Already closed | 1h 50m | Midtown W

The Importance of Being Earnest (Two Ways)

From 15 member  reviews
Members say: Funny, Clever, Great acting, Delightful, Great writing

About the show

New York Classical Theatre revisits its gender-flipping production of Oscar Wilde's comic masterpiece, where the entire cast swaps roles at every other performance, this summer in an outdoor staging in 3 NYC parks. More…

Considered one of the great comedies in the English language, Wilde's 1895 classic is a satire of social manners and obligations in Victorian England. In NY Classical's production, the entire cast will swap roles (and genders) every other performance to explore the power dynamics in the script.

The production, which is the centerpiece of NY Classical’s 20th Anniversary season, will play in Central Park from May 28-June 16, Brooklyn Bridge Park from June 18-23, and Carl Schurz Park from June 25-30.

1h 50m | Already closed | Unspecified venue - NY (Midtown W)

Member Reviews (15)


Funny, Clever, Great acting, Delightful, Great writing
Avg Score

Free admission, Great escape, Strong acting, Clever, Delightful

See it if you want to laugh. Wilde penned one of the greatest comedies ever...every sentence sparkles. NYCT gives this gem a proper, unfussy setting.

Don't see it if you only like modern experimental theater...altho try the reverse-gender casting wh upends convention. Some top-notch performances.

Also I am a fan of the NY Classical Theatre's outdoor, roving prodns...and ... Read more Read less

Funny, Energetic, Simple staging, Great writing, Clever

See it if you've never seen it! Great fun in both versions. Wlide's clever writing comes through. All of the actors work hard to make a fine ensemble.

Don't see it if you are expecting something novel. Even with the flipped casting the staging and performances are traditional.


See it if Light rom com of stuffy Victorians trying to find love and bending all the societal rules to do so.

Don't see it if Acoustics are tough in the park (they always face the crowd when speaking rather than each other). Moving seats distracts you too much.

Also Central Park: 2 hour play happens at 3 sites which requires you to mov... Read more Read less

Quirky, Must see, Funny, Entertaining, Clever

See it if You like outdoor theatre. It was gender swap night. The story was still just as good and classic.

Don't see it if You do not like panoramic theatre. You do not like modernization of classics

Intelligent, Great writing, Great acting

See it if You want to see a well performed version of a classic play in a beautiful setting. Enjoy plays in parks.

Don't see it if You do you not like sitting on the ground or standing. Do not like satires or Victorian dramas.

Also NYCT is one of the best park companies in the city. Always fun and wel... Read more Read less

Great acting, Great staging, Funny, Delightful

See it if You like al fresco performances of a great comedy of manners given by talented and enthusiastic actors with great gusto.

Don't see it if If you don't like sitting on the grass or moving about between scenes and are bored by Oscar Wilde (how could you be?)

Funny, Quirky, Great acting, Delightful, Clever

See it if you love Wilde, like seeing old shows through a new lens, like good acting.

Don't see it if you hate the original.

Great acting, Hilarious

See it if so funny

Don't see it if n/a

Delightful, Clever, Great writing, Great acting, Funny

See it if You want to see a wonderfully done straight production of this classic comedy and a hilarious gender-flipping version of it.

Don't see it if You're not open to finding something first staged in 1895 highly amusing.

Also Several outstanding performances. Connie Castanzo was spectacular both... Read more Read less

Free, Funny, Intelligent, Delightful

See it if 8 actors bring clear clever fun to a late Victorian picnic setting. Gender reversed casting proves clothes do not make the man. Or the woman

Don't see it if You don't like Oscar Wilde. But it is so delightful it might convince you.

Also This is a laugh out loud fast moving production, and everyone in it is... Read more Read less

Great acting, Funny, Enchanting, Ambitious, Clever

See it if You want to give old English plays a chance/want to see a solid outdoor production.

Don't see it if You don’t like sitting in the grass. There’s also movement between acts which may be a concern for people who can’t walk or move easily.

Intelligent, Refreshing, Entertaining, Delightful, Clever

See it if you adore classics being done at their finest.

Don't see it if you have difficulty sitting outdoors

Hilarious, Great writing

See it if If you like puns and sharp dialogue.

Don't see it if You prefer musicals...this is nothing like that.

Must see, Great acting, Funny, Absorbing, Ambitious

See it if If you're interested in seeing a classic Oscar Wilde masterpiece both traditional and flipped on its head with a modern twist.

Don't see it if Don't see it if you hate joy

Refreshing, Great acting, Entertaining, Delightful, Clever

See it if Love it

Don't see it if None

June 24th, 2019
“NY Classical Theatre is presenting two variations of Wilde’s masterful comedy of manners...The traditionally cast version is probably fine. But the gender-reversed version is not just entertaining but surprisingly fitting and enlightening...Incorporating gender-reversed casting works perfectly w...
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June 5th, 2019
“There’s nothing more satisfying...than sitting on the grass...enjoying...a talented troupe of actors performing a witty, erudite piece of classical theater...Wilde’s play being a poke in the inflated pretensions of Victorian notions of duty, respectability, morality, and class, the simple act of...
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June 26th, 2019
“In one version of 'The Important of Being Earnest,' the Oscar Wilde masterpiece of comic invention, men are men, women are women...New York Classical is playing it both ways. In its alternate version, men will be women and women men...Michalski with his baritone voice and female gestures is idea...
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March 14th, 2019
for a previous production "While this would seem like an opportunity to further explore the sexual politics of the piece or perhaps even examine it in a different period or setting, the result feels rather tame...Luckily, Wilde's delightfully satiric work does hold up and remains funny, but it sometimes feels like it does...
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