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The Lehman Trilogy (Off-Broadway)

From 138 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Great staging, Absorbing, Intelligent, Great writing

About the show

Making its North American premiere, this National Theatre production traces the trajectory of western capitalism by following the fortunes of a single immigrant family. Directed by Sam Mendes. More…

From the arrival of three brothers from Bavaria to America in search of a new life to the collapse of the firm they established, triggering the largest financial crisis in history, the story of the Lehman Brothers serves as a parable of the shifting definition of the American dream. Simon Russell Beale, Adam Godley, and Ben Miles reprise their portrayals of the Lehman Brothers, their sons, and grandsons spanning nearly two centuries and told in three parts on a single evening.

Member Reviews (138)


Great acting, Great staging, Absorbing, Intelligent, Great writing
Avg Score

Overrated, All male cast, Intelligent, Great set/music, Epic

See it if you're fascinated by immigrant stories. A doozy of Amer rags-to-riches. Avant garde staging. Fast pace. Many chars. Sweep of 150+ years.

Don't see it if you want a point to the 3 1/2 hours; TLB is just stylish storytelling. Or if you dislike men posing as women/yg kids. Or if boxes bore you.

Also I liked TLT for its engaging, intriguing story of poor Jewish immigran... Read more Read less

Informational only, Devoid of feeling, Mechanical, Dry, Disappointing

See it if You want to learn about the Lehman Bros history. OK performances of robotic material. Their story is very interesting. The script is not.

Don't see it if Passionless reciting of a Wikipedia entry. Very little dialogue. 3hr45min

Also Sets are cute but nothing new. Not deserving of the Armory. Could have... Read more Read less

Educational, Informative, Dry, Overrated, Disappointing

See it if You enjoy history & intersted in seeing an informative documentary style show. 90% of the text is narration, not dialog.

Don't see it if You prefer shows that SHOW you a scene rather than TELL you. It feels like an audiobook or reading of a wiki page not a play.

Also The show pretty much goes through the timeline of events that is prese... Read more Read less

Must see, Great staging, Absorbing, Riveting, Masterful

See it if You enjoy masterful storytelling. Phenomenal staging that only serves the story, never upstaging it. Projections and lighting stunning!

Don't see it if It’s long. Three and a half hours but it’s so incredible I wouldn’t let that stop you. This really is a must see.

Also Even if you have no interest or knowledge in this (I knew nothing abou... Read more Read less

Resonant, Intelligent, Great staging

See it if Very well staged and good acting. The story of the Lehman family. Told mostly in third person and done very creatively.

Don't see it if If you do not want to see a play that is long. Three and a half hours long. A play spoken in third person.

Long, Great acting, Great staging, Profound, Masterful

See it if A creatively staged work with riveting performances. Long but engaging. I learned a lot. Lots of NYC history.

Don't see it if You can’t hang for 3 hr 20 min. You don’t like non-fiction pieces.

Riveting, Epic, Great staging, Profound, Masterful

See it if Contrast of vitality & mortality; tradition & modernization. More than the ledger went bankrupt. Breathtaking staging, wonderful acting.

Don't see it if You don’t want a 3.5+ hour experience. You aren’t interested in a nonfiction jewish immigrant story, questioning the idea of America.

Masterful, Fascinating, Great acting, Epic, Absorbing

See it if u want to see truly great storytelling; u want to see an epic tale of extravagance staged w/the utmost economy; to see masterful acting.

Don't see it if u don't appreciate the art of stagecraft; u were burned by the 2008 crash/Lehman Bros bankruptcy & don't want reminders of your misfortune.

Also This production will remind you of why you love theatre.... Read more Read less

High tech, Well played, Uneven, Instructive, Breathtaking

See it if you'd like to experience a thrilling hi-tech cautionary tale about unbridled capitalism as seen by tracking 1 family & its business.

Don't see it if you are looking for a traditional drama, with stable characters & dialog among them.

Also “The Lehman Trilogy” is often thrilling. An open cube of a set spins a... Read more Read less

Intelligent, Great staging, Great acting, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if you enjoy gripping, historical plays expertly directed & acted, linear plot, actors playing multiple roles, clever set & projections

Don't see it if 3 hours, 15 min. is too long for you, no interest in Lehman Brothers or immigration, have bad recession memories, hate corporate America

Amazing use of photographs, Dazzling, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting

See it if extraordinary theater appeals. Three men doubling & trippling by just changing posture. A glass box stage seemingly floats on water or fire

Don't see it if you cannot climb the 2 flights of stairs to the top of the bleachers or are unable to spend serious money for the lower front seats.

Great writing, Intelligent, Great staging, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if Grand sweep origin American epic of Lehman immigrants assimilating from the ascent up to the capitalist clean-up collapse of 2008. Top trio.

Don't see it if Three actors playing 3 bros portraying 70 characters w/o wardrobe on a confined set is distancing/confusing. Overly narrated. Stereotyping.

Also Intimate play in a barn.

Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Slow burn, Great staging, Epic

See it if you're willing to take the ride of a super slow burn that requires a lot of patience before a really rewarding payoff.

Don't see it if you want histrionics or traditional spectacle. The spectacle here is the spectacular way this super slow pace ends up feeling like a whirl.

Riveting, Nearly perfect, Great acting, Epic, Ambitious

See it if you're interested in the history behind the rise/fall of the Lehman Bros; enjoy exquisite acting, direction, sets, lighting, visuals, etc.

Don't see it if no interest in an immigrant family's passion to succeed; no appreciation for 3 glorious actors playing dozens of roles; 3.5 hrs too long.

Also Knowing now what I would have missed, I feel so lucky to have bought t... Read more Read less

Great writing, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing, A thrilling evening in the theatre

See it if you're interested in historical stories. This play charts the rise & fall of the Lehman family. Superb performances, direction, set.

Don't see it if you can't sit through 3 hours and 20 minutes—which just fly by. Also, if you are not a fan of serious theatre and exquisite acting.

Intelligent, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if You enjoy plays that are set as storytelling rather than multiple actions. You have interest in the makings of the stock market + Lehmans.

Don't see it if You don’t want to invest a long evening watching a fascinating but very serious play. The evening began at 7:30 and ended at 10:50.

Also If you have not seen this play by now you will have to see it at a dif... Read more Read less

Dizzying, Ambitious, Intelligent, Great staging, Great acting

See it if you want to see three superb actors playing multiple roles in an inventive production of a play about family and finance over 3 generations

Don't see it if you find sitting for 3 1/2 hours challenging or if you dislike plays that rely heavily on third-person narration.

Also All three actors are amazing. The set is stunning and the projections ... Read more Read less

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

See it if you want great actors doing a relevant play in a gorgeous theatre, on a magnificent set.Topic doesn't really interest me, but this was great

Don't see it if you want a frothy musical.This is brilliant on every level. Every element was perfect-acting,lighting,set,direction.Do not miss this one.

Masterful, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if story of immigrant Jewish brothers & their descendants, traditions & struggles; history & econ. primer of financial markets that isn't dry

Don't see it if don't like unusual (but very effective) staging, actors that play more than one role (including some brief side parts); 3 hrs 20 minutes*

Also *with 2 intermissions - but it really did fly because of the mesmerizi... Read more Read less

Intelligent, Clever, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if you like beautiful writing, excellent acting. Staging unique, true story of Lehman Brothers. Acts I & II mesmerizing, ActIII a bit confusing

Don't see it if you don't like long plays..three and a half hours, very wordy & must listen to every word to follow story, three men play multiple roles.

Also You will never see another play staged or done like this. Perfect timi... Read more Read less

Masterful acting, Poetic, Moving, Remarkable stage design and craftsmanship, Elegiac yet celebratory

See it if you want to lose yourself in a haunting, intelligent, and stunningly-performed family legacy that leads you through the nation’s history.

Don't see it if grand, sweeping, family stories told in poetic, hypnotizing narration by 3 actors playing all roles won’t hold your attention for 3+ hours.

Also At core, The Lehman Trilogy is upward mobility, American Dream fare, t... Read more Read less

Intelligent, Great acting, Great writing, Great staging

See it if great acting and an absorbing 3 hour+ story that goes by quickly. learned a lot historically and also how families change over time

Don't see it if want fluff, then this is not for you. one needs to be present at the production especially and three actors portray multiple characters

Thought-provoking, Epic, Great acting, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if You want to experience an epic master class in acting and storytelling with 3 flawless performers tracing a notable family story

Don't see it if You want flashy costumes or musical numbers or don't really care about the background of modern banking

Great acting, Great staging, Great writing, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if you fancy being BLOWN AWAY by a MASTERFUL theatrical experience brilliantly told through three insightful acting GODS of the theater.

Don't see it if a masterfully told three and a half hour story illustrated by three English actors just isn't your cup of tea. You will SURELY be the loser.

Also OMG! On the surface glance, a three and a half hour play about the bui... Read more Read less

Masterful, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if Masterful storytelling about generations of Lehman Bros. Terrific performances by the three leads. Great staging in a rotating glass box.

Don't see it if You don't have any interest in the subject matter. The play is 200 minutes including two intermissions,but holds your interest and attention

March 28th, 2019
"Genuinely epic production, directed with surging sweep and fine-tooled precision by Sam Mendes...Under the inspired direction of Mendes, with a design team that understands the value of simplicity in doing justice to complex matters, 'The Lehman Trilogy' unfolds a tale of extravagant wealth with...
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March 28th, 2019
"If it weren’t for the superb work of Mendes, Devlin and the three astonishing performers, the heavy atmosphere might thicken into obfuscating fog. As it is, in the hasty final act, Massini tries to draw conclusions about a financial chaos he doesn’t understand and a show that has operated with g...
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March 28th, 2019
"Strange, sleek beast: massive and dazzling on the outside, and in plenty of ways filled with virtuosity and vitality by a core of brilliant actors and top-of-their-game designers, all given the time and space to experiment, to build a world brick by brick with their ingenious director. But somet...
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March 28th, 2019
"This is theatrical storytelling at its most thrilling, a work of novelistic sweep and operatic crescendos, as rich in incisive character detail as it is in breathtaking visual coups...The play employs third-person narration to an audacious degree, and yet, under Mendes' unerring directorial hand...
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