All stories by Joseph Pisano on BroadwayStars

Thursday, May 2, 2024

The Great Gatsby: A New Musical by Joseph Pisano

As for previous theatrical takes on the classic Jazz Age novel--and a few cinematic ones, too--the understandable allure of Fitzgerald's breathtaking sentences has represented a deathly sire…

SOURCE: at 11:46PM
Sunday, April 28, 2024

Patriots by Joseph Pisano

If there's a compelling reason to see "Patriots," it's Stuhlbarg, a Julliard-trained actor who can elevate flawed material with the best of them. In "Patriots," his talent bridges a director…

SOURCE: at 10:20AM
Monday, April 22, 2024

The Outsiders: A New Musical by Joseph Pisano

The cast of "The Outsiders: A New Musica"l bring their own substantial charisma to the stage, but it's been dramaturgically constrained by Adam Rapp and Justin Levine's book, which sacrifice…

SOURCE: at 02:42PM
Monday, April 8, 2024

The Who’s Tommy by Joseph Pisano

But, as the book's co-writer with Townshend, McAnuff is self-aware enough to recognize that "The Who's Tommy" needs to blow one's mind through sensory overload. That way, thoughts can't inte…

SOURCE: at 12:42PM
Monday, April 1, 2024

Dead Outlaw by Joseph Pisano

Conceived by Yazbek, the show is structured as a folksy retelling of the haplessly heinous Elmer McCurdy's life and post-life story, with the unbelievably true and undeniably dead portion re…

SOURCE: at 03:15PM
Monday, February 26, 2024

The Life & Slimes of Marc Summers by Joseph Pisano

Christopher Rhoton's Double Dare-inspired set belies these weightier autobiographical details, offering enough of a time-warping simulacrum to help middle-aged members of the audience shed a…

SOURCE: at 02:59PM
Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Sunset Baby by Joseph Pisano

"Ain't nothin' sentimental about a dead revolution." Wearing a too-short, too-tight dress, shiny thigh-high boots, and a long fuchsia wig, the twentysomething Nina (Moses Ingram) attempts to…

SOURCE: at 10:33PM
Wednesday, February 7, 2024

Days of Wine and Roses: The Musical by Joseph Pisano

Reteaming with O'Hara and book writer Craig Lucas for the first time since the 2005 Tony-award-winning "The Light in the Piazza," Guettel's hodgepodge of a score equates jazz with blithe ine…

SOURCE: at 11:23AM
Tuesday, December 12, 2023

How to Dance in Ohio by Joseph Pisano

Based on an identically titled 2015 HBO documentary by Alexandra Shiva, "How to Dance in Ohio," in its musical form, works best whenever that magnificent seven is completely together onstage…

SOURCE: at 04:28PM
Monday, November 20, 2023

Spamalot by Joseph Pisano

Still, whatever faint accommodations he grants it, for Idle, structure is the enemy of joy, which every aspect of "Spamalot" is relentlessly intent on delivering, not only from a few well-pe…

SOURCE: at 11:39PM
Sunday, November 12, 2023

I Need That by Joseph Pisano

A repetitively thin outlook on grief, "I Need That" ostensibly concludes with an image of healing, but I'm not sure why, or if it actually does. It's possible the famously prolific Rebeck ha…

SOURCE: at 01:03AM
Wednesday, October 25, 2023

Gutenberg! The Musical! by Joseph Pisano

How much you enjoy 'Gutenberg! The Musical!" likely depends on a combination of factors entirely unrelated to that German fellow: familiarity with the tropes it's skewering; your own level o…

SOURCE: at 02:16PM
Monday, October 16, 2023

DruidO’Casey: Sean O’Casey’s Dublin Trilogy by Joseph Pisano

Director Garry Hynes (a co-founder of the Druid) heightens the portent of this bellicose rhetoric, as well as O'Casey's mockery of it, by having a fractious collection of barroom denizens st…

SOURCE: at 01:50PM
Thursday, October 5, 2023

Purlie Victorious: A Non-Confederate Romp Through the Cotton Patch by Joseph Pisano

In 1961, Ossie Davis channeled the hurt of growing up in segregated Georgia into "Purlie Victorious: A Non-Confederate Romp Through The Cotton Patch," humorously attacking the cause of his s…

SOURCE: at 10:43AM
Sunday, September 24, 2023

Swing State by Joseph Pisano

Gilman's triteness and predictability combine to poorly serve a talented acting quartet, all of whom originated their roles in a 2022 production of "Swing State" at the Goodman Theatre under…

SOURCE: at 05:55PM
Thursday, August 17, 2023

The Shark Is Broken by Joseph Pisano

As for what's in a name, yes, Ian Shaw is Robert's son, returning the life-giving favor not just through his words but also bodily, portraying his father in "The Shark Is Broken" with a cand…

SOURCE: at 12:26PM
Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Alex Edelman: Just For Us by Joseph Pisano

Alex Edelman in a scene from his one-man show “Just for Us” at the Hudson Theatre (Photo credit: Matthew Murphy) Early in his stand-up show Just for Us Alex Edelman pays tribute to Robin…

SOURCE: at 03:43PM
Thursday, June 15, 2023

Singfeld! A Musical Parody About Nothing! by Joseph Pisano

Picking the easiest possible creative path, a decision the effort-averse George would no doubt admire, the McSmiths forgo imaginative risk-taking in favor of simply copying their source mate…

SOURCE: at 01:09PM
Wednesday, June 7, 2023

This Land Was Made by Joseph Pisano

In its earliest scenes--as a Marvin Gaye record spins on the turntable, Adam Honoré's lighting design pairs naturalistically with Wilson Chin's meticulous set, and Dominique Fawn Hill and D…

SOURCE: at 12:01PM
Monday, May 1, 2023

Prima Facie by Joseph Pisano

The mesmerizing Jodie Comer, making her Broadway debut in the Olivier Award-winning best new play after starring in the genre-subverting BBC show Killing Eve, portrays Tessa (for which Comer…

SOURCE: at 02:50PM
Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Fat Ham by Joseph Pisano

When it comes to modern adaptations of Shakespeare plays, many theatergoers tend to treat them like a test, mentally annotating plot and character correlations as if their high school Englis…

SOURCE: at 07:48PM
Monday, April 17, 2023

Shucked by Joseph Pisano

In addition to a surfeit of approximate rhymes, the score for Shucked includes a paean to corn and a reprise of the following ready-for-Hallmark advice: "maybe love is like a seed/a little s…

SOURCE: at 12:15AM
Monday, March 27, 2023

Parade by Joseph Pisano

While Brown's tunefully varied score strives to historically situate the bigoted nightmare we're witnessing within the cultural context of the South's fabricated sense of nobility and victim…

SOURCE: at 03:17PM
Monday, March 20, 2023

The Coast Starlight by Joseph Pisano

When it comes to plot, characters, or often both, even the best theater tends to require a suspension of disbelief. Given that it's hardly a sucker's bet for indolent playwrights to pin thei…

SOURCE: at 01:09PM
Tuesday, March 7, 2023

Fall River Fishing by Joseph Pisano

Absurdist to an increasingly ho-hum degree, Szadkowski and Knox let their imaginations run amok with silly speculations about pre-double-homicide life in the Borden household that are punctu…

SOURCE: at 05:21PM
Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Lucy by Joseph Pisano

Writer/director Erica Schmidt's "Lucy" is a play struggling to find a point of view, or perhaps a point of view struggling to find a play. If the latter is true, then that narrative position…

SOURCE: at 11:25AM
Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Between Riverside and Crazy by Joseph Pisano

Living in his "palatial" rent-controlled apartment on one of Manhattan's most stunning architectural stretches, Walter "Pops'' Washington (Stephen McKinley Henderson) is an aging man of agin…

SOURCE: at 04:07PM
Thursday, January 26, 2023

Without You by Joseph Pisano

And that's the agonizing tension in "Without You;" in his lyrical responses to Larson, Rapp is well aware that it's not a back-and-forth, that Larson can't say anything more than he has alre…

SOURCE: at 10:24AM
Thursday, December 15, 2022

The Far Country by Joseph Pisano

All of the above occurs prior to the intermission and, if "The Far Country" has a shortcoming, it's that the second half feels like a sequel to what came before rather than a continuation of…

SOURCE: at 12:18PM
Monday, December 5, 2022

KPOP by Joseph Pisano

Adopting the hokey framing device of a concert documentary, Kim turns the impending U.S. debut of a South Korean entertainment company's three hottest acts into a triptych of rigorously gend…

SOURCE: at 10:41PM
Sunday, November 20, 2022

Mike Birbiglia: The Old Man & The Pool by Joseph Pisano

Still, rest assured, most of what Birbiglia says is funny, even for any fans well aware that Birbiglia is leading us somewhere that is not. Given the eponymous Hemingway allusion, the show's…

SOURCE: at 06:51PM

All that Chat

May 30, 2023: Grey House - Lyceum Theatre
Jun 26, 2023: Just For Us - Hudson Theatre
Jul 24, 2023: The Cottage - Hayes Theater
Nov 16, 2023: Spamalot - St. James Theatre
Dec 18, 2023: Appropriate - Hayes Theater
Mar 07, 2024: Doubt - Todd Haimes Theatre
Apr 14, 2024: Lempicka - Longacre Theatre
Apr 17, 2024: The Wiz - Marquis Theatre
Apr 18, 2024: Suffs - Music Box Theatre
Apr 25, 2024: Mother Play - Hayes Theater
Jun 10, 2024: The Drama Desk Awards