The production became media fodder as it repeatedly delayed scheduled openings. Two directors joined and exited the roster, production costs rose from $600,000 to $720,000, and top tickets soared to $12.50. Producer Alexander Cohen announced that the critics would be invited "when the show's potential has been realized."
The show eventually debuted to chilly notices. In his New York Times review, Clive Barnes lauded Angela Lansbury's performance despite the musical's weak material. "It is a memory worth treasuring in an evening that seems destined to be forgotten," he wrote. Lansbury won her second Tony Award for the performance.
This week, the musical made its UK premiere in a production led by Tony winner Betty Buckley.
Holed up in a seedy motel on the edge of the Mojave Desert, two former lovers unpack the deep secrets and dark desires of their tangled relationship, passionately tearing each other apart. Led by director Daniel Aukin (Back Back Back at MTC, 4,000 Miles), Tony winner Nina Arianda (Venus in Fur at MTC, Born Yesterday) and Sam Rockwell (A Behanding in Spokane, The Way Way Back) bring an explosive intensity to Sam Shepard’s (Buried Child, True West) landmark myth of the new Wild West.