Sunday, January 22, 2012

Theater Recommendation: 4000 Miles ****

(Click on the title to read the complete item.)
Amy Herzog's play received universal acclaim during its brief run at the Duke last summer. It will be moving into the Mitzi Newhouse Theater at Lincoln Center in mid-March with the original cast for a limited run. If you missed it the first time, be ready to order tickets as soon as they go on sale -- February 6 for LCT members, February 12 for the general public.

Here is my review from last June:
The title of this new play by Amy Herzog, in an LCT3 production at the Duke, refers to the distance 21-year-old Leo (a strong Gabriel Ebert) has traveled on a cross-country bicycle ride that ends with his unexpected 3 a.m. arrival at the West Village apartment of his 91-year-old grandmother Vera Joseph (the incomparable Mary Louise Wilson). [The character of Vera, a devoted Marxist, also appeared in Herzog's recent well-received play After the Revolution]. Leo has been traumatized by the death of his best friend en route, a less-than-enthusiastic reception by his girlfriend Bec (Zoe Winters), a student at Columbia, and family problems back home in St. Paul. Grandmother and hippie grandson gradually overcome their differences and grow close. Greta Lee is hilarious as Amanda, a Parsons student Leo brings home one night. The characters are vivid, the dialogue is believable and the back story is interestingly complex. One can quibble over a few plot devices, but Herzog is clearly a talented playwright. The set by Lauren Helpern perfectly captures a slightly worn apartment that hasn't changed much in 50 years. Daniel Aukin's direction in unobtrusively fine. 

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