Where do you go if you are a young playwright and want to have your play produced? The answer is the NYWinter and NYSummerfest’s. This year at the Winterfest Robert Williams gave 56 plays, 7 musicals and 27 shorts a chance to perform, be seen and reviewed. The festival ran from January 2nd to March 12th with 70 productions making it to the stage. Each brought their own unique story, perspective, designs that inspired and captivated their audiences. Each was required to enlist the bravery and inventiveness of live theatre that didn’t rely on special effects, Hollywood stars or huge budgets.
Thanks to Robert Williams, young talent was recognized and celebrated tonight, after 3 long months of innovative theatre being given life. Last night performances from each of the nominees gave the rest of the audience a chance to see what they had been missing and it was an impressive round-up.
In keeping with fairness every category was tied except for: Best Stage Manager: Melanie Aponte from Inappropriate Relationship, Best Set Designer: William Spinnato, Suzanne Anoushian, and CJ Yeh from Nell Dash and Most Creative Play to Mozart’s Women by Gudrun Buhler. Ms. Buhler actually won three times tonight making her the biggest winner of the night. Each of these categories took home $200.00
5 performers out of 171 were nominated for Best Actress, with the winner receiving $500. Tiffany May McRae – from The Weekend Will End and Tracy Weller from Family Picnic showed such a variety of different styles. Ms. McRae was intense and dramatic and Ms Weller quirky and avant guarde. I am sorry I missed Ms. McRae’s performance and the show The Weekend Will End.
5 out of 190 were been nominated for Best Actor, with Patrick Hamilton from These Little Ones Perish and Scott McCord from Peace and Quiet splitting the $500.00 prize. Mark my words you will be hearing more about Mr. McCord. Again I am sorry I did not see his entire performance.
5 out of 70 were nominated for Best Director, with Lola Lopez Guardone from These Little Ones Perish and Dennis Corsi from Nell Dash taking the honors and splitting the cash.
7 singers out of 54 were nominated in the Best Singer category with Gudrun Buhler for Mozart’s Women and Monica Meaux Hope for Healing Fractures splitting the $250.00 prize. This was a terrific reason why the prize should be split. With Ms. Buhler’s angelic operatic purity and Ms. Hope’s miraculous vocal range and heavenly gospel sound, there was no comparison.
Best Music Score for $300.00 was shared by Conor James from When Love Goes Sour and Paul Rigano for You Heard it Here. When Love Goes Sour was another missed show I would have liked to have seen. With it’s contemporary pop sound, I am sure I will be hearing more from Mr. James.
The biggest prize of the night of $1250.00 went again to Ms Buhler’s Mozart’s Women who shared the prize with Larry Philips’s The Weekend Will End as Best Play or musical. Making this a special night for the talented Ms. Buhler.
The best part of last night was Ms. Buhler’s last speech. She stated how glad she had won, but remembered all the times she hadn’t and encouraged the other nominees and participants in the festival to keep on creating. As Ms Buhler stated “nobody can take your creativity from you.”
The NYWinterFest offered so much to the playwrights, actors and the audience. I have attended many festivals and the caliber of talent and the support that they receive is impressive. With the NEA in jeopardy, it is nice to know there is a place that offers a sounding ground to construct the future of theatre.
Next-up the NYSummerFest now taking submissions.
Events for March
St. Patrick’s Day, Women’s History Month, a Harlem Renaissance exhibit at the Met with160 works by Black artists. Beatrix Potter: Drawn to Nature,at The Morgan Library & Museum through 6/9. The Orchid show continues until 4/21 at the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx. Florals in Fashion highlights the work of designers Hilary Taymour (Collina Strada), Olivia Cheng (Dauphinette) and Kristen Alpaugh, aka FLWR PSTL Also Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz’s “Giants,”is at the Brooklyn Museum until 7/7. The exhibition features artists who have made and continue to make a significant impact on the art world and contemporary culture. The show features 98 artworks by Black American, African, and African artists including Gordon Parks, Kehinde Wiley, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Mickalene Thomas, Hassan Hajjaj, Barkley L. Hendricks, Lorna Simpson, and Amy Sherald.
3/1 -3: The Vienna Philharmonic one of the world’s most celebrated orchestras, takes center stage at Carnegie Hall.
3/3 -5: Coffee Fest NY Javits.
3/3 -5: International Beauty Show Javits.
3/6 – 10: The New Colossus Festival provides a platform for new artists, including international bands making their NYC debuts. The festival will take place across multiple venues mostly spread throughout the Lower East Side and the East Village, including Bowery Electric, Mercury Lounge, Berlin, Heaven Can Wait, and others. This year’s artists include Cucamaras (UK), Ducks LTD (Canada), Heffner (US), Holiday Ghosts (UK), Hotel Lux (UK), Housewife (Canada), and more. You can check out the full lineup and schedule of events here.
3/8: International Women’s Day
3/15: The New York Pops Hitsville: Celebrating Motown
3/1 -17: The Annual Flamenco Festival with 22 performances across 13 different venues all over the city.
3/1 -17: The New York International Children’s Film Festival
3/17: Join in on the 263rd celebration of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in NYC. The parade kicks off at 11am, moving along Fifth Avenue from 44th Street to 82nd Street. This year’s grand marshal, Maggie Timoney, president and CEO of Heineken USA, is only the fifth woman to lead the parade since its inception.
3/20 -24: Affordable Art Fair with over 400 living artists to discover you are sure to find your next perfect artwork.
3/23 – 11/: JAPAN Fes, in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens. This is the largest Japanese food festival in the world, with over 1,000 vendors.
3/24 – 4/7: The Annual Macy’s Flower Show created in partnership with Dior.
3/26 – 10/2: Apollo: When We Went to the Moon at The Intrepid Museum. The exhibit is included with museum admission.
Cabaret, Talks and Concerts For March
Brave the rain and head out to the clubs for they abound in entertainment galore. Here are our top picks.
92 Street Y: 1395 Lexington Ave. 3/ 2 – 4: Soul Picnic: The Songs and Legacy of Laura Nyro; 3/ 11: Cabaret Conversations Sally Mayes and 3/18: The Ally: Josh Radnor and Playwright Itamar Moses in Conversation Co-presented with The Public Theater.
Birdland Jazz: 315 West 44 St. Every Monday at 5:30 Vince Giordano and The Nighthawksand 9:30pm Jim Caruso’s Cast Party; Every Tuesday at 8:30pm The Lineup with Susie Mosher; 3/11: It’s De-Lovely: Jeff Harnar Sings Cole Porter and 3/25: Karen Mason In “Just In Styne: Karen Sings Jule”.
Cafe Carlyle: 35 E 76th St. 2/1-3: Through 3/2: Jennifer Holliday; 3/3 – 4: Mallory Portnoy and Nick Blaemire; 3/5 – 20: Hamilton Leithauser and 3/21 -23: Orfeh.
Carnegie Hall: 881 7th Ave at 57th St. 3/15: The New York Pops Hitsville: Celebrating Motown; 3/20: of Sinéad O’Connor and Shane MacGowan; 3/23: Meow, Meow and 3/27: Standard Time with Michael Feinstein.
Inside the Origins of Whiskey presented by Bushmills at Halls des Lumières
This week in New York City, whiskey lovers were treated to a special treat at Halls des Lumières. At Origins of Whiskey presented by Bushmills, guests savored the rarest collection of aged Irish single malt. The unique day made available was the grandest display in a public tasting in over a century.
The immersive experience was delightful and embraced the magic of the origins, sacred traditions, and rich history of the world’s favorite spirit. The light and sound exhibit transported consumers out of the bustling city and into the rugged North Coast of Ireland where whiskey was first created. The visual journey began with natural climatic conditions of the Giant’s Causeway then glided over the flowing River Bush. The water runs through beds of basalt rock to reach the golden barley fields that lead into the iconic still houses.
“As the oldest licensed whiskey distillery in the world and the originator of the single malt, Bushmills Irish Whiskey is delighted to share our story with our friends overseas,” stated Alex Thomas, Master Blender, Bushmills Irish Whiskey. “Most people think that it takes only two ingredients (water and malted barley) to make our award-winning single malt but having nurtured this ancient art into modernity, we know that there is a third… our people. There are families that have been working at the distillery for generations and with each old friend that leaves us or a new friend that joins, comes a story. With the help of our whiskey experts and local Irish storytellers, we’re excited to tell our story and bring the beauty of both the north coast of Ireland and our beloved distillery to you”
The tasting preview included a superb 16-year-old, a fantastic 21-year-old and a phenomenal 25-year-old that could only be described as a bold interpretation that a whiskey lover adores. There was additionally a rare cask that stimulated the senses in a beautiful way. Guests fully embraced the authentic Irish journey of discovery through time to explore the Irish single malt category in all its glory.
The rare collection of four Irish whiskeys were:
Bushmills 16-Year-Old: a marriage of single malts matured for at least 16 years in hand-selected Oloroso sherry butts and bourbon barrels
Bushmills 21-Year-Old: An exceptional liquid of single malts matured for at least 19 years in hand-selected Oloroso sherry butts and bourbon barrels
Bushmills 25-Year-Old: Bottled at 46% ABV and non-chill-filtered, Bushmills 25 is extremely rare in the United States, with only 120 cases imported annually.
Rare Cask 03: Bushmills’ Rare Cask 03 is a 30-Year-Old Madeira Cask single malt, released as part of the Rare Cask series, which was created to showcase some of Bushmills’ oldest and most collectable whiskey to-date available in the U.S market. This is the last chance to taste this Rare Cask expression in the United States.
Tickets are next available for this incredible experience in Chicago on March 1 until March 3. Tickets are $35 (currently only wait list is available).
For more information and a link to purchase tickets, please visit https://originsofwhiskey.com/
Museum of Broadway Celebrates Black History Month
Museum of Broadway, 145 W. 45th Street, upcoming February Events
Saturday, February 24th | 12:00 PM
The Museum of Broadway Presents: A History of Minstrelsy with Ben West
Join musical theatre artist and historian Ben West, author of the upcoming book The American Musical, for a journey into the history of minstrelsy, including its legacy of blackface on Broadway, its trailblazing Black artists, and its impact on the development of the American musical. Note: This talk will involve mature content.
– Event link here
Monday, February 26th | 11:00 AM
The Museum of Broadway Presents: A Conversation with Black Broadway Creatives
Join in celebrating and honoring the lives, careers, and experiences of Black Broadway creatives in the American theater. Panelists include Ken Hanson, Dante Harrell, Destiny Lilly, Zane Mark, Thelma Pollard and Virginia Woodruff, in-conversation with Erich McMillian-McCall of Project 1 Voice.
– Event link here
Wednesday, February 28th | 12:00 PM
The Museum of Broadway Presents: Mary & Ethel…And Mikey Who?
Talkback and Book Signing with award-winning author Stephen Cole joined by famed cabaret star Klea Blackhurst and special guest Anita Gillette
– Event link here
Thursday, February 29th |10:30 AM
The Museum of Broadway Presents: Spotlight on Black Broadway Producers
Join acclaimed award-winning producers Rashad Chambers, Sade Lythcott & Brian Anthony Moreland in-conversation with Merrily We Roll Along’s Krystal Joy Brown
– Event link here
Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus Makes Grand Return to New York City This Weekend
Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus is back in The Big Apple in epic way. For the first time in New York City since 2017, the grand return of The Greatest Show On Earth is running until Feb. 25 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
Feld Entertainment has brilliantly re-imagined this modern take on the well-known show that is something you have to see to believe. It is a bold and beautiful change that children of all ages will love. You have tremendous fun in the moment and the joy created will make sweet memories to last for a lifetime.
The immersive, live, family entertainment experience captivates through thrilling action and high energy music.
Encounter never-before-seen stunts, acrobatic displays, and comedic acts along the way in the new circus format that features amazing details all the way down to a loveable robotic dog. A truly international cast that includes 75 performers hailing from 18 countries including Argentina, Canada, Cuba, Ethiopia, Italy, Mongolia, Spain, Ukraine, and the United States will inspire audiences through a variety of unbelievable circus acts.
Traditional circus acts blend perfectly with new awe-inspiring moments such as The Triangular Highwire, led by The Lopez Family, sixth-generation circus artists hailing from Mexico and Chile; as well as The Double Wheel of Destiny which showcases four acrobatic daredevils performing challenging back-and-forth leaps and somersaults atop two simultaneously spinning apparatuses suspended 30 feet above the ground and moving at incredibly high speeds.
The dynamic show is a hit, and you will love it!
SHOW DATES & TIMES:
Barclays Center performances will continue to run:
Friday, February 23 – 2:00 PM & 6:00 PM
Saturday, February 24 – 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM
Sunday, February 25 – 11:00 AM & 3:00 PM
There are also two upcoming cities close to Manhattan with performances in coming days.
Prudential Center – 25 Lafayette Street, Newark, NJ 07102
- Thursday, February 29 – 7:00 PM
- Friday, March 1 – 7:00 PM
- Saturday, March 2 – 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM
- Sunday, March 3 – 12:00 PM & 4:00 PM
BELMONT PARK, Long Island, NY
UBS Arena – 2400 Hempstead Turnpike, Belmont Park, NY 11003
- Friday, March 8 – 7:00 PM
- Saturday, March 9 – 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM
- Sunday, March 10 – 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM
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