I got a sinking feeling reading the reviews last night for Women on the Verge of A Nervous Breakdown knowing that I have a ticket to see a Broadway musical widely considered a mess.
It's one of 11 shows - 10 on Broadway and 1 off-Broadway - that I'll be taking in during my two trips to New York City this month.
For an out-of-towner, especially one who can't get to the city that often, the selection process can be a gamble. Sometimes I have friends who've seen a show and rave about it. Sometimes I'm making my decisions before opening night or even before previews begin.
Honestly, I'm not sure how I'll feel about my choices by the end of November or whether the results will affect my next round of theatergoing.
While I use discounts, I'll pay full price if I think a better seat is worth it. And my aging knees require the extra leg room in the orchestra section. So we're not talking about an inconsequential amount of money.
Fortunately, I'm in a situation where I could just eat the ticket and go see something else that got a better reception from the critics. It's not going to break the bank.
Maybe it's me putting on a brave face but despite the pans, I'm still curious about Women on the Verge - if only to see for myself what everyone's talking about. I'm still looking forward to seeing Patti LuPone and Laura Benanti onstage again. I will do my best to sit back and enjoy myself. I will NOT have a nervous breakdown over it.
Picking a show is a tough decision for a tourist. Do you go with the safe choice or do you take a chance? I hope I'm always willing and able to take a chance. That's part of the excitement of being a theatre fan - and sometimes the disappointment.
And I'm pretty easy to please. Being in New York City, on vacation and away from the responsibilities of daily life, is always a treat for me. A show has to try really hard for me not to be entertained.
I love being in New York and I love going to Broadway. If Women on the Verge doesn't work for me well, it's an opportunity to hone my critical skills and see why - and to be part of the conversation.