Black Theatre Week By Black Theatre Networks from July 27–31, with a host of stage artists taking part in tributes, readings, and more.
Following a welcome address from BTN President Andre Harrington and Vice President Chris Berry, Tony Award winner André De Shields (Hadestown) will host a 50th anniversary celebration for New Federal Theatre, honoring Artistic Director Woodie King Jr., July 27.
Later events in the week (all free and open to the public) include a conversation between Tony-nominated playwright Dominique Morisseau (Ain’t Too Proud) and political analyst Dr. Michael Eric Dyson moderated by playwright Michael Dinwiddie (July 28); a presentation of two-person plays focusing on the Black LGBTQAI+ experience (July 29), a panel with The Roots’ Tarik Trotter and Oscar winner John Ridley on their upcoming musical Black No More (July 29); and a showcase of upcoming seasons by culturally Black theatres across the U.S. (July 31).
12:00: SigSpace: Arts Lunch with Nikiya Mathis By Signature Theatre Company. Arts Lunch is back and we are closing out this month with a bang! Join us with Nikiya Mathis (Fabulation, Or The Re-education of Undine). The Antonyo Award-winning actress and hair & wig designer will take over our Instagram Live with special guests Jessica Frances Dukes, Heather Alicia Simms, and J. Bernard Calloway from our productions of Lynn Nottage’s Fabulation, Or The Re-education of Undine, and By The Way, Meet Vera Stark.
1pm: Irish Repertory Theatre: Meet the Makers By Irish Repertory Theatre. John Douglas Thompson and Obi Abili on Breaking Barriers in Eugene O’Neill’s The Emperor Jones
2pm: Live with Carnegie Hall: Judy Collins, Alan Cumming, More By Carnegie Hall. Grammy Award winning singer-songwriter Judy Collins has appeared at Carnegie Hall more than 50 times. She returns to host a Live with Carnegie Hall episode on Thursday, July 30 at 2PM EDT joined by special guests, Shawn Colvin, Alan Cumming, Steve Earle, and Jimmy Webb for a discussion and performance of both original songs as well works by Stephen Sondheim.
2:10pm: A Midsummer Night’s Stream New York City-based actor and cabaret star Stephen S. Miller, the host of the internet TV show The Mama Rose Show, will be making his London cabaret debut via London-based Harold Sanditen’s Open Mic Zoom on Thursday, July 30, titled “A Midsummer Night’s Stream,” which is the last show of the summer.
Harold Sanditen is a jazz and cabaret singer and the host of the über-popular Open Mic Party, Live at Zédel – the longest running show in the Crazy Coqs – London’s most beautiful music room.
Joining Miller will be Elizabeth Desiree and Oliver Harris, Jeudi Cornejo Brealey, Monica Salvi, Dillie Keane, Nina Pelton, David Pevsner, Gabrielle Stravelli, Mychelle Colleary, Juliet Wood, and Isabella Allon.
Michael Lavine is presenting a special Webinar Zoominar benefit series: Moment Matinee Presents Songs of the Decade. The last of the three decades will be The Fabulous Forties, with live performances from Broadway and cabaret acclaimed artists as well as some premiere recordings.
Performers for the 3rd episode include Steven Brinberg, Barbara Minkus (Funny Girl); Jon Peterson (Cabaret national tour); Michele Ragusa (Gypsy, Ragtime); Arbender Robinson (Book of Mormon, Hair), and singer-pianist Steve Ross.
4pm: The Receipts with Davon Williams a virtual forum created and moderated by actor, singer and artist Davon Williams to enact vital and necessary change in the American theatre, returns Thursday, July 30, with a new episode.
Episode 8, “Williams Investigates the 2020 Actors’ Equity Association (AEA) Election, Presented to the Council of Black Excellence” will live stream here.
Williams will be challenging the decision of the AEA Election Compliance Committee regarding electioneering, exploring the case for cyber-bullying by council members, and investigating reports of race-baiting.
The discussion will feature “The Receipts” Council of Black Excellence, including Tony winner Tonya Pinkins, retired NASA mathematician Valerie L. Thomas, Judge Odell McGhee, II (Senior Judge, Iowa District Court), and Black Theatre Girl Magic’s Mandi Jo Szendrei and Caila Carter.
4pm–9:30pm: Marie’s Crisis Virtual Piano Bar Tonight’s scheduled pianists are Alex Barylski (@Alexander-Barylski) and Adam Michael Tilford (@Adam-Tilford-1).
5pm: Watch Me Work: Suzan Lori Parks She’s back. A meditation on the artistic process, and an actual work session, featuring Suzan-Lori Parks working on her newest writing project. Traditionally hosted on the mezzanine of The Public Theater Lobby, this new version will bring the program to your home via Zoom sessions and HowlRound livestreams.
6pm: Classic Conversations: Becky Ann & Dylan Baker By Classic Stage Company hosted by Artistic Director John Doyle. The series continues with Emmy nominee Becky Ann Baker (Girls, Good People) with husband Tony nominee Dylan Baker (La Bête), both of whom starred in the Doyle-directed Peer Gynt at CSC in 2016.
6pm: Empower Artist virtual fundraiser Off The Lane is hosting its first annual, “Empower Artist” virtual fundraiser. The event is hosted by, Betsy Spina (Radio Disney Country), and will feature performances from, Billy Gilman (The Voice), Daniel Quadrino (Wicked, Newsies), Lisa Ramey (The Voice), and more Broadway artists.
Proceeds and donations will benefit Off The Lane’s programs and operational costs as they continue to be a leading resource for young artists looking to pursue careers in New York City.
6pm: West Adams Viewing and Conversation By Skylight Theatre. Live for a special dialogue with the writer, director, and cast after watching the archival recording of West Adams as it was performed before an audience earlier this year. Written by Penelope Lowder. Directed by Michael A. Shepperd. Performed by Andrés M. Bagg, Allison Blaize, Clayton Farris, and Jenny Soo
7pm: Quarantine Cabaret and Cocktails produced and hosted by entertainer and LML Music founder, Lee Lessack, and actor and frequent SNL regular, Robert Bannon. The duo hosts a star-studded group of performers every week with laughs, music, and stories.
Previous guests include the Broadway cast of Mrs. Doubtfire, Diana DeGarmo & Ace Young, Nick Adams, Mandy Gonzalez, and more.
7pm: Theater of War EMS Dramatic readings of Sophocles’ Ajax as a catalyst for a discussion about the impact of Covid-19 on frontline medical providers. Best-known for Antigone in Ferguson, the company founded by Bryan Doerries performs classical plays to prompt community discussions about urgent issues. This edition features performances by Chad Coleman, Amy Ryan, and Anthony Almojera.
7pm: We Need Your Listening Three individual slots per day through August 2 As part of the Ice Factory 2020 Festival, this half-hour encounter is described as “a series of intimate, one-on-one exchanges with performers – discovering and re-discovering the act of listening as radical engagement….This is a one-on-one experience that will require you to have your camera turned on.”
7pm: The Spoils New Group available until August 2. Billed as a reunion reading of this play by Jesse Eisenberg, it features the starry cast of the original 2015 Off-Broadway production (pictured), including Eisenberg himself. (My review, which I subtitled “Jesse Eisenberg makes himself an insufferable jerk, again”) $25
7pm: The 7th Voyage of Egon Tichy Theater in Quarantine. Space traveler Egon Tichy likes his quiet time. But when his ship gets hit by a chunk of interstellar detritus, he’s sent careening into a minefield of time vortexes. This 30-minute solo slapstick science-fiction adventure stars Joshua William Gelb
7pm: We’re Still Here: A Virtual Cabaret by Alliance Theater a free variety show featuring Broadway stars Terry Burrell (Ethel) and Courtenay Collins (The Prom).Burrell and Collins will alternate as hostess, as they entertain audiences from home with songs, stories, special cocktails, and maybe a surprise guest or two.
7pm: Humanities Symposium Series: Murder Mysteries By Paper Mill Playhouse Join us on the set of the 1997 production of The Mask of Moriarty. Moderated by Amber Edwards with panelists such as authors Justin Scott and Carol Higgins Clarke, with Executive Director of Mystery Writers of America Priscilla Ridgway.
7pm: Constantine Maroulis in Concert By Axelrod Performing Arts Center. Tony Award nominee and Broadway star Constantine Maroulis will be performing his favorite rock songs plus songs from his brand new album, Until I’m Wanted. Maroulis, known for his star turns on Broadway in Rock of Ages and Jekyll and Hyde, performed in the Axelrod’s 50th Anniversary Concert of HAIR in 2018.
7pm: Ailey All Access: Awakening Ailey All Access releases its next recorded performance: Awakening by Artistic Director Robert Battle, a ballet that expertly balances chaos and resolution, dissonance and harmony.
7:30: Verdi’s Il Trovatore The clichéd quip, attributed to Enrico Caruso, is that it’s easy to put on a great performance of Verdi’s hot-blooded potboiler—all you need is the four best singers in the world. In this Live in HD transmission, the Met sought to do just that, assembling a powerhouse quartet to tackle the daunting principal roles: Sondra Radvanovsky, Dolora Zajick, Marcelo Álvarez, and the late Dmitri Hvorostovsky. The four stars tear into Verdi’s thrilling score, packed from beginning to end with memorable arias, searing and swooning duets, and rousing ensemble and choral numbers.
8pm: Fatchley She NYC Theater Festival. In Zoe Kamil’s play, Brooklyn actress Reina is determined to make a comeback after a public breakdown, but the pain of her past isn’t as far removed as she would like.
8pm: Stars in the House: Original One Day at a Time Reunion Norman Lear and producer Patricia Fass Palmer will join the Romano sisters, otherwise known as Valerie Bertinelli and Mackenzie Phillips; Michael Lembeck (Max Horvath), and Glenn Scarpelli (Alex Handris) to share favorite stories from life on the set of one of the most beloved sitcoms of the 70s and 80s in support of The Actors Fund
8pm: Scar Tissue She NYC Theater Festival In this play by Victoria Fragnito, best friends Jessica and Sam each have scars from their pasts that haven’t healed. After years of denial, an impromptu lunch date and a surprise overnight guest forces them both to confront these wounds and face what they didn’t want to see head-on.
8pm: New Songs Now in Your Living Room: Masi Asare, Troy Anthony, Andrew Butler, Julian Hornik, Jean Rohe, Ellen Winther By Rattlestick Playwrights Theater. Produced in partnership with Rosalind Productions, Inc., New Songs Now is an unplugged concert series that gives inventive songwriters the opportunity to test out new material in a low-key, fun environment. Each night, composers share selections of their work, followed by a conversation with the artists to demystify the songwriting process.
8pm: 31st Annual GLAAD Media Awards By GLAAD. Broadway alums Peppermint and Beanie Feldstein, Dolly Parton, and more are set to appear during the 31st Annual GLAAD Media Awards, which have moved online for a virtual ceremony. The in-person shows in New York City and Los Angeles scheduled for the spring were postponed due to COVID-19 pandemic.
The awards honor fair, accurate, and inclusive representations of LGBTQ+ people and issues.
As previously announced, the awards will welcome back the theatre favorite category: Outstanding Broadway Production. Nominated this year are Jeremy O. Harris’ Slave Play, Matthew Lopez’s The Inheritance, Alanis Morissette and Diablo Cody’s Jagged Little Pill musical, Heidi Schreck’s What the Constitution Means to Me, and Tarell Alvin McCraney’s Choir Boy.
A number of fan favorites are also scheduled to appear, including Emmy winner Lena Waithe and Broadway alum Olivia Wilde (1984). Rounding out the line up are Cara Delevingne, Kaitlyn Dever, Sonya Deville, Jonica T. Gibbs, Dan Levy, Lil Nas X, Rachel Maddow, Ryan O’Connell, the cast and producers of Pose, Geena Rocero, Angelica Ross, Benito Skinner, Brian Michael Smith, Dwyane Wade and Gabrielle Union, and Raquel Willis.
Comedians Fortune Feimster and Gina Yashere will host with a special performance from Grammy-nominated duo Chloe x Halle.
8:30pm: BPN Town Hall: E-Ticket to Broadway, Best Friends Edition! By Broadway Podcast Network BPN Town Hall: E-Ticket to Broadway LIVE, Best Friend Edition, featuring Jessica Rush & Michael James Scott, Ashley Brown & Josh Strickland, and Keala Settle & Jessie Mueller. To celebrate #InternationalFriendshipDay, these Broadway Besties will share their love of friendship and the Disney Parks! Hosted by David Alpert, the guests include Ashley Brown (Mary Poppins), Jessie Mueller (Waitress, Beautiful), Michael James Scott (Aladdin, The Book of Mormon), Keala Settle (Waitress, “The Greatest Showman”), Josh Strickland (Tarzan), and Jessica Rush (Tina, Jersey Boys). The event also serves as a fundraiser for Gilana’s Fund. See ya real soon! #disney #broadwaypodcastnetwork #broadway
9pm: The Soul Spot By The Tank The Soul Spot: Virtual Experience is an evening length dance show directed and choreographed by Candace Brown, a world renown and highly sought after commercial choreographer and teacher.
Brown has danced for Janet Jackson, Beyoncé, and Dancing with the Stars. Candace has also choreographed for Nicole Scherzinger, Dream Dance Company (Australia), Unity Dance Ensemble (LA), and multiple showcases and artists throughout NYC and LA.
My View: Barrington Stage Co. on 42nd Street Oct. 30 For Its Gala at Green Room 42
The evening of cocktails, dinner, and cabaret show headlined by Billy Stritch celebrates the inaugural season of newly appointed Artistic Director Alan Paul and Managing Director Lynsey Shade.
Proceeds from the Gala will benefit the Julianne Boyd New Works Fund.
Mary Ann and Bruno Quinson are presenting the event which is sponsored in part by Rhoda Levitt. Eda Sorokoff is Chair with Violet Eagan & Rosita Sarnoff Co-Chairs
Since its inception in 1995, Barrington Stage (BSC) has produced 41 new works, 21 of which have moved on to New York and major regional theatres around the country.
BSC believes that new work is the heart and soul of theatre. If theatre is to thrive and create meaningful and new experiences for audiences, then it is vital to support playwrights and their visions of the world we live in.
BSC’s New Works Fund takes a two-pronged approach – PlayWorks supports the creation of new plays while our acclaimed Musical Theatre Lab develops new musicals. In both of these programs, BSC seeks artists whose unique voices speak to our audiences with relevant new plays and musicals. BSC hopes our new work will ask questions of the world we live in – questions that may not have answers but will begin a dialogue between the artists and our audiences.
Cabaret, Talks and Concerts For October
The question would be, what to pick to go see, out of the multitude of offerings. Here are our picks for October
92 Street Y: 1395 Lexington Ave. 10/1: Dr. Jane Goodall in Conversation with David Rubenstein; 10/4: Fashion Icons with Fern Mallis: Martha Stewart; 10/9: “Gutenberg! The Musical!”: Josh Gad and Andrew Rannells in Conversation with MTV’s Josh Horowitz; 10/10: Arnold Schwarzenegger in Conversation: BE USEFUL: Seven Tools for Life; 10/12: Audra McDonald: Musings through Music with Andy Einhorn and 10/28 – 30: Tale as Old as Time: The Songs of Howard Ashman
Birdland Jazz: 315 West 44 St. Every Monday at 9:30pm Jim Caruso’s Cast Party; Every Tuesday at 8:30pm The Lineup with Susie Mosher; Every Saturday at 7pm Eric Comstock with Sean Smith (Bass) & special guest Barbara Fasano (Voice); 10/2: A Collective Cy Jeff Harner sings Cy Coleman; 10/9: The Unprecedented Amanda Green & Friends; 10/16: Maude Maggart: “Here Come The Dreamers” and 10/23: Jamie deRoy and Friends and 10/26 -28: Karrin Allyson: “Brazilian Nights And Beyond” Feat. Vitor Goncalves, Rafael Barata & Harvie S.
Carnegie Hall: 881 7th Ave at 57th St. 10/2: Lyle Lovett and His Large Band; 10/18: A Very Good+ Night of Comedy with Jerry Seinfeld, Kevin Hart, Jim Gaffigan, Amy Schumer & Ronny Chieng
Special Guest D-Nice and 10/27: The New York Pops with Hailey Kilgore, Derek Klena, Javier Muñoz and Ali Stroker
Chelsea Table + Stage: Hilton Fashion District Hotel, 152 W 26th St. 10/20: Marieann Meringolo
Don’t Tell Mama: 343 W. 46 St. 10/28: Quinn Lemley
The DJango: 2 Avenue of the Americas.
54 Below: 254 West 54 St. 10/2 The New York Pops Underground; 10/2, 17, 28 and 30: Norbert Leo Butz Sings Torch Songs for a Pandemic; 10/3, 7 and 11 Linda Eder; 10/5 -6 Mauricio Martínez: 5’11” Based in NYC, feat. Linedy Genao & more!; 10/8: Little By Little Reunion Concert, feat. Darrin Baker, Liz Larsen, and Christiane Noll; 10/12: Lee Roy Reams: Uncensored! For Adults Only!’ 10/14 -16 and 23 -25 and 30: Marilyn Maye; 10/20 – 21: Lorna Luft; 10/22: A Gentleman’s Guide 10th Anniversary Celebration and 10/ 26 -28: Jai Rodriguez: A Thousand Sweet Kisses
Sony Hall: 235 W. 46th St. 10/4:Daniel Nardicio presents Witch Perfect An all live-singing parody of Disney’s Hocus Pocus feat. Emmy-winning stars from RuPaul’s Drag Race: Scarlet Envy, Tina Burner & Alexis Michelle and 10/16: Rockers on Broadway 30th Anniversary
Theatre at the West Bank Café: 407 West 42 St. 10/14 and 28: Mark Nadler – CRAZY
The Town Hall: 123 West 43rd Street. 10/10: A Not That Fancy Conversation and Performance with Reba Mcentire and 10/11: Alec Baldwin’s Here’s The Thing Live With Michael Wolff
Santino Fontana Brings Voice, Comedy and Showmanship To 54 Below
Tony Award® winner Santino Fontana brings his tremendous talent to 54 Below and it is a show that wraps you up in his humor, charm, vocal prowess, laid back demeanor, jeopardy style musical choices and over all entertaining. By the end of the show you feel as if you know him or at least a part of him. Starting off with Charles Strouse and Lee Adams’s “Stick Around,” the night turned into a Russian roulette of material. The audience picked numbers and as Santino put it “if you don’t like the show, it’s your fault.” First up for my show was the naughty but amusing “Making Love Alone” followed by Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella‘s “Do I Love You,” which made for an amusing combination of songs. During Cinderella Mr. Fontana had shoes that were built up 2 inches inside and 2 inches outside, which cause a tremendous amount of pain, so the song told the story of his plight, which made the song take on a much different meaning. Sondheim’s “Anyone Can Whistle,” was sung for a Carol Burnett tribute, that luckily we were treated to.
His guest for the evening was Sarah Steele (“The Good Wife,” The Humans, The Country House) who sang “out There On My Own” from Fame. On the 14th it will be Greg Hildreth (Company, Disney’s Frozen, Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella). Click on the name and you can hear that version.
Showing off his baritone side with Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “If I Loved You.” We almost got to see Santino in Cy Coleman and Dorothy Fields”s Sweet Charity, instead we got hint of what that would be like with “Too Many Tomorrows.” A hilarious version of “I feel Pretty” from West Side Story lightened the mood and had the room in tears. Recreating his duet “Love Is An Open Door” from Frozen, Santino channeled Dorothy Michaels from Tootsie. Again the room was laughing with the sheer comedic genius that won Mr. Fontana a Tony Award. Bringing the energy to a calmer state was the emotional Leslie Bricusse and Anthony Newley’s “Who Can I Turn To?”
Vocally the most impressive song of the night was “Joey, Joey, Joey” from Most Happy Fellow. Mr. Fontana’s voice was glorious in the tones and the subtle texturing. Keeping in the ballad mode and honoring Marilyn Bergman he launched into the iconic “Where Do You Start,”while accompany himself on the piano, which was highly impressive. Back to the uptempo mode “I Met A Girl” from Bells Are Ringing, was given a rigorous, amusing take. This was his original audition song. Lerner and Loewe’s “How to Handle a Woman,” from the recent Camelot, showed how Santino would have made an excellent King Arthur.
Another favorite moment of the night was “Buddy’s Blues” from Follies. Already a personal favorite, this made me want to see Santino play this role at a later date, though personally I would cast him as Ben.
For the finale songs “The Music In You” from Cinderella, told how he and the cast loved watching the magnificent Victoria Clark perform. “This Can’t Be Love” from 1938 Rodgers and Hart musical The Boys from Syracuse, ended up in an encore, of Harvey Schmidt and Tom Jones’s “They Were You” from The Fantasticks, which made my guest producer Pat Addiss extremely happy.
Santino was backed by his musical director and accompanist Cody Owen Stine, who played flawlessly.
Santino Fontana opened September 10th at 54 Below and you can still catch this marvelous show tonight September 14th. 54below.com
This is a do not miss!
Talking With Mauricio Martínez About His New Show 5’11, Based in NYC and More
I met Emmy Award winner Mauricio Martínez when he was performing in Children of Salt and have watched him ever since. He then became known for the Broadway musical On Your Feet!, but before that he appeared in the Emmy Winning TV Show El Vato NBC, the hit Señora Acero Telemundo and several Mexican telenovela. T2C talked to this prolific actor/ singer to learn more.
His new show at 54 Below talks about all the self-tape sides filling up his Dropbox. In his new show, 5’11, Based in NYC, Mauricio is putting those to good use in a musical “What If…,” sorting through what might have been. Pushing aside the ring light, you will lean more about this uber talented Mexican American.
His show on October 5 and 6 at 7pm is at 54 Below. The show feature Linedy Genao (Bad Cinderella, On Your Feet!) and Alexis Michelle (“RuPaul’s Drag Race”) and is written by Mauricio Martínez & Robbie Rozelle, with musical direction and arrangements by Brian J. Nash. Directed by Robbie Rozelle.
Video by Magda Katz
Ken Fallin’s Broadway: Linda Purl Not Just An Actress
Last night Linda Purl took the audience at The Green Room 42 on a magical journey.
In 2020 Linda Purl starred as Ryan Spahn mother in Vivian Neuwirth’s Mr. Toole at 59E59 Theaters.
Ms Purl just released her fourth album of standards, This Could Be the Start. If the CD is anything like the concert this s a must have,
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