The Way West
Closed 1h 40m
The Way West

The Way West NYC Reviews and Tickets

(28 Reviews)
Members say
Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Disappointing, Absorbing

About the Show

Labyrinth Theater Company presents a new comedy about a modern-day, falling-apart California town, where Mom shares death-defying tales of pioneer crossings as she waits for her bankruptcy to come through.

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Member Reviews (28)

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Thought-provoking, Funny, Moving, Great acting

See it if funny and poignant. True and whimsical. Great acting all around. Entertaining.

Don't see it if you don't like small shows.

Entertaining, Funny, Great acting, Relevant

See it if You like stories about mothers & daughters and themes about surviving financially. The performances are good and the story is entertaining

Don't see it if You don't like small/intimate shows or shows w/ mostly women. I was fully engaged but didn't care for the monologues that broke the 4th wall

Critic Reviews (11)

The New York Times
March 17th, 2016

"Ms. Mansour’s dialogue can be bleakly funny...While the dialogue often has a comic crackle, the characters’ fecklessness is less charmingly kooky than exasperating...Under the direction of Mimi O’Donnell, O’Connell displays an earthy good humor that partly makes up for her tedious forays into a fantasyland...Mansour seems to be striving not just for laughs but for pathos, too. The trouble is these people behave so absurdly that it’s hard to have much sympathy for them."
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Time Out New York
March 19th, 2016

"When the production itself becomes unsteady the play turns clunky and mean-spirited. But Mansour's sympathy for her central character and one casually wonderful performance mean that 'The Way West' occasionally lives up to the playwright's own ambitions…O'Connell is indispensable—a sympathetic tragedy-in-motion…O'Donnell handles the play's two farce scenes with quick confidence, but the wide spectrum of performance destabilizes an already tonally challenging play."
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March 16th, 2016

"With this challenging, important new play, Mansour holds a mirror up to America: where we've been and where we might be going...One of the most watchable actors in New York, O'Connell gives a typically memorable performance...You are likely to leave 'The Way West' feeling deeply ambivalent. Mansour does not create likable characters. They are marked by delusion, jealousy, irresponsibility, sloth, and blind faith. Still, few among us can claim to be completely free of those foibles."
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Lighting & Sound America
March 18th, 2016

"'The Way West' suffers from a certain monotonousness--things just keep getting worse--that undermines one's interest in the characters. Watching them repeatedly screw up, it becomes increasingly difficult to care what happens to them...Mimi O'Donnell's direction can't bring urgency or a rooting interest to this situation but her cast is fairly solid...As 'The Way West' follows a predictable path to ruin, Mansour's editorializing fails to take it to state-of-the-nation play status."
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Theatre is Easy
March 24th, 2016

"If there was ever any doubt that Deirdre O'Connell is one of the best actors working in New York City, head down to Labyrinth...It's predictability that makes 'The Way West' wander from its otherwise playful and engaging path...There's a lot to admire about a story focusing on women fighting for dignity...But since the women are victims of their own poor decisions more often than not, by the end when things are in total disarray I didn't really feel sorry for anyone."
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Theater Pizzazz
March 17th, 2016

"Played masterfully by Deirdre O’Connell, Mom is a plain-talking spitfire...'The Way West' feels like a play long overdue. Three strong female characters fill the ensemble. Musical interludes weave through a plot driven by sharp dialogue and brilliant comedy...Mimi O’Connell provides pinpoint direction here to seamlessly transition the plot’s momentum into these metaphorical explorations of theme, without sacrificing an inch."
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March 16th, 2016

"A little of Mom's soliloquizing goes a long way and, in less capable hands than Deirdre O'Connell's, these sequences would be wearing. O'Connell, however, is one of the most adroit, compelling actors currently working, and her performance is reason enough to see 'The Way West'...[The designers] have found clever ways to deliver the whopping physical surprises in Mansour's wild and woolly script...Even in its most poignant moments, 'The Way West' is very funny."
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Front Row Center
March 17th, 2016

"There are a lot of laughs in 'The Way West' about a family’s descent into debt and insolvency. With humor in pathos, playwright Mona Mansour captures the tenuous way many Americans are living nowadays, financially over their heads with no job security, or worse, permanently unemployed...Mimi O’Donnell’s crisp direction strikes the perfect balance needed to pull off this comedic tragedy. Together with Ms. Mansour, they evoke the family’s back story that you see as plain as day."
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March 16th, 2016

"Ms. Mansour’s intent is genuine, but the play wobbles between realism and absurdism never giving either genre the opportunity to realize her noble dramatic goals...Under Mimi O’Donnell’s reasoned but sometimes inconsistent direction, the ensemble gives each of their characters an often intense and hyperactive authenticity that fills the stage with an aching for redemption and release from the captivity of meaninglessness...'The Way West' seems to be a work in progress."
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New York Theater
March 17th, 2016

"If all that befalls the family sounds too dark for 'The Way West' to be counted as a comedy, it has the rhythms and sparkle of lighter fare, thanks to the playwright’s witty dialogue and gentle doses of absurdity; the smooth direction of Labyrinth’s artistic director Mimi O’Donnell; and the terrific six-member cast – above all, the always fabulous Dierdre O’Connell as the descendant of pioneers, who elevates deliberate denial into a basic tenet of the American West."
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Theatre's Leiter Side
March 17th, 2016

"Ms. Mansour may be saying that the American pioneer spirit of survival in the face of every obstacle, on which Mom keeps harping, will somehow prevail, but what she’s shown about this family suggests not that they’ll succeed but that even worse awaits in the future. ‘The Way West’ isn’t funny enough to gloss over how depressing it is."
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