Author Archive

What a Way to Make a Living

Written by Mark Peikert on . Posted in Arts & Film, NY Press Exclusive, Theater

07_Theater-RX When the film adaptation of The Hours came out, my boss at the time said, apropos of Julianne Moore’s character, “You don’t need a reason to be depressed.” That truth kept flashing through my mind during RX, the saddest comedy to come along in quite a while. In Kate Fodor’s world, managing editor at American [&hellip
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Bright Lights, Broke City

Written by Mark Peikert on . Posted in Arts & Film, Arts Our Town, Arts West Side Spirit, Books, Our Town, West Side Spirit

08_Arts-the-darlings_1 Cristina Alger took the “Write what you know” dictum to heart. Her book The Darlings (which has evoked comparisons to Dominick Dunne and Tom Wolfe—no shabby company for a debut novel) is set amid the world of the titular Upper East Side hedge fund family, just as the market crashes and reveals some questionable corporate [&hellip
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Mildly Troubled

Written by Mark Peikert on . Posted in NY Press Exclusive, Theater

Angelica Page and Jeffrey Carlson in 'Psycho Therapy' The flimsy and painless Psycho Therapy is little more than a paycheck for its actors, but the results aren’t disastrous. Nothing about Frank Strausser’s new comedy is available for pointing and laughing; the story of conflicted Lily, who finds herself in couples therapy with her current boyfriend Philip and her ex-boyfriend Dorian, is light on [&hellip
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Keyholes: Taking a Peek into Spalding Gray's Old Writing Spot

Written by Mark Peikert on . Posted in Dwell OTDT, Our Town Downtown

otdthome This month, Our Town Downtown begins a new recurring feature called Keyholes, in which we investigate real, Downtown apartments. And who better to show that it doesn’t hurt than our own managing editor Marissa Maier, who currently lives in the former Soho apartment of Spalding Gray, her stepfather. According to family lore—Maier has her doubts—her Wooster [&hellip
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She's Grrreat!

Written by Mark Peikert on . Posted in Arts & Film, Books, Our Town Downtown

agora Judging from her hilariously dark new memoir Agorafabulous!: Dispatches from My Bedroom (out Feb. 14 from William Morrow), Sara Benincasa will always win the “Who has it worse?” game. Spent a week during college in your apartment, unable to get dressed or leave? Benincasa could barely leave her bed, and took to pissing in cereal bowls rather [&hellip
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Book Review: Luminous Airplanes by Paul La Farge

Written by Mark Peikert on . Posted in Arts & Film, Books

farge There is a lot of ground covered in Paul La Farge’s Luminous Airplanes, from the Great Disappointment of the 19th century to a time when computers were the province of dedicated insomniacs obsessed with the idea of making the machines do their bidding. Beneath the divergences and skittering chronology, however, is a fairly banal search for [&hellip
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They're Young, They're In Love, And They Sing at People

Written by Mark Peikert on . Posted in Arts & Film, Theater

clue The titular duo of misguided new musical Bonnie & Clyde first appear covered in blood, already dead in their car from the rain of bullets police officers unleashed upon them in 1934. That’s a pretty apt foreshadowing of this dead on arrival musical retelling of America’s sweetheart bandits. Book writer Ivan Menchell is the only person capable [&hellip
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Cut It Down

Written by Mark Peikert on . Posted in Arts & Film, Theater

cherry “People shouldn’t be going to plays,” says Ranevskaya somewhat ominously in Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard—or that may just be Dianne Wiest’s performance. Should you have ever tossed and turned in grief at Marilyn Monroe never having the opportunity to play Chekhov, Wiest’s simpering performance is dedicated to you.  There are, of course, more problems in this [&hellip
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Misery Loathes Audiences

Written by Mark Peikert on . Posted in Arts & Film, Theater

misery The insistent irony of the title Happy Hourshould be enough to tip audiences off to what to expect from the trio of Ethan Coen-penned one acts, staged at a glacial pace by Neil Pepe. Surprise! None of these characters are happy! And this collection is definitely not an hour. Things start off excruciatingly immediately, with the [&hellip
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