Already closed | 2h 0m | East Village

State of the Union

From 44 member  reviews
Members say: Relevant, Great acting, Great staging, Absorbing, Entertaining

About the show

Metropolitan Playhouse presents this 1945 political drama that asks: how can you win a campaign if the candidate insists on saying what he means?  More…

The party needs an independent thinker,  but not one with a mind of his own. Grant Matthews could be the Republicans' savior. A Democrat has held the White House four terms running, but this dynamic industrial tycoon has the charisma and populist instincts to woo a broad swathe of the voting public. With the help of his lover, a driven newspaper magnate, the party leaders convince him to take a speaking tour of the country to test the waters. The catch? For appearance's sake, he must take along his wife, Mary. But as the tour goes on, the politicians realize they didn't reckon with either her honesty or his principles, let alone the chance they might still love each other.


Member Reviews (44)

MEMBERS SAY:

Relevant, Great acting, Great staging, Absorbing, Entertaining
81
Avg Score

91
Relevant, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing, Intelligent

See it if You’re ready for an OMG moment...!... this show is frighteningly relevant to today’s politics even though it was written so long ago.

Don't see it if If you have no interest in politics or if you think that what the crusty orange jock strap in the Oval Office is doing right now is great.

Also I loved this show! Great acting! Great writing! Great staging for such... Read more Read less

77
Entertaining, Profound, Intelligent, Great staging

See it if If you like a classic type of play, based on politics. Plays tone is political leader that has guts to change things... similar to today.

Don't see it if If your not into political plays. A little long but was well staged good costumes.

85
Absorbing, Romantic, Relevant, Intelligent, Funny

See it if Frank speaking presidential candidate is torn between his hard nosed mistress and his idealistic wife. Fun, intelligent period piece.

Don't see it if You can't forgive some dated elements, old-fashioned gender roles, and corny moments.

77
Dated, Absorbing, Great writing, Thought-provoking, Resonant

See it if Tough, taut & timely today as then; the players change but not the game Sharp direction from Livingston w/able cast playing multiple roles

Don't see it if Political references dated but not harmful Despite stage traffic sometimes getting snagged moves like a deft screwball comedy with teeth

84
Well played, Sharply written, Political, Smart, Dated--in a good way

See it if you’d like to see a drama of our recent history about a political situation different from ours on the surface, yet sharing a similar core.

Don't see it if you are looking for something new.

Also The current production of the late 1940s political comedy “STATE OF TH... Read more Read less

86
Great acting, Intelligent, Great staging, Thought-provoking, Absorbing

See it if you are not familiar with this well-written play, acted very well on a small stage, excellently designed with an important message for today

Don't see it if you do not enjoy how politics works or are bothered by actors playing multiple roles. It is a long play for those who cannot remain still.

80
Thought-provoking, Clever, Relevant, Great staging, Great acting

See it if you enjoy a drama about politics and politicians. Interesting character studies with people having to make decisions.

Don't see it if you do not like talk of politics, you do not like a very small stage.

Also The Metropolitan Playhouse always chooses very interesting old plays. ... Read more Read less

85
Funny, Relevant, Resonant, Intelligent, Great writing

See it if You like political satire that is very apropos today. It is a long old fashioned play but worth if you’re patient.

Don't see it if You have a short attention span.

73
Great acting, Dated

See it if You want to see some great acting performances

Don't see it if You are expecting this to be as relevant to today as some of the other reviews suggest it’s old and outdated material

Also I didn’t care much for the writing. I’m sure I would’ve liked this pla... Read more Read less

79
Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if Although a revival about politics in the late 40’s it is very relevant to today. Great ensemble and clever staging.

Don't see it if If you are not interested in history or US politics. It is almost 3 hours. It is not a light drama however quite amusing.

89
Absorbing, Relevant, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting

See it if You want to see an amazing cast perform in a small space with excellent staging and great costumes. You want to see a good political drama

Don't see it if Political dramas are not your thing. You want to miss out a great performance. You don't want to laugh.

Also I absolutely loved this performance. I liked the staging, writing, per... Read more Read less

90
Timely, Gorgeous period costumes, Everything old is new again!

See it if you're interested in what people were seeing on stage post-WW II and in particular Lindsay&Crouse. You should know there era to get it.

Don't see it if You don't like politics on stage, don't care about the post-war era, and the names Reuther, Pearson and Wilkie are unknown to you.

Also The is a great little theatre company that never disappoints and serve... Read more Read less

86
Entertaining, Great acting, Great staging, Relevant

See it if u want 2 see a Pulitzer Prize winning 1945 political play so relevant today in a great acting & staged production performed in a tiny space.

Don't see it if you don't enjoy political plays.

75
Interesting, Somewhat relevant, Fine set, given limitations, "message" somewhat flawed, Excellent dialog

See it if you like shows that explore the issues of American politics-- the good, bad and ugly, are well written and interesting.

Don't see it if you prefer plays that are "light" entertainment and dislike ones where you have to "concentrate" to follow the plot & character motives

72
Tiresome, Ambitious, Relevant, Cliched, Slow

See it if You really like the Jazz Age. You want to watch a show that reminds you of how fed up you are with politics (because we've all forgotten).

Don't see it if You think there's more to politics than just saying what you really believe instead of going into dark rooms with vote collectors.

75
Entertaining, Relevant, Intelligent, Great writing, Clever

See it if You would enjoy a political satire of a simpler time, and enjoy a slightly amateurish production of an American classic.

Don't see it if Stuff like awkward staging (the lead's back to the audience...) and uneven acting would irreparably ruin your enjoyment of a clever show.

77
Entertaining, Relevant, Good ensemble, Emotionally restrained, Talky talky talky

See it if you'd like to see a very good ensemble of characters play out political issues as relevant today as they were 70 years ago

Don't see it if you want an emotionally affecting drama; the dialogue is very wordy & humorous in many ways but the emotional involvement is distant

Also It's L-O-N-G...The first act before intermission runs nearly 2 hours, ... Read more Read less

86
Great staging, Great writing, Intelligent, Relevant, Refreshing

See it if u like good productions of traditional plays,witty dialogue & well-developed characters, are interested in politics or Amrcn theatre history

Don't see it if u prefer cutting-edge drama,aren't into politics or American or American theatre history, dislike actors playing multiple small roles

Also I really enjoyed this. It's amazing how relevant to current politics t... Read more Read less

87
Great acting, Great staging, Great writing, Intelligent, Resonant

See it if Fne performances (esp Durkin, Sell and Kuriloff), expert, fast paced direction,smart,witty dialogue.Sets & costumes excellent. Feminist bent

Don't see it if Like many older plays, this 3 act is long. Especially long first half drags a bit. And it's pretty much all politics with a touch of humor.

Also It's always challenging for contemporary theaters to revive old 3 act ... Read more Read less

80
Relevant, Intelligent, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you are looking for a 70 year old play that is still relevant Well acted and directed

Don't see it if you are not a fan of the "well made" play. It's 2hrs 40 with many references that were topical when written but are historical now

72
Ambitious, Great writing, Intelligent, Resonant, Relevant

See it if you are interested in political humor and important topics that are relevant today.

Don't see it if you expect a perfectly directed play where the actors understand the nuances of what they are saying.

75
Entertaining, Fluffy, Clever

See it if Charming piece of post WW2 political maneuvering— funny how relevant now. Good acting

Don't see it if Somewhat slow until Mary comes on scene. Certain portrayals are excessively subservient and objectionable

85
Thought-provoking, Must see, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if You like political plays,comedy,humor sets the tone of a presidential candidate’s challenge to be nominated or serving the country and unite

Don't see it if You despise politicians, Republicans, do not have interest for behind the scene of prepping a candidate to both public and political arena.

Also Fantastic play, although it takes place for ‘48 elections, most of the... Read more Read less

71
Dated, Ambitious, Entertaining

See it if you enjoy a 'classic' political play which is entertaining

Don't see it if You are used to the high quality of most New York acting

75
Resonant, Clever staging, Relevant, Some excellent acting, Absorbing

See it if If you like Mr Smith Goes to Washington and The Candidate, hate current politics, want well done story of the 40's with relevance today

Don't see it if if politics bores you, if you need elaborate staging, won't travel to the lower East Side, offended that servant roles are so servile.


February 19th, 2019
"It doesn't take very long to understand that what at first appears to be a wisecracking political comedy has a heart of purest mush. This sentimentality is so nakedly apparent possibly because much of its humor has the quality of yellowed newsprint...A play like ‘State of the Union’ can, arguabl...
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February 15th, 2019
“Invariably, the play evokes comparisons with the current political environment...The script may periodically show its age, but kudos once again to the marvelous Metropolitan Playhouse for mounting a revival of a rarely produced play...Livingston has drawn fine performances...If the government co...
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February 28th, 2019
“Lindsay and Crouse (known today for The Sound of Music) have written an entertaining and witty look at backroom politics which suddenly seems contemporary all over again. Laura Livingston's high-powered production of State of the Union, which raised eyebrows when it won the Pulitzer Prize in 194...
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February 18th, 2019
"Is the play dated? Yes, but entertainingly so...As good as the drama is, it needs an able cast to breathe life into the script. Fortunately, the 19 actors assembled here are up to the task...The production values come without razzamatazz here, but that's fine...Directed by Laura Livingston, this...
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