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Review Roundup: THE COLUMNIST Opens on Broadway - All the Reviews!


Manhattan Theatre Club's world premiere production of THE COLUMNIST by Tony and Pulitzer Prize winner David Auburn, directed by Tony Award winner Daniel Sullivan opened tonight, April 25th on Broadway! Tickets are now on sale through Sunday, June 24.

The limited engagement of THE COLUMNIST stars Tony and Emmy Award winner John Lithgow, Drama Desk Award nominee Margaret Colin, four time Tony Award winner Boyd Gaines, Tony Award nominee Stephen KunkenMarc Bonan (Broadway debut), Grace Gummer ("Smash," Arcadia), and Brian J. Smith (MTC's Come Back, Little Sheba; "Stargate Universe"). The creative team for THE COLUMNIST includes John Lee Beatty (scenic design), Jess Goldstein (costume design), Kenneth Posner (lighting design), John Gromada (original music & sound design), Rocco DiSanti (projection design), Charles G. LaPointe (hair & wig design), and David Caparelliotis (casting).

Let's see what the critics had to say!

Ben Brantley, The New York Times: ...what "The Columnist" will be about has been laid out as conscientiously as it might be in the opening paragraph of a solid-A term paper. And in his first full-length play since the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Proof" (2000), Mr. Auburn carefully follows through and expands on every element in that early scene. As an old-fashioned architect, he can't be faulted here. But he doesn't furnish his rooms so that they feel genuinely lived in. The masterly director Daniel Sullivan (who also staged "Proof") and a very good cast that also includes Margaret Colin and Boyd Gaines do their best to bring flesh to what remains essentially an annotated outline. Sometimes they succeed. But you always hear the dry rustle of reference materials in the background - of time lines, headlines and lists of famous names to be included.

Mark Kennedy, The Associated Press: The portrait that emerges – Manhattan Theatre Club's "The Columnist" opened Thursday at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre – should send a chill down the spine of any pundit who begins to think he or she is bigger than the story. Director Daniel Sullivan has tried to make each scene stand on its own, but the result is a play that may be more fun to perform than watch.

Erik Haagensen, Backstage: Playwright David Auburn has pulled off a nifty trick in "The Columnist," his new play about mid-20th-century political scribe Joseph Alsop. Faced with a fascinating protagonist but lacking a strong plot, Auburn has devised an ingenious structure of subtly accreting scenes that generates considerable forward motion, coalescing in both a complex character study and a surprisingly full portrait of an era of rapid change in American society. Under Daniel Sullivan's unerring direction, John Lithgow delivers a riveting turn in the title role of this crackling entertainment.

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