Entertainment, Features, New York

‘Make Believe’ Doesn’t Find Dramatic Purpose

September 13, 2019

By Dr. Leonard Golubchick, LaborPress Entertainment Editor

Playwright Bess Wohl’s family drama Make Believe is an 80-minute exploration of four siblings making the transition from childhood to adulthood. The first half of the play (at the Tony Kiser Theatre, directed by Michael Greif) is set when the four children are aged 5-12. It has some comic moments as they play games in an attic, role-playing their parents’ often-violent interaction, but overall, the trauma of the past haunts the adults of the future.

The second half introduces us to their adult counterparts. They are ensconced in the same attic and are brought together to attend a funeral. Whose, we do not know. But by this point, the plot begins to ramble, and while the troubling issues from their parents’ relationship certainly are re-engendered, it doesn’t get into anything substantial.

Wohl has done excellent work as a playwright; her Grand Horizons will open on Broadway in December. But Make Believe is a clunky play without much purpose.

September 13, 2019

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