Stage Review

HOLLYWOOD ARMS (2002)

EW's GRADE
B

Details Opening Date: Oct 31, 2002; Lead Performance: Linda Lavin; Writers: Carol Burnett, Carrie Hamilton; Director: Harold Prince

Along with her daughter -- the late Carrie Hamilton -- Carol Burnett has fashioned a memory play about her troubled childhood (no money, wayward mom, alcoholic dad). And while it's not the most trenchant piece of writing you'll ever experience, under Harold Prince's expert direction some very harsh material takes on a warm, appealingly nostalgic glow. It helps that the entire cast is excellent -- particularly Michele Pawk as the increasingly bitter, celebrity-obsessed mom and Linda Lavin as the non-stop nattering Nanny (the same grandmother, we assume, for whom Burnett always tugs her ear). This moving production may kick off a new media subgenre: the Broadway-bound star autobiography.

Originally posted Jan 03, 2003 Published in issue #689 Jan 03, 2003 Order article reprints
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