Uncle Vanya (Hunter Theater Project)
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Uncle Vanya (Hunter Theater Project)

Uncle Vanya (Hunter Theater Project) NYC Reviews and Tickets

(138 Reviews)
Members say
Great acting, Absorbing, Great writing, Intelligent, Masterful

About the Show

The Hunter Theater Project presents its inaugural production, a staging of a new translation of Anton Chekhov’s classic drama, directed by Richard Nelson.

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Member Reviews (138)

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677 Reviews | 187 Followers
Absorbing, Intimate, Accessible, Resonant, Intelligent

See it if you want a smart, approachable, naturalistic staging of Chekhov that feels more like eavesdropping on a family than watching a classic drama

Don't see it if u don't like Nelson's quiet, low key, conversational productions à la Gabriels & Apple Family plays; u prefer your Russian drama traditional

481 Reviews | 315 Followers
Understated, quiet

See it if Very intimate production of Uncle Vanya. I had not seen Uncle Vanya before, but found this accessible and intense.

Don't see it if You want to see a dynamic, action filled play. I found it hard to stay awake in the middle, despite the excellent acting. Read more

513 Reviews | 129 Followers
Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Masterful, Understated

See it if you love intelligent, brilliant & subtle acting, writing & direction. The quiet ending is devastating; Woods as Sonja is superb.

Don't see it if you are looking for action or a complicated approach to Chekov; you do not enjoy personal theater in an intimate setting; Read more

469 Reviews | 258 Followers
Absorbing, Ambitious, Exquisite, Great acting, Masterful

See it if you want to see the aways dependable Jay O. Sanders give the performance of his career in Richard Nelson's exquisite production.

Don't see it if you don't like intimate theatre or people speaking in normal tones. Read more

414 Reviews | 74 Followers
Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent, Moving

See it if classic Chekhov play interpreted by Richard Nelson; similar in staging to his Gabriel plays - quietly spoken around a kitchen table; low key

Don't see it if you need to hear every bit of dialogue or if you don't like plays that are dialogue heavy with little action; did not like the Gabriel plays Read more

427 Reviews | 48 Followers
Ambitious, Great acting, Great staging

See it if Like the play and missed the recent Richard Nelson Apple/Gabriel plays. Love to be right on top of the action.

Don't see it if Took a while to get into some of the actor's styles. Uneven between comedy and the dramatic outbursts.

367 Reviews | 61 Followers
Great acting, Must see, Relevant, Absorbing, Jay o. sanders!!

See it if You love Chekov. You love naturalistic acting of the first order. You love theatre.

Don't see it if You can't sit still, listen, and be taken to another world. Read more

360 Reviews | 89 Followers
Absorbing, Great acting, Great staging, Romantic, Masterful

See it if You have seen other productions of Vanya but felt emotionally disconnected from the material.

Don't see it if You dislike theatre in the round. You dislike the source material to the point where you feel you wouldn't enjoy any production of it. Read more

Critic Reviews (24)

The New York Times
September 16th, 2018

"It’s clearer, truer, and more comprehensible than it’s ever been before...I’m still shivery, teary-eyed, and stunned from seeing Richard Nelson’s devastatingly intimate production...This is as naked and fully human an 'Uncle Vanya' as we’re likely to see. Nelson’s impeccably balanced ensemble doesn’t seem to be so much interpreting the script as living it...The performances are so self-effacing, you won’t at first realize how thorough and completely felt they are."
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Time Out New York
September 16th, 2018

"We’ve never seen a Vanya like this—huge, ox-necked, shuddering like a dray horse from from burdens he’s pulled too long. Sanders's acting contains a level of detail that simply shouldn’t be visible without a camera to magnify it...The only people onstage who come close to this titanic performance are Woods, a vivid and feeling actor, and DeVries, who can also render the pore-level naturalism that Nelson demands. But a central chunk of the play belongs to Astrov and Elena, who are less secure."
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New York Magazine / Vulture
September 16th, 2018

"It’s a pity that Nelson, Pevear, and Volokhonsky’s new version of ‘Uncle Vanya’...often seems to stick in the mouths of its actors. The cast is, for the most part, superb, and in the moments they’re not shown to best advantage, their inherent abilities are still well visible below the text...It’s a credit to them, to Nelson as a director, and to the irrepressible brilliance of Chekhov that the production still manages, labored language and all, to find moments of real humor and pathos."
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The Wall Street Journal
October 8th, 2018

"The results are successful in every way...I can wholeheartedly recommend this production to Chekhov novices and connoisseurs...Such terrible tales are best told in an understated way, and Nelson’s actors hardly ever raise their voices, whether figuratively or literally. Instead, they let you listen in as they watch the sun set on their bleak little world...One of our most accomplished character actors, Sanders gets to be the star of this show, scoring a decisive triumph in the title role."
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The Washington Post
September 20th, 2018

“A heart-piercing production as sublime as I’ve ever seen Chekhov performed...The actors...speak in intentionally normal tones of voice, and if you have trouble catching every word, Nelson has said he doesn’t much care...By distilling the text to a seemingly fresh variety of conversational truthfulness...Vanya’s silent suffering feel brutally real. And when in this instance Vanya’s patience finally runs out, Sanders’s explosion is nothing less than cataclysmic.”
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September 16th, 2018

"Utilizes the distinctly small style that Nelson, as playwright and director, has honed over the past several years. The actors speak in a near whisper and express the unique suffering of these characters in true Chekhovian style, with an elegant balance of vocal and physical anguish...Nelson, Pevar, and Volokhonsky have created a lithe, colloquial cutting of 'Uncle Vanya'...It's the perfect introduction to the text for new audiences, while still capturing the spirit of the original."
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September 17th, 2018

"The most interesting feature of the translation is how the language rarely commits itself to a period...New York stage gem Jay O. Sanders is extremely compelling in the title role...But it's Yvonne Woods' captivating performance as Sonya, Serebryakov's daughter through his first marriage, that gives this production its true beauty...As long as Nelson's productions keep supplying such superb ensembles giving such fully-realized performances, familiarity breeds admiration."
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Lighting & Sound America
September 18th, 2018

“The translation, which feels fresh without being distractingly contemporary, fits neatly with Nelson's staging...The design consists of little more than a table and some chairs, with...mics hanging overhead, providing just enough...to make every word intelligible, despite the low-key, almost cinematic, acting style...Nelson has assembled a number of fine companions for Sanders' Vanya...Sanders carries the day; his Vanya is the preeminent member of this house of fools and broken hearts."
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