Already closed | 1h 30m | Lower E Side

Nellie and The Women of Blackwell

From 16 member  reviews
Members say: Absorbing, Great acting, Great staging, Relevant, Intense

About the show

Based on the exposé that shocked the world, “Ten Days in the Mad-house,” IVP and Wildrence’s newest immersive show gives you the opportunity to join Nellie as she navigates the halls of Blackwell Asylum.  More…

In this play, only 16 audience members are selected to follow our heroine, Nellie Bly as she navigates the halls of Blackwell Insane Asylum to discover what the living conditions were like for Blackwell’s patients, many of whom were women. Audience members are encouraged to explore the space, either on their own or in groups, and ask the characters questions to help further Nellie’s quest, and to gain a better understanding of women’s lives in this period of history. 

1h 30m | Already closed | Wildrence (Lower E Side)

Member Reviews (16)


Absorbing, Great acting, Great staging, Relevant, Intense
Avg Score

Immersive, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Intense, Powerful

See it if you want to experience a powerful immersive production that details the horrors Nellie Bly uncovered while investigating an asylum.

Don't see it if you don't want to be part of an immersive theater experience that gives you a sense of what it was like in the Blackwell Island Asylum.

Great staging, Right length, Educational, Absorbing

See it if You like immersive theater & are ok with bare bones dialogue

Don't see it if You are looking for something deep or emotional, writing & acting are not subtle enough to convey true anguish of women in this situation


See it if you like immersive theater and particularly like docudramas and think the combination would be exciting. Are interested in asylum history.

Don't see it if you need a complex plot or mind some clichés. Play is minor on interactions and freedom for immersive. ISSUES WITH SHOW-SCORE see below

Also The box-office and organizers claimed to not be aware that show-score ... Read more Read less

Clever, Relevant, Resonant, Great staging, Entertaining

See it if You enjoy a performance that creates a mood and atmosphere for you where you feel you are feeling what the characters are going through.

Don't see it if You expect or like upbeat shows. This show portrays what it must have been like for women who were put away into asylums for truly no reaso!

Also The show wakes you up to truths about institutions that abuse and dest... Read more Read less

Great staging, Intense, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if You enjoy interactive, experiential theatre. Felt like a haunted house at times; nobody jumps out, all about experience/setting.

Don't see it if You're hoping to learn about mental health, or how Nellie's work helped to lead to better situation for people with mental health disorders

Intense, Absorbing, Entertaining, Relevant, Clever

See it if You're into immersive theater or historic topics. If you're looking for show that's both shocking and relevant.

Don't see it if You're uncomfortable in tight spaces, dark, it interacting with the actors/other audience.

Must see, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if This was the first immersive play I’ve attended. It grabs you from the beginning. The acting and message was powerful.

Don't see it if You do not like interacting with the actors.

Profound, Great acting, Must see, Thought-provoking, Intense

See it if an immersive documentary theater experience chronicling the horrors of women committed to insane asylums in 19th century NYC interests you.

Don't see it if Standing, walking through tight spaces, triggers such as darkness, strobes, and loud noises, or becoming part of the show bother you.

Also The audience becomes a part of the inhumane treatment of women in the ... Read more Read less

Relevant, Great acting, Absorbing, Edgy, Ambitious

See it if If you want to feel like you've entered a dream, movie and time machine all at once.

Don't see it if You don't like to leave your comfort zone or have to interact directly with theater characters

Great writing, Riveting, Thought-provoking, Must see, Absorbing

See it if you want to be transported back in time and witness history. It is a very powerful performance.

Don't see it if you are claustrophobic or afraid of small spaces that can also be dark at times. May trigger personal issues due to the nature of the story.

Also Fascinating to become a part of the show and visit the asylum to learn... Read more Read less

Profound, Must see, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if This immersive piece allows each audience member to experience the sights, sounds & voices of the unfortunate souls condemned to Blackwell.

Don't see it if Unprepared for an immersive experience that may trigger PTSD

Also This play offers a truthful, well researched and compelling portayal o... Read more Read less

Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing, Clever, Entertaining

See it if You are interested in an insightful, creative, immersive experience that is as much a work of art as it is powerful and meaningful.

Don't see it if you aren’t interested in the above.

Resonant, Profound, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you are looking for a deeply immersive experience that makes a strong impact, with great acting and staging.

Don't see it if you are easily disturbed by realistic portrayals of people in mental and physical distress.

Intense, Great staging, Absorbing

See it if I am a fan of immersive theater& this production was very engaging with the audience. They even had easter eggs! Check out your alias!

Don't see it if You cannot handle triggering theater

Also Loved this production! Everything was so detailed and you felt like yo... Read more Read less

Masterful, Relevant, Absorbing, Great staging, Great acting

See it if As this was my first immersive theatre show, was a little nervous but was immediately absorbed and engaged. Compelling story

Don't see it if Cannot navigate the physical space (there is walking from room to room)

Also Actors made me feel comfortable to participate. Everyone has a unique ... Read more Read less

Edgy, Great acting, Entertaining, Delightful, Absorbing

See it if From the moment it started, you are set into a fully immersive experience. Not only are you an observer, but a part of the story.

Don't see it if Upsetting themes, disturbing treatment, horror and strobe lights

January 31st, 2020
"The implicit promise is that the audience will somehow experience the same abhorrent abuses that Bly witnessed. How…? The answer is: selectively, and safely…The company, with limited resources, does an impressive job…[but] too much of the interactivity felt perfunctory."
read more

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