Awake and Sing! Score 70%

Awake and Sing!

On paper it seems like a good idea at the right time.  A revival of Clifford Odets’ 1935 classic Awake and Sing! about a struggling immigrant family in The Bronx, done in Yiddish, the language they would probably have spoken had they existed in real life. A no-brainer for the New Yiddish Rep since Awake and Sing! was the first Broadway play to focus entirely on a Jewish family.  And Clifford Odets was one of the first American playwrights to use, and become recognizable for ethnic language and street talk in his work.  The current production at the 14th St. Y through December 24th, has a Yiddish translation by Chaver Paver, but there are supertitles in English over the set that are easy to read.

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Once on This Island Score 97%

Once on This Island

In Once on this Island, Director Michael Arden has created an island of joy at the Circle in the Square Theatre. It is glorious and you absolutely must see it.

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The Parisian Woman Score 40%

The Parisian Woman

If a four-word review would be useful — and it might be in the Twitterverse we seem to inhabit— the thing to know about The Parisian Woman is that it is mostly “lipstick on a pig.”

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Describe the Night Score 80%

Describe the Night

Describe the Night, currently playing at Atlantic Theater Company’s Linda Gross Theater, is a question for which there is no answer.   Playwright Rajiv Joseph plays connect-the-dots with historical facts and figures spanning 90 years that might – or might not – have any connection, and asks us to see a familiar face in the resulting picture.  And while his pen is busy hopping all over the page, it’s kind of hard not to see a horrifyingly familiar image emerge from the seemingly random lines being drawn.

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The Winter’s Tale Score 85%

The Winter’s Tale

The Mobile Unit at the Public Theater has given The Winter’s Tale just the right kind of ‘makeover’ in an intelligently abridged interpretation, performed in a bright, informal space with a terrific cast and excellent direction.

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