Review Roundup: THE SEVEN YEAR DISAPPEAR Starring Cynthia Nixon and Taylor Trensch Opens Off-Broadway

Originally slated through March 24, this strictly limited Off-Broadway engagement must end Sunday, March 31.  

By: Feb. 26, 2024
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Review Roundup: THE SEVEN YEAR DISAPPEAR Starring Cynthia Nixon and Taylor Trensch Opens Off-Broadway
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Emmy and Tony Award-winner Cynthia Nixon and Taylor Trensch star in THE SEVEN YEAR DISAPPEAR, opening tonight at The New Group, a funny, deeply human mystery of mothers and sons, coming of age, and coming apart. Read the reviews!

Naphtali's (Taylor Trensch) world-famous performance artist mother (Cynthia Nixon) disappeared suddenly seven years ago.  And yet, he sees her everywhere: in the faces of friends, coworkers, the guy he's flirting with.  When his mother returns with few answers and a major request, Naphtali is forced to confront what he's spent years trying to forget.  

This production marks a return to The New Group for Cynthia Nixon, where she directed Rasheeda Speaking and Steve, and appeared on stage in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, directed by Scott Elliott.  This marks a New Group debut for playwright Jordan Seavey and Taylor Trensch.

This production includes Scenic Design by Derek McLane, Costume Design by Qween Jean, Lighting Design by Jeff Croiter, Sound Design by Rob Milburn & Michael Bodeen and Projection Design by John Narun.  Fight & Intimacy Director: UnkleDave's Fight-House.  Dialect Coach is Deborah Hecht.  Casting Director is Judy Henderson, CSA.  Production Stage Manager is Valerie A. Peterson.  Assistant Stage Manager is Stephen Michael Varnado.

Directed by Scott Elliott, this world premiere production began previews Tuesday, February 6 in advance of an Official Opening Night on Monday, February 26.  Originally slated through March 24, this strictly limited Off-Broadway engagement must end Sunday, March 31.  Performances take place at The Pershing Square Signature Center.

Review Roundup: THE SEVEN YEAR DISAPPEAR Starring Cynthia Nixon and Taylor Trensch Opens Off-Broadway Naveen Kumar, The New York Times: Nixon, a delicately skilled stage performer, plays each character as a slightly exaggerated persona, like roles an artist might try on to demonstrate that identity is a kind of drag. If there are psychoanalytic underpinnings to this approach, they’re not compellingly explored. The result is two actors operating in uneven registers throughout, with Trensch as the so-called straight man to Nixon’s shuffle of mild caricatures. (The exceptions are mother-son confrontations that Elliott pitches as earplug-worthy shouting matches.)

Review Roundup: THE SEVEN YEAR DISAPPEAR Starring Cynthia Nixon and Taylor Trensch Opens Off-Broadway David Finkle, New York Stage Review: Not able completely to keep all Seavey’s twists clear, Scott Elliott nonetheless directs with style. He’s greatly helped by lighting director Jeff Croiter, sound designers Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen, and perhaps most of all by projection designer Narun. Despite Seavey’s many distracting features, they all contribute to an unusually elegant production, maybe elegant in spite of itself.

Review Roundup: THE SEVEN YEAR DISAPPEAR Starring Cynthia Nixon and Taylor Trensch Opens Off-Broadway Melissa Rose Bernardo, New York Stage Review: But after watching Nixon playing such weak-willed (but well-dressed) TV women—Miranda on And Just Like That… and Ada on The Gilded Age—it’s a thrill to see her as the uncompromising Miriam. Incidentally, it’s been seven years since her last New York City stage appearance (The Little Foxes). Let’s hope she doesn’t, well, disappear for so long next time.

Review Roundup: THE SEVEN YEAR DISAPPEAR Starring Cynthia Nixon and Taylor Trensch Opens Off-Broadway Kyle Turner, New York Theatre Guide: The Seven Year Disappear circles around questions about artistic practice and purpose, growing up as if your life is not your own, and the conflation of identity and consumption. But Seavey seems uninterested in engaging with these ideas directly and thoroughly. The characters never share their views on the purpose of art, particularly in the context of using one’s own life as material. There’s no detailed engagement with art as processing or capital or exploitation. At most, Naphtali confesses he’s “fucked up” because of his relationship with his mother's work, but such a straightforward declaration betrays the play's lack of linguistic imagination.

Review Roundup: THE SEVEN YEAR DISAPPEAR Starring Cynthia Nixon and Taylor Trensch Opens Off-Broadway
Average Rating: 57.5%


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