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Theatre and Cabaret News: 36th Bistro Awards, Live In-Store Pop-Up Performances, Origin 1st Irish Theatre Festival, 24 Hour Plays Bennington, Open ‘Tho Shut and Abingdon

Theatre and Cabaret News: 36th Bistro Awards, Live In-Store Pop-Up Performances, Origin 1st Irish Theatre Festival, 24 Hour Plays Bennington, Open ‘Tho Shut and Abingdon

36th Annual Bistro Awards Are Now Underway…and coming to a screen near you! Featuring live performance and highlights from Bistro Awards shows dating all the way back back to 1989, plus a spotlight on our 2021 Bob Harrington Lifetime Achievement Award recipient.

Voyeur: The Windows Of Toulouse-Lautrec offers special live in-store performances Friday, February 12 in the windows of Fleur du Mal (175 Mott Street) from 5-7 pm. Voyeur cast members Katherine Winter, Natasha Frater and Chloé Bell will perform short works in rotating repertory inspired by their acclaimed roles and wearing fashions by Fleur du Mal. The event is free and open to the public with masking and social distancing required.

Voyeur is conceived and directed by Mara Lieberman with puppet design and construction by James Ortiz (Hercules, The Woodsman).

The 13th annual Origin 1st Irish Theatre Festival wrapped up its first all-virtual edition last week.  This year the world’s only festival devoted to producing and presenting the plays of contemporary Irish playwrights from around the world, hosted a total of 20 virtual events, in three weeks from January 11 to 31.  Among the events were six recorded theatrical productions made both before and during Covid from Belfast, Dublin, Wexford, London and New York; six films and documentaries (many with theatrical roots), and five panel talks on topics including producing during the pandemic; inclusion and diversity in Ireland; the Irish influence on Tin Pan Alley, and the impact of Irish artists and actors on the video gaming industry.  The work of 34 contemporary Irish playwrights, writers and filmmakers was showcased during the Festival.

Participating theatres companies included Fishamble: The New Play Company, and About Face Ireland in Dublin; the Irish Repertory Theatre Company and Origin Theatre Company in New York; The Wexford Arts Center in Wexford, and The Lyric in Belfast. 

The films included two new theatrical features, both up-tempo comedies – “Spa Weekend” from 3 Hot Whiskeys Productions in Dublin, and “Misty Button” from Locked in the Attic Productions in New York. Also screening in the film category were encores of the first horror feature written and directed by an Irish woman, Aislinn Clarke’s “The Devil’s Doorway (from Northern Ireland Screen and 23Ten Productions); Conal Creedon’s acclaimed documentary “The Burning of Cork” (from Irishtown Press/RTE), an advance of a new documentary still in production about the impact of Brexit on communities in Northern Ireland (Maci Duffy Productions), and the rediscovery of a cultural treasure “To the Western World” (Foxtrot Films) with its remarkable depictions of living conditions in Connemara more than a century ago.

For more information and to see the entire Festival line-up, visit

On Tuesday, February 16, 2021 at 8:00 pm, Bennington College will present a virtual benefit to support the Nicky Martin Scholarship for Performing Arts and the Spencer Cox ’90 Field Work Term Fellowship for Student Activists.

Bennington talent, composed of alumni and friends, will gather virtually to write, rehearse, perform, and produce all-new monologues in just 24 hours. The result is the first-ever virtual production of The 24 Hour Plays: Viral Monologues Bennington, which will be streamed along with guest musical performances and remarks.

Tickets begin at $30, which includes unlimited viewings of the performances for four days, and are available to purchase through Eventbrite.

Participating alumni include Sofia Alvarez ’07 (writer), Debra Eisenstadt ’91 (writer), Jill Eisenstadt ’85 (writer), Joel Marsh Garland ’97 (actor), Jonathan Marc Sherman ’90 (writer), and Molly Tarlov ’08 (actor). The full list of participants is available on the Bennington College website.

Jenne Vath peroforms in “Open ‘Tho Shut, an afternoon of performances in Theater for the New City’s ChopShop Theater, November 11, 2020. Photo by Jonathan Slaff.

On Saturday, February 13 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM, Theater for the New City (TNC), 155 First Ave., will present the fourteenth installment of “Open ‘Tho Shut,” its afternoon of “walk-by theater” that is staged in its set shop and visible from East Tenth Street between First and Second Avenues. 

The program offers a succession of free, live performances in which acts are staged in the theater’s set shop for audiences of socially distanced passers-by, who watch through an open garage door on East Tenth Street.  These live performances are also live streamed on TNC’s website ( and Facebook page.

The lineup of performances for Theater For The New City’s Open ‘Tho Shut, Part Fourteen on February 13th is the following:

* Mistress of Ceremonies: Crystal Field

* Cobu (all-female Japanese Taiko drumming and dance troupe of Yako Miyamoto, Ayaha Otsuka, Mayu Yamashita, Micro Fukuyama and Kana Matsui).

* Phoebe Legere (vocalist & songwriter)
* Richard West(guitarist) and Susan Mitchell (violinist)

* Justin Rodriguez and Natasha Velez in “Earth Cry” (Grito de Terra), a song from TNC’s Summer Street Theater, “Liberty or Just Us”

* Phoebe Legere and Crystal Field sing “Thank You For Being Who You Are”

* Mary Tierney and Mary Ellen Ashley perform “My Dinner With Mary” by Coni Koeffinger.

February 20 performers will include:

* Thunderbird American Indian Dancers’ Louis Mofsie and Rob Mastroanni in “Flute Music Old and New”

* Yip Harburg Rainbow Troupe

* Alessandra Belloni.


Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email:

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