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Anatomy of a Suicide - Atlantic Theater Company

MemorableUserName
Understudy
joined:3/27/19
Understudy
joined:
3/27/19

Has anyone seen this? Any thoughts/impressions/opinions?

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broadway86
Broadway Legend
joined:10/8/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
10/8/03

Seeing it Sunday, I will report back!

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JBroadway
Broadway Legend
joined:4/6/12
Broadway Legend
joined:
4/6/12

I saw it this past weekend and thought it was fascinating and beautiful. I had several small technical criticisms of the writing and direction, but overall I found it really moving and creative. I should say that I'm partly biased in that I love when plays/movies/musicals/etc. where time is represented non-literally for emotional effect, and also where they deal with multiple generations, family history/legacy, etc. And this play tics those boxes. 

In any given "scene," there are actually 3 scenes happening simultaneously onstage, each of which takes place in a different decade and centers on a different character. So we're essentially following 3 different protagonists, and we see their stories progress and unfold at the same time. The dialogue is written in such a way that sometimes the separate scenes kind of echo each other, or respond to each other, or sometimes clash against each other. So the play does require the audience to put in some real effort into following what's happening, and even then you won't be able to catch every word. But I think the playwright and director do a good job of timing it in such a way that all the important information can be heard without competition.

Personally, I thought the payoff was worth the effort, but others might disagree. The person I saw it with didn't care for the show for that reason. 

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VotePeron
Broadway Legend
joined:5/2/13
Broadway Legend
joined:
5/2/13
Every element of the show is excellent - the script, cast, direction, design - but an enjoyable evening at the theater this is not. Do all theatre experiences need to be entertaining? Maybe not, but it’s something you should consider before going.

It’s as dark as you can get in terms of subject matter. It’s bleak and oppressive and forces you to feel the anxieties of its characters. It’s triggering and hard to watch at times.

So, while wonderfully produced, I don’t recommend it. It’s not particularly profound or moving, and left me more distressed than fulfilled. (And this is coming from someone who prefers darker, moodier plays.)


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Sutton Ross
Broadway Legend
joined:7/20/13
Broadway Legend
joined:
7/20/13

I loved it, as a daughter and a mother to a young daughter, it spoke to me particularly. I thought the staging and direction was brilliant. Yes, it's dark but incredibly relatable and smart. As others have touched on, this isn't a show for people looking for a fun, light night out at the theater. It's worth seeing, in my opinion. 

jbird5
Broadway Star
joined:12/20/15
Broadway Star
joined:
12/20/15
It matters where you sit, especially closer to the stage. I got a $25 ticket and was extreme house left. This meant I basically got to watch Carla G. Up close for 2 hrs, not that I’m complaining. The central action, if you can call it that, is in the middle with Celeste Arias, the daughter who is quite gorgeous. Unfortunately, much of her section was obstructed from where I sat. I also think her character may have become quite tiresome by mid-play. On the far side was the granddaughter who I had no interest in at all. So you might have a different experience sitting in different sections if you go more than once.
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WiCkEDrOcKS
Broadway Legend
joined:6/13/04
Broadway Legend
joined:
6/13/04
I thought this was pretty great, all around. It’s challenging, dynamic, and ultimately a must see for anyone who has ever dealt with depression or suicide, even though it could certainly be triggering.

All of the performances are stellar, but Gabby Beans (who I think has the hardest role, in a show full of them) really impressed me. And Carla Gugino continues to deliver great performances that seem to go under most peoples’ radar. She’s truly phenomenal in this. I can’t wait to see her Stella in STREETCAR.

ANATOMY has been popping up on TDF and I think there are a few Access 25 tickets left if you do some searching. It’s absolutely worth checking out, if you like this type of play.
Current Avatar: Cynthia Erivo, bringing down the house in The Color Purple.
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broadway86
Broadway Legend
joined:10/8/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
10/8/03

I thought this was extraordinary. Not just the focus and emotional availability of the cast, but the amount of concentration it requires from the audience. If you're up for something intense and unique, go see it.

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BroadwayGuy12
Broadway Star
joined:12/22/07
Broadway Star
joined:
12/22/07

I saw this earlier this week and want to add my voice to the chorus of praise. I found the entire evening to be absolutely riveting, and think that everyone involved is doing wonderful work. I've been thinking about the performance all week, and hope that I'll be able to return to the production at some point before it closes. At the very least, I'm eager to read the script if/when it's published; there's so much beauty and pain and nuance here that it deserves to be revisited again and again.

Hairspray0901
Broadway Star
joined:12/29/08
Broadway Star
joined:
12/29/08

Saw this last night and loved it. After reading the boards and a few short interviews, I went in expecting it to be very dark and depressing, but, in my opinion, that is not what it ended up being. Of course, some might disagree with me. While the subject matter was heavy, this was one of the best pieces of theatre I've ever seen. Very unique in how the story unfolds; you really need to be dialed in / paying attention which, can be hard at times because there is so much happening at once. Excellent writing, staging and directing. The entire cast blew me away. Carla Gugino is giving a master class in acting. Count me as another person who hopes to see it again before it closes. Can't recommend this enough.

MemorableUserName
Understudy
joined:3/27/19
Understudy
joined:
3/27/19

A few reviews:

NY Times (Critics Pick)

Hollywood Reporter (negative)

Time Out (positive)

The Wrap (positive...I think? Mostly seems like a lot of description)

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ErmengardeStopSniveling
Broadway Star
joined:9/20/18
Broadway Star
joined:
9/20/18

Sometimes you wonder if critics saw a different show... this was the low point of the past year of theatergoing, and I can't imagine it's the type of thing that would have been overhauled since the first week of previews. Performances and direction are lovely, but it's a pornographic depiction of depression on stage –– which might be an interesting scene, but unsustainable for a full-length play. It's like being hit over the head with a 2x4 for an hour and 45 minutes.

(I attended with someone who does suffer from depression, and he almost left.)

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Mark Waltz
Understudy
joined:5/7/18
Understudy
joined:
5/7/18

The highlight of the New York Times review for me was almost like the Times reading my intentions which made me decide to not make my original plans for WHEN to go (Saturday afternoon): "Anatomy of a Suicide” isn’t the kind of show you can see then cavalierly head out for drinks, recycling your playbill along the way."

I did that with "Sister Calling My Name" at the Sheen Center last Saturday, and was totally depressed by intermission (as well as turned off by the play itself.). I didn't have to worry about "recycling" the playbill or losing it as I simply tossed it away. This might be OK for a Friday night where I go home afterwards and can sleep in the next morning, but joining friends for cocktails at a piano bar after a quick bite to eat and dealing with the subject matter on my mind doesn't seem like a good idea. 

One Grecian Ern