New York | Ends Jun 02

The Pink Unicorn (Out of the Box Theatrics)

From 13 critic and 6 member reviews
Members say: Great acting, Disappointing, Slow, Relevant, Must see

About the show

In this solo show, Trisha Lee, a Christian widow in a small conservative Texas town, is faced with a whole new set of personal challenges when her 14-year-old daughter comes out as gender queer. More…

In "The Pink Unicorn," Trisha recounts her story about facing a crisis she never saw coming, at a time when transgender people and gender issues weren't even on her radar.

Reviews Off Broadway

"Alice Ripley is a standout in this expository show about a conservative Texan single mother's journey to acceptance of her genderqueer child. She confronts her past as her family weighs in on the changes happening. And she confronts her second family, as the controversy roils her church, where friends and acquaintances stake out different positions. The subtly of Ripley's performance is perfect. She brings the audience along on this roller coaster, prompting laughs, tears, and introspection." Full Review


"Alice Ripley (Best Actress Tony Award winner for 'Next to Normal') is, in a word, astounding. Her Trisha is brimming with curiosity, honesty, humor and grace; she is inspiring to watch and simply amazing. Edie's characterization of Trisha is delicate and poignant, funny and sincere; her illuminating script is sheer writing perfection." Full Review

Melinda's Malarky

"Trisha's earnestness to understand & support her daughter are all very real...Ripley has this magical ripple effect that fills the stage with real characters and emotions spinning a one woman show into a transformative work of art that is quietly powerful and deeply penetrating...Playwright Edie has written a smart, warm, funny, and provocative play that mystify the soul inspiring empathy, tolerance, and love. We are all of us better for having experienced this miraculous production." Full Review

Gay City News

"An extraordinary, spellbinding solo show...And what a performance! Ripley fully disappears into the role of the valiant, albeit conflicted widow...Under the thoughtful direction of Amy Jones, Ripley moves naturally around the stage...Watching 'The Pink Unicorn,' I was convinced it was a bio-drama based on actual events. It feels so specific, so real." Full Review

Front Mezz Junkies

"This is exactly what it means to be a true actor; to have the ability to weave a story, solo and strong, regardless of the size and shape of the site specific space. Utilizing every little natural gesture and pause, 'plain as you please,' she rings a captivating tale so true and digs so deep...Directed with a subtle edge by Amy E. Jones, the tale feels authentic but needs a sharper eye and a more focused edit to be the powerhouse it sits on the edge of being." Full Review

Theatre is Easy

"It’s a heartwarming story with a relatively happy ending, but the tight, thoughtful script mixes humor and pathos to successfully touch upon our propensity to judge others and reflexively resist change before we really know what's at stake...Alice Ripley is simultaneously radiant and real. Her struggle to accept her child without necessarily understanding her is beautifully rendered. It also feels honest." Full Review

Show Showdown

"Although playwright Elise Forier Edie, herself the parent of a trans child, occasionally leans toward 'transgender 101' in 'Pink Unicorn,' she also fills the play with love and compassion and knowledge and an important sense of the grays in which most people live, rather than the blacks and whites of the doctrinaire and the haters. Edie is most fortunate in having Amy E. Jones as her director and, particularly, Alice Ripley as Trish." Full Review

Theater Reviews from my Seat

“The play creates a believable story arc for this complicated mother/child relationship. Ripley’s heartfelt and earnest performance adds layers and layers of emotional depth. By the end, there is a freedom expressed that is not simply obvious...The play would definitely benefit from a few less metaphors...The story is timely, important, nicely told, and prompts thought...Enjoying Ripley deliver this monologue in a room with two dozen people is the icing on a joyously hopeful rainbow cake.” Full Review

New Yorker

“The performance a cozy aptly intimate setting...for this one-person show about a Presbyterian widow...Directed by Amy Jones...Elise Forier Edie’s script scans a bit more like a first-person short story than like a monologue to be performed. But Ripley fully inhabits the role, employing a profound command of inflection and mannerism that makes her character engrossingly genuine and conversational; she finds humor in the most unexpected little places." Full Review

Lighting & Sound America

"Ripley nails the Texas accent and captures Trisha's slightly hesitant manner...At least at the performance I attended, this lack of assurance laid bare a certain weakness in the script...You should also know that this is a bare-bones production...Still, 'The Pink Unicorn' has crowd-pleaser potential and I wouldn't be surprised if it is already in much better shape. And Trisha's journey toward inclusion is a perfect one for the venue." Full Review

New York Theater

"A well-meaning effort to dramatize the everyday heroism of ordinary Americans...Some of this is touching. It would be more so if the character weren’t such an exaggerated rube...There is a noticeable lack of variety in the performance as a whole. I don’t blame this on Ripley. Much more could have been shape the storytelling...Still, it would be churlish to dismiss ‘The Pink Unicorn’, which has a warm heart, an endearing character at its center.” Full Review

New York Stage Review

“Edie has a transgender child, and her goal is a virtuous one: to show us that even the most apparently unsophisticated folks can harbor open hearts and minds...If the abundance of clichés in ‘Pink Unicorn’ threatens to overshadow fact-based elements, it’s hard not to be at least intermittently moved by the sense of urgency and compassion in Edie’s writing...Ripley deserves praise for bringing obvious commitment and contagious affection to her character." Full Review

The New York Times

"The real treat for fans of Ms. seeing her in such intimate confines...Trisha and — even more so — Jo feel generic. They are described in quick broad strokes that don’t get much deeper than quirky anecdotes and folksy turns of phrase. The other characters popping in and out make even less of an impression...Of course, it’s impossible not to root for Trisha. But while good intentions go a long way in real life, they are not enough to sustain this undernourished play." Full Review

Riveting, Thought-provoking, Great acting

See it if You want to see a Tony award winning actress perform an intimate monologue

Don't see it if You want to see a spectacle of a show.

Relevant, Cliched, Slow, Insipid, Disappointing

See it if Texan mother forced to get woke and tolerant from her high-schooler daughter. Big Tony-winner stage actor in a tinyworld 40-seat place.

Don't see it if Despite playwright's life mirroring events in this country cornpone script, Ripley's fake drawl & venue...all reflect poorly for Ripley.

Also Sinful Red Lobster suddenly has more appeal.Cyril Makepeace?Seriously.

During previews
Great acting, Funny, Entertaining

See it if you are interested in LGBT issues. Or if you want to see a Tony Award winner performing in a very intimate venue.

Don't see it if you dont like solo shows or want a lot of production values. This one is pretty bare bones. But the story is very entertaining.

During previews
Absorbing, Must see, Great acting, Luminous, Great writing

See it if Alice Ripley in solo tour de force on tiny stage will enthrall you in an exquisitely intimate performance, literally reaching out to us.

Don't see it if Profound, soul-searching performance scary? If resist introspection on fear/disdain twd differences, LGBTQ ids, witness courage on display.

During previews
Relevant, Story of transformation, Queer affirming, Great acting, Alice ripley!

See it if You appreciate stories of parenthood, transformation, and diversity. You like Alice Ripley (very intimate theatre). Like 1-person shows.

Don't see it if You are intolerant to Queer issues. Need high production values.

Also Ripley is convincing and effective. Texas accent needs work -- it's mo... Read more Read less

During previews
Slow, Great acting, Disappointing, Banal

See it if you're a fan of Alice Ripley or stories about supportive parents honestly trying to understand their children appeals to you.

Don't see it if you're transphobic.

Also Alice Ripley is a very good actress, but the piece still drags and she... Read more Read less

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Cast & Creatives (4)