Wednesday, February 21, 2007
About a half-hour into Dying City, Christopher Shinn's plodding and generally perplexing new play at Lincoln Center's Mitzi E. Newhouse Theatre, an old man tripped and fell while trying to flee. That was more interesting than anything that happened onstage in the entire play. This isn't one of those "so-bad-it's-funny" plays; it's one of those "just plain bad" ones. Couple that with sophomoric acting from the truly unwatchable Pablo Schreiber and the miscast Rebecca Brooksher, and languid direction from James Macdonald (he had the same problem with his staging of Caryl Churchill's A Number), and you've got one of the most agonizing evenings of theatre in a long time. Chekhovian melodrama at its worst.