Review Roundup: What Did Critics Think of DOUBT at Studio Theatre?

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Review Roundup: What Did Critics Think of DOUBT at Studio Theatre?

Studio Theatre's production of Doubt recently opened and the critics came to see it! Read what they had to say!

Doubt opens amidst the social and political change of the 1960s, as Sister Aloysius, the rigid, by-the-book principal of a Bronx parish school clashes with Father Flynn, the charismatic, progressive priest trying to upend St. Nicholas's traditional customs. She also questions Father Flynn's actions, after she learns of his potentially objectionable interest in the school's first and only Black student. But is there hard proof of any misconduct? As the polarity between the two grows, it threatens dire consequences for all involved.

"Doubt is as complex as it was 15 years ago, and its questions of how to handle unprovable suspicions-and how the most vulnerable usually bear the brunt of unequal justice-are as timely as ever," said Studio's Artistic Director David Muse. "It's a particular pleasure to welcome Sarah Marshall and Christian Conn back to Studio as they face off in Shanley's moral drama."

Read the reviews below!

Barbara Mackay, DC Metro Theater Arts: There is more conversation than physical movement in Doubt, but director Matt Torney keeps the action moving at a brisk pace throughout. Set designer Daniel Conway divides a sextagonal thrust stage in half. In the rear are the gray stone walls of the school's interior and a small garden outside it. Very little adorns the walls, just a sculpture of the Virgin Mary. For exterior scenes, there is a garden bench. For Aloysius' office, there is a heavy wooden desk and several chairs.

Peter Marks, The Washington Post: Among all of the attributes of Torney's production - which include the fine mid-century costumes of Wade Laboissonniere and set by Daniel Conway - the best is the work of Marshall. The brittleness of her Sister Aloysius is so meticulously rendered that it would be as proper for an audience member to want to tiptoe around her as to clap. The extent to which Aloysius seeks to assert rectitude and common sense as essential values is beautifully embodied by Marshall, who never in her unforgiving mien asks for our sympathy; rather, she earns it. It is one of the veteran actress's best performances, which, of course, is what is often said of what she does onstage.

Benjamin Tomchik, BroadwayWorld: Enhancing Shanley's writing is Matt Torney's direction. Taking simple things like personal space, Torney turns them into weapons for the intellectual chess match between Father Flynn and Sister Aloysius. One scene has Conn's Flynn give Pedlow's James a pat on the back, a move so subtle and yet measured in the manipulative battle to win her affections.

Photo Credit: Teresa Wood

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