BWW Reviews: DRUNKLE VANYA by Three Day Hangover, Don't Miss It!

BWW Reviews: DRUNKLE VANYA by Three Day Hangover, Don't Miss It!

Anton Chekhov's classic play, Uncle Vanya, has found a new life in Three Day Hangover's creative adaptation, Drunkle Vanya. The character of Uncle Vanya is known to be a drunk. So, there's no better place to stage this show than The Gin Mill, on the Upper West Side. Audience members can relax, gather at the bar or tables and enjoy the performance as they sip a few drinks themselves. Whether you are a theater enthusiast, wholly familiar with Chekhov's plays, or encountering his work for the first time, you will enjoy a night with Drunkle Vanya.

Three Day Hangover produces professional plays in venues like bars for the public, just as classical theater was performed centuries ago. We attended one of the first performances of Drunkle Vanya that totally captivated and entertained the full house audience.

Directed by the company's co-founder, Lori Wolter Hudson, she also adapted the script. Wolter Hudson thoughtfully uses modern references like Web Md, Quickbooks and Nutrisystem. She has embedded clever games to move the plot along and engage the audience including the concept behind "Cards Against Humanity." And, it is the gaming devices that make the rather bleak story an engaging, sometimes raucous romp.

Drunkle Vanya depicts a family and their visitors whose lives are marred by unhappiness. Living together on a country estate, their somewhat mundane day to day existence becomes complicated by passionate yearnings and broken dreams. Vanya, in particular, bemoans his "wasted life."

A great deal of credit must be given to the cast of Drunkle Vanya as they strike the right tenor between fine performances of Chekhov's prose while effectively satirizing some of the plot's elements. The talented cast included Joel Rainwater as Vanya, Amanda Sykes as Yelena, David Hudson as Astrov, Leah Walsh as Sonya, Sean Terrant as The Professor and Josh Sauerman as Waffles.

Although I have seen Uncle Vanya performed a number of times and Chekhov is one of my all-time favorite playwrights, I applaud Three Day Hangover's adaptation, Drunkle Vanya. Even with humorous interludes like Vanya "getting iced" or Waffle's kazoo accompaniment, Chekhov's drama is wholly intact, a powerful human experience.

Drunkle Vanya will be performed at The Gin Mill, 442 Amsterdam Avenue (between 81st and 82nd Streets) New York, NY. Shows are at 8:00 pm from September 9th through the 18th. There are no performances on September 14th. Tickets are $15.00 and are available at ThreeDayHangover.com or drunklevanya.brownpapertickets.com.


Photo Credit: Lloyd Mulvey

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From This Author Marina Kennedy

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