THE PLACE WE BUILT (by Sarah Gancher, directed Danya Taymor, The Flea Theater)
"Friedlander and Gray are exceptionally riveting in their portrayals, cynical and sincere in vibrant and paradoxical ways."
"The strength of “The Place We Built” lies in its theme of resistance and transformation. Zoltan’s description of the zeal of the young people who gather at the closing and dismantling of the Seagull is chilling and haunting. Near the end of the play, Julia (Cleo Gray) confesses to Zoltan, “And I know the world is complicated. Everything is s**t. I don’t care. We have to keep trying. Things can change. I am changing.” It is this youthful penchant for chasing hope that makes “The Place We Built” engaging and relevant and worth the visit."
- reviewed by David Roberts; OnStage Blog
"The cast, made up of the Bats, the theatre's resident company, once again is more than up to the task. Standouts include Leta Renée-Alan as Aniko, who comes to resent always being the adult in the room; Cleo Gray as Julia, who wants to hang on to The Seagull no matter what..."
- reviewed by David Barbour; Lighting and Sound America
"Most appealing characters of the bunch: ...Julia, tough and a tad sexually ambiguous, made literate and demanding by Cleo Gray..."
- reviewed by Joel Benjamin; TheaterScene.net
SOLDIER X (by Rehana Lew Mirza, directed by Lucie Tiberghien, Ma-Yi Theater Co.)
"The polar opposite of tough-girl Downey is delicate Lori (Cleo Gray), the Asian-American barista at Amani's favorite coffee joint. Gray embodies the well-meaning (but clueless) California hipster, complete with a miniskirt and fantastically strappy boots (costumes by Beth Goldenberg). The two meet in a contentious scene that ends with an increasingly hostile Downey screaming at Lori, who responds accordingly. "When I threatened to call the police I realized, I want them to make her disappear," Lori later admits. Is the perfunctory "thank you for your service" really just a way to make our veterans disappear? Are we quietly imploring them to not ruin our comfortable Stateside existence with their PTSD rage?"
- reviewed by Zachary Stewart; Theatermania
DONKEY PUNCH (by Micheline Auger, directed by Audrey Alford, Ivy Theatre Co.)
"Kareena (Cleo Gray, achingly raw)"
- reviewed by Raven Snook; TimeOut NY, Critic's Pick, 4 Stars (August 2014)
"Gray gives an extremely dynamic, carefully layered performance as this seemingly alpha girl who is actually hiding self-loathing under her sexy veneer of authority. In the scene where Kyle seduces Kareena, there’s an unresolvable push and pull between her own need for power and her sense of radical powerlessness underneath."
- reviewed by Dan Callahan; L Magazine
"The performances are assured and the relationships have spark, particularly when Cleo Gray and Jon McCormick are involved. The two have a scene late in the show that provides the standout five minutes of the evening, leaving me wanting more of their obvious chemistry and imagining them chewing on a two-hander, Venus in Fur perhaps."
- reviewed by Seth Bogner; Theatre is Easy
"At center is Kareena (a complicated personality boldly played by Cleo Gray)"
- reviewed by Howard Miller; Talkin' Broadway
"Aided by Auger’s sharp, witty and well-crafted script, this production benefits from strong performances from both Dortch-Crozier and Gray. They have believable chemistry as friends, and Gray’s slick comic timing allows her to come across as someone masking her feelings—almost everything she utters is a well-delivered barb or wisecrack."
- reviewed by JK Clarke; Theater Pizzazz
"With the balance of the self-assured Gray, the two women present a friendship that feels familiar and yet has dangerous potholes that we genuinely don't want the characters to fall into."
- reviewed by Inna Tsyrlin; Stage Buddy
a cautionary tail. (by christopher oscar pena, directed by Ben Kamine, The Flea Theater)
“…the performances were strong. Cleo Gray as Vivienne offered a mulit-dimensional take on a conflicted young woman.”
- reviewed by Michael Bradley Block; Theater in the Now
"Primarily, it's the story of Luke (the lively and convincing Tony Vo) and Vivienne (the talented Cleo Gray), Stuyvesant High School students and siblings dealing, as teenagers do, with friends, relationships, sexuality, and grudges. Vivienne struggles to decide between a sensible Ivy League education, and a more risky arts education."
- reviewed by Jordan Teicher; CurtainUp
JOB (by Thomas Bradshaw, directed by Ben Kamine, The Flea Theater)
"Job’s wife, Cleo Gray bringing the inconsolable woman vividly to life, leaves him when he cannot renounce God."
- reviewed by Scott; Reviews Off Broadway
THESE SEVEN SICKNESSES (by Sean Graney, directed by Ed Iskandar, The Flea Theater)
"In a strong ensemble cast, there were a few standouts...Every time Antigone (Katherine Folk-Sullivan) and Ismene (Cleo Gray) had a scene together, I found myself drawn in and moved by the tenderness and honesty of their connection."
- reviewed by Olivia Jane Smith; New York Theatre Review