This past weekend I had the chance to see A Long Day's Journey into Night, a play by Eugene O'Neill, performed at the Lion Theatre.

Prior to seeing the play, all I knew was that it had been made into a film and that it was a Pulitzer Prize winning drama. So going into it, I was pretty much an open book.

The first two minutes were cheerful, which cannot be said for the rest of the drama- and when I say drama, I mean drama. After those two happy minutes was a three hour long, semi-depressing blame game.

The story revolved around one family over the duration of what seemed like a very, very long day. Each member is haunted by ghosts, not the Casper kind, but ghosts of bad memories and experiences. What unfolded was definitely powerful, and quite compelling.

The cast gave wonderful performances overall, however in the beginning it seemed as if every once in a while a few cast members would fumble on a line or two. After it happened more than once, I realized that it probably wasn't part of the script. Besides that, the monologues especially given by the Mary character were really captivating.


At times, I found the dialogue to be a little on the boring side and sometimes repetitive. I was beginning to hear a lot of the same stuff, and I started to see people's heads kind of slowly fall back into their seats. It didn't exactly help that the fourth act was set in very dim lighting, perfect for napping.

The dim lighting and a very long third and fourth act made up for a few empty seats after the intermission. It really did seem to drag towards the end which took away from the performances by three vital characters.

By the end, I was satisfied with the performance but a little bit disappointed at the length of the play. The cast is immensely talented and I was genuinely drawn in during some very intense moments. It wasn't appropriate for say, a date, but if you've heard of the play/film and are eager to see it in person, I'd say go for it!

If you do want to catch the play, go soon because it is coming to the end of its three-week limited engagement on June 12th.

Performed at the Lion Theatre, part of Theatre Row at 410 West 42nd Street, tickets are $18 and can be purchased three ways: online at www.TicketCentral.com, calling 212-279-4200, or in person at the Theatre Row Box Office from 12pm to 8 pm daily.

--Samantha Chin, NYCRD contributor

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