Wilborn Hampton, The Huffington Post: Who says they don't write Broadway musicals like they used to? Joe DiPietro and Kathleen Marshall have teamed up to reshuffle the Gershwin playlist into a new musical, named for the familiar tune "Nice Work If You Can Get It," that is quite simply, to borrow another song title, "Delishious." And with Kelli O'Hara as a bootlegger and Matthew Broderick as a Roarin' Twenties playboy, one can only say bring back Prohibition!
Chris Jones, Chicago Tribune: Overall, the show is too afraid of emotional engagement, which is silly when you have these songs and O'Hara's voice and Broderick's likable self to deliver them. More truth and honesty would make the work considerably nicer — and, for the audience, easier to get.
Howard Shapiro, Philadelphia Inquirer: The cast is spot-on. Is there any ingenue role in musical theater that Kelli O’Hara — of “The Pajama Game” and “South Pacific” revivals — couldn’t make her very own? In “Nice Work,” even given a stellar cast, when she’s on the stage she often is the single focus, by sheer force of her ability to sing any song fully in character, and deliver it with a striking musicality. This leaves her leading man, Matthew Broderick, in an uncomfortable position. Although his part of a rich playboy with a low-wattage brain means he must appear as a constant shade of gray among the colorful characters on stage, a part he delivers earnestly, his singing seems only serviceable by comparison to O’Hara’s.
David Rooney, Hollywood Reporter: Broderick is winningly paired with the luminous Kelli O’Hara (South Pacific), and the leads are backed by a string of top-notch character turns. Throw in 21 tunes from two of the preeminent practitioners of the American musical and you have a cocktail that should go down easily with Broadway nostalgists. It might also draw audiences seduced by the magic and glamour of Jazz Age entertainment in this year’s Oscar-winner The Artist.
Steven Suskin, Variety: The newly manufactured 1920s-set musical "Nice Work if You Can Get It" crams vintage Gershwin songs into a bubbly crowdpleaser, enchantingly rendered by thesps Kelli O'Hara, Michael McGrath and Judy Kaye. Mix in staging and choreography by Kathleen Marshall ("Anything Goes") and a cheerfully screwball if somewhat creaky new book by Joe DiPietro, and you've got what might be termed a good new old-fashioned musical. If only its likable, hard-working leading man -- a miscast Matthew Broderick -- didn't seem to be painfully concentrating on his next step, all night long.
Matt Windman, amNY: While Kathleen Marshall's crowd-pleasing production lacks the inspired showstopper choreography of her revival of "Anything Goes," it makes for nonstop giddy fun thanks to its dynamic cast, Joe DiPietro's wickedly funny dialogue and a treasure trove of timeless Gershwin favorites and rarities. At first, Broderick seems ill at ease, especially while dancing. But soon enough he wins over the audience with his charm and thin but pleasant singing voice. O'Hara, best remembered as Nellie Forbush in the "South Pacific" revival, proves that she can also sparkle in a silly comedy.
Scott Brown, Vulture: Nice Work is a lovely, witty diversion. Marshall’s musical troika (orchestrator Bill Elliott, musical director Tom Murray and music supervisor David Chase) have sculpted a swelling throughline score out of Gershwin’s songs and instrumental compositions, with judicious, occasionally rather sly quotes from Rhapsody in Blue, The Three Note Waltz, and many others. Nobody fills a big space like Marshall. Nice Work is perfectly nice work, an old-fashioned romp with a well-deployed prop in the center ring: If the show is Jackie Chan, Broderick is the vase he’s juggling.
Jeremy Gerard, Bloomberg: The show, drawing hither and yon from the Gershwin songbook, demonstrates how hard it is to create the illusion of effortless whimsy. A new book by Joe DiPietro pays heavy-handed tribute to the flimsy plots that Guy Bolton and P.G. Wodehouse once devised for George and Ira to showcase their sublime ditties. The result is mostly a flop-sweat inducing affair. However appealing Broderick and O’Hara are individually, as romantic leads, they’re weak sparks on damp leaves. Fortunately, a pair of first-rate second bananas -- Judy Kaye and Michael McGrath -- partly salvage this misguided enterprise.