All stories by Ben Brantley on BroadwayStars

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Review: ‘Barber Shop Chronicles’ Offers an Exhilarating Sanctuary by Ben Brantley

Inua Ellams’s energizing, globe-traveling play considers the barber’s chair as the black man’s confessional.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 01:42PM
Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Best Theater of 2019 by Ben Brantley, Jesse Green, Laura Collins-Hughes, Alexis Soloski and Elisabeth Vincentelli

Shows that defied categorization offered a stark choice: Escape an angry world, or face up to its travails. Beyond Broadway, writers explored race, inequality and addiction.

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Tuesday, November 26, 2019

‘A Bright Room Called Day’ Review: The Playwright Enters the Play by Ben Brantley

In retooling his first produced work, Tony Kushner himself appears as a character in this lumbering portrait of endangered artists in Nazi Berlin.

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Monday, November 25, 2019

Review: A Heartbreaker Returns in ‘The Young Man From Atlanta’ by Ben Brantley

The Signature Theater’s compassionate revival of Horton Foote’s 1995 Pulitzer Prize-winning play takes a slow route to devastation.

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Wednesday, November 20, 2019

‘A Christmas Carol’ Review: God Rest Ye Merry, Plutocrats by Ben Brantley

This lively reimagining of Dickens’s yuletide perennial, written by Jack Thorne, returns the story’s social conscience to center stage.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:06PM
Sunday, November 17, 2019

‘The Inheritance’ Review: So Many Men, So Much Time by Ben Brantley

Breadth doesn’t always equal depth in Matthew Lopez’s supersize, vividly painted portrait of gay life in the 21st century, featuring E.M. Forster as a spirit guide.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:12PM
Monday, November 11, 2019

Review: Reflections That Sear in a Reborn ‘Fires in the Mirror’ by Ben Brantley

The Signature Theater revival of Anna Deavere Smith’s drama about the Crown Heights race riots confirms this play’s status as an enduring work of art.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 11:06PM
Sunday, November 10, 2019

Review: All the World’s a Grave in the Druid ‘Richard III’ by Ben Brantley

Garry Hynes’s visually hypnotic interpretation of the tale of the crookback who would be king sees medieval England as a cold slaughterhouse.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 11:06PM

When Home Is a Big Broadway Stage by Ben Brantley

Kristin Chenoweth and Ian McKellen demonstrate the increasingly popular art of turning theater palaces into cozy parlors for confabs with fans.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 02:18PM
Thursday, November 7, 2019

Review: Peter Dinklage Tackles ‘Cyrano’ Without the Nose by Ben Brantley

The Emmy-winning “Game of Thrones” star shows off his abundant charisma in a lachrymose musical adaptation of Rostand’s classic.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:24PM
Monday, October 28, 2019

‘The Michaels’ Review: Dance as Life in Upstate New York by Ben Brantley

In this delicately wrought portrait of a dying choreographer and her family, Richard Nelson’s play considers the redemptive powers of art in fractious times.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 03:48PM
Sunday, October 27, 2019

Review: In Zawe Ashton’s ‘for all the women,’ the Price of Uprooting a Life by Ben Brantley

This convoluted play chronicles the breakdown of a conflicted, displaced East African woman in the cosmopolitan West.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:24PM
Thursday, October 24, 2019

‘Is This a Room’ Review: Why’d She Blow the Whistle? by Ben Brantley

Tina Satter’s remarkable docudrama recreates the bizarrely banal interrogation that led to the arrest of the intelligence contractor Reality Winner.

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Tuesday, October 22, 2019

‘For Colored Girls’ Review: Ntozake Shange’s Women Endure by Ben Brantley

The director Leah C. Gardiner delivers a warm and inspiriting revival of the landmark poetic drama, with a gloriously interdependent cast.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 11:24PM
Monday, October 21, 2019

Review: ‘Forbidden Broadway’ Sticks It to the Great Woke Way by Ben Brantley and Jesse Green

Gerard Alessandrini’s franchise was looking as long in the tooth as the shows it aimed to skewer. A new edition brings it back to hilarious life.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 03:48PM
Sunday, October 20, 2019

Review: ‘American Utopia’ Is David Byrne’s Neighborhood by Ben Brantley

This jubilant production, choreographed by Annie-B Parson, transforms an icon of alienation into a cosmically cozy senior statesman.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 11:48PM
Thursday, October 17, 2019

‘Little Shop of Horrors’ Review: Jonathan Groff Feeds the Beast by Ben Brantley

Michael Mayer’s revitalizing revival of this genially gruesome classic becomes a sly morality tale for the age of universal celebrity.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:18PM
Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Review: Marisa Tomei Braves a Typhoon in ‘The Rose Tattoo’ by Ben Brantley

Trip Cullman’s unmoored production of this atypical comedy from Tennessee Williams presents sexual attraction as a raging force of nature.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 11:54PM
Sunday, October 13, 2019

Review: Partying to End the Patriarchy in a Dionysian ‘Girls’ by Ben Brantley

This head-tripping play from Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, inspired by Euripides’ “The Bacchae,” allows women past and present to find catharsis in one truly wild bash.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 01:03PM
Thursday, October 10, 2019

‘Linda Vista’ Review: A Womanizer Who Devastates as He Charms by Ben Brantley

Tracy Letts, the author of “August: Osage County,” reinvents the midlife crisis play with a hilarity that scalds in this Steppenwolf production.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 11:42PM
Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Review: ‘The Wrong Man’ Sets a Universal Nightmare to Music by Ben Brantley

Ross Golan’s dark chamber musical, based on a concept album, stars the excellent Joshua Henry as an innocent man on the lam.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:48PM
Monday, October 7, 2019

Review: Love Among the Shadows in Edgar Oliver’s ‘Victor’ by Ben Brantley

In this haunting memoir of his relationship with a homeless man, Mr. Oliver confirms his status as a poet laureate of New York’s dispossessed.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 01:36AM
Wednesday, October 2, 2019

‘Freestyle Love Supreme’ Review: Hip-Hop Saves the World by Ben Brantley

This exultant evening of improvised rap — created by Thomas Kail, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Anthony Veneziale — turns out to be a perfect fit for Broadway.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:06PM
Tuesday, October 1, 2019

What to See? Why So Pricey? Our Theater Critics Have Your Answers. by Ben Brantley and Jesse Green

Ben Brantley and Jesse Green respond to readers curious about the Tony race, hungry for happy fare, and heading to London.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:42AM
Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Review: Paging Pablo Escobar in ‘Our Dear Dead Drug Lord’ by Ben Brantley

Alexis Scheer’s vibrant play about four teenage girls, a Ouija board and a narco-terrorist summons the truly scary spirits that keep us awake at night.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:18PM
Monday, September 23, 2019

Review: Being Young and Bored in a Book Club on ‘Sunday’ by Ben Brantley

In Jack Thorne’s listless new play, a group of feckless friends gather to discuss Anne Tyler and share their self-consciousness.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 11:18PM
Sunday, September 22, 2019

Review: The Lists We Live by in Daniel Fish’s ‘White Noise’ by Ben Brantley

This distillation of Don DeLillo’s 1985 novel, by the director who deconstructed “Oklahoma!,” catalogs the clutter of the American mind.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 12:18PM
Wednesday, September 18, 2019

For Peter Brook, the Experimental Showman, ‘Nothing Is Ever Finished’ by Ben Brantley

His eyesight failing but schedule still packed, the 94-year-old stage director reflects on a globe-spanning career that includes a New York premiere this week.

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Monday, September 16, 2019

Review: In ‘Wives,’ the Other Halves Have Their Say by Ben Brantley

Jaclyn Backhaus’s slapdash comedy, at Playwright’s Horizons, travels through time to coax oppressed spouses out of their powerful husband’s shadows.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:24PM
Sunday, September 15, 2019

Review: Being Brainwashed Into Joy in Derren Brown’s ‘Secret’ by Ben Brantley

This one-mentalist show, in which Mr. Brown peers into the minds of his audience, offers exhilaration and comfort to New York City’s head cases.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:06PM
Thursday, September 5, 2019

Review: Tom Hiddleston in a Love Triangle Undone by ‘Betrayal’ by Ben Brantley

Mr. Hiddleston, Zawe Ashton and Charlie Cox portray three friends in flux in Jamie Lloyd’s revelatory interpretation of a Harold Pinter classic.

Linked From The New York Times Subscription at 10:18PM

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2019-2020 BROADWAY SEASON
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