Bill W. and Dr. Bob is a study of two desperate men on the brink of ruin due to their disease of alcoholism and the founding of AA. Beginning in 1929, the story traces Bill W. and Dr. Bob's friendship and their crusade to sobriety through 1950 with Dr. Bob Smith's passing. Bill Wilson, a bright energetic Wall Street man who can "talk a dog off a meat wagon", is a futuristic person who finally realizes he has an unsurmountable problem and goes on a mission to do something about it or literally perish. He meets Dr. Bob, another desperate alcoholic, on a trip to Akron Ohio where they realize the program of simply praying for sobriety does not work. What they hope will work is discussing their problem with other alcoholics. After they see this is working for them (with some set backs) they go on to seek others with the same disease to join them. Although the second act begins to drag a bit, I found the story of Bill W. and Dr. Bob to be inspirational. The acting was terrific particularly Timothy Crowe who plays a very believable and tormented Dr. Bob. Daniel Pearce and Liz Wisan were spectacular portraying multiple challenging roles throughout the play. The set design was brilliant with an ever present well stocked bar in the background serving as a constant reminder of their omnipresent and always readily available demons. You don't have to be a member of AA to enjoy this play although at least half of the audience for this show seemed to relate to it personally. Everyone knows someone close to them who has this disease. Seeing this production will leave you with a new admiration for the courage of those who have joined AA and sorrow for those who just can't admit they have a problem.
15 Vandam St, New York, NY 10013Click for map and directions
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