Review Roundup: Renee Taylor in MY LIFE ON A DIET
Academy Award-nominated and Emmy Award-winning writer and actress Renée Taylor - known to millions for her role as Fran Fine's food-obsessed mother, Sylvia, on "The Nanny" - returns to the New York stage in the New York premiere of My Life on a Diet, an autobiographical comedy written by Ms. Taylor and her late husband Joseph Bologna. Originally directed by Mr. Bologna, My Life on a Diet just opened at Theatre at St. Clement's.
Renée Taylor looks back on a life full of memorable roles in Hollywood and on Broadway, and just as many fad diets. A self-described "diet junkie," Taylor, in My Life on a Diet, dishes out juicy anecdotes about -- and weight loss tips from -- Hollywood legends such as Joan Crawford, Marilyn Monroe, Marlon Brando and Cary Grant (she used to think that if she ate like star, she'd just might live like one). By sharing her high and lows - on and off the scale - as only she could, Renée Taylor proves how the ability to laugh will get you through it all.
Let's see what the critics had to say...
Elisabeth Vincentelli, New York Times: Just a hint that there may be something spicy going on at the Theater at St. Clement's. And fortunately for audience members unmoved by the idea of an hour and a half dedicated solely to dieting, there is. Ms. Taylor mixes reminiscences about her childhood and beginnings as an actress and writer with a lighthearted look at her self-image and quest for love. There is a happy ending, too: a 53-year romantic and artistic partnership with Joseph Bologna. This show, which they wrote together and which he directed (he died last year), is the final installment in a fruitful collaboration that fully took off when they wrote the 1968 Broadway comedy "Lovers and Other Strangers."
Davod Finkle, NY Stage Review: You say you want a good laugh. If you're truly serious about laughing heartily, you'll get over to the Theatre at St. Clement's real fast for Renée Taylor recounting My Life on a Diet. It's LOL funny. Funny? Why, absolutely every single solitary joke lands, and there's a rarity for you.
Judd Hollander, Epoch Times: The show's only problem is a technical issue of matching a visual reference to whatever Taylor is speaking about. A slide would appear several seconds later than it should have, by which time Taylor had moved on to the next point in the story. These blips interrupted the show's narrative, and several times Taylor would be forced to pause while waiting for a certain image to be projected. Nicely mixing elements poignant, personal, and comedic, "My Life on a Diet" makes for an enjoyable experience, both in terms of one woman's struggle to comes to terms with how she sees herself, and in showing the very full life she has led.
Photo Credit: Jeremy Daniel