New York | 1h 30m | Already closed

What We're Up Against (Life Force Arts)

From 4 critic and 30 member reviews
Members say: Relevant, Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

About the show

Life Force Arts presents Theresa Rebeck's timely dramedy, which explores the intricacies of wage inequality and gender roles in the workplace. More…

Set in a highly competitive architecture firm, 'What We're Up Against' is a burning examination of the complicated battle of the sexes raging across Cubicle Land. A comic yet insightful view of what it means to be female in a male-dominated career, and one woman’s response when she tires of slamming into the glass ceiling.

1h 30m | Already closed | June Havoc Theatre (Midtown W)


"Theresa Rebeck writes an explosive new play on gender parity and the glass ceiling which does not get the production it deserves." Full Review

Times Square Chronicles

"'What We’re Up Against' shows how sexism remains entrenched to the bowels...Ms. Rebeck’s play is dark, timely, foulmouthed, juicy and seems like it is placed in the '50s not now, but the truth is we have not come along way baby...There are a few twists and turns that could be cleaner...Ms. Peress is a director to watch as she makes this show feel effortless. This is a company with actors to follow and a play that will have you in conversation for at least a couple of days." Full Review


"This satirical play is timely as we watch the historic battle of the sexes between presidential candidates Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton...Rebeck's writing, Mamet-esque and tack-sharp, is a pleasure to behold. This production, directed by Lorca Peress, is well done with standouts in the cast, Lesley McBurney as Eliza and Ean Sheehy as her smart but cowardly colleague, Ben." Full Review

Stage Buddy

"Watching the show was, for the women in the audience, a deeply frustrating experience, testament to the play’s success in portraying the sexist practices that all-too-often dominate male-centric workplaces...Though the play’s themes are explicitly portrayed, Rebeck’s nuanced writing, aided by the skill of McBurney’s performance, develops a more profound understanding of those women’s experiences...Under Lorca Peress’s direction, the performances avoid the obvious stereotyping." Full Review

Clever, Great writing, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if you like shows that are 100% relevant, well acted, well staged, and VERY well written. It's set in 1993, but is topical today.

Don't see it if you think women should stay at home and make babies. Rebeck shows us how women don't always help women in the workplace, & men rarely do.

Absorbing, Resonant, Timely, Timeless, Great acting

See it if you're a woman who's run up against gender bias, so, basically every woman in America will find something that resonates here.

Don't see it if you're looking for a light comedy or easy answers. This one will stay w/ me a good long time. Loved it. Amazing set design on a budget, too.

Absorbing, Great writing, Relevant

See it if You're interested in workplace dynamics and gender issues. You want to see a small show tackle actual issues.

Don't see it if You're easily offended by language or sexism.

Also The cast was terrific and the set was great, especially for a small of... Read more Read less

Timely, Relevant, Intelligent, Riveting

See it if You enjoy plays that address societal issues such as women's rights and equality in the workplace. Rebeck's realistic-yet-humorous style A+

Don't see it if You are a chauvinist. You do not appreciate great writing that hooks an audience and lands a (sadly still necessary) message with power.

Absorbing, Great acting, Resonant, Great staging, Intelligent

See it if You are interested in timely, issue oriented plays with a message that needs to be addressed and lands loud and clear. An important must see

Don't see it if If you want to go and see light and fluffy play. This is not one of those.

Absorbing, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Edgy

See it if You are passionate on the wage gap, injustice in the workplace and feminism. If you admire dedicated and energetic acting, come and see this

Don't see it if A few line fluffs and black box theater put you off.

Absorbing, Crackling dialogue, Intelligent, Relevant, Must see

See it if Are interested in theatre that poses questions about equal opportunities in the workplace for men and women. Good direction, lively dialogue

Don't see it if If cursing offends you or if you aren't interested in this subject matter. You didn't like Glengarry Glen Ross.

Also Nice surprise!

Absorbing, Clever, Great writing, Great acting

See it if You're interested in a well crafted play investigating gender in the workplace.

Don't see it if You want something with spectacle or outside day-to-day challenges.

Clever, Funny, Great writing, Quirky, Relevant

See it if You like hot topics, and enjoy crass remarks. A fast paced world where women still do not get equal treatment as men

Don't see it if If you do not like vulgar language

Absorbing, Relevant, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Satiric

See it if You are intested in seeing an intelligent well-acted piece of "issue-oriented" theater-- in this case gender discrimination in the workplace

Don't see it if You have no interest in watching a play about sexual politics.

Absorbing, Great acting, Intense, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if If you are interested in the issues facing women in a corporate atmosphere - good acting and well developed characters

Don't see it if You like characters that fit easily in a good versus bad scenario. If you don't like drama or profanity

Also This shows the slow pace to women's equality in the workplace. It exam... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Relevant, Resonant

See it if you are a woman who has ever seen discrimination based on your gender; or you are sympathetic to same. A rather predictable plot well done.

Don't see it if you are looking for big surprises about this subject; you feel that women should shut up and quit complaining; you disbelieve in gender bias

Great acting, Clever, Dated, Entertaining, Funny

See it if you are interested in issues that affect women in the workplace, particularly if you were in the work force in the 1990's.

Don't see it if you cannot find humor in way women were treated in the workplace in the 1990's, or you are not interested in women's issues.

Entertaining, Great writing, Great acting, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if it's a great play that is thematically interesting without losing entertainment value

Don't see it if you prefer lighter plays or dramas with comedic beats

Absorbing, Funny, Intelligent

See it if you want to continue thinking about the theme of the show-which I am still doing a day later.

Don't see it if If you are biased about women in the profession

Absorbing, Relevant, Intense, Resonant, Thought-provoking

See it if you can bear bracing, extended iteration of mentality and behavior made infamous for the moment by Trump. Engaging, well-acted and -written.

Don't see it if you're not receptive to the reality of women treated as second-class citizens in today's workplace or you cringe easily at f-bombs.

Well acted, Relevant, Intelligent, Not subtle

See it if you're interested in the (very real) challenges faced by women in the workplace

Don't see it if U can't take serious cursing, don't believe that women face discrimination, can't forgive a couple of lines that blow the ending and message

Also To the playwright: I won't spoil the ending for readers, but I really ... Read more Read less

Intense, Great acting, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if You want to explore the dynamics of women & men as "equals" in a typically male work place. Good dialogue, especially in confrontations.

Don't see it if If the "war of the sexes" is not of interest, If cursing and yelling is a problem, if you want a lot of comedy in your dramedy..

Also The piece sometimes seems dated, perhaps because the characters could ... Read more Read less

Great acting, Intelligent, Resonant

See it if You like an intelligent play that highlights the difficulty that women face breaking into the "boy's club".

Don't see it if You don't like easily defined characters.

Absorbing, Clever, Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Simplistic

See it if you like Rebeck's plays, enjoy plot twists & betrayals, appreciate what women endure in the work place, like a well crafted revenge

Don't see it if you don't like workplace dramas, dated but still relevant situations, or don't enjoy obviously issue shows

Resonant, Intense, Thought-provoking

See it if You realize how difficult it continues to be for women in the workplace. Relationship between the women interesting and plausible too.

Don't see it if You're disturbed by an unsatisfying ending and long pontificating by some of the characters. Still it's important to see and talk about.

Relevant, Cliched, Disappointing

See it if you enjoy office dramas with a feminist slant. Perhaps a bit too on the nose at times, but it brings up important, topical points

Don't see it if you don't like foul-mouthed dialog and female empowerment. Some characters weren't really fully developed

Absorbing, Clever, Great acting, Dizzying, Relevant

See it if you enjoy topical political shows about feminism, misogyny, great acting, and rapid, snappy and smart dialogue. Shorter, one-act plays.

Don't see it if You want something light and funny, don't like plays examining sexism and misogyny, want a play that is full-length and fully developed.

Also Great potential, would love to see it fleshed out into a longer play (... Read more Read less

Relevant, Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Ambitious

See it if Youre interested in fair employment.

Don't see it if You like plays that leave you up in the air.

Easy to relate, Smart, Irritating, Cliched, Solid acting

See it if you don't get enough office politics at work and like stories dealing with workplace issues.

Don't see it if cacaphony of actors yelling over each other on stage would irritate you. Kinda a downer for women who find this topic frustrating.

Cast & Creatives (13)