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What to Watch in The New Year: Jan 30

What to Watch in The New Year: Jan 30

9am: La MaMa Umbria: WEATHER# By La Mama Weather is one of the last works composed by American writer, composer, and director Elizabeth Swados on the text of Filippo Consales. The goal of this “dramatic oratorio,” as Swados defined it, is to use music and theater as tools to raise public awareness on urgent issues related to climate change. 

Originally presented onstage at Teatro Romano in Spoleto, Italy’s Festival Dei Due Mondi 2014, WEATHER# is now being produced as an online immersive experience through an international collaboration involving partner organizations and artists from Italy, France, United Kingdom, United States, Korea, and Mexico.

 With sounds and rhythms that mix the atmospheres of western music and world music, the composition collects a great variety of stories, scientific descriptions, newscasts and mythological narrations that tell of storms, destructions, rebirth and beauty. This kaleidoscopic vision is a kind of hymn to the force of nature and at the same time a warning that wants to encourage people to reflect on the environmental emergencies that our planet is facing. An alternation of instrumental parts and songs invoke different stories and environments, independent of each other. 

The audience will be able to watch WEATHER# in an online 360° space, composed of 12 rooms, like the months of the year, each including one song with the related video, animations and a series of references that help contextualize the topic of the songs. Navigating through the online space and interacting with the different visual and musical contents of the opera, the audience will have the chance to uncover the stories as well as the scientific or cultural references behind those stories.

3pm: Give Me Your Hand Theatre@Home Winter Festival at Irish Rep.
A poetical stroll through The National Gallery of London with poems by Paul Durcan, starring Dermot Crowley & Dearbhla Mollo

7pm: Dog Act The Seeing Place Streaming Feb 2-12
A darkly comic variation on the classic doomsday genre, with five original songs.

7pm: Death and Mourning After By La Mama Part of Reflections of Native Voices Festival

Timothy White Eagle in collaboration with cellist Lori Goldston will present a work in development titled Death and Mourning After. The duo will be presenting an improvised performance based on the themes, rituals and mythologies surrounding death. 

During the time of COVID, White Eagle has been locked down and considering death rituals, early spiritual expression, first mythologies and humanities search for answers which lay out of reach, beyond the veil of death. 

Filmed in an empty theater at On the Boards in Seattle, Washington, this work in progress is an exploration of themes central of a major upcoming working from White Eagle.

Available through Feb 7.

7pm: The Homebound Project: Sixth Edition available until Sunday Jan 31. Given the prompt “2021,” the following performers will appear in short works by the following playwrights:
Christopher Abbott and  Dylan Baker and Becky Ann Baker in a work by David Lindsay-Abaire, directed by Paul Mullins
Jojo Brown in a work by Cece Suazo, directed by Jenna Worsham;
Michael Chernus in a work by Adam Rapp
Dalia Davi in a work by Ren Dara Santiago, directed by Jenna Worsham;
Nicholas Gorham in a work by Brian Otaño, directed by Tatiana Pandiani;
Emily Kuroda in a work by Kate Cortesi, directed by Jenna Worsham;Eden Malyn and Catya McMullen in a work by McMullen
Carolyn Ratteray in a work by Bekah Brunstetter
Stacey Karen Robinson in a work by Sharon Bridgforth
Paul Sparks in work by Brian Watkins, directed by Danya Taymor
Babak Tafti in a work by Colette Robert, directed by Taylor Reynolds
Daigi-Ann Thompson in a work by Julissa Contreras;
Special guest appearance by Amanda Seyfried musical performance by Sting.

7pm: The Black Queen Screen Tests, Act 3 By The Tank Created by Jerome A Parker. An ALL-BLACK, virtual, workshop production of “The Black Queens, or House of Dinah” built to elevate the theatricality and explore the “live.” On November 20th, 2020 – after a series of in-house workshops – the Tank hosted a live stream of our experiments. But most importantly, this endeavor was created and entirely run by a 20+ team of BLACK creative artists, artisans and technicians.  

This absurd musical, which taps into the art of drag, mixes lip-syncing and live moments of dance and music to tell an intergenerational BLACK, QUEER story of self-reliance, resilience and survival. Songs from jazz legend, black/queer icon Dinah Washington’s catalogue were celebrated here – and new, hybrid, virtual theater positions were created and built by an ALL-BLACK TEAM!  

The cast of The Black Queen Screen Tests includes Amanda Moreau (Wilhelmina), Joshua Josey (Lady), James Edward Becton* (Felicia), Joyia D. Bradley (Gladys), Suzanne Darrell*† (Tamika), Theodore Alexander (Wilhelmina Double) and Marcus L. Braggs (Lady Double).

7:30pm: Verdi’s Rigoletto A Victor Hugo play, haunting and scandalous, provided the inspiration for Verdi’s mid-career masterpiece about a vengeful but misguided court jester, out to rescue his deflowered daughter from a duke’s licentious clutches. None of it ends well, but along the way, the composer introduces several of his most iconic duets and arias—including the tenor’s indelibly popular number “La donna è mobile” in Act III—as well as an 11th-hour quartet that counts among the finest moments in opera.

7:30pm: Beirut MCC Theater Available through January 31
Marisei Tomei, Oscar Isaac and Patrick Breen star in a reading of the play by Alan Bowne that launched MCC in 1987 (a rebroadcast of the virtual event from April.) Set in a dingy Lower East Side apartment in the 1980s, Beirut follows the story of Torch (played by Oscar Isaac), a young man who is in quarantine after testing positive to a nameless disease. His girlfriend (Marisa Tomei, reprising her award-winning role from 1987), refuses to leave him isolating alone.

7:30: Anjou: The Musical Horror Tale A modern Mexican opera with music by Guillermo Mendez M. and lyrics by Mendez and Guadalupe Sandoval, in a new English translation by Javier Vilalta, directed and edited by Roberto Araujo.

The complete cast includes Roberto Araujo, Jonathan Burke, Jay Armstrong Johnson, Jelani Remy, and Adam Roberts as Henry; Taylor Iman Jones, Bianca Marroquín, Julia Murney, and Kristie Dale Sanders as Catherine de’ Medici; Caroline Bowman, Shereen Pimentel, and Eva Tavares as Margot de Valois; Javier Muñoz as “Charles IX;” Austin Colby as Arthur; and Nathan Cockroft, Kevin Curtis, Gabriel Hyman, and Michael Perrie Jr. as Spirit/Mignon. Bianca Marroquín will also serve as The Narrator.

 As Charles IX is crowned as the new monarch, the Catholic church puts pressure on Queen Catherine de’ Medici to eradicate Protestantism in France. The treacherous queen has a plan of her own: to remain in power through her beloved and overly-conceited son, Henry of Anjou, and to plan her daughter’s wedding with a Protestant knight, while executing one of the bloodiest events in history.

Available through Feb 2.

7:30pm: The Nourish Project WP Theater available each night through Feb 7th. A 70-minute show conceived and directed by Rebecca Martinez has a large cast and uses music, dance, and poetry, with the intent of allowing the virtual audience “to follow their curiosity and explore their own paths during the experience.”

Brenda Braxton
Brenda Braxton

8pm: Stars in the House It’s Guest Host Week! It’s Guest Host Week!  Join host Brenda Braxton for… Billy Mitchell’s Villain: DeBlanks (a fill-in-the-blanks comedy) *A madcap Mad-libs murder mystery adventure with guests Carly Hughes, Patti Murin, Colin Donnell, Barrett Foa, Lesli Margherita and Frank DeCaro!

Kelli O’Hara, Renée Fleming, More Sing Adam Guettel’s Myths & Hymns (Episode 1) By MasterVoices The central project of MasterVoices’ 2020-2021 season will be a virtual rollout of award-winning composer Adam Guettel’s theatrical song cycle, Myths and Hymns, in an online staging conceived by Ted Sperling. Inspired by Greek myths and a 19th-Century Presbyterian hymnal, the 1998 cycle is a kaleidoscopic collection of musical genres as it explores the nature of faith and longing in a secular world. New short musical films will illustrate the protagonist’s attempt to seek answers in four ways – through Flight, Work, Love, and Faith. The four chapters of this personal voyage will be released in free digital installments throughout the winter and spring.

Molly Sweeney Lantern Theater Company through February 14. This Philadelphia company’s newly filmed performance of Brian Friel’s gentle tale from the shifting perspectives of Molly Sweeney, her husband Frank, and the surgeon who values his skills above his patients.

The Niceties Forward Theater through February 7. In this Wisconsin theater company’s production of the play by Eleanor Burgess, Zoe, a Black student at a liberal arts college, is called into her white professor’s office to discuss her paper about slavery’s effect on the American Revolution. What begins as a polite clash in perspectives explodes into an urgent debate about

Cathy Belton, Derbhle Crotty, and Aisling O’Sullivan portray three women, two of them sisters, who have drifted apart and are now catching up over coffee. Over the course of three conversations spanning five years, we learn that they have allowed relationships with their partners to come between their relationships with each other. Gradually, a common secret of tragic consequence is revealed.

Bernadette Peters, David Hyde Pierce, More Star in Jerry Herman Tribute From Pasadena Playhouse Pasadena Playhouse will pay tribute to the late composer of Hello, Dolly!Mame, and La Cage aux Folles with You I Like: A Musical Celebration of Jerry Herman.

Conceived and music directed by Andy Einhorn, the revue will be available to stream January 10. A live virtual opening night will also take place that night, with guests including Bernadette Peters and David Hyde Pierce.

Available to stream through February 7.

The Haunting of Alice Bowles A new theatrical production streaming online from Original Theatre Company (Apollo 13: The Dark Side of The Moon) debuts.

The Haunting of Alice Bowles by Philip Franks, based on M.R. James’ short story The Experiment, stars Janie Dee, Max Bowden, Stephen Boxer, Jack Archer, Alexandra Guelff, Robert Mountford, Poppy Roe, and Tim Treloar.

In 1918, the recently widowed Alice Bowles is left destitute as she seeks to solve a mystery left by her late husband Francis. Moving to 2020, YouTube urban explorers Matt and Caitlin uncover a mysterious grave in an abandoned churchyard. What starts as harmless entertainment turns darker when their discovery begins to unwrap a mystery which has lain dormant for over a century.

The digital production is co-directed by Philip Franks and Alastair Whatley, designed by Adrian Linford, and edited by Tristan Shepherd, with sound design and original music composed by Max Pappenheim.

Ham: A Musical Memoir Sam Harris’s sensitive and prodigiously talented boy survives the Bible Belt through talent and moxie, which lead to fame and fortune, but when the rocky road of desperately seeking acceptance finally reaches a dead end, he is forced to confront the internal demons that haunt him.

Encores! Inside the Revival: Tap Dance Kid New York City Center. Directed by Kenny Leon (A Raisin in the Sun) dives into the 1983 Tony-nominated musical The Tap Dance Kid, centered around the life of an upper-middle class Black family and a ten-year-old’s dream of being a professional tap dancer despite the challenges posed by his lawyer father and society. Leon, alongside book adapter Lydia Diamond, will give audiences an up-close look at the percussive heart of the story with the help of choreographer Jared Grimes and cast member from the original Broadway production Dulé Hill.

Entertainment

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: suzanna@t2conline.com

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