The Nap BROADWAY REVIEWS

Photo: Joan Marcus
  • NY TIMES

  • DEADLINE

  • NY 1

  • VARIETY

  • CHIC TRIB

  • EW

Opening Night:
September 27, 2018
Closing:
November 11, 2018

Theater: Samuel J. Friedman Theatre / 261 West 47th Street, New York, NY, 10036

Synopsis: 

By the author of the rollicking, award-winning Broadway comedy One Man, Two Guvnors, The Nap is a very funny look at the world of snooker – the British version of pool. Dylan Spokes, a fast-rising young star arrives for a championship tournament only to be confronted by the authorities warning him of the repercussions of match fixing. Before he knows it, Dylan’s forced into underhanded dealings with a cast of wildly colorful characters that include his ex-convict dad, saucy mum, quick-tongued manager and a renowned gangster, to boot. It’s a fast-paced comedy thriller where, in an exciting twist, the tournament unfolds live on stage. This New York Times Critics’ Pick is “easily the funniest play on Broadway” according to the New York Stage Review. Directed by Tony Award® winner Daniel Sullivan.

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  • NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW OF The Nap

    Great Pretenders Pocket Laughs in ‘The Nap’

    Ben Brantley

    September 27, 2018: When you’re feeling burned-out, fed-up and generally disgusted — like now, maybe? — there’s nothing more therapeutic than a tickling session at the theater. Relax, it involves no squirmy physical contact. I mean the sort of tickling administered by a team of master farceurs who frisk you into a state of sustained laughter, as involuntary and contented as the purr of a kitten at play. It’s the noise being artfully coaxed from audiences by the British dramatist Richard Bean and a precision-tooled ensemble of great pretenders at the Samuel J. Friedman Theater. That’s where Mr. Bean’s delicious new comedy “The Nap” opened on Thursday night, directed with an assured balance of blatancy and subtlety by Daniel Sullivan. While the name of this Manhattan Theater Club production might seem to promise a snooze, the title refers not to a siesta but to the baize surface of a snooker table — or specifically to the resistance it gives to the balls that skim across it.

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  • DEADLINE REVIEW OF The Nap

    ‘The Nap’ Cues Up For Long Con, Scratches

    Greg Evans

    September 27, 2018: The Nap, Broadway’s latest laugh from London, tries to fool us and sometimes does, though not in ways playwright Richard Bean might have intended. Teased with the appealing prospect of an evening of Martin McDonagh-lite, we’re quickly handed a cartoon con job. No offense to Snooker fans here, there or anywhere, but a comedy built around the game’s intricacies and milieu is bound to lose some bite when rules need more set-up than jokes. Well-reviewed in London, and with real possibility promised by a good cast (led by Ben Schnetzer, a New Yorker doing a fine Yorkshire accent), a strong director in Daniel Sullivan and a playwright with an earlier stateside gem (One Man, Two Guvnors), The Nap begins to disappoint fast.

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  • NY1 REVIEW OF The Nap

    Theater Review: 'The Nap'

    Roma Torre

    September 27, 2018: Comedy is very much in the eye and ear of the beholder. And so it's quite possible what I find funny about "The Nap," a new British comedy, is not your cup of tea at all. And considering it's centered on snooker, a game similar to billiards, and the characters are supposed to have thick Yorkshire accents, it might not translate well on this side of the pond. Yet, as the Brits might say, it had me potted. It starts rather slow. Dylan Spokes is the 107th-ranked snooker player in the world, and he's getting ready for the World Snooker Championship in Sheffield. The game is extremely popular in the United Kingdom, and Dylan is very serious-minded. But once playwright Richard Bean dispenses with the setup and we meet the rest of the cast, an unsavory bunch of characters, "The Nap" wakes right up.

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  • VARIETY REVIEW OF The Nap

    Broadway Review: ‘The Nap’

    Frank Rizzo

    September 27, 2018: “I am a fish and snooker is my sea,” says Dylan Spokes, an aspiring marlin of a player in “The Nap,” the delightfully loopy comedy by the “One Man, Two Guvnors” playwright Richard Bean. Even with some deft explaining, Yank audiences may still be behind the eight ball — wait, there’s no eight ball — in this Brit-centric, billiard-like game that’s at the heart of the play. But they’re sure to revel in Bean’s eccentric characters and daft dialogue even as they raise their eyebrows over the plot — and plot twists. There’s also something mysteriously appealing in entering the world of this pub-popular sport, here set in Sheffield, England, ground zero for snooker championships. Add high stakes, lowlifes and a wicked wit, and you’ve got a solid win.

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  • CHICAGO TRIBUNE REVIEW OF The Nap

    It's about snooker. Broadway comedy 'The Nap' has some real playing amid the exaggerations

    Chris Jones

    September 27, 2018: Snooker isn’t pool, any more than it’s billiards. The widespread confusion annoys us aficionados of the noble cue sports on both sides of the Atlantic. Any number of snooty leisure activities like tennis or golf involve little more than hitting a little ball around. Why the lack of respect for games played on baize? The answer, of course, is class. As one of the characters in the lively, snarky and deftly structured new Richard Bean comedy by the Manhattan Theatre Club makes clear, the British game of snooker long has been the province of barrooms, pubs and smoky working-class clubs. Until the 1980s, even professional players made laughably little money, barely enough for a few celebratory beers, a plate of bangers and mash and a taxi back to the hotel.

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  • ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY REVIEW OF The Nap

    Don't sleep on Broadway's new British comedy The Nap: EW review

    Jessica Derschowitz

    September 27, 2018: Because the title lends itself to endless puns, let’s get them out of the way: The Nap isn’t about a short snooze. Nor is it likely to make you want to take one. What it is about, however, is snooker — a British version of pool — and the wild cast of characters surrounding an upstart contender for the sport’s world championship (seriously, it’s a whole thing). And it makes for a decidedly-not-sleep-inducing good time. You don’t need to know much of anything about billiards to get hooked into this witty play from prolific playwright Richard Bean (One Man, Two Guvnors), which came to Broadway after a well-received 2016 run in the U.K. The story centers on Dylan Spokes (Ben Schnetzer), an up-and-coming snooker star who’s returned to his hometown of Sheffield for that impending tournament (the “nap” of the title refers to the cloth on the game’s table).

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