplay the sense that we are watching a debate about marriage, parenthood and the bad deck of cards we're sometimes dealt...Ms. Ryan doesn't dish up a facile happy ending and the finale she has devised is eloquently heart-felt. She's also written some good dialogue. However, the top heavy plot with its too convenient details left me wondering if 'In the Secret Sea' wouldn't work better as a documentary." Full Review

45
DC Metro Theater Arts

"Ryan has done her research, and the technical sections of the play ring with a fair amount of seeming accuracy. It is in the relationships among the five characters who populate her story that she falls short...It’s only the very real pain felt by Kenny, which young Adam Petherbridge conveys most movingly, that piques our interest...A noble attempt to dramatize a difficult subject, but there is no majesty in the telling, and it left me informed, but unmoved." Full Review

95
Stage Buddy

"The title of Cate Ryan’s brilliant and captivating script comes from the idea that a woman’s womb is like a secret sea, and this interplays masterfully with the concepts and moral issues that are raised...The stand-out performance of the evening was provided by the father-to-be, played confidently by Adam Petherbridge...At times shocking, but always engaging, 'In the Secret Sea' will leave you mulling its thought-provoking questions long after the last curtain call." Full Review

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
62
Avg Score

50
Cliched

See it if You want to see a "pretty good show" This is very so so.

Don't see it if If you want anything edgy. They could have done more with it. just ok

55
Clever, Intelligent, Disappointing, Intelectual

See it if you enjoy an intellectual piece.

Don't see it if absorbent acting is mandatory.

78
Delightful, Great writing, Entertaining

See it if Two married couples have deal with their fate. Its sad, funny and engaging at times. Well written.

Don't see it if Human sadness

69
Disappointing, Insipid, Slow

See it if you like small dramas with GREAT sets

Don't see it if you are annoyed by overwriting. Dialogue was contrived. I don't know people who talk that way in front of others.

40
Preachy, Disappointing, Tedious, Stilted

See it if You get a free ticket. Terrible script, and most of the cast overacts. The son was mostly good but his final scene was SO hokey.

Don't see it if You're looking for a satisfying theatrical experience and value your entertainment dollar.

80
Absorbing, Intense, Disturbing

See it if You like unusual family dramas about difficult times.

Don't see it if You like happy stories.

66
Thought-provoking, Cliched, Great concept, poor execution

See it if you like WASPY living room drama ...IE AR Gurney..

Don't see it if You want engaging dialogue and plot.

68
Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Banal

See it if You want a serious drama about a heavy topic. Though it wasn't the best play, it does make you think about how you'd react in that situation

Don't see it if You're easily depressed, don't like talk-heavy plays or are narrow-minded. This play did not blow me away at all, but the actors were decent

72
Banal, Disappointing, Entertaining

See it if An interesting family drama

Don't see it if You want to see something unusual

74
Thought-provoking, Slow, Strong performances, Unrealistic

See it if you enjoy straight theater by seasoned performers on a lovely set that you'd like to live in. No easy answers here.

Don't see it if you have a strong opinion about abortion that you want validated. No real solutions are presented & the plot and characters feel artificial.

79
Absorbing, Great acting, Depresssing

See it if Enjoy an impeccably acted drama.

Don't see it if You're looking for a fun night at the theater.

65
Absorbing, Intelligent, Relevant, Timely, Conversation-provoking

See it if You're ok with a quiet somewhat clichéd if well meaning serious drama designed to begin conversation; or have conservative friends to bring.

Don't see it if You're looking for a light-hearted evening, a detailed intellectual discussion or have unshakable conservative views of social issues.

73
Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great staging

See it if You understand Catholicism, holiday traditions Like dramas about difficult decisions, controversial topics, family drama. Like great acting!

Don't see it if You expect edgy, modern characters who keep you on the brink of discovery. Expect an exciting new perspective on a current topic.

66
Great acting, Intense, Thought-provoking, Cliched

See it if you enjoy drama. Show was tight, but often predictable & bit repetitive. Ending excellent. Plot a bit reminiscent of Twilight of the Golds.

Don't see it if you are looking for light, enjoyable show.

19
Disappointing, Pathetic

See it if There are no other shows playing & someone offered you free tickets. The book was absolutely pathetic. Didn't blame the actors; they tried

Don't see it if You love theatre or even like theatre or hate theatre but want to try it out one last time.

36
Indulgent, Banal, Excruciating, Cliched, Insipid

See it if you got free tickets and you're in midtown and need to sit down for an hour and a half.

Don't see it if you're too shy to leave a theater during the middle of a show.

12
Disappointing, Poorly written, Bad acting, Nice set, Unbelievable relationships

See it if It has a very nice set. may provide for a good discussion after the show about a difficult topic. you like your shows dripping with cliches

Don't see it if you enjoy a show with sharp dialogue that makes sense, relationships that are believable. provides 'thought out' arguments on a loaded topic

76
Funny, Intense, Thought-provoking, Slow

See it if Interested in dramas focused on human relationships and what it is to love and be loved.

Don't see it if You don't like watching PDA with older actors.

40
Intense, Banal, Disappointing, Cliched, Slow

See it if I really can't recommend this play to anyone. It manages to offend both sides of the abortion debate - a neat trick.

Don't see it if A bunch of people sitting around talking about things that are none of their business. Preachy. Made no sense.

70
Thought-provoking

See it if Starts a serious conversation. Really questions your beliefs

Don't see it if Without giving anything away don't see if you live by the "old school mentality"

50
Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Cliched

See it if You like serious themes like religion and ethical dilemmas and acting that's earnest

Don't see it if You expect the writer to respect the audience by not having the actors guess stupidly about what could be wrong with their pregnant kids

80
Original, Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great writing

See it if You like contemporary drama with relevant themes and believable characters. You can"t stay uninvolved as soon as the theme is revealed !

Don't see it if You can't deal with realistic dramas about heart wrenching subjects. This is not light theatrical fare.

70
Absorbing, Relevant, Good acting, Interesting characters, Good conflict

See it if like family drama.

Don't see it if you're looking for something light.

40
Funny, Banal, Cliched, Insipid

See it if you are a fan of bad Lifetime movies- this is pure melodrama and camp under the guise of a Very Important Topic on a very cheap set.

Don't see it if You are looking for a thoughtful debate play on abortion (the pregnant woman isn't even a character), nuanced writing, or quality acting.

55
Good acting given the script. boring, banal and cliched.

See it if you enjoy family drama, ethical issues in a dull setting. Good concept poorly executed.

Don't see it if you're looking for a fun, lively, upbeat show.