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Oklahoma! Reviews

Broadway ShowsMusicalsTony WinnersDrama Desk WinnersTony Nominees

Average customer review: 1.5 star rating (1.3 Stars)

Number of reviews: 438



1.0 star rating Nippy Mobisto from San Francisco, California


OOOOOKLAHOMA! at the Golden Gate Theater today… Was definitely the worst theatrical production I’ve personally ever attended 🫤 I have seen junior high and high school versions of Oklahoma! that brought the house down, so rich in material is this play. I’ve been to a lot of theater, from the original cast of Fiddler on the Roof doing Summerstock to community theater and always have fun. This was not fun. It was grim. It was billed as a new, fresh take on Oklahoma! We were ready for undefined gender roles, saucy dialogue and, well, some SF flair! What we got was merely a racially diverse cast. The bleak stage for the entire first half consisted of folding banquet tables, various cheap coolers and cans of Bud Light placed on them and the entire cast lolling about for no reason. The actors were in regular, modern clothes with cowboy boots. Good thing we already knew the story line, because it was poorly developed. The only actors who stood out were the peddler, Ali, who did his part in this wretched production valiantly, and to a lesser degree Will, who showed he has some stage presence. The rest were duds who could carry a tune but, had nothing compelling to offer. They had talent. They were just yoked to a bad wagon. The script couldn’t make up its mind if it was going traditional or avant- guard and even made a lame physical joke about two men kissing that seemed to be aimed to titillate midwestern homophobe tourists who would think it was funny. We considered going home rather than returning from intermission. But, didn’t. The woman on our right fell asleep in the second half, after reaching out to tap my companion in solidarity while we were all laughing at the utterly disconnected interpretive dance scene opening the second act, which went on forever, filled the theater with fake smoke and was not meant to be funny. Which had zero connection to the story. I think they were trying to kill 15 minutes. The poor, lone dancer, inexplicably costumed in tights and a t-shirt that said DREAM BABY DREAM in gold lamé, danced well. But, one kept thinking…why? Wtf? Several times the acid rock (recorded, I think, but who knows? We couldn’t see in the smoke and dark) music was so loud and obnoxious, we plugged our ears bcs it hurt. Again..why??? The orchestra, which was for some reason onstage the entire time, consisted of good country/bluegrass musicians they should have used to better advantage. Numerous scenes happened in complete darkness so you couldn’t see the actors. We’re not sure why. The actress playing Lourie seemed to be channeling the Boondocks comic strip. An angry black woman trope. She was played as a very pretty, unpleasant bitch. Angry and mean. The kinda gal high school football players might have sought out but, any sane adult male would have run for the hills. She sang well but, that did not save her. She ended up completely splattered in Poor Jud Fry’s blood and traumatized at the end, though Poor Jud was shot at least 20 feet away from her and barely had any blood on himself. Ado Annie either mumbled incoherently or did full throated, opera decibel-level singing at which she was adept, but, she did not convey the charisma of Ado Annie so.. wasn’t fun as she should have been. Curly was a little man who sang well but, without much umpf, though he did shake up a beer and squirt it on the unfortunate elders sitting in the first four rows for no reason whatsoever. The squirted people were not happy about that. We still don’t know why that happened.. The entire play was interspersed with dead air between lines that made one wonder if the actors just forgot their lines. There were only a couple of high energy song/dance scenes but, then again too few to mention and we weren’t much invested in the characters by the time those happened so..yawn Whoever wrote this interpretation and the director should be so ashamed of themselves, they should retire, never to be heard from again. We were around the side door waiting for our Lyft as the cast came out and we politely avoided eye contact and crossed the street so as not to convey to them how we felt. It wasn’t their fault. There it is there.

1.0 star rating Gail from San Francisco, California


None of the joy or charm of the original production. The cast members could sing, but dancers they were not. The show was very dark in tone. We know many people who saw it and everyone couldn’t wait to leave. A truly terrible show.

1.0 star rating Mimi from Los Angeles, California


Seeing this show was my birthday present. I told my husband he was getting me a gift I really wanted. Oh no, what a disappointment. I feel older and not a bit wiser. The program notes said there was nothing left out of the script. What they left out was the meaning of the whole thing. They also left out the life and the energy and so many opportunities to do better. I hope you get a better birthday gift than I did.

1.0 star rating Jack from Los Angeles, California


This piece of crap won the Tony Award for Best Revival? Huh? The first act was nothing more than a table read with mediocre music. No chemistry between the actors, woke casting and we're sitting close to the stage in LA and still couldn't understand what was going on. Scenes going into prolonged darkness which made no sense. The stage fully lit during supposedly dramatic moments. The, "ballet," that opened the second act was a prolonged, awkward, agonizing interpretive dance last seen on the first day of freshman dance class. If this was the directors' vision he needs to see an optometrist right away. The set was a joke, only chairs and picnic tables. Not even a few silly stick horses. This production has no redeeming entertainment value whatsoever. None. Zero. If your TV doesn't work, if you have no book to read, no friends to spend time with, better that you sit in the corner of a dark room by yourself than going to see this trash. Save your $. It's an embarrassment.

1.0 star rating Dana M. from Los Angeles, California


I just got home from seeing OKLAHOMAA at the Ahmanson Theater. I am 62 years old, male, and have worked professionally in theater and music my entire life. I can without a doubt say tonight's production of Oklahoma was the worst production I have ever seen on any stage in all these years. Especially for a professional theater of this caliber. I have been to dozens of Ahmanson's fantastic productions over the years, and NEVER been dissappointed like this. I could have even handled the bare bones staging, and unusual presentation of a classic musical, but this was absolutely horrible. ...The singing was awful, the acting was awful, the staging was horrific, the lighting a nightmare, the dance piece after intermission completely out of place and immature and pathetic. Lowest level of talent at a professional show I've ever seen. I am still in shock the Ahmanson allowed this horrible amateur poorly staged show on their stage. Do yourself a favor...skip this one, its AWFUL!!!

1.0 star rating Donna Roberts from Los Angeles, California


Many, many (wise) people didn't return after intermission. The rest of us staggered out at the end saying "WTAF did we just see??" It was like a bad table reading. Ridiculous dramatic and unnecessary pauses. Poor casting. Uneven singing. Ado Annie was a caricature. Original score that DID NOT WORK with the staging, or, rather, with the lack thereof. Inexplicable Blair-Witch interludes. Ending scene was the crescendo of horribleness. SAVE YOURSELF AND YOUR WALLET....DO NOT SEE THIS.

1.0 star rating Frank from Los Angeles, California


There were some talented performers, but this production was the most ill-conceived, ham-handed, badly-directed and cheapest-looking musical I may have ever seen, and I’m including my 8th grade production of Finian’s Rainbow. There has to be a REASON why you want to do a new take on Oklahoma, and this version is without reason, other than being edgy for edginess’s sake. Having the cast open beers all over the audience and having the ending look like Carrie isn’t thought-provoking, it’s just gross and pointless. Making the stage go pitch black and the actors mumble into microphones isn’t cutting edge, it’s just pretentious nonsense. If you’re going to strip a naturally lavish musical down to bare bones with only one dance sequence, then at least have that dance sequence be great AND. make sure everyone in your cast can actually sing on key! Also don’t buy set decorations from The Party Store. I truly feel bad for the actors. And for myself.

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