Author Archive

The Big Deal

Written by Doug Strassler on . Posted in NY Press Exclusive

Dan LeFranc has constructed the play of a lifetime By Doug Strassler “Auntie Mame” would fit right in with the family depicted in playwright Dan LeFranc’s The Big Meal. Her “life is a banquet” sensibility echoes throughout the show, running at Playwrights Horizons after a decorated turn in Chicago last year, in which events unfold [&hellip
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Elysian Fields Forever

Written by Doug Strassler on . Posted in NY Press Exclusive

There’s nothing definitive about the new Desire revival It’s hard to breathe new life into a classic work. With performers ranging from the iconic Marlon Brando and Vivien Leigh to Alec Baldwin, Cate Blanchett, Jessica Lange, Frances McDormand, and Treat Williams breathing life and resuscitating it into the immortal roles of Blanche DuBois and Stanley [&hellip
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To Sirs, With Shrugs

Written by Doug Strassler on . Posted in NY Press Exclusive

James Corden makes us all slaves to laughter in One Man, Two Guvnors By Doug Strassler Francis Henshall (James Corden) has an enormous appetite for most things, it would seem: for life, for attention, and, most appropriately, for food. It’s the latter quest that drives him to desperately agree to work for two separate servants [&hellip
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Some ‘Regrets’ in a Hotel in Reno

Written by Doug Strassler on . Posted in NY Press Exclusive, Uncategorized

It’s not been a good year for Manhattan Theater Club’s City Center series, which included Zoe Kazan’s dramatically anemic We Live Here and Molly Smith Metzler’s amateurish Close Up Space. If Matt Charman’s Regrets, directed by Carolyn Cantor, is the best of the bunch, it’s only because it is raising the bar from a subterranean [&hellip
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Sex and the Pity

Written by Doug Strassler on . Posted in NY Press Exclusive

Your Boyfriend May Be Imaginary hits on some real topics By Doug Strassler What would playwrights do if the dating scene was an easy one to navigate? Lonely hearts’ losses, however, are audience’s gains in Larry Kunofsky’s new play “Your Boyfriend May Be Imaginary,” a skewed look at the youth dating scene that manages to [&hellip
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Where’s the 2011 Pulitzer for Fiction? And Doug Strassler’s other reactions to this year’s Pulitzer Prizes

Written by Doug Strassler on . Posted in NY Press Exclusive

Apparently, a spoonful of water helps the medicine go down for the members of the Pulitzer committee. I’m referring to yesterday’s surprise announcement to award the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama to Quiara Alegría Hudes for Water by the Spoonful. The drama follows a young Iraq War veteran after returning home to Philadelphia. I’ve not [&hellip
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Mud Brothers

Written by Doug Strassler on . Posted in NY Press Exclusive

Best Man boasts a smart ensemble By Doug Strassler The Best Man, Gore Vidal’s moralistic chestnut, was written and set in 1960, running parallel with the Kennedy-Nixon presidential race. It’s since been revived on Broadway twice; first in 2000, and again now in 2012. What might all these years have in common? Yep, they’re election [&hellip
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Where’s the Fire? The first Broadway revival of Evita is only medium flying adored

Written by Doug Strassler on . Posted in NY Press Exclusive

“A backstreet girl” is how Evita describes the ambitious Eva Duarte Peron, the ambitious actress who clawed her way from poverty to celebrity as the wife of Argentine dictator Juan Peron and, ultimately, to either immortality or infamy, based on which side of fence this polarizing figure put you on. Her legend was considerably abetted [&hellip
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Going the Distance

Written by Doug Strassler on . Posted in NY Press Exclusive

With 4000 Miles, Amy Herzog graduates to the head of the class By Doug Strassler I wasn’t a very big fan of Amy Herzog’s last play, 2010’s After the Revolution; despite a starry and experienced cast, I found the thoughtful work heavy-handed and dramatically clunky. I am happy to report, then, that I am exceedingly [&hellip
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Canadian Bakin’

Written by Doug Strassler on . Posted in Arts Our Town Downtown, NY Press Exclusive, Our Town Downtown

Director Philippe Falardeau makes Monsieur Lazhar look like child’s play Monsieur Lazhar gets off to an auspicious start as a young pupil in a Montreal elementary school discovers one of his teachers has killed herself. Helping the students address their grief, amid the myriad other growing pains all children must face, is a new teacher [&hellip
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