SIGNIFICANT OTHER: Show Review by Robin Gorman Newman
With smarts, sass (literally) and sensitivity, playwright Joshua Harmon (Bad Jews) tackles the subject of singlehood and tugs at you winningly with humor and heart.
Jordan and his crew of 20 somethings are inseparable, whether partying on the dance floor or crying on each other’s shoulders, until one by one, each of his BFFs meet their bashert, and he is left wondering what if he is destined to live a future alone. as a single gay man.
At age 29, he’s already feeling his biological clock….not to have kids….but, thanks perhaps to his close relationship with his beloved, widowed grandmother (the delightful Barbara Barrie) who he visits frequently, he is acutely aware of how growing into old age is peferable with a mate. She constantly inquires about his social life, only too aware of his challenges, and reminisces lovingly of Pop-Pop, Jordan’s grandfather.
Jordan had come to lean the most heavily on his reliable gal pals, until the last is about to walk down the aisle, and he has a a gut-wrenching meltdown.
“All the things you got from our friendship, you get from Tony now. Which is great. But all the things I got, things I really need– I’m not getting them from anyone, and then you tell me I’m your best friend but it’s so different, it’s so, so different and I feel so alone,” Jordan proclaims to Laura, the one, if he were straight, might have proven to be his soulmate.
“Your wedding is my funeral, ” he also says to Laura, played with tremendous depth and warmth by the appealing Lindsay Mendez.
Jordan gets crushes and has lust fests, but true love has evaded him. Glick does a wonderful job capturing the insecurity beneath his character’s playful exterior. This is a highly memorable star turn by Glick. His face is an emotional canvas, and, he is well supported by the entire cast, two of whom convincingly play multiple roles.
Deftly directed by Trip Cullman, making his Broadway debut, the cast also includes John Behlmann (Journey’s End), Sas Goldberg (Stunning), Rebecca Naomi Jones (American Idiot), and Luke Smith (Peter and the Starcatcher Tour).
The creative team includes choreography by Sam Pinkleton (Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, Amélie), scenic design by Mark Wendland (Tony Award nominee, The Merchant of Venice, Next to Normal), costume design by Kaye Voyce (The Real Thing, The Realistic Joneses), lighting design by Japhy Weideman (Tony Award nominee, The Visit, Airline Highway, Of Mice and Men) and sound design by Daniel Kluger (The Common Pursuit).
Significant Other began at Roundabout Theatre Company following the professional debut and world premiere of Joshua Harmon’s play Bad Jews at Roundabout Underground’s Black Box in fall 2012. Bad Jews was the first play to transfer to the Roundabout’s Laura Pels Theatre and became the third most produced licensed play last season. Significant Other becomes Roundabout’s second new play to transfer to Broadway following the success of Stephen Karam’s Tony Award-winning play, The Humans.
Harmon is a young playwright to be watched, and like myself, he is a huge Wendy Wasserstein fan, who so well captured the essence of single womanhood. Harmon’s got good taste in writers and wit and insight to spare, and I anticipate future enduring works of flawed, vulnerable and endearing characters and scenarios that resonate, as both he and his subjects age and evolve.