Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright David Mamet’s polarizing and provocative drama “Oleanna” opened at the John Golden Theatre on October 12. This is the first time...

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright David Mamet’s polarizing and provocative drama “Oleanna” opened at the John Golden Theatre on October 12.

This is the first time on Broadway for a production of “Oleanna,” a two-character play starring Bill Pullman and Julia Stiles. It is a transfer of the Center Theatre Group’s production. An edge-of-your seat drama, the theatergoer witnesses the struggle of a middle-aged male university professor, John, and one of his female students, Carol.

Mamet wrote “Oleanna” in 1992 and it opened off-Broadway just as the volatile Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas sexual harassment hearings were getting underway. This production is directed by Tony Award winner Doug Hughes.

Previews of the production began September 29, with ticket prices ranging from $76.50 to $116.50. The last full week of previews saw gross ticket sales of $283,245 at the 804-seat theater, according to the Broadway League.

Evening performances are scheduled weekly for Tuesday at 7 p.m, and Wednesday through Saturday at 8 p.m. Matinees are lined up for Wednesday and Saturday at 2 p.m and Sunday at 3 p. m. The run time of performances is 1 hour and 15 minutes with no intermission. The production has an open run.

The John Golden Theatre is located at 252 West 45th Street, New York NY. Scheduling and ticketing details are available on the production’s official Web Site.

Opening Night: ‘Oleanna’

Publication Critic Review
Variety David Rooney “…while Pullman makes John’s undoing a harrowing spectacle, the sheer acrimony of Mamet’s stance against Carol blunts the confrontation.”
New York Times Ben Brantley “…(this) latest version, which pits the excellent Bill Pullman against the luminous Julia Stiles, often seemed slow to the point of stasis, and its ending found me almost drowsy.”
Associated Press Michael Kuchwara “‘Oleanna’ is a fiendishly difficult play to pull off, but Pullman and Stiles, under the precise, careful direction of Doug Hughes, make the most of Mamet’s seemingly imprecise language.”
USA Today Elysa Gardner “…you’ll swear you can see the actor’s blood pressure rising. You may feel your own going up, as well. ‘Oleanna’ has lost none of its provocative power…”
Entertainment Weekly Leah Greenblatt “Pullman comes across as such an affable, bumbling teddy bear of a man that his targeting by Stiles’ inarticulate woman-child turned aggressive ideological shrew just seems absurd, and throws the entire play off-balance.”
Bloomberg.com John Simon “The writing clearly and deliberately aims at provocation, at which it succeeds rather better than at credibility.”