“A very nice new play…A smart and well-developed structure…Buchheister’s direction, a light touch with strong theatrical instincts, creates compelling moments as well…The play has some unhelpful unresolved questions, but the ambiguity of the core relationship gave the work an American honestly I appreciated. Awesome, another awesome, and super sad, American family play.” Full Review
"This thought-provoking story takes the dysfunctional family to extremes...If it sounds like this isn't exactly the feel-good story of the summer, then you get the point: it's not the place to bring the kids for a taste of cutting-edge theater. But if you're looking for a play that isn't afraid to take what most people consider taboo and insist that you look the demon in its eyes, then this is a story for you." Full Review
"'The Itch' is tedious, seemingly pointless and has patches of intrigue...Boredom or mild interest are the likely possibilities...The cast does their best by the material with their strong characterizations...Ms. Buchheister’s physical staging is efficient and adeptly melds all of the elements into a slowly paced yet endurable 90 minutes...Ultimately, if accepted on its own self-consciously unconventional terms, 'The Itch' is a fitfully engaging experience." Full Review
"There are some loose ends protruding from the shocking surface, and that is the play’s main sin...This descent deep into the void of forbidden love could benefit from some clarification. But...writer Zelman-Doring seems to be more interested in separate stitches, not the whole picture. The direction by Buchheister mimics this approach with interestingly staged scenes cobbled together as if in a hurry...The play ends abruptly, leaving the siblings pretty much where they started." Full Review
"The confusingly odd story...has a decidedly downtown feel and makes use of film and video projections as well as loud original punk sounding music...The staging, however, lacks tension despite the smart dialogue. And neither the actors nor the direction infuse the evening with an emotion-filled conflict that is necessary to bring the meandering story to a final unresolved fade-out." Full Review
“A work in progress...By populating the stage with live actors and music, video projections, voice-overs, and prerecorded soundscapes, writer Zelman-Doring and director Buchheister split audience focus with, at best, no discernibly useful outcome, and at worst, unnecessary distractions…It would be fascinating to see a stripped-down theatrical version of this play...There is the potential for deeply resonating drama in these characters, but it’s all shielded behind the frills of multimedia.” Full Review
“The main problem lies in the disconnected writing that has no sequence of events, nor any cause and effect from moment to moment, and the direction that fails to make sense of it all…They blindly drive forward recklessly sprouting lines and scenarios void of realistic emotional engagement, sequential logic, nor any connection to the shabby world around them…It is basically dead on arrival.” Full Review
See it if you like shows about personal struggles and family discord. That have a dark sense of humor.
Don't see it if you like shows that are an escape from everyday life. Or prefer period pieces that are more whimsical.
See it if you enjoy watching the tension in dysfunctional families presented in a new way with technology sometimes enhancing, sometimes distracting.
Don't see it if you cannot tolerate loud disruptions, multiple media presentations, choking smoke from herbal cigarettes and interrupting mechanical sounds.
See it if You're a fan of new plays, exploration of drug abuse and sex in family dynamic, multimedia
Don't see it if Drug abuse and adoption themes are upsetting or uninteresting. Incongruent and unexplained plot points are a bother.
See it if you like to view shows in an intimate space. (Great sight lines) Also, some credit must be given for effort.
Don't see it if You expect a fun musical comedy. I always wonder re:the same person being the writer and the actor in the same play. Yes the effort is there
See it if You want to see a show that is confusing and all over the place. You want to see a play about siblings and their struggles.
Don't see it if You want to see a play that is easy to follow.
Also The performers did their best with what they were working with.
See it if you can tolerate the "poor little rich boy" narrative, you like inventive use of video, you are looking for a short, new play
Don't see it if you want something fully polished, you need characters with clear motivation, you are upset by notions of incest
See it if you appreciate challenging, creative, disturbing, dark, real drama of dysfunctional family, raw emotion, twins' sibling devotion and empathy
Don't see it if you prefer light comedy, musicals, clear plot, conflict resolution, and theme with all characters, not only Mills, live onstage. I was lost.
See it if You like the idea of thanklessly puzzling over the mental problems of some rather uninteresting somewhat dislikable people.
Don't see it if You'd prefer being entertained or edified in some way, rather than puzzled and annoyed.
See it if you want to see some good acting by the leads
Don't see it if poor use of multimedia disturbs you. The fear of an author to directly confront their themes is problematic.
See it if Like bad writing with unlikeable characters and an extremely confusing plot filled with video, bad music and tasteless incest tendencies.
Don't see it if you seek a plot with memorable moments.
See it if with all due respect for the cast who try to bring depth to this intended (?) profound drama, it lacks any supportive words by me.
Don't see it if This performance just lacks any of the tenets of theater we have come to admire. Sorry I don't like to be negative, it is what it is.
See it if I can't think of anyone who would want to see this play. It really made no sense at all. Not sure what the message was
Don't see it if You value your time. This was one of the worst plays I ever saw. No intermission so it was impossible to leave til the bitter end!
See it if The Itch is a interesting play that moves between realism and the theatre of the absurd - the staging of the Thanks Giving dinner was clever
Don't see it if You don't like slow paced drama which uses a number of multi-media elements.
See it if you appreciate any effort to understand the effects of addiction on a family.
Don't see it if you feel that even when there are some very good ideas and intentions, a show that is ultimately incomprehensible is not worth the time.
See it if You. Are in the West Village and all other shows or films are sold out and you told friends you were going to catch a typical village show !
Don't see it if You can't tolerate a lot of herbal cigarette smoke blown at you. You have your heart set on seeing some worthwhile off off Broadway theatre.
Get alerts about your favorite artists and theater companies