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Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike 

When: Sept. 20-Oct. 25 2013
It’s not surprising that Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike won a 2013 Tony Award for Best Play. Written by Christopher Durang (Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All for You), Vanya is a comedic powerhouse furnished with emotional depth and a self-effacing screwball-ness that makes its nearly three-hour run fly right by. There’s so much to praise about this show. Let’s start with how it’s not really about Chekhov at all. Thank goodness. What with the government shutdown, we can all use a little laughter, which the works of Debbie Downervich rarely provide. What Durang does instead, with the help of superb direction from Richard E.T. White and a bangin’ cast, is take the high art of theater (with classical Greek allusions and everything) and themes of loss and familial dysfunction (Chekhov’s specialty), and blend them with amusing anecdotes and broad, physical humor until they’re distilled into a palatable, fermented beverage that we can all enjoy far less guiltily than those fake Cronuts popping up everywhere.
— Anna Pulley


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