The Trojan Women
Closed 1h 15m
The Trojan Women
61

The Trojan Women NYC Reviews and Tickets

61%
(23 Reviews)
Positive
39%
Mixed
22%
Negative
39%
Members say
Intense, Thought-provoking, Resonant, Absorbing, Great acting

About the Show

The Flea mounts Ellen McLaughlin’s Bosnian War-inspired adaptation of Euripides' classic starring its resident acting company, the Bats.

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Member Reviews (23)

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69
Entertaining, Resonant, Intense

See it if you like heart wrenching classic greek

Don't see it if you want to see more seasoned actors who may carry this hefty material a bit better

81
Relevant, Intense, Absorbing

See it if Appreciate an ancient story brought into the 21 century. Surprisingly relevant and as heartbreaking today as the story was 3200 years ago.

Don't see it if You insist on elaborate staging or costumes. It's a stripped down performance with less props than even the Greeks would have used.

Critic Reviews (18)

The New York Times
September 1st, 2016

“'Whatever you dream,' Poseidon (Thomas Muccioli) says, 'even the most horrifying dream cannot be worse than what you will awake to.' The production seems, in a way, to heed his counsel. There’s a hollow, anesthetized quality to the performance, and it’s a hindrance...The primary impression this production leaves is that the depth of the characters’ suffering is foreign to these artists — even as stories of urban dwellers racked by war come to us in the news every day."
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Time Out New York
September 2nd, 2016

"The pained clarity and blunt poetry of McLaughlin’s text retain some power even when delivered in a horse of wooden acting. With few exceptions—such as Wortmann as Andromache—the young actors of the Bats, under Haney’s earnest direction, lack the gravitas to pull off this material, and the intimacy of the Flea’s tiny basement theater is unmerciful. They give it the old college try, but the result, alas, too often evokes college theater."
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Theatermania
September 1st, 2016

"A solid and vibrantly acted production...One of the problems with more traditional presentations of 'The Trojan Women' is that Hecuba can often come off as a bottomless vessel of misery, pouring her self-pity all over the stage to the point where it barely registers. McLaughlin mitigates this by refocusing attention on the other women...Choreographer Powell attempts to bring a sense of ritual to the stage, but it often feels like a massive distraction from otherwise earthy performances."
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Lighting & Sound America
September 12th, 2016

"Under Anne Cecelia Haney's measured, yet relentless, direction, the play's implacable march to a place where hope no longer exists remains steadily engrossing and often powerfully affecting. Working with The Bats, she has overseen several fine performances...Modern costumes point out what is probably the production's biggest weakness...Another weakness is the stylized movement...What is right with this production far outweighs what is questionable about it."
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TheaterScene.net
September 4th, 2016

“Although Ellen McLaughlin’s new adaptation makes some changes to the Euripides original, it retains its power pertinent for our own time in the wake of the refugee crisis. While at times callow, Anne Cecelia Haney’s production for The Bats is persuasive, potent and poignant. It also provides an excellent introduction to the plays that make up Greek tragedy for those who have not experienced them on stage.”
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CurtainUp
September 7th, 2016

"This 'Trojan Women' tends to be overwhelmed by these intrinsic difficulties of Euripides's text, exclaiming emotion more often than truly demonstrating it…When it's all said and done, you can't help but marvel at the tremendously tragic tale, but ‘The Trojan Women’ hasn't crossed the crucial line between jolting and heartbreaking…The end result isn't distasteful, but there's the disappointment of a missed opportunity. You want to feel devastated, but what you get hews closer to numbness."
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Stage Buddy
September 12th, 2016

"Though lovely, McLaughlin’s rich imagery becomes at times repetitive…The chorus’s constant repetition of each others’ words, grounded in distressing physical movement, diminish the emotional impact of the piece through sometimes overly frantic performances…The play at times becomes too oratory, as the increasing loudness feels jarring in the small space. However, this makes the moments of silence stand out, lending a meaningful juxtaposition to the play’s quieter monologues."
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Theatre's Leiter Side
September 1st, 2016

"The young actors struggle against the demands of the semi-poetic dialogue and the incessant sorrow they must convey. But they're totally overwhelmed by the task. Not even when Andromache’s baby is torn from her arms does the production carry the emotional punch required. This 'Trojan Women' delivers its message; it fails, though, to deliver the goods."
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Times Square Chronicles
September 2nd, 2016

"There is a sense of tribal rituals in McLaughlin’s adaptation of 'The Trojan Women'...furiously acted by The Bats...This production, though only an hour, is solid but heavy in its message and disconnect. Much has been cut and if you do not know this tale of woe you may not understand some of what has happened...The lights and sound design are dark and ominous, as is the direction...War is becoming an everyday occurrence...This play shows the numbness we have succumbed to."
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Theater In The Now
September 13th, 2016

"In a world where this story has seen an array of reinventions, what, if anything, did this new production offer?...What resulted in 'The Trojan Woman' was a melodramatically one-note drama that fell a bit short. Director Anne Cecelia Haney’s direction was ambitiously uninspiring. Whether it was the concept or the company’s overall lack of connection to the material, 'The Trojan Women' never quite found its footing. The piece seemed to be in a constant state of chaos and confusion."
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On Stage Blog
September 12th, 2016

"Anti-war plays are always relevant, though this particular production doesn’t have many concrete historical or timely references…Lead by Hecuba, a queen in exile (intense and unbreakable DeAnna Supplee), the women of Troy are fighting fear and despair…A fighting/dancing scene is beautifully staged by the choreographer Joya Powell. The sound design and the lighting highlight the slow-mo moments of the fight, making it even more surreal and terrifying."
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Village Voice
September 8th, 2016

"Haney struggles to bring the Trojans' story to life. Performers deliver choral text in tones that suggest self-consciousness about classical poetry, rather than moment-by-moment emotion. There are wistfully harmonious songs, and swoopy ensemble choreography...but both elements are overly recognizable, and the staging feels too familiar to shock us into connecting with the Trojans' plight...Occasionally, the young performers from the Bats find ways to ignite feeling."
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U
September 6th, 2016

"Dances are deftly delivered, speeches are articulately delivered, yes. But the depth of experience behind the devastation of the war-torn universe of the play is not quite evoked. I yearned for vocal quality variation…The insistent delivery of meaningful speeches was wearying...Yet, I was pleased to go along this intermission-less ride…And some speeches held me rapt…This adaptation of the myth of real human historical tragedy of war merits multiple productions more."
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Let's Talk Off-Broadway
September 11th, 2016

"The current production makes the play, that is a cascade of dramatically intense situations, action and ideas, seem static. The directing depends on outdated ideas of what Greek tragedy should look and sound like…The set and costuming are burdened by the same unimaginative vision. The Bats are, like the rest of the production, burdened by the obvious. These actors speak, however, with clarity and projection, and if you go, you will hear every word–and that’s worth plenty!"
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E
September 21st, 2016

"Trimming the script to a brisk 60 minutes, adapter Ellen McLaughlin highlights the play’s themes of remembrance, identity and survival…McLaughlin and director Anne Cecelia Haney wisely don’t oversell the relevance of the narrative. Its universality speaks for itself…The cast delivers the confident, visceral work for which the Bats are well known. Their unaffected approach to this challenging material potently embodies both the mythic and the modern elements of the text."
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SusanGranger.com
September 9th, 2016

"Ellen McLaughlin’s adaptation focuses on the wasted lives that war leaves in its wake. And its theme, of course, is timeless…Modestly staged by Anne Cecelia Haney, this translation is performed by The Flea’s resident acting company, known as The Bats, not well served by Joya Powell’s distracting choreography. Perhaps because of their youth and relative inexperience, they declaim the choral text, never seeming to grasp the emotional subtlety, which is as relevant today as it was back then."
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Z
September 10th, 2016

"Euripides wrote 'The Trojan Women' two millennia ago, and its relevance still astounds…The choreography feels distracting at times and the ensemble’s youthful energy can work against the somber themes of this very old story, but there are powerful performances…Euripides wrote his little anti-war play two thousand years ago and it is still powerful, an age-old story that we never seem to learn from."
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Off Off Online
September 3rd, 2016

"It is the human tension of the play that rings through McLaughlin’s words and lifts the story into beautiful, complex territories...This adaptation of Euripides’ antebellum narrative, if occasionally flighty, is moving and cinematic in its scope...The plot is held together by the barest of backbones, and for all the characters’ elegies and monologues, there are times when the postwar narrative seems too forced, too distant. But when we are reminded, it is powerful."
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