Reviews

Skinning a Cat

Glenda Jackson is brilliant.  Throughout Three Tall Women, her craggy face—one Beckett would have loved—alternately radiates wisdom, confusion, knowing cynicism, and puckish amusement, all with a firmly-pursed upper lip.  The primary difference, I think, between stage and film acting is the requirement for stage actors to use all of their body.  Too frequently, this means a series […]

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Reviews

Do You Mind if I Ask You Questions?

In 2004, nearly a half-century after its debut, Edward Albee decided to revise The Zoo Story, adding a first act that would “flesh out Peter fully.”  Without struggle and all of a sudden, Homelife “fell from my mind to the page … intact.”  The result, At Home at the Zoo, is receiving its first New York revival courtesy of […]

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Reviews

I’m Right Here

Here’s an endorsement that might not sound like one: for a play about three upper-class, narcissistic WASPs alternately moaning about their medical, financial, and relationship problems, Melissa Ross’ Of Good Stock isn’t all that bad.

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Reviews

Bring Some Extra Blankets

David Auburn won the Pulitzer Prize in 2001 for his play Proof, which is probably the only reason that Lost Lake is being produced now by the Manhattan Theatre Club.  This is a textbook mediocre American play: Veronica (Tracie Thoms) is a nurse practitioner and a single mom who is looking to rent a cabin for a […]

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Reviews

The Gap

It seems that the surest way to win a Pulitzer is to write a comic drama about a bad dinner between couples and preferably one in which, as the night progresses, secrets are revealed.  It has worked, albeit with some variations, for Edward Albee, Donald Margulies, and Tracy Letts.  And now we can add Ayad […]

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Reviews

Let’s Go Outside and Play

Kenneth Lonergan’s 1996 play This Is Our Youth is a neat little love story about a sociopathic bike messenger and drug dealer, Dennis Ziegler (Kieran Culkin), and his sniveling, obsequious friend, Warren Straub (Michael Cera).  After Warren steals $15,000 in cash from his physically abusive father, he flees to the emotionally abusive Dennis, and the two spend […]

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Reviews

People Hurt Me—So I Hurt Them Back

“It is a curious subject of observation and inquiry,” writes Nathaniel Hawthorne in The Scarlet Letter, “whether hatred and love be not the same thing at bottom.”  This certainly seems to be the case in August Strindberg’s The Dance of Death, a brutal exercise in misanthropy during which an elderly military captain, Edgar (Daniel Davis), […]

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