Doctor Zhivago Broadway Review: A Soapy Romance During the Russian Revolution


I had hoped that a major benefit of winning the Cold War would be no longer having to sit through a show like Doctor Zhivago, a musical adaptation of Pasternak’s novel that presents the Russian Revolution largely as the story of a good-looking couple’s long-simmering adulterous affair and the mean Communists who get in their […]

The King and I Broadway Review: A ravishing revival starring Kelli O’Hara, Ken Watanabe


From the very first moments of Lincoln Center’s ravishing The King and I, it feels like a privilege just to be sitting in the audience. First the 29 musicians play Rodgers and Hammerstein’s lush overture in an orchestra pit that looks to be in the middle of the auditorium. Then suddenly a magnificent ship slides […]

Finding Neverland Broadway review: Peter Pan. Again.


Is it pointless to pan Peter? Are we helpless in the face of the massive Peter Pander/Pandemic/Pandemonium (pick your Peter Pan pun.) Shortly after Peter and the Starcatcher and Peter Pan Live on NBC, we now get Finding Neverland, a musical adaptation of the 2004 film about how playwright J.M. Barrie came to create Peter […]

An American in Paris Broadway Review: A mesmerizing new Gershwin ballet


Both Gigi and An American In Paris are adapted from Oscar-winning 1950’s movie musicals directed by Vincente Minnelli and starring Leslie Caron. Both take place in Paris. Both have revised books, tuneful songs, able performers, pleasing designs.  So why does An American in Paris feel so fresh, and Gigi…not?

Hand to God Broadway review: Puppet pleasures and religious people’s pain


For an evil sock puppet who eventually bites a teenager’s ear off,  Tyrone is quite the philosopher. In the prologue in Hand to God, Robert Askin’s funny, filthy, violent and sensitive play, Tyrone tells us that all the trouble began when some jerk “invented right and wrong,” which led to the invention of the devil. […]

Wolf Hall Broadway Review: Henry VIII, heresy and adultery made dull


It’ll be another three months before the American Revolution arrives on Broadway, with the hip-hop musical Hamilton. In the meantime, the Great White Way has been pledging allegiance to the British Crown, first with The Audience, a play in which Helen Mirren portrays Queen Elizabeth II over 60 years, and now with Wolf Hall, Parts […]

Gigi Broadway Review: Vanessa Hudgens in visually stunning, emotionally threadbare production


Gigi, an imitation French confection of a musical starring High School Musical sweetheart Vanessa Hudgens, is based on a novella by Colette about two aging prostitutes grooming their illegitimate relative, a child of 15, to attach herself to a rich older man.  Colette added a twist to this sordid story, which she set in high-toned […]

Helen Mirren reigns supreme over The Audience


It’s always a pleasure to welcome Helen Mirren back to the Broadway stage. Her new vehicle by Peter Morgan, who served her well once before as author of “The Queen,” a film in which by playing Elizabeth II for the first time, she won herself a well deserved Oscar for best performance. Now here she […]

Larry David’s Fish in the Dark a smash hit


Larry David’s ‘Fish’ gives new meaning to the word “promising.” There’s no question his play is full of laughs, but it is peopled by over a dozen completely one dimensional characters who remain where they began until minutes before the final curtain, by which time all or most have seen the light, and spread some joy.

Lady, Be Good! at Encores


At the conclusion of the Saturday matinee during the seven performance run of each Encores! presentation at New York’s City Center, there is always a talkback with members of the company, or artists connected to the original productions will speak to us. In the case of George and Ira Gershwin’s first collaboration to hit Broadway, […]

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