The Lucky Ones NYC Reviews and Tickets

84%
(71 Reviews)
Positive
96%
Mixed
4%
Negative
0%
Members say
Great singing, Absorbing, Intense, Ambitious, Edgy

About the Show

Ars Nova presents indie-music duo The Bengsons ('Hundred Days') spinning a memory-tale of teenaged passion, ideals lived to the limits, family shattered and faith lost — all in hope of finding a way home again.

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Member Reviews (71)

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706 Reviews | 214 Followers
85
Tragic, Heartbreaking, Sad, Moving, Great music

See it if Autobiographical musical about an extended family that suffers a tragedy. Beautifully performed songs with intense feeling. Sad but real.

Don't see it if You want a more uplifting experience. This is a 2 1/2 hour show that drags in the second half. It's at its best during the songs.

425 Reviews | 62 Followers
90
Great singing, Resonant, Intense

See it if Indie musical (banjo, accordion, electric guitar, etc.) of a hippy family that encounters a tragedy. Slightly rough around the edges.

Don't see it if Indie / folk music isn't your thing. Mental health / death is triggering

417 Reviews | 69 Followers
72
Clever, Ambitious, Great singing, Indulgent, Relevant

See it if you like the Bengsons, indy music and a fascinating story that is based on reality.

Don't see it if you can't sit through a long show (over 2.5 hours) that becomes repetitive and could use a lot of editing. This play could have been great.

402 Reviews | 86 Followers
85
Absorbing, Great singing, Refreshing, Ambitious

See it if you enjoy a different type of musical with indie rock music and a deeply personal story. There are a lot of great songs and creative staging

Don't see it if you don't like indie rock music or don't like shows that deal with real life family tragedies.

360 Reviews | 89 Followers
88
Meditative, Unique, Thought-provoking, Haunting, Intense

See it if You enjoy podcasts such as This American Life, Radiolab, Invisibilia, etc. It has a very similar feel, especially the last third.

Don't see it if You dislike folk/indie scores. You are looking for a "light" show. Read more

348 Reviews | 69 Followers
92
Hipster nirvana, Majestic, Meditative, Dizzying

See it if you enjoyed Hundred Days and/or like folk rock musical theatre.

Don't see it if you like very traditional narrative structure. Read more

265 Reviews | 52 Followers
88
Intense, Great acting, Profound, Raw, Great singing

See it if You're interested in a soul-baring musical show accompanied by great choreography & a riveting story. This may be the most honest show ever.

Don't see it if You are looking for a traditional play - this is not that. But it would be hard not to be swept away by its emotion and intensity.

258 Reviews | 45 Followers
83
Engaging, Heartfelt, Great singing

See it if Wonderful singing, moving story of the disintegration of a loving oddball family. Humorous and sad, sometimes love is not enough.

Don't see it if No sets to speak of, fourth wall comes and goes, definitely indie, off-off broadway fare. Read more

Critic Reviews (15)

The New York Times
March 31st, 2018

"The songwriting, though feelingful, does not yet seem complex enough structurally to handle the size and depth of the action it must portray...The music has a pleasantly droning quality that forestalls harmonic development. The ruminative, repetitive lyrics similarly stunt the drama...Kauffman’s astute staging does what it can to jury-rig a feeling of depth...The storytelling is as yet too impulsive, and at times too self-indulgent, to be corralled...A gawky, powerful work in progress."
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Time Out New York
April 1st, 2018

"Scratch any family history, and you’re bound to draw some blood. Abigail Bengson's childhood experience has more than most...Harrowing...A teen bacchanal, thrillingly choreographed by Sonya Tayeh, culminates in a cozy romance-but not for long...Tragedy that ensues, but nothing in this story is that simple...'The lucky ones,' the show suggests, are those who, born into damage, can still 'open up.' Bengson, with her extraordinarily expressive musical and authorial voice, does so magnificently."
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Theatermania
March 31st, 2018

"There's an intoxicating quality to the Bengsons' music...The entire cast gives passionate performances...It is possible to appreciate the virtuosity on display even if you don't really buy the Bengsons' consistently on-brand folksy fabulism (which I didn't)...Stripped of its soul-stirring music and mystical staging, 'The Lucky Ones' would look a lot like an after-school special...Yet the tale of a young man whose delusions of grandeur drive him to violence feels especially relevant in 2018."
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Lighting & Sound America
April 9th, 2018

"The Bengsons have once again supplied a brace of distinctive indie-folk tunes matched with probing lyrics that illuminate the family's oddball, self-invented way of life...If 'Hundred Days' came across as an evasive, even self-indulgent work, 'The Lucky Ones' is an almost foolhardy act of bravery. We may not be getting the full story, but, nevertheless, she has put these deeply personal materials to work in asking probing questions about happiness, fidelity, and one's place in the world."
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TheaterScene.net
April 13th, 2018

"Adding to the confusion are Abigail's many family members, including her sisters--one of whom is named Emily (Ashley Pérez Flanagan), not to be confused with her new friend Emma--her parents, her aunt (the stalwart Maryann Plunkett) and her cousins. Another part of the problem is that there are simply too many people to be contained on the small stage of the Connelly Theater, which may be why the majority of them begin the show in the balcony in the rear of the auditorium."
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Theatre is Easy
April 1st, 2018

"Heartbreakingly human, semi-autobiographical tales...Anne Kauffman's direction and Sonya Tayeh's choreography work impeccably well with the music...A testament to Kauffman and Tayeh’s leadership, the show’s entire cast, tops to toes, gives an inspiring performance...It is viscerally evident that every facet has been considered in creating one united, yet nuanced, message. I laughed, I cried, I jammed. I witnessed storytelling of intense emotional depth, and ultimately, the joy of storytelling."
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Front Row Center
April 2nd, 2018

"Sonya Tayeh’s choreography, paired with the spot-on costuming by Asta Bennie Hostetter, perfectly captured the spirit of freedom and abandon that exemplified the hippie, vibe that may not have been a parenting panacea. And Abigail Bengson is a captivating presence on stage. It’s nearly impossible to look anywhere else when she is singing...Unfortunately, 'The Lucky Ones' kind of fizzles out at the end."
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Stage Buddy
April 9th, 2018

"The whole show is so beautifully crafted, it's less a musical and more a seamless experience that grabs you tight at the outset and never lets go until the final dimming of the lights. That's due in some part to a gorgeous script, but also in large measure to Tayeh's groundbreaking choreography, Bengson's warm stage presence, and a score that represents the best indie-folk/rock has to offer...Seamless, deep, and artistically inspiring, 'The Lucky Ones' is theatre at its very best."
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