Off Broadway News: As You Like It!, The Public Theatre, The New Group and Ensemble Studio Theatre,
Join Rosalind & Celia as they flee into the Forest of Arden for romance, music, & adventures in cross-dressing in Shakespeare’s startlingly modern comedy, AS YOU LIKE IT. Meet the lovesick Orlando, femme fatale Phebe, the wickedly funny Touchstone, the dreamy Jaques, & the glamorous court in exile led by Queen Senior. Murder attempts, lion attacks, not even visits from the gods can stop the glorious fun of As You Like It!The cast of As You Like It! features Alyssa Diamond, Amy Frances Quint, Ange Berneau, Anuj Parikh, Bellamy Ridinger, Calley Light, Camelia Iturregui Fuertes, Casey Young, Coleman Shu-Tung, David Arthur Bachrach, David Elyha, Eric Doss, Hester Wilkinson, Jaixa Irizarry, John L. Payne, Jonathan Reed Wexler, Kyle Primack, Martin Bodenheimer, Riley Scott, Steven Ungar, Tony Savage Thorn, Ty-Quan Payne, and Vivien Landau (Shiva Baby). The production’s set & costume design is by Asa Benally, lighting design by Obie & Drama Desk Award winner Dennis Parichy, choreography by Geneva Jenkins, Violence Coordinator Marcus Watson and The Production Stage Manager is Joseph Gagliano.
Performances of As You Like It! are on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30PM and Sundays at 3:00PM. There is also a Wednesday performance on 10/19 at 7:30PM.Running time: 2hrs, 15 mins. One intermission.
The Public Theater (Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director and Patrick Willingham, Executive Director) and Elevator Repair Service (John Collins, Artistic Director) will begin previews for the New York premiere production of Baldwin And Buckley At Cambridge with a Joseph Papp Free Performance on Saturday, September 24 in the Anspacher Theater. The production was conceived by Greig Sargeant with Elevator Repair Service and is directed by Elevator Repair Service (ERS)’s Artistic Director John Collins. Baldwin And Buckley At Cambridge has also extended and will now run through Sunday, October 23 with an official press opening on Sunday, October 2.
In 1965, two of America’s intellectual giants were invited to debate whether “the American Dream is at the expense of the American Negro,” bringing into sharp focus our country’s deepest divisions. The renowned theater company Elevator Repair Service returns to The Public with Baldwin And Buckley At Cambridge, a profoundly relevant presentation of the legendary debate between virtuosic writer James Baldwin and father of American conservatism William F. Buckley, Jr. The production concludes with an imagined scene between Baldwin and his close friend Lorraine Hansberry, researched and written by long-time ERS company members April Matthis and Greig Sargeant. Heralded by the New York Times as “one of the city’s few truly essential theater companies,” Elevator Repair Service applies their trademark approach of verbatim textual exploration and intensive collaboration to re-create Baldwin and Buckley’s blistering dissection of race, racism, and human worth.
The cast of the New York premiere of Baldwin And Buckley At Cambridge includes Daphne Gaines (Lorraine Hansberry), Gavin Price (Mr. Heycock), Matthew Russell (Understudy), Greig Sargeant (James Baldwin), Christopher-Rashee Stevenson (Mr. Burford), and Ben Jalosa Williams(William F. Buckley, Jr.).
Starting Tuesday, October 18, Stephanie Weeks will take over for the role of Lorraine Hansberry for all remaining performances. Additionally, during select performances, Matthew Russell will play Mr. Heycock. Visit publictheater.org for the performance calendar and more details.
The New Group has announced complete casting and dates for the company’s 2022-23 Season opener: Evanston Salt Costs Climbing, by Will Arbery and directed by Danya Taymor. The New York premiere of this play about climate and change will feature Quincy Tyler Bernstine, Jeb Kreager, Ken Leung, and Rachel Sachnoff.
The production will run October 25 to December 18 at The Pershing Square Signature Center in the Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre (480 West 42nd Street).
In Evanston Salt Costs Climbing, Will Arbery (Corsicana, Pulitzer Prize finalist for Heroes of the Fourth Turning) confronts humanity’s deepest fears with surreal humor, warmth, and the fortitude of municipal public servants. Winters keep getting worse in Evanston, IL where salt truck drivers Peter and Basil battle the ice and snow and pass the time with jokes and stories. But what’s with this creeping sense of dread? Is it because their boss Maiworm has noble visions of new green technology that would make their jobs obsolete? Or is there a more terrifying warning calling out from under these roads? At least they have each other, right?
Directed by Danya Taymor, Evanston Salt Costs Climbing features Quincy Tyler Bernstine (Ruined, Mary Seacole), Jeb Kreager (HBO’s Mare of Easttown, Heroes of the Fourth Turning), Ken Leung (HBO’s Industry, Lost) and Rachel Sachnoff (Evanston Salt Costs Climbing at White Heron Theatre).
Ensemble Studio Theatre (EST) announced the directors for the 38th Marathon of One-Act Plays, which will be fully comprised of work from artists who identify as Black, Indigenous & People of Color (BIPOC). The full list of directors is Sivan Battat, Dominic Colón, nicHi Douglas, Chika Ike, Cameron Knight, Rebecca Martinez, Jonathan McCrory, Jess McLeod, Keenan Tyler Oliphant, Erin Tripp and Elizabeth Van Dyke.
This year’s selection of eleven plays was curated by Co-Artistic Directors Mike Lew (Teenage Dick) and Colette Robert (Behind the Sheet). Ten plays will be presented across two different series from Sunday October 16, 2022 through Sunday November 13, 2022 at EST (545 West 52nd St, New York, NY 10019). An eleventh play, Yan Tután, will be streamed October 23 to November 13 in collaboration with Perseverance Theatre in Alaska.
Series A will begin on Sunday, October 16 with press invited beginning Monday, October 17. Series B will begin on Sunday, October 23 with press invited beginning Monday, October 24.
SERIES A BEGINNING OCTOBER 16:
Still… By Harron Atkins Directed by Cameron Knight
Noah and Jeremy bonded over music, fell in love over music, then fell apart over music. Can music bring them back together? Still… is a play that follows two people over 50 years as they struggle to love two things at once: each other and their dreams.
Intro To By Vivian J.O. Barnes Directed by Keenan Tyler Oliphant
Three very different women take a writing class.
Prospect Avenue or The Miseducation of Juni Rodriguez
Written and Directed by Dominic Colón
Two young men from the Bronx meet on a downtown number 2 train. This brief encounter sparks a meditation on life, love, and McDonald’s.
Los Complicados By Cusi Cram Directed by Rebecca Martinez
It is 1984 and 15-year-old Manca is having a truly abysmal day. Will her pot-smoking, free spirited god-brother, Pedro be able to lift her up out of the dumps? The jury’s out because with these two everything is muy complicado.
Younger Battles the Possible Ghost By Shannon Tyo Directed by nicHi douglas
There is almost certainly a ghost in Younger’s bedroom. What to do, what to do…
SERIES B: BEGNNING October 23
Tr@k Grls (pt1) By Bleu Beckford-Burrell Directed by Elizabeth Van Dyke
Raeni Bailey and Anita Gordon have four things in common right now: living in Far Rockaway, Queens; the High School Track team and being Black Girls. A homage play to the Lady Seahorses of Far Rockaway High School.
Brass Knuckles By Yussef El Guindi Directed by Sivan Battat
As Maysoon puts on her hijab she tries to steel herself against the possible verbal, even physical assaults she might have to endure during the course of the day for wearing a hijab.
Prepared By Keiko Green Directed by Jess McLeod
Global warming, tidal waves, and tornadoes have destroyed all of humankind as we know it…well, all except Troop 4337. Set in the not-so-distant future, the only survivors of the apocalypse are a troop of boy scouts led by an eccentric Scoutmaster. They soldier on, fighting off the all-consuming cosmic loneliness, as they attempt to make peace with a vengeful Mother Nature.
Breath of Life: A choreoplay of Black Love By Goldie E. Patrick Directed by Jonathan McCrory
When Toni and Drew, both Black community activists, are hit with the double pandemic of COVID-19 and Police Brutality, the decision of whether to protest in their community or stay home becomes more than a political choice. Separated from each other for the first time in months, each has their own confrontation of the fears they’ve been holding onto about their new life.
blooms By a.k. payne Directed by Chika Ike
Ten minutes before their shift at the grocery store, Leticia tries to prove to Kim that love exists; Kim wishes she could rearrange the world.
STREAMING Oct 23 – Nov 13:
Yan Tután By Vera Starbard Directed by Erin Tripp *Streaming in collaboration with Perseverance Theatre
An Alaska Native group faces a leadership crisis and must decide whether to continue their traditional practice at all.
*Mark Returns To The Magis Theatre Company
Magis Theatre Company will present a revival of their critically acclaimed production of *mark, a solo performance of the Gospel of Mark. Originally produced at La MaMa ETC and directed by Luann Purcell Jennings in 2014, it features original music composed by internationally acclaimed, award-winning composer Elizabeth Swados. Actor George Drance will again perform the role of the storyteller. *mark will be performed at Theatre 315 located at 315 W. 47th St. New York, NY. The show dates are as follows: Wednesdays, April 12 and 19 at 7PM; Thursdays, April 6, 13 and 20 at 7pm; Friday April 7, 14 and 21 at 8PM; Saturday April 8, 15 and 22 at 2PM. Tickets are available at Eventbrite: tinyurl.com/36h7rzdt. The production is directed by Jackie Lucid.
The Gospel of Mark, the oldest of the four gospels, had an early tradition of being performed aloud from start to finish. It was finally written down during Nero’s brutal persecution of the followers of “the Way.” Recited in its entirety to give courage to this community of quiet rebels, their radical compassion put them in danger because their inclusivity threatened the Empire’s status quo. Today it is rare for an audience to hear this gospel performed in its totality, or to experience it with the immediacy of that dangerous period of oppression. In his contemporary solo performance, Drance, reclaims the urgency of the words as when they were first spoken. He examines the message of commitment and love through the eyes of a street artist, using drawings to illustrate and illuminate the text.
Magis Theatre Company, founded in 2003, is an ensemble of actors and teaching artists who came together out of desire: desire to teach, desire to train, and desire to act. The company has produced a variety of actor driven, physically based theatre productions that explore the human condition. Recent productions include: Thornton Wilder’s The Alcestiad performed at FDR Four Freedoms Park; Calderon’s Two Dreams, presenting both the 1636 comedia and the 1677 auto sacramental of Life is a Dream; Leslie Lewis’ Miracle in Rwanda, testifying to the transformative power of prayer and forgiveness. Their adaptation of C.S. Lewis’s fantastical spiritual tale The Great Divorce was hailed by the New York Times as “thought provoking… long on theatrical skill and remarkably short on preachiness.”
Actor George Drance, Artist-in-residence at Fordham University, has performed and directed in over twenty countries on five continents. He has served as artistic director of Theatre YETU in Kenya and artistic associate for Teatro la Fragua in Honduras. Drance has been a guest artist and lecturer at Columbia University, Cornell University, Marquette University, Marymount Manhattan College, Hebrew Union College, and Boston College. In March, Drance, who is Ukrainian, will appear at LA Mama in Radio 477!, a new show created by Yara Arts Group and Ukrainian artists about the city of Kharkiv, its jazz history, and how it stood up to Putin today. With texts and lyrics by award-winning Ukrainian poet Serhiy Zhadan, music by Anthony Coleman, it is directed by Virlana Tkacz.
Perhaps best known for her Broadway and international smash hit Runaways, the late Elizabeth Swados (1951-2016) composed, wrote and directed issue-oriented theatre for over 30 years. Some of her works include the Obie Award winning Trilogy at La Mama, and Alice at the Palace with Meryl Streep at the New York Shakespeare Festival. Her awards include: Five Tony® nominations, three Obie® Awards, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Ford Grant, the Helen Hayes Award, a Lila Acheson Wallace Grant, PEN, and others.
Visit the Magis Theatre Company online at: https://www.magistheatre.org
Broadway’s A Doll’s House Meticulously Stunning Revival Soars Like a Birdie Above That Clumsy Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
For a revival to find its footing, it has to have a point of view or a sense of purpose far beyond an actor’s desire to perform a part, whether it suits them or not. It needs to radiate an idea that will make us want to sit up and pay attention. To feel its need to exist. And on one particular day in March, I was blessed with the opportunity to see not just one grande revival, but two. One was a detailed pulled-apart revolutionary revival of Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House that astounded. The other, unfortunately, was a clumsy revival of Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof that fell lazily from that high-wired peak – not for a lack of trying, but from a formulation that never found its purpose.
Theatre News: Smash, I Need That, Good Night, Oscar, Funny Girl, This Beautiful Lady and In The Trenches: A Parenting Musical
The NBC television series Smash is coming to Broadway for the 2024-2025 season. Robert Greenblatt, Neil Meron and Steven Spielberg will produce. The musical will feature a book co-written by three-time Tony Award nominee Rick Elice and Tony winner Bob Martin. Tony and Grammy winners Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman (Some Like It Hot). The team earned three Emmy nominations for their songs from the “Smash” series will pen the score, which will feature numbers from the TV show.
Five-time Tony winner Susan Stroman (New York, New York) will direct and Tony nominee and Emmy Award winner Joshua Bergasse will choreograph.
The series was created by Theresa Rebeck and Spielberg, launch the series. Spielberg is also one of the co-producers of Good Night, Oscar, which begins performances at the Belasco Theatre on April 7.
Official dates, theater, creative team and casting for the “Smash” stage musical will be announced at a later date.
Speaking of the Pulitzer Prize finalist playwright Theresa Rebeck, Danny DeVito and Lucy DeVito are set to star in her new play I Need That at the Roundabout. The new comedy will be directed by Tony nominee Moritz von Stuelpnagel which will open at the American Airlines Theatre in October. The cast will also include Ray Anthony Thomas. … Also newly announced for Roundabout’s new Broadway season is a spring 2024 revival of Samm-Art Williams’ 1980 Tony-nominated play “Home.” Tony winner Kenny Leon will direct
Speaking of Good Night, Oscar, Doug Wright’s play was named finalist for 2023 new play award by The American Theatre Critics Association. The other six finalists for the 2023 Harold and Mimi Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award include: Born With Teeth by Liz Duffy Adams, the ripple, the wave that carried me home by Christina Anderson, Sally & Tom by Suzan-Lori Parks, Spay by Madison Fiedler and
Swing State by Rebecca Gilman.
Paolo Montalban and Anne L. Nathan are joining Lea Michele in Funny Girl as Florenz Ziegfield and Mrs. Strakosh. Montalban and Nathan will replace original cast members Peter Francis James and Toni DiBuono, who take their final bows on March 26th.
Elizabeth Swados’ This Beautiful Lady will play at La MaMa this May. Previews will begin May 5 for the Off-Broadway run ahead of the May 8 press opening, with performances set through May 28 in the Ellen Stewart Theatre.
In The Trenches: A Parenting Musical, with book, music, and lyrics by Graham & Kristina Fuller, will receive industry readings on Friday, March 24th at 11am & 3pm at Ripley Grier Studios. The readings will be directed by Jen Wineman (Dog Man: The Musical) and will feature music direction by Rebekah Bruce (Mean Girls) and arrangements by Dan Graeber, Graham & Kristina Fuller.
The cast of In The Trenches features Amanda Jane Cooper (Wicked), Jelani Remy (The Lion King, Ain’t Too Proud), Christine Dwyer (Wicked), Caesar Samayoa (Come From Away), Max Crumm (Grease, Disaster!), and Vidushi Goyal.Join two bleary-eyed young parents as they trudge through the trenches and discover their new post-baby identities. In an evening of new-parent greatest hits, a foul-mouthed toddler zeroes in on “the most dangerous thing in the room”, tap dancing towards bleach, knives, and tide pods; a chronically-overlooked younger sibling sings the “second child blues”; a mom trio celebrates yoga pants in an R&B love song to the “official mom uniform”; dad discovers he’s not the “ice-cream and movie-night cool parent” but rather the “do your homework real parent” amid a kiddo sugar-crash; and mom retrieves a sticky, hair-covered pacifier from the floor of a LaGuardia bathroom while her baby screams bloody murder and her flight boards without her.
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