33 Variations BROADWAY REVIEWS

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  • NY TIMES

  • AP

  • USA TODAY

  • VARIETY

  • BACKSTAGE

Opening Night:
March 9, 2009
Closing:
May 21, 2009

Theater: Eugene O'Neill Theatre / 230 West 49th Street, New York, NY, 10019

Synopsis: 

In 1819, fledgling publisher Anton Diabelli commissioned 50 composers to write a variation on a waltz he had created. Beethoven rejected the invitation, dismissing Diabelli's waltz as ordinary. He then obsessively created 33 variations on Diabelli's theme. Why? Kaufman's play weaves Beethoven's artistic journey with that of Katherine, a musicologist deciphering clues left behind in Beethoven's notebooks and letters and wondering about her own obsession with genius.

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  • NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW OF 33 Variations

    Beethoven and Fonda: Broadway Soul Mates

    Ben Brantley

    March 10, 2009: It’s a fine line between brittle and breakable. Jane Fonda blurs that distinction to memorable effect in “33 Variations,” the new drama written and directed by Moisés Kaufman that opened on Monday night at the Eugene O’Neill Theater. Playing a sharp-witted, terminally ill musicologist confronting the betrayal of her body, Ms. Fonda exudes an aura of beleaguered briskness that flirts poignantly with the ghost of her spiky, confrontational screen presence as a young woman.

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  • ASSOCIATED PRESS REVIEW OF 33 Variations

    Moises Kaufman's earnest, plot-heavy "33 Variations" swirls with big ideas about big subjects - life, death, art to name three - and how they intersect and illuminate each other.

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  • USA TODAY REVIEW OF 33 Variations

    It's fitting, in a way, that 33 Variations opened at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre on Monday, less than a week after Horton Foote died at 92. Foote, whose own new play Dividing the Estate arrived on Broadway this season to wide acclaim, reminded us that even as the body succumbs to the ravages of age, the heart and mind can remain vital.

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  • VARIETY REVIEW OF 33 Variations

    It's been 46 years since Jane Fonda's last role on Broadway but there's no sign of rustiness in the cool command she brings to "33 Variations." Fonda certainly knows her way around characters like musicologist Dr. Katherine Brandt, an impassioned woman hungry for knowledge and reluctant to concede her weaknesses. Playing an emotionally distant parent who finds closeness with her daughter only at the end of her life, the iconic star's work here is also illuminated by personal history, mirroring her own famously troubled relationship with her father. If Moises Kaufman's elegant production outshines his schematic play, Fonda nonetheless distinguishes it with integrity and class.

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  • BACKSTAGE REVIEW OF 33 Variations

    The art of variation is transforming something into its better self," explains Jane Fonda as Dr. Katherine Brandt, the musicologist at the center of Moisés Kaufman's muddled play 33 Variations.

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