If you’ve ever seen an episode of Jerry Springer, a lot of Jerry Springer: The Opera will seem oddly familiar. This show features a cast of characters that are as vulgar as the trailer-trash contestants that originally displayed their wares, mental instability, and let it all hang out for the public to gawk at.
What makes this show so watchable is the music by Richard Thomas who also wrote lyrics, and the book and additional lyrics by Stewart Lee. Part operatic, part gospel, a splattering of rock and some riffs taken from “The Rhythm of Life” from Sweet Charity, this music soars. This show has some of the best voices I have heard on a Broadway – let alone an off-broadway – stage. Completely sung through by all except Jerry (perfectly embodied by the magnificent Terrence Mann) and Steve (Billy Hepfinger), the security man who women swooned after.
John Rando’s (A Christmas Story) direction sets the show completely all around you. In Act One, the contestants vie for their ten minutes of TV fame, considering their moments on the show as the best moments of their lives. As they air their dirty little secrets, we meet Dwight (the glorious voiced Luke Grooms), a fiancé who has cheated not only on his girlfriend Peaches (Florrie Bagel) with her best friend Sandra (Beth Kirkpatrick), but also a transsexual named Tremont (Sean Patrick Doyle). Montel (the wonderful Justine Keyes), a young man with a fetish, who wants his girlfriend Andrea (Elizabeth Loyacano) to join in with another baby named Jane (Jill Paice, An American In Paris). And a wife, Shawntel (Tiffany Mann), who dreams of pole dancing, though her hypocritical husband Chucky (Nathaniel Hackmann) and his ultra-Christian mother (Jennifer Allen) are adamantly against this. Then the KKK show up and Jerry is shot.
Act Two is Jerry defending his life in hell to his obsessed comic warm up, now Satan (the devilish Will Swenson, Waitress). Baby Jane wants to save Jerry, but Satan wants his day on the show against Jesus (Justine Keyes again) who keeps turning the other cheek, then hits back. The show turns blasphemous as Adam, Eve, and the Virgin Mary all end up needing Jesus to reconcile with them. Then God (Grooms) shows up stating “It Ain’t Easy Being Me”. Gun control is given its day and Jerry succeeds… or does he?
The cast is exquisite with stand-outs such as Sean Patrick Doyle, who moves with such grace and elegance and breaks our hearts with his love for Dwight. Tiffany Mann whose vocals on “I Just Wanna Dance” are seriously glorious. Justine Keyes whose bravery on “Montel’s Momentous” is stage watching. Jill Paice as Baby Jane has perfect tones on “This is My Jerry Springer Moment” and “Your Dreams” and seem otherworldly. Vocally, this whole cast, which also includes Brandon Contreras, Brad Greer, Kim Steele, and Nichole Turner, is heavenly.
John Rando’s direction is spot on. The choreography by Chris Bailey (Menier’s Assassins) is manic and energetic. The set by Derek McLane works well with the lighting by Jeff Crotier to make the perfect Jerry Springer TV Sound Stage on both earth and beyond. Costumes by Sarah Laux are a lot of fun. The music direction by Michael Brennan and orchestrations by Greg Anthony Rassen deserve award nominations.
Produced by the New Group, this show is brave, though at times, shocking. If obscenities offend you, beware. I am surprised this show is not being picked on by christian groups, but that tells you how far we have come or gone into bedlam.
Jerry Springer: The Opera: The New Group at The Signature Theatre, 480 West 42nd St.
**Due to demand, a three-week extension with Matt McGrath appearing as Jerry Springer beginning March 13. Terrence Mann, currently appearing in the role of Jerry Springer, plays his final performance March 11 due to an existing commitment beyond that date. Jerry Springer – The Opera now plays through April 1.
Theatre News: Doubt: A Parable, Here Lies Love, Prayer for the French Republic, Eisenhower and Hell’s Kitchen
Tyne Daly and Liev Schreiber will star in a revival of Doubt: A Parable on Broadway. The production is to begin performances next February at the American Airlines Theater.
The new production is produced by the Roundabout Theater Company, and will be directed by Scott Ellis, who has been serving as the nonprofit’s interim artistic director since the death of artistic director Todd Haimes in April.
The play, by John Patrick Shanley, is about a nun who suspects a priest has sexually abused a student at a Catholic school. In 2005, the year it first opened on Broadway, it won both the Pulitzer Prize for drama and the Tony Award for best play; it was later adapted into a film and an opera.
Daly, who will play the nun who serves as the school principal, and Schreiber, who will play the parish priest, are both Tony winners. Daly, is known for her role in “Cagney & Lacey”. She won the 1990 Tony Award for her portrayal as Mama Rose in the revival of Gypsy. Schreiber, is the star of Showtime’s “Ray Donovan.” He won a Tony Award in 2005 for a revival of Glengarry Glen Ross.
Doubt is one of three plays to be staged by Roundabout this coming season. The others are I Need That, a new play by Theresa Rebek starring Danny DeVito alongside his daughter, Lucy, and Home, a 1979 revival, directed by Kenny Leon, by Samm-Art Williams.
David Byrne, Fatboy Slim and Here Lies Love are causing controversy with their July Broadway debut. The show’s extensive use of prerecorded music has the American Federation of Musicians’ Local 802, up in arms. The Local’s Broadway musical contract stipulate that productions employ 19 live musicians.
In response to the union’s concerns, Byrne and the show’s PR team released a statement on Instagram to lay out the production’s revolutionary format and genre-bending originality. Here Lies Love is not a traditional Broadway musical. The music is drawn outside of the traditional music genre. The performance of the live vocals to pre-recorded, artificial tracks is paramount to its artistic concept. Production has ripped out the seats in the theater and built a dance floor. There is no longer a proscenium stage. The Broadway Theater has been transformed into a nightclub, with every theatergoer immersed in the experience.
Here Lies Love is on Broadway because Broadway must support boundary-pushing creative work. Broadway is also the venue for a well conceived, high-quality show that highlights the valued traditions of specific cultures whose stories have never been on its stages. Here Lies Love does not believe in artistic gatekeepers. Here Lies Love believes in a Broadway for everyone, where new creative forms push the medium and create new traditions and audiences.
I saw Here Lies Love at The Public and not sure what kind of fast talking this is, but this statement rings false and full of how can we cut the costs while sticking it to the audience.
Prayer for the French Republic, by Joshua Harmon is coming to Broadway this season.This award-winning Off Broadway production played to rave reviews at The Manhattan Theatre Club. The production was the winner of the 2022 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Play and Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding New Off-Broadway Play. Broadway performances will begin previews on Tuesday, December 19, at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, with an official opening night on Tuesday, January 9, 2024. David Cromer directs.
Off Broadway: Tony winner John Rubinstein starts previews June 13 at St. Clement’s in one-man show Eisenhower.
Alicia Keys’ musical Hell’s Kitchen will run at The Public Theater from October 24 – December 10, starring Shoshana Bean. Inspired by Keys’ own life, the new musical features an original score by the 15-time Grammy-winning singer-songwriter, with a book by Kristoffer Diaz. Hell’s Kitchen will be directed by Michael Greif and choreographed by Camille A. Brown.
Leading the cast will be Maleah Joi Moon as Ali, opposite Bean as Ali’s mother Jersey, with Brandon Victor Dixon as Ali’s father Davis, Chad Carstarphen as Ray, Vanessa Ferguson as Tiny, Crystal Monee Hall as Crystal, Chris Lee as Knuck, Jackie Leon as Jessica, Kecia Lewis as Ali’s piano teacher Miss Liza Jane, Mariand Torres as Maria, and Lamont Walker II as Riq.
Completing the cast are Reid Clarke, Chloe Davis, Nico DeJesus, Timothy L. Edwards, Raechelle Manalo, Sarah Parker, and Niki Saludez, with understudies Badia Farha, Gianna Harris, Onyxx Noel, William Roberson, and Donna Vivino.
The musical is described as a coming-of-age story set in a cramped apartment in the neighborhood of the title near Times Square, where 17-year-old Ali is desperate to get her piece of the New York dream. Ali’s mother is just as determined to protect her daughter from the same mistakes she made. When Ali falls for a talented young drummer, both mother and daughter must face hard truths about race, defiance, and growing up.
The production has set design by Robert Brill, costumes by Dede Ayite, lighting by Natasha Katz, sound by Gareth Owens, and projection design by Peter Nigrini.
Shakespeare Loose and Rollicking in Bryant Park
Eric Paterniani as Launce and Chewy as Crab (Launce’s ornery hound) in “Two Gentlemen of Verona,” 2015. Photo by Rosalie Baijer.
By Drew Valins
A couple of weeks ago I received a text: “Shakespeare’s Bday #459. We’re doing a sort of Greatest Hits thing. Are you in?” It was the Bat Signal from our own Hamilton Clancy, the Artistic Director of the Drilling Company. He was planning a sort of Shakespeare variety show. Although the run would be brief (May 25 only), it would be auspicious as the first production of the 2023 New York outdoor Shakespeare season.
We call our company the Drill for short. We are the Drillers. Every summer we do a Shakespeare play or five, and we split them between a parking lot on the Lower East Side and Bryant Park. This evening would be a lookback on our ten years of presenting Shakespeare in Bryant Park.
Of course I was in. This had become a ritual, something we previously did in Bryant Park to celebrate Shakespeare’s Birthday in April. Each year held different surprises. One time we gathered about 30 actors and did a flash mob choreographed for optimal surprise. I decided to become a “drunk” Hamlet with brown bag and bottle in hand, ranting about how much of an asshole I was next to a garbage can: “O what a rogue and peasant slave am I!” Another time we celebrated The Immortal Bard with a full brass band doing a New Orleans style serenade of Shakespeare’s songs to accompany our scenes and monologues.
It would be fun. It would be loose. It would be rollicking. It would be like getting the band together again to do our songs. Who doesn’t like rock and roll?
Our company is no stranger to Bryant Park. We know the drill. We gathered at the Upper Terrace, some of us early to rehearse a bit and grease the wheels, others showing up at the last minute due to…well, life.
I recall one time we lost a key cast member who was stuck on the F train somewhere between “who knows where and who cares, you’re late!” We knew our #1 Drilling Company Rule: “Show up before your entrance or we skip forward”. It’s outdoor theater and the show would go on.
We set up our tent for changing and got our costumes and props in order. We did sound checks with the friendly Bryant Park staff and ran through the running order so that we’d know who to hand off our mics to and when.
It was a beautiful crisp evening in Bryant Park. The stage was set, the chairs were out, the audience was ready. I breathed in, closed my eyes, and let the sun wash over me. Ahhh. Outdoor theater. This is what summer means to me in NYC.
Doing outdoor Shakespeare in Bryant Park is like being the center act in a ten ring circus. You have the biggest audience you can ever dream of. I recall our “Romeo and Juliet” had upwards of 700 people. And at the same time you are in fact in the dead center of Manhattan, contending with a kind of manic energy all around you. I’ll tell you one thing I know. The Bryant Park Grill Happy Hour crowd may be the loudest din a theater company ever had to overcome. And yet it’s a beautiful thing to embrace for both performer and audience. The audience has so much to look at and that’s a big reason they come. You catch our show but you also get to look around and see all the teeming life of the city. For me, Shakespeare’s prose scenes, which tend to be comic in nature, adapt very well to this ambience. As Autolycus from The Winter’s Tale, I had the chance to grab the audience’s attention by shuffling through the aisles, offering folks free T shirts, Covid Tests and Toilet Paper. People laughed and as a performer, that’s food for my soul.
“Why do we do this stuff?” one of my fellow actors asked me once while we were waiting to go on. Before I had a chance to open my mouth he answered his own question: “Because we are addicts. We just love this shit. We need this shit.”
There is no backstage in Bryant Park. You don’t hide and enter on your cue. You are already there. The line between audience and performer is playful.
When we did Much Ado About Nothing set in the post WW1 Suffragette period, the men entered the scene from way way back behind the audience singing. Weaving our way through the yoga mats and picnic mats, the children doing hula hoops, and the lovers smooching on blankets, we sang our wartime song and it was awesome to hear our voices echoing through the entire park.
Come chaos! We are ready for you. Performing outdoors requires flexibility, to put it delicately. Among the many instances of chaos, I recall a few. In Two Gentlemen of Verona, the clown Launce had a real dog with him which, of course stole the show especially when it didn’t listen. An acting teacher once told me: “Never act alongside a dog or a baby. You’ll lose every time.”
In Much Ado, during the b allroom dance scene, a drunk dude (probably from Bryant Park Grill) wandered on stage thinking it was a real event and started dancing with us. We looked at each other and under our breath we said: “just keep going!”. When he realized that there were a lot of people sitting in chairs watching him, he found his inner superstar and started putting on a show. Eventually he wandered off to his next adventure.
Three Witches kicked off our 2023 production with their cauldron scene in Mackers (you don’t say Macbeth in a theater) and they did it half in English and half in Gaelic. It was dynamite and set the ritual of the evening in motion.
Next up was an audience fave: Act 1, Scene 2 of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, or “Meet the Mechanicals.” The only problem was that our Quince was off in Atlantic City doing bawdy Spiegelworld stuff. So I was tasked with jumping in. No problem. I had a week to learn it, and I realized it would be perfect because Quince has a clipboard and so if I needed a line, I’d just look down at my clipboard, perfectly in character!
We had Hamlet trying to get a grip, Juliet lamenting her lost love, Gertrude in grief, Jacques dancing with his many truths, and Polonia, a female Polonius which Hamilton Clancy notes “is a character that should always be played by a woman because it’s better that way.”
And while Lady M bemoaned her husband’s weakness, I glanced over at the pastry shop called Lady M on 40th street.
As for two person scenes, we pulled from Othello and Taming of the Shrew. It was delightful to watch Alessandro Colla and Evangeline Fontaine, a real life married couple who met in the Drilling Company, bicker and bluster and love their way through the scene as Kate and Petruchio.
Autolycus made an appearance from Winter’s Tale.
We had one original piece called Dueling Dr. Caiuses, written by myself and Remy Souchon. We both played Dr. Cauis in former Drilling productions of Merry Wives of Windsor and in this comic scene the two of us competed to find out who was the “Real” Dr. Caius. In the end of course we both died and so neither of us got the part.
And gracefully running through all the acts was the music. Original songs written and performed by Natalie Smith. The sweet song “Springtime” from our production of “As You Like It” was the closer. The whole company gathered on stage and sang together as a goodbye to this spring evening and a hearty hello to Summer.
Drew Valins is an actor and playwright and proud 15 year member of the Drilling Company. (www.drewvalins.com)
Pan Asian Repertory Theatre Presents NuWorks 2023
Pan Asian Repertory Theatre (Tisa Chang, Founding Artistic Producing Director) presents NuWorks 2023, the annual experimental series of self-created work from innovative and diverse artists exploring an eclectic range of genres and techniques using poetry, text, dance, and music. Featuring new works by diverse artists Sora Baek, Jan Barry & Jenny Pacanowski, AJ Layague, Sanhawich Meateanuwat, Lyra Nalan, Sai Somboon, Cody LeRoy Wilson, Mandarin Wu & Da Xu.
Performances begin in repertory Saturday, June 3, 2023, at 7:00PM and will conclude on Sunday afternoon June 11, 2023, at 3:00PM at Theatre 1 at Theatre Row (410 West 42nd Street).
General Admission tickets are priced at $27.50 and available at https://bfany.org/theatre-row/shows/nuworks-2023/ For additional information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Pan Asian Repertory Theatre website at https://www.panasianrep.org/nuworks2023.
NuWORKS 2023Schedule of Events
PROGRAM APremieres Saturday, June 3, 2023 at 7:00PM Second performance Friday, June 9, 2022 at 7:00PM
Dream ReunionWritten by Lyra Nalan Starring Genevive Shi and Stephanie Gong Directed by Nina Lam
Ting, a Chinese woman living in America, runs over various possibilities of her reunion with her mother back home, hoping to find the right words that lead to a perfect scenario.
Lyra Nalan is a bilingual Chinese writer based in New York. She is the Judith Royer Award-winning playwright for the play Paper Dream and has been nominated for the Susan Blackburn Smith Prize and the Smith Prize for Political Theatre. Her work has been showcased at the Kennedy Center, Cherry Lane Theatre, Round House Theatre, Spooky Action Theatre, Miranda Theatre, Avant Bard Theatre, Tradewind Arts Asian American Artists, Strand Theatre, Three Cats Productions, and Adventure Theatre MTC. Lyra is currently working on a commission for Silk Road Rising theatre. She’s very honored and thrilled to be a part of Pan Asian Rep’s NuWork Festival! EDUCATION: Northwestern University: MFA in Writing for the Screen and Stage. WEBSITE: Lyranalan.com.
SELL ME: I Am From North KoreaWritten and performed by Sora Baek
On her 15th birthday, a North Korean girl, Jisun makes the heart-wrenching decision to sell herself to an old Chinese man to make money for ger dying mother’s medications. However, after risking everything by crossing the Tumen River into China, she learns that she is not-sellable and finds herself on the streets.
Sora Baek (Writer/Performer) is grateful to Pan Asian Rep and Tisa for this wonderful opportunity to share her work. Sora is a New York-based actor and playwright from South Korea. She has been featured on News 12 NJ and the international Radio Show, Voice of America. Select theater credits include: SELL ME: I am from North Korea (International Human Rights Festival, Emerson Theater Collaborative, Jersey City Theater Center), The Storm, A Christmas Carol, 400 Parts Per Million, and Sworn Virgin (NYC and International Tour) with Blessed Unrest, and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf (Calaveras Repertory Theatre). Sora won Best Actress at the Epidemic Film Festival in San Francisco. She also won Best Lead Performer at the U.K’s Scene Saver and her play was nominated for Best Play. She works with Only Make Believe where she performs interactive theater with children in hospitals and is an associate member of an internationally acclaimed theater company, Blessed Unrest. www.sorabaek.com
PROGRAM BPremieres Sunday, June 4, 2023 at 3:00PM Second performance Tuesday, June 8, 2023 at 7:00PM
A Sisyphean DreamWritten and Devised in Collaboration with Heen Sasithorn, Vin Kridakorn and Pacha Chantri Directed by Sanhawich Meateanuwat
A group of immigrant actors meets in a dream space to discuss their dreams as immigrant actors. Through challenges., self-doubts, and homesickness, they wonder if they made the RIGHT choice to travel across the world to pursue their dreams.
Sanhawich Meateanuwat (Playwright) recently moved to New York after graduating from the MFA Directing Program at Illinois State University. In Thailand, they worked as an instructor and resident director at Bangkok University, where they directed, adapted, and translated numerous plays. In 2022, they received the National SDC Directing Fellowship Award at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival. They worked as a Directing Fellow at the National Playwrights Conference 2022 at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center. This year, they have been selected to be the part of The Drama League’s Directors Project as Directing Assistantships cohort and the KCACTF/LORT ASPIRE Arts Leadership fellows. Website: Sanhawich.com
Bridge Back Home From WarA Conversion through Poetry About the Impact of War By Jan Barry and Jenny Pacanowski
After returning from the wars overseas, follow two veterans from different eras, different wars, navigate their experiences through an interactive writing workshop with the audience.
Jan Barry is a poet and author whose books include A Citizen’s Guide to Grassroots Campaigns,Earth Songs, Life after War & Other Poems and (co-editor) Winning Hearts & Minds: War Poems byVietnam Veterans. A U.S. Army veteran of Vietnam, he coordinates Warrior Writers workshops forveterans and family members in New Jersey. For more information: www.janbarry.net
Jenny Pacanowski served in the Iraq war in 2004 as a combat medic in the Army. Her military service led her back to the arts, which includes writing and facilitating workshops for veterans, their families and providing guidance on how their communities can support them through theatre. Jenny and her organization, Women Veterans Empowered & Thriving do their best to assist veterans to reintegrate and thrive.
PROGRAM CPremieres Tuesday, June 6, 2023 at 7:00PM Second performance Saturday, June 10, 2023 at 7:00PM
Cowgirl Katarungan Is Fixin’ to FightWritten by AJ Layague
Cowgirl Katarungan is a Filipinx-American truthteller/detective who recounts – and dismantles – four historical vignettes where racism, misogyny, and the eugenics movement took center stage. And she does it in verse.
AJ Layague – she/her (Playwright) immerses into stylized historical worlds which typically center the non-binary and/or people of color, instead of relegating them to side characters or ancillary roles. They steer their narratives and their movement in their worlds, even when these narratives and worlds are bleak and not completely within their control. And as an ethnomusicologist – I lived and studied music in Southeast Asia – I am most interested in how music-cultures and cultures can evolve, respond, and even thrive during colonization. And how they sound and re-sound post-colonization.
Extraordinary AlienWritten and performed by Sai Somboon Directed by Nana Dakin
A solo show based on Sai’s lived experience expressed through movement/dance, comedy, monologues, and video projections. A reflection on their intersectional identities as a gay, cisgender Thai man, a recently naturalized citizen of the United States, and an actor/dancer navigating the audition and performance landscape in New York.
Sai Samboon (Writer/Performer) is a comedian, actor and dancer from Bangkok, Thailand. Based out of New York City, Sai has performed in Sleep No More at the McKittrick Hotel, FringeNYC, Astoria Performing Arts Center, Fulton Theatre, Maltz Jupiter, Dallas Musicals, North Shore Music Theatre and Daegu Opera House in Daegu, South Korea. Sai holds a Bachelor of Art in Anthropology from Franklin & Marshall College, and a Master of Fine Arts in Dance from The Ohio State University and he is finishing up the Master of Education program at Harvard University.
PROGRAM DPremieres Wenesday, June 7, 2023 at 7:00PM Second performance Sunday, June 11, 2023 at 3:00PM
Period.Written and by Mandarin Wu and Da Xu Performed by Mandarin Wu Sound Design by Da Xu
A tragicomedy starring Handy Mandy, as she tap dances through the conflicts of being an aging Asian-American modern woman and actor, navigating through current social climate and regularly incapcitated by the periods in her life.
Mandarin Wu (Playwright/Performer) is a theatre performer singer/dancer/actor/choreographer/ director. Selective credits: “PLEASED” (Pan Asian Rep 2022 NuWorks), A Dream of Red Pavilions (Pan Asian Rep), Follies (APAC), Orfeo ed Euridice(Met Opera). Choreography for Theatre: Skin (Rattlestick), Romance of the Western Chamber(Wildly Productive), Eastbound (NYTB), Legally Blonde_ (National ChiaYi University of Taiwan). NYU Tisch Dance MFA, UC Irvine Dance BA. Musical Theatre faculty at Marymount Manhattan College.
Xa Du (Playwright/Sound Design) Credits: “PLEASED” (Pan Asian Rep 2022 NuWorks), The Brothers Paranormal (East WestPlayers), Uncovered(UCLA). With Los Angeles Movement Arts: Momentum, Catalyst (co-curator), and audio/visual movement works for LACMA’s Art Walk. Live Visuals: Alienware Computers, LuLuLemon. Toured extensively with the seminal Chinese rock band 舌头(SheTou) as photographer and live visual collaborator. 2021 Westben International Performer-Composer Residency participant.
Did My Grandfather Kill My Grandfather?Written and performed by Cody LeRoy Wilson
A journey to find out what it means to be Asian-American, the piece follows Cody’s mother’s immigration story. Cody investigates their family’s story and gain new perspectives on the meaning of family roots and their Asian Decent.
Cody LeRoy Wilson (Playwright/Performer) makes his Pan Asian Rep debut at Theatre Row and he is beyond grateful for the opportunity. Other NYC credits include Off Broadway: Handbagged (59E59), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Titus Andronicus with NYSX and Prisoners of Qual Dong at Prism Stage. Regional: Book of Will, Handbagged, and Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time at Roundhouse Theater, As You Like It at The Folger, Measure For Measure, As You Like It, So Please You at Hudson Valley Shakespeare, and Miss Saigon at Missouri Playhouse. TV/Film: “Russian Doll,” “Impractical Jokers,” “Hello Tomorrow!,” and Money Monster.
For additional information, please visit the website at http://www.panasianrep.org/nuworks-2023.
Pan Asian Repertory Theatre, celebrating its 46th Milestone Season, is the most veteran Asian American theatre company on the East Coast. Tisa Chang founded Pan Asian Rep in 1977 at Ellen Stewart’s La Mama ETC with the vision to promote equity and access that Asian Americans artists can equally follow, focusing on stories of probing social justice issues with distinctive Off-Broadway Productions, Tours, National Outreach, and Community Service. Mel Gussow of The New York Times described it as “A Stage for All the World of Asian–Americans” and wrote that “Before Pan Asian Rep, Asian Americans had severely limited opportunities in the theater….” The company has nurtured thousands of artists and is a “who-is-who” of Asian American theatre history, with notable alumni/ae: Ako, Ernest Abuba, Tina Chen, Philip Gotanda, Wai Ching Ho, David Henry Hwang, Daniel Dae Kim, Lucy Liu, Ron Nakahara, R.A. Shiomi, Lauren Yee, and Henry Yuk.
Pan Asian Rep Programs are made possible, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts; the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature; the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council; and major support from Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Howard Gilman Foundation, Mary Li Hsu Charitable Trust, NY Community Trust, Shubert Foundation, Fan Fox & Leslie R. Samuels, Lucille Lortel Foundations; and many generous individuals.
email@example.com Twitter & Instagram: @PanAsianRep www.facebook.com/panasianrep/
And The Winners of The 2023 Drama Desk Awards Are ………
The 2023 67th Drama Desk Awards, honoring artistic excellence on Broadway, Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway, will take place on June 6 at Sardi’s Restaurant. Today the winners were announced.
Outstanding Play: “Leopoldstadt,” by Tom Stoppard
Outstanding Musical: “Some Like it Hot”
Outstanding Revival of a Play: “The Piano Lesson”
Outstanding Revival of a Musical: “Parade”
Outstanding Lead Performance in a Play: Jessica Chastain, “A Doll’s House” and Sean Hayes, “Good Night, Oscar”
Outstanding Lead Performance in a Musical: Annaleigh Ashford, “Sweeney Todd”
and J. Harrison Ghee, “Some Like it Hot”
Outstanding Featured Performance in a Play: Miriam Silverman, “The Sign in Sidney Brustein’s Window,” Brooklyn Academy of Music and Brandon Uranowitz, “Leopoldstadt”
Outstanding Featured Performance in a Musical: Kevin Del Aguila, “Some Like it Hot” and Alex Newell, “Shucked”
Outstanding Direction of a Play: Max Webster, “Life of Pi”
Outstanding Direction of a Musical: Thomas Kail, “Sweeney Todd”
Outstanding Choreography: Casey Nicholaw, “Some Like it Hot”
Outstanding Music: Brandy Clark and Shane McAnally, “Shucked”
Outstanding Lyrics: Scott Wittman and Marc Shaiman, “Some Like it Hot”
Outstanding Book of a Musical: Matthew López and Amber Ruffin, “Some Like it Hot”
Outstanding Orchestrations: Charlie Rosen and Bryan Carter, “Some Like it Hot”
Outstanding Music in a Play: Suzan-Lori Parks, “Plays for the Plague Year,” The Public Theater
Outstanding Scenic Design of a Play: Tim Hatley, “Life of Pi”
Outstanding Scenic Design of a Musical: Beowulf Boritt, “New York, New York”
Outstanding Costume Design of a Play: Emilio Sosa, “Ain’t No Mo’”
Outstanding Costume Design of a Musical: Gregg Barnes, “Some Like it Hot”
Outstanding Lighting Design of a Play: Natasha Chivers and Willie Williams (video), “Prima Facie”
Outstanding Lighting Design of a Musical: Natasha Katz, “Sweeney Todd”
Outstanding Projection and Video Design: Andrzej Goulding, “Life of Pi”
Outstanding Sound Design of a Play: Ben & Max Ringham, “A Doll’s House”
Outstanding Sound Design of a Musical: Scott Lehrer and Alex Neumann, “Into the Woods”
Outstanding Wig and Hair: Mia M. Neal, “Ain’t No Mo’”
Outstanding Solo Performance: Jodie Comer, “Prima Facie”
Unique Theatrical Experience: “Peter Pan Goes Wrong”
Outstanding Fight Choreography: B.H. Barry, “Camelot”
Outstanding Adaptation: “A Doll’s House,” by Amy Herzog
Outstanding Puppetry: Nick Barnes and Finn Caldwell, “Life of Pi”
Shows with multiple wins
Some Like It Hot: 8
Life of Pi: 4
A Doll’s House: 3
Sweeney Todd: 3
Ain’t No Mo’: 2
Prima Facie: 2
Harold Prince Lifetime Achievement Award
Stephen McKinley Henderson has been bringing in-depth, gripping portrayals of memorable characters to the stage for over four decades. With his return to Broadway this season as Pops in “Between Riverside and Crazy,” which the Drama Desk previously nominated in 2015, this year’s Harold Prince Lifetime Achievement Award marks Henderson’s role in this powerful production as a celebration of his brilliant career.
The cast of Soho Rep’s “Public Obscenities” – Tashnuva Anan, Abrar Haque, Golam Sarwar Harun, Gargi Mukherjee, NaFis, Jakeem Dante Powell, and Debashis Roy Chowdhury – embodied the transnational world of Shayok Misha Chowdhury’s bilingual play with memorable authenticity, remarkable specificity, and extraordinary warmth.
Sam Norkin Off-Broadway Award
From his standout performance in american (tele)visions, to writing and performing the autobiographical “Dark Disabled Stories,” Ryan J. Haddad’s work this season has expanded on and interrogated what the idea of “accessibility” really means. Whether riding a shopping cart like a throne, or relating his experiences on a “gay, pink bus,” Haddad shared with audiences an unabashed queer fabulosity that was both unforgettable and deeply human.
The Outer Critics Circle Awards and You Are There Part 1
The 72nd Annual Awards honoring achievements in the 2022-2023 Broadway and Off-Broadway season were presented on Thursday, May 25, 2023, at the Bruno Walter Auditorium, New York Public Library for the Performing Arts. Executive Producer Lauren Yager, did a marvelous job and the event was enjoyed by all.
Here are highlights from the show.
President of the Outer Critics Circle David Gordon and Vice President Richard Ridge welcomed everyone.
Presenter Lea Solonga presented Outstanding Director of a Musical to Michael Arden – Parade
Outstanding Lead Performer in a Broadway Play Sean Hayes – Good Night, Oscar was hysterical and the highlight of the afternoon.
Outstanding Solo Performance Jodie Comer – Prima Facie
T2C had a chance to talk to Lea beforehand
John Gassner Award for New American Play (Preferably by a New Playwright): Fat Ham by James Ijames
Outstanding Book of a Musical: Robert Horn – Shucked
We talked to Robert prior to his speech.
Outstanding Featured Performer in an Off-Broadway Play: K. Todd Freeman – Downstate
Outstanding Featured Performer in an Off-Broadway Musical:Lindsay Mendez – Merrily We Roll Along
Outstanding New Off-Broadway Musical: The Harder They Come and Outstanding Revival of a Play (Broadway or Off-Broadway):Topdog/Underdog Suzan Lori Parks
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Monty Python’s Spamalot Finds its Grail Hilariously at the Stratford Festival 2023
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Shakespeare Loose and Rollicking in Bryant Park
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The New Dramatists’ 71st Annual Benefit Luncheon With Josh Groban, Suzan-Lori Parks, Ban Platt and More
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Stratford Festival’s King Lear 2023 Struggles in the Controlled Column of Rain
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Grey House Is Haunting in More Than One Way
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enCourage Kids Foundationen 38th Annual Gala