Review Roundup: THE WANDERERS Opens at Roundabout Theatre Company

The production, starring Katie Holmes, officially opened last night, February 16. 

By: Feb. 17, 2023
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Review Roundup: THE WANDERERS Opens at Roundabout Theatre Company
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Roundabout Theatre Company officially opened The Wanderers by Anna Ziegler, directed by Barry Edelstein, last night, February 16. 

The cast includes Sarah Cooper as "Sophie," Lucy Freyer as "Esther," Katie Holmes as "Julia Cheever," Dave Klasko as "Schmuli," and Eddie Kaye Thomas as "Abe."

Performances are now running at the Laura Pels Theater in the Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre (111 West 46th Street). This is a limited engagement through Sunday, April 2, 2023.

 

Read the reviews for The Wanderers below!

Review Roundup: THE WANDERERS Opens at Roundabout Theatre Company Jesse Green, The New York Times: The comparison between the two marriages, each undone by the search for something outside the characters’ ken, nevertheless feels specious. The dialogue in both sections, sprinkled like parsley with pidgin Yiddish and Hebrew prayer, has a secondhand aura that is also unconvincing. More authentic are the wigs by Tommy Kurzman and costumes by David Israel Reynoso; you certainly never question which world you’re in as the fur hats and wigs — the shtreimels and sheitels — give way to sweatpants.

Review Roundup: THE WANDERERS Opens at Roundabout Theatre Company Jonathan Mandell, New York Theater: But “The Wanderers” is far more playful than profound, an exercise in clever storytelling that involves not one, but two big plot twists – one gradually revealed; the other, seismic – and features that glamorous movie star character. As in her 2017 play “The Last Match,” which was presented at the same theater, Roundabout’s Laura Pels, and which also focused on two couples in challenging relationships (rival tennis players and their spouses), Ziegler comes up with some novel stagecraft that doesn’t completely work, but feels largely satisfying nonetheless. And in “The Wanderers,” she collaborates with the well-cast performers and director Barry Edelstein in creating five absorbing characters.

Review Roundup: THE WANDERERS Opens at Roundabout Theatre Company Elysa Gardner, The Sun: Under Barry Edelstein’s adroit, sensitive direction, “Wanderers” sparkles not only as a study of these engaging characters, but as one of a heritage, and its different cultural variations and generational shifts. As a thoroughly secular Jew, I was deeply moved watching Esther and Schmuli grapple — through different perspectives, and with different outcomes — with the requirements of tradition, and then observing as Sophie and Abe try to thrive on their own terms, albeit with their parents’ examples and burdens never far from their hearts.

Review Roundup: THE WANDERERS Opens at Roundabout Theatre Company Jackson McHenry, Vulture: It’s hard to say too much about the premise of Anna Ziegler’s The Wanderers without spoiling the primary enjoyment you get from it, which is learning how exactly Ziegler has entwined her characters, her plot unfolding like a kid’s paper fortune teller. The frustration in the Roundabout’s staging is that it doesn’t keep up with the script. The director, Barry Edelstein, takes a steady, dutiful approach to something that is trying to reach toward more abstract reckoning, and by the end, the staging starts to do it a disservice.

Review Roundup: THE WANDERERS Opens at Roundabout Theatre Company Robert Hofler, The Wrap: “The Wanderers” lasts only 105 minutes without intermission, and yet effectively holds enough storylines for a half dozen lesser plays. We never meet Sophie’s parents, but as pieced together from what she and Esther tell us, they emerge as two of the strongest characters ever to have not graced the stage. Their life together sparkles with energy and could be a whole other play.


Average Rating: 66.0%


To read more reviews, click here!


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