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Author Archive | Richard Seff

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Review: ‘The Parisian Woman’ at Hudson Theater

Drawing room comedy is back for the moment, thanks to Beau Willimon’s The Parisian Woman. Genuine high wattage star Uma Thurman is riding in this vehicle which deals with the powerful people in present-day Washington, whom we are told are the only sort worth having as friends. Pam McKinnon has staged the play with fluidity, […]

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Review: ‘Meteor Shower’ at the Booth Theatre

This 90-minute sketch by Steve Martin begins as a situation comedy. Until fairly recently there were always several lighting up Broadway; and they were usually written by the likes of Neil Simon, Jean Kerr, or John Van Druten, and–for those of you over fifty–F. Hugh Herbert or the team of Joseph Fields and Jerome Chodorov. […]

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Review: ‘SpongeBob SquarePants’ at the Palace Theatre

At last, a musical version of the SpongeBob family of characters who first appeared in a film cartoon in 1999. The title character and his friends have always lived in the fictional underwater city of Bikini Bottom, and they’ve been so popular with their fans that they’ve become among the highest rated series on Nickelodeon. […]

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Review: ‘Brigadoon’ at New York City Center

I was about to resignedly sigh about another tired revival of a favorite musical from the Golden Age, when along came Brigadoon from the remarkable New York City Center “Encores!” series to force me to instantly retract. Instead I fling my hat in the air to welcome a brilliantly cast, directed, and choreographed example of […]

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Review: ‘Harry Clarke’ at The Vineyard Theatre

Only on rare occasion have I found a one-man (or woman) play rich enough for my blood. I do recall John Gielgud’s mesmerizing performance in Shakespeare’s Ages of Man, and there have been some plays dressed up to look fully realized by using scenery and costumes to enhance interesting stories from the mouths of interesting […]

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Review: ‘Office Hour’ at The Public

The playwright Julia Cho now has Office Hour on at the Public Theatre, but she has been a steady and welcome contributor to the contemporary scene for some time. Works of hers have been produced at Playwrights Horizons, Roundabout Theatre Company, and the Vineyard, as well as at reputable regional theaters like the South Coast […]

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Review: ‘The Portuguese Kid’ at the Manhattan Theatre Club

Jason Alexander was a Broadway baby long before he achieved fame on Seinfeld, but he’s had trouble re-establishing himself even though he’d appeared in Merrily We Roll Along, The Rink, Jerome Robbins’ Broadway, and others. He’d also co-starred with Martin Short in the West Coast production of The Producers. At last, he’s found a role […]

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Review: ‘Junk’ at Lincoln Center Theater

A junk bond is a high-yield, high-risk maturity in the financial markets, and a greedy group of investors bought them and enjoyed the 10-12 percent interest that was sent out semi-annually, in most cases. Ayad Akhtar’s play, Junk, now playing at Lincoln Center in New York City, is a documentary that is informative and technically quite […]

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Review: ‘M. Butterfly’ at The Cort Theatre

The characters Song Lilig and her consort René Gallinard are back on Broadway. Their play is M.Butterfly and its tale of a romance between a French diplomat (Gallinard, played by Clive Owen in the revival) and a young opera singer (Lilig, played by Jin Ha). This time out, director Julie Taymor has added her extraordinary […]

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Review: ‘The Band’s Visit’ at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre

David Yazbek has been one of the less publicized composer/lyricists from the generation of writers who followed those who wrote musicals in the “Golden Age” of Broadway. Yazbek has earned nominations for a Tony Award three times, for The Full Monty, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, and Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown. He’s also […]

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Review: ‘Lonely Planet’ at Keen Company

The setting of Lonely Planet is a “map store on the oldest street in an American city.” I assume the playwright, Stephen Dietz, wrote that into the program to let us know that what we are about to witness could have happened almost anywhere in America. There are several maps mounted on the walls of the […]

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Review: ‘The Home Place’ at Irish Repertory Theatre

Brian Friel’s play, The Home Place, has taken its time to find its way to New York, where it arrived in good hands at the newly renovated Irish Repertory Theatre off Broadway. The play premiered in 2005 at the Gate Theatre in Dublin before transferring to the West End n London and is only now having its […]

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Review: ‘If Only… a Love Story’ at The Cherry Lane Theatre

The Cherry Lane Theatre, in Greenwich Village, is offering a new play by a New York playwright, Thomas Klingenstein, whose earlier works have been seen at the Lark Theatre Lab, the Atlantic Theatre  Studios and the New York Historical Society. Clearly, he’s done his apprenticeship, and now we have his full-length play with an excellent […]

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Review: ‘Prince of Broadway’ at the Manhattan Theatre Club

Hal Prince, producer/director extraordinaire is far too modest. His new offering at the Manhattan Theatre Club is so vastly entertaining that I hereby elevate him from PRINCE to KING OF BROADWAY for masterminding this two and a half hour extravaganza which he’s managed to accomplish with just nine very talented actors. Part of Prince’s gift […]

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