Guess you can say The Performers didn't, well ... perform.
The first casualty of the Broadway season, David West Read's romantic comedy about high school friends who are reunited at the Adult Film Awards in Las Vegas didn't connect with the Broadway faithful and will close its short run at the Longacre Theatre on Sunday, Nov. 18.
Mediocre reviews plagued the show from the start, with The Hollywood Reporter's David Rooney writing, "The playwright has concocted himself a fertile setup for comedy but fails to do anything creative with it. He tosses in hit-or-miss jokes, but very little actual cleverness or emotional insight into relationship issues."
Ben Brantley of The New York Times wrote, "The Performers reaches its heights, which are mostly foothills, when it follows the internal logic of porn-speak to absurdist extremes."
Vulture's Scott Brown concluded, "Not bad. But in sum, it’s merely good TV writing, without disciplined TV structure. There’s not enough story even to sustain The Performers’ slender 90 minutes, and West bends his characters into all sorts of pretzels to fulfill basic comic payoffs."
The cast includes Alicia Silverstone, Henry Winkler, Cheyenne Jackson, Ari Graynor, Daniel Breaker and Jenni Barber.
The play, produced by Robyn Goodman, Amanda Lipitz and Scott R. Delman, is directed by Evan Cabnet, who also directed Read's prior drama, The Dream of the Burning Boy.
The Performers will have played 23 previews (two previews were lost to Hurricane Sandy) and seven performances at the time of closing.
The remaining performance schedule is as follows: Nov. 15 and 16 at 8 p.m.; Nov. 17 at 2 and 8 p.m.; and Nov. 18 at 2 and 7 p.m.