Let's Talk Off Broadway

Yvonne Korshak reviews Off-Broadway, Broadway, Film and Art

Tag: Pam MacKinnon

Broadway Review | Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? by Edward Albee | With Tracy Letts, Amy Morton, Carrie Coon, Madison Dirks | Directed by Pam MacKinnon | Steppenwolf Theatre Company

This is an excellent production of a very well written and engrossing play that leaves off with an unpleasant sense of sound and fury signifying not much.

It’s about a husband and wife who constantly argue and undercut one another.  This is done under the guise of what’s supposedly a significant psychological, even philosophical, revelation involving a mutually held illusion but in my view that’s a highfalutin pretext: the unlikely revelation is no more than a justification for a tremendously skilled playwright to write a total orgy of witty, sharp, well observed nastiness between a married couple.  That can be a lot of fun, but it’s also pretty sordid.

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Review | Completeness by Itamar Moses | Directed by Pam MacKinnon | Playwrights Horizons

Itamar Moses catches today’s lingo like butterflies.  Completeness is about young people, in the Computer Science and Biology Departments of a university, talking about love, molecular biology and computer science, while going through a variety of partners.  It’s good to have a play about people who are intelligent and care about their work.

Elliot is a Computer Science Assistant Professor (or thereabouts) who — beyond his sleepy-eyed cool — is dedicated to solving THE problem in Computer Science, “The Salesman’s Problem” — and if you see the play, he will tell you all about its complexities.  He’s so articulate you feel he knows everything, except how to resolve the conflict between his anxiety about commitment (described in a hilariously hyperbolic monolog that’s a high point of the play) and a yearning to settle in with “the one” or “love” or whatever. 

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