What’s in a Name? Chekhov, Obviously

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Sigourney Weaver (foreground), Kristine Nielsen and David Hyde Pierce in Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. (T. Charles Erickson)

Fans of Anton Chekhov will likely recognize three of the four title names in playwright Christopher Durang's new comedy, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, which stars Sigourney Weaver and David Hyde Pierce in the Lincoln Center Theater production at the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater.

So, is this new play by the author of Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All For You and The Marriage of Bette and Boo, a satire on Chekov, or are other motives at work? And who is Spike? New York Times theater critic Charles Isherwood has taken a look, and lets us know if this new play is Chekov-angsty, Durang-funny, or something of the two.

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