Thursday, May 23, 2013

Dysfunctional Family

Deirdre O'Connell, DeMunn and Charlie Saxton in A Family for All Occasions.

Am I the only one who didn't see why Bob Glaudini's Jack Goes Boating received the all the praise that it did when it played Off Broadway several years ago? It seemed like Steppenwolf-lite: filled with characters that were alternately dark and/or quirky but bore little resemblance actual people.

That was a Labyrinth Theater Company production that starred Philip Seymour Hoffman. Now Hoffman directs Glaudini's latest play for Labyrinth, A Family for All Occasions. It has flashes of brilliance, especially when Jeffrey DeMunn is onstage (how nice not to see him battling zombies on The Walking Dead anymore), but also long stretches of aimless plotting.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

It's a Draw

William Laney and Alex Fast in The Drawer Boy.

I almost never tire of dry, quirky, understated Canadian humor, and when that is the main thrust of The Drawer Boy, Michael Healey's play is a delight. But this tale of two farmers with a mysterious past overreaches in the second act, aiming for profundity and coming up quaint. Perhaps that's why it took 14 year for it to receive it's New York premiere, in a production now at SoHo Playhouse.