We round up the reviews for the revival of Jordan Harrison’s Pulitzer Prize nominated play.
Evening Standard: ★★★ “Though talky and static as a piece of drama, Jordan Harrison’s Pulitzer-nominated 2014 play is an intriguing meditation on ageing, death and Artificial Intelligence.”
iNews: ★★★★ “The second factor is Harrison’s ability to layer ideas upon ideas so gradually that we don’t realise how many intellectual questions we’re absorbing. This is a play about how memory shapes our sense of self; about the costs of love; about our hold over our children – and yes, about artificial intelligence. In the age of ChatGPT, we’re bound to see more plays about AI. Harrison sets out the parameters of a new genre boldly and brightly.”
Time Out: ★★★ “In the end, though, I don’t think compelling ideas are enough to see it through. It feels both too short and too static, a lack of meat on the characters’ bones running up against the glacial stillness of the scenes. For a sad play about people in mourning, it never really feels moving. It feels overshadowed in this respect by its most obvious comparisons, like Solaris or Caryl Churchill’s A Number. Thought-provoking and full of ideas, but it’s lacking in heart and Dromgoole’s austere production doesn’t exactly help the medicine go down. If this is the future, it’s a cold place.”
Theatre Weekly: “Marjorie Prime definitely leaves its audience wanting more; extra time to explore the characters in more detail would have made the chilling conclusion even more thought-provoking. It feels as if the play has been written in response to the recent release of ChatGPT, but it was actually first performed almost a decade ago, which explains some of the older references, but demonstrates just how prescient Harrison’s writing is.”
Marjorie Prime continues to play at the Menier Chocolate Factory until 6 May 2023.