February 2016 Theater Openings Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off Broadway

Februarykeycollage

Clockwise from top left: Sam Shepard, Forest Whitaker, Stephen Karam, Lydia Diamond.

Actor Forest Whitaker and playwright Stephen Karam make their separate Broadway debuts this month in the only two Broadway shows opening in February — a revival of Eugene O’Neill’s “Hughie,” and “The Humans.” Playwrights Sam Shepard and Lydia Diamond will be represented among the more than a dozen off-Broadway shows opening,

Below is a list, organized chronologically by opening date, with descriptions. Each title is linked to a relevant website.

Nothing, of course, is guaranteed about any of these shows, even those that seem the most promising. (This is why I write reviews.)

Color key: Broadway: RedOff Broadway: Purple or BlueOff Off Broadway: Green.
To look at the Spring season as a whole, check out my Broadway Spring 2016 Preview Guide and my Off Broadway Spring 2016 Preview Guide

February 1

Utility (The Amoralists at Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre) 

“Amber has two jobs, three kids and an eight-year-old’s birthday party to plan. The house needs fixing up and her on-again, off-again husband, Chris just can’t help but make things worse. As Amber struggles to keep things from boiling over, she finds herself a stranger to the person she once was and the person she thought she might be.”

February 2

rockandrollrefugee

Rock And Roll Refugee (Royal Family Arts Center)

Based on the life of Genya Ravan, a Holocaust survivor and immigrant who became a rock ‘n’ roll pioneer.

 February 3

Bedlam's Sense & Sensibility

Bedlam’s Sense & Sensibility

Burning (Resonance Ensemble at Theatre at St. Clements)

Playwright Ginger Lazarus takes her inspiration from Cyrano de Bergerac: Cy is a woman kicked out of the Army for being gay, who, like Cyrano, suffers from insecurity that prevents her from pursuing love. She blogs from her country store in a remote Western town near the base where she last served.

Shown in repertory with Cyrano de Bergerac (See February 8)

The Wedge Horse (Fault Line at IATI Theater)

When tragedy strikes, siblings Maddy and Bobby must decide whether to use the memory of a loved one for violence or healing.

February 4

 Bedlam’s Sense and Sensibility (Gym at Judson)

Return engagement of Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility, adapted for the stage by Kate Hamill,

Broadway and the Bard (Amas at Theatre Row)

Stage and screen veteran Len Cariou combines his two great loves – Shakespeare and American Musical Comedy – into one evening of soliloquy and song.

February 8

TheWoodsmana

The Woodsman (New World Stages)

The origin story of the Tin Woodsman from the Wizard of Oz – “the woman he loved, and the witch that would stop at nothing to keep them apart.”

Cyrano De Bergerac (Resonance Ensemble Theatre at St. Clements)

Shown in repertory with Burning (see February 3)

 February 9

ProdigalSonpic2

Prodigal Son (MTC at City Center)

John Patrick Shanley’s new play, which he directs, stars Robert Sean Leonard, and Timothée Chalamet as a brilliant, troubled young man from the Bronx at a New Hampshire private school.

 February 10

Encores: Cabin in the Skycabininthesky

Presented over a long weekend as part of the Encores series of Broadway “concerts” “Originally produced in 1940, Cabin in the Sky followed Porgy and Bess in celebrating African-American music and dance traditions. Cast includes Chuck Cooper, LaChanze

 February 11

SmartPeople

Smart People (Second Stage)

Written by Lydia Diamond and directed by Kenny Leon — the same team that brought us Stick Fly – the comedy focuses on four Harvard intellectuals who find themselves entangled in a complex web of social and sexual politics on the eve of Obama’s first election.

 Mike Birbiglia: Thank God for Jokes (Lynn Redgrave Theater)

 February 17

Buried Child (New Group at Signature Theatre Center)

Revival of Sam Shepard play with a stellar cast including Ed Harris and Amy Madigan.

 February 18

Old Hats (Signature Center)

A return of Bill Irwin and David Shiner signature clowning.

Sarah Steele, Arian Moayed, Jane Houdyshell

Sarah Steele, Arian Moayed, Jane Houdyshell

The Humans (Helen Hayes)

Playwright Stephen Karam makes his Broadway debut in this play about a Pennsylvania family celebrating Thanksgiving at the daughter’s apartment in lower Manhattan. As darkness falls outside the ramshackle pre-war duplex, eerie things start to go bump in the night.

My review of The Humans, when it was Off-Broadway, with the same cast.

 February 22

Smokefall (MCC at Lucille Lortel Theatre)

“Magical realism collides with manic vaudeville in a family drama” written by Noah Haidle and directed by Anne Kauffman. The cast includes Zachary Quinto.

herrequiemshowpageart.jpeg__284x50000_q85_subsampling-2Angel Reapers (Signature)

Playwright Alfred Uhry and choreographer/director Martha Clarke team up on this “theatrical collage” about the Shakers, the early American religious sect best-remembered now for their furniture, whose members were committed to celibacy. Actual traditional Shaker songs and movement are incorporated.

Her Requiem (LCT – Claire Tow)

“Caitlin takes her senior year off from high school to compose a full-scale requiem. Inspired by her dedication, her father, Dean, becomes obsessed with requiems and the people who love them, while her mother, Allison, becomes concerned about Caitlin’s isolation from everyone aside from her music teacher.”

February 23

Dotposter

Dot (Vineyard Theatre)

Written by Colman Domingo and directed by Susan Stroman, “Dot” examine’s Dotty’s struggles to navigate life with dementia, while her children fight to balance care for their mother and care for themselves.

The Body of an American (Primary Stages at Cherry Lane)

“Two men, a war photojournalist and playwright, journey from some of the most dangerous places on earth to the depths of the human soul.” Based on a true story

February 24

Insignificance (Langham Place Hotel)

 

Joseph McCarthy, Marilyn Monroe, Joe DiMaggio, and Albert Einstein

gather in a hotel room in 1953 l and debate power, sex and politics.

First performed in 1982, the play will be staged entirely within a hotel room on the 5th floor of Langham Place Hotel.

 

February 25

ForestWhitaker

Hughie (Booth Theatre)

Forest Whitaker makes his Broadway debut in a revival of Eugene O’Neill’s short play as small-time gambler and big-time drinker who is in a hotel lobby in 1928 with a new night clerk (Frank Wood) on duty; he is forced to confront his personal demons and discover the real end to his own story

WomenwithoutmenposterA Room of My Own (Abingdon Theater Company at June Havoc Theatre)

Playwright and director Charles Messina recounts growing up with his eccentric Italian-American family in Greenwich Village. Cast includes Ralph Macchio and Mario Cantone

 

Women Without Men (Mint Theatre at NY City Center

The revival of the 1938 play by Hazel Ellis about the clash of conflicting natures and petty competitions that erupt amongst the cloistered teaching staff of an all-girls boarding school.

February 29

Straightcast

Straight (Theatre Row – Acorn)

Ben is a 26-year investment banker, who likes beer, sports, and Emily — and Chris.

The Wildness, Sky-Pony’s Rock Fairy Tale (Ars Nova)

“An ‘all-in’ experience for all five of your senses.”

 

 

January 2016 Theater Openings Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off Broadway

If at first glance January seems a relatively fallow time for theater in New York – just two shows opening on Broadway this month, some half dozen Off-Broadway – the truth is that it is one of the most robust times for theater in the city, thanks to some 15 theater festivals. There are easily more than 100 works of theater on offer, although they each run for only a handful of performance. Most can be considered Off-Off Broadway, but I won’t include them in this preview, because I’ve created a separate guide just for them: Winter Theater Festivals in New York City 2016.

Below is a list, organized chronologically by opening date, with each title linked to a relevant website. Color key: Broadway: Red. Off Broadway: Purple or Blue. Off Off Broadway: Green.
To look at the Spring season as a whole, check out my Broadway Spring 2016 Preview Guide and my Off Broadway Spring 2016 Preview Guide

January 7

 

Sanctuary1

Sanctuary (Theatre Row – Lion)

Susanne Sulby’s solo show about the effect of war on women through the ages.

January 9

The Offending Gesture (Connelly Theater)

Mac Wellman’s new play uses the true stories of Hitler and his dog, Blondi, and the international incident caused by Finnish businessman’s Tor Borg having taught his own dog Jackie to do the Nazi Party Salute, which the Nazis interpreted as an insult.

January 10

Changling1

The Changeling (Red Bull at The Lucille Lortel Theater)

The Jacobean tragicomedy by Thomas Middleton and William Rowley explores the follies of love and the nature of madness.

MDLSX 1 - Photo by Theo Cote

MDLSX (La MaMa)

Silvia Calderoni from Motus company stars in this solo show about a person of fluid gender.

January 11

Tappinthrulife

Maurice Hines Is Tappin’ Thru Life (New World Stages)

Through song and dance, Maurice Hines pays tribute to his brother and longtime dance partner, the late Gregory Hines, by taking the audience on a journey through his  career, working in homages to Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Duke Ellington, Lena Horne and Judy Garland.

January 13

Key Change a_Jess_Christina_web.-w475-h300-p0-q85-F-----S1-ccentertop50

Key Change

A portrayal of incarcerated women, devised by women from Her Majesty’s Prison Low Newton, in the North of England.

January 14

NoisesOff_1000x378_2

Noises Off (American Airlines Theater)

An impressive cast of the go-to Broadway stars of the moment (Andrea Martin, Megan Hilty, et al) undertakes the third Broadway production of this backstage comedy. “The Opening Night performance of the farce Nothing On is just hours away, and as the cast stumbles through their final dress rehearsal, things couldn’t be going any worse.”

January 15

Collaborators

Collaborators (The Storm Theatre Company at Grand Hall)

The story of the brilliant dissident writer Mikhail Bulgakov, who is chosen by Joseph Stalin to write a celebratory bio play titled Young Joseph

January 19

SkeletonCrewposter

Skeleton Crew (Atlantic Stage 2)

In Dominique Morisseau’s third play in her Detroit trilogy, a makeshift family of workers at the last exporting auto plant in the city navigate the possibility of foreclosure. Power dynamics shift, and they are pushed to the limits of survival. When the line between blue collar and white collar gets blurred, how far over the lines are they willing to step?

MotherCourage

 

Mother Courage and Her Children (Classic Stage Company)

Originally scheduled to open January 7, it was reschedule because of the departure by lead Tonya Pinkins due to creative differences. Now Kecia Lewis stars in this production of Brecht’s play set in the Congo.

 

January 20

Ourmothersbriefaffair

Our Mother’s Brief Affair (MTC Samuel J. Friedman Theatre)

On the verge of death for the umpteenth time, Anna (Linda Lavin) makes a shocking confession to her grown children: an affair from her past that just might have resonance beyond the family.

January 21

Wide Awake Hearts (59E59 – B)

Truth and fiction begin to blend when four friends make a movie about love, infidelity and the complexities of human interaction.

GloryoftheWorld

The Glory of the World at Brooklyn Academy of Music

A new play by Charles Mee, about Catholic monk, author and philosopher Thomas Merton.

January 24

BurialatThebes

The Burial at Thebes (Irish Rep at DR2)

A version of Sophocles’ Antigone by Nobel laureate Seamus Heaney written in 2003 in response to the attack on Iraq

January 25

chris-hedges-quote

Death of the Liberal Class (New Ohio Theater)

Inspired by journalist Chris Hedges’s book, Robert Lyons writes a dark domestic comedy about a burnt out leftist journalist  who retreats to the family farm for some peace, but doesn’t get it when his family follows.

January 27

IandYou1

I And You (59E59)

The night before a class assignment is due, Caroline and Anthony plumb the mysteries of a Whitman poem…unaware that a deeper mystery has brought them together. Winner of the Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award for playwright Lauren Gunderson.

January 28

Monte Cristo

Monte Cristo (Urban Stages)

An adaptation of Alexandre Dumas’ The Count of Monte Cristo by Jared Reinmuth.

 

sojourners

Sojourners (Playwrights Realm at Peter Jay Sharp Theater)_

A Nigerian immigrant wants to return home after she gets her degree; her arranged-marriage husband wants to stay.

January 30

TheVeryHungryCatapillar2

The Very Hungry Caterpillar (47th Street Theatre)

A 60-minute show that uses 75 puppets to adapts four children’s books by celebrated author Eric Carle for the stage: The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse, Mister Seahorse, The Very Lonely Firefly and, of course, The Very Hungry Caterpillar

 

 

Off Broadway Spring 2016 Guide

As Hamilton director Thomas Kail makes clear this season, Broadway may beckon, but Off-Broadway is the room where it happens.

Lin-Manuel Miranda and Thomas Kail

Kail is directing two plays Off-Broadway – “Dry Powder” at the Public, starring The Office’s John Krasinski making his New York stage debut, and “Daphne’s Dive” at the Signature, written by Pulitzer-winning playwright Quiara Alegría Hudes, who shares Broadway credentials with both Kail and Lin-Manuel Miranda. (She is the book writer for Miranda’s “In The Heights.”)

Danai Gurira, who until last year was best known for her role as Michonne on The Walking Dead TV series, will see her play “Eclipsed” transfer from Off-Broadway to Broadway this season. But one day after “Eclipsed” is scheduled to open, a second play of hers, ‘Familiar,” is opening at Off Broadway’s Playwrights Horizons.

Even Harold Prince — as in the Prince of Broadway — is directing a new musical Off-Broadway this season, his first new work for a New York stage in nine years.

HaroldPrinceOther Broadway stalwarts with new shows Off-Broadway include Pasek and Paul (best-known for A Christmas Story), Alfred Uhry (Driving Miss Daisy, Parade), Stew and Heidi Rodewald (Passing Strange), Lydia Diamond (Stick Fly), John Patrick Shanley (Doubt), and Enda Walsh (Once)

If the line between Broadway and Off-Broadway seems increasingly porous, there are still significant differences, which require separate approaches.  Broadway is more or less a collection of random individual potential hits or misses. (See my Broadway Spring 2016 Preview Guide.)  Off-Broadway is not as easy to get your hands around — there are many more shows and most have limited runs; the theaters are more spread out geographically and far more numerous — some 200 theaters/theater companies, or five times the number of Broadway houses.  But it also features a solid number of producing theaters, who reliably present a rich, adventurous and diverse season of shows, at lower prices than Broadway.

Danai Gurira, author of a play on Broadway and Off Broadway

Danai Gurira, author of a play on Broadway and Off Broadway

It thus makes sense to organize an Off-Broadway preview by focusing on these individual seasons, presented in the order of my preference for the particular theaters   (determined by such factors as their recent track record, the promise of the new season, and by the overall experience I’ve had with the theater, both as theatergoer and as critic.)

I’ve put a red check mark —  — besides ten about which I’m especially excited, or intrigued, or at least notably hopeful. This can’t count as a recommendation, because I haven’t seen them yet. I plan to see almost everything below, and expect to be surprised.

PLAYWRIGHTS HORIZONS playwrights horizons logo

416 W. 42nd St. Twitter: @PHNYC

Annie Baker’s “The Flick” is one of six plays that originated at Playwrights Horizons that have won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. It offers new plays and musicals that are consistently satisfying, or at least intriguing.

PlaywrightsHorizonsSpring2016

Familiar by Danai Gurira

February 12 – March 27, 2016

“It’s winter in Minnesota, and a Zimbabwean family is preparing for the wedding of their eldest daughter, a first-generation American. But when the bride insists on observing a traditional African custom, it opens a deep rift in the household.”

Antlia Pneumatica by Anne Washburn

March 11 – April 24, 2016

Washburn (who forever has my attention, thanks to her Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play) writes about a once tight-knit group of friends who reunite to bury one of their own.

Indian Summer by Gregory S. Moss

May 13 – June 26, 2016

Spending an unpleasant summer with his grandfather, in an unfriendly Rhode Island beach town, Daniel soon meets Izzy, who is tough-acting, beguiling, and taken.

THE PUBLIC THEATER

publictheaterlogo425 Lafayette Street. Twitter: @PublicTheaterNY

The original home of the Broadway hits Hamilton and Fun Home, as well as Eclipsed, opening on Broadway this season.

The Public Theater at 425 Lafayette Street

The Public Theater at 425 Lafayette Street

Under the Radar Festival, 12th edition

January 6-17, 2016

Cutting-edge theater from around the U.S. and the world.

The first performance of each of the Public’s main shows below is offered for free by lottery. 

Southern Comfort

February 23 – March 27, 2016

A bluegrass-tinged musical based on a documentary that tells the true story of a group of transgender friends living life on their own terms in the back hills of rural Georgia

The Gabriels, Election Year in the Life of One Family

Play One: Hungry

February 27 – March 20

As a kind of follow-up to Richard Nelson’s impressive series, The Apple Family Plays, the playwright is writing a three-play cycle about a different family in the same upstate city of Rhinebeck, using the same approach — the discussion of krasinskipolitics happening on the same day as the play itself is unfolding.

Dry Powder

The wheeling-dealing of the executives (including John Krasinski) in a private equity firm.

March 1 – April 10

Head of Passesphylicia rashad in head of passes

March 15 – April 17

Inspired by the Book of Job, this play by Tarell Alvin McCraney (The Brother/Sister Plays) and directed by Tina Landau presents the story of Shelah (Phylicia Rashad) who must fight to survive during a reunion held on her birthday.

The Total Bent

May 10 – June 12

A British record producer courts a Southern black composer in this musical written by Stew and Heidi Rodewald, the team behind Passing Strange.

The Mobile Shakespeare Unit: Romeo & Juliet 

April 11 – May 1

Directed by Lear deBessonet

 

SIGNATURE

signature_01

480 West 42nd Street. Twitter: @signaturetheatr

As the first New York theater to win the Regional Tony Award, the Signature now has some solid proof of what has been clear to its patrons for years.  What has distinguished this theater is not only its track record, but its commitment to keep the price of all tickets for initial runs to $25.

This season is special for two reasons — it’s the 25th anniversary season, and it’s the last one under founding artistic director James Houghton.

Old Hats

January 26 – March 2016

A return of Bill Irwin and David Shiner signature clowning.

Angel Reapers

 Angel Reapers

February 2 to March 13. Opens February 22.

Playwright Alfred Uhry and choreographer/director Martha Clarke team up on this “theatrical collage” about the Shakers, the early American religious sect best-remembered now for their furniture, whose members were committed to celibacy. Actual traditional Shaker songs and movement are incorporated.

QuiaraAlegriaHudes

Daphne’s Dive

April 26 – June 5, 2016

Directed by Thomas Kail, this play is the first of several at the Signature to be written by Quiara Alegría Hudes. “Daphne’s Dive is a cheap corner bar in North Philly where Daphne and her vibrant, eclectic regulars drink to art, politics, and life.”

AlbeeFornesKennedy

SIGNATURE ONE ACTS

Edward Albee’s The Sandbox
María Irene Fornés’ Drowning 
Adrienne Kennedy’s Funnyhouse of a Negro

May 3 – June 12, 2016

 This trio of famous one-act plays is directed by Lila Neugebauer

SecondStagelogoSECOND STAGE *

The cast of Smart People: Mahershala Ali, Joshua Jackson, Ann Son, Tessa Thompson

The cast of Smart People: Mahershala Ali, Joshua Jackson, Ann Son, Tessa Thompson

Smart People

January 26 – March 6. Opens February 11.

Written by Lydia Diamond and directed by Kenny Leon — the same team that brought us Stick Fly – the comedy focuses on four Harvard intellectuals who find themselves entangled in a complex web of social and sexual politics on the eve of Obama’s first election.

Dear Evan Hansen, from the Arena Stage production

Dear Evan Hansen, from the Arena Stage production

√ Dear Evan Hansen

March 26 – May 22. Opens May 1

A hit when it played at Washington, D.C.’s Arena Stage, this original musical tells the story of a high school student who is mistakenly thought to be best friends with a classmate who had committed suicide.   Michael Greif (RentNext to Normal and Grey Gardens) directs, with music and lyrics by  Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (A Christmas Story, Dogfight) and a book by Steven Levenson (Showtime’s “Masters of Sex”).

VINEYARD THEATER

vineyard_01

108 East 15th Street Twitter: @VineyardTheatre

Dot

February 4 – March 13, 2016

Written by Colman Domingo and directed by Susan Stroman, “Dot” examine’s Dotty’s struggles to navigate life with dementia, while her children fight to balance care for their mother and care for themselves.

features-large_FY16-INDECENT2

√ Indecent

“May – June 2016”

In the same season that the much-anticipated Shuffle Along presents the backstage story to a famous Broadway musical from the 1920’s, Paula Vogel’s new play looks at the events surrounding the 1923 Broadway debut of Yiddish-theater playwright Sholem Asch’s controversial drama God of Vengeance, which dealt with prostitution and lesbianism and whose cast was successfully prosecuted for obscenity.

new_york_01

NEW YORK THEATER WORKSHOP

79 East 4th Street. Twitter: @NYTW79

Red Speedo

February 17, 2016—March 27, 2016

Lucas Hnath (The Christians) writes about an Olympic swimmer who “confronts the lure of endorsements, the perils of mixing the personal and professional, and the unforgiving weight of success.”

 Hadestown

Inspired by Orpheus’ mythical quest to overcome Hades and regain the favor of his one true love, this musical developed and directed by Rachel Chavkin  (a name you’ll keep on hearing), with folk and jazz music by Anaïs Mitchell, takes place in an “industrialized world of mindless labor and full stomachs.”

LincolnCenterlogoLINCOLN CENTER THEATER*

@LCTheater

The shows at Lincoln Center’s Off-Broadway venues are relatively inexpensive (especially at the Claire Tow theater, where initial-run tickets cost $20) and often rewarding.

The RoyaleThe Royale

February 11 – May 1.  Opens March 7.

Written by Marco Ramirez and directed by Rachel Chavkin, the play is “loosely based on the real-life experiences of Jack Johnson, the first African-American heavyweight world champion.”

Her Requiem

February 6 – March 20. Opens February 22.

Written by Greg Pierce and directed by Kate Whoriskey: “Caitlin takes her senior year off from high school to compose a full-scale requiem. Inspired by her dedication, her father, Dean, becomes obsessed with requiems and the people who love them, while her mother, Allison, becomes concerned about Caitlin’s isolation from everyone aside from her music teacher.”

War

May 21 –

Written by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins (Appropriate, An Octoroon and Gloria.) “Tensions escalate between Tate and Joanne after their mother has a stroke. As they attack each other in their mother’s hospital room, they are ambushed by two strangers who make a shocking claim about their grandfather during WWII.”

MCCTheaterLogoMCC THEATER

Address: The Lucille Lortel Theatre, 121 Christopher Street. Twitter: @mcctheater

Smokefall

February 4 – March 13, 2016

“Magical realism collides with manic vaudeville in a family drama” written by Noah Haidle and directed by Anne Kauffman. The cast includes Zachary Quinto.

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Gynecologic Oncology Unit At Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center Of New York City

May 19-Jun 25, 2016

Written by Hailey Feiffer and directed by Trip Cullman:   “A foul-mouthed twenty-something comedienne and a middle-aged man embroiled in a nasty divorce are brought together unexpectedly when their cancer-stricken mothers become roommates in the hospital.

ROUNDABOUT* LAURA PELS

roundabout_01This is their 50th anniversary. Off-Broadway’s Roundabout show, The Humans, is transferring to Broadway this season.

Steven Pasquale

The Robber Bridegroom

February 18 – May 29

Steven Pasquale stars in this revival of the musical with book by Alfred Uhry about  “a Southern-fried Robin Hood” who falls in love

CLASSIC STAGE COMPANY

 

mothercourage_800x315

Mother Courage and her Children

December 9 – ?

Tonya Pinkins left this production citing creative differences, so it’s up int he air when it will open and when the run will end.  Bertolt Brecht’s most popular play about a Mother Courage who follows one luckless army after another across a war-torn world, has been transposed to the present-day Congo. Duncan Sheik (Spring Awakening) has written a new score for the play.

NathantheWise

√ Nathan the Wise

March 18 –

F. Murray Abraham stars an adaptation of this 18th century play by Gotthold Ephraim Lessing. “Jerusalem, 1192. Muslims, Christians and Jews live side by side thanks to a fragile truce that could collapse at any moment. As the tension mounts a question arises from the ruling Sultan: “which religion is the one most beloved by God?” Nathan, a pious Jewish merchant, is charged with answering this question to help secure the continued safety of his people.”

Peer Gynt

May 11 –

Director John Doyle (Passion, Allegro)adapted Ibsen’s tale of the misadventures of young Peer from childhood renegade to outcast, adventurer, industrialist…

AtlanticTheaterlogoATLANTIC

√ Skeleton Crew

January 6 — February 14, 2016. Opens January 19.

“In Dominique Morisseau’s third play in her Detroit trilogy, a makeshift family of workers at the last exporting auto plant in the city navigate the possibility of foreclosure”  Directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson.

Hold Onto Me Darling

February 24 – April 3

The new play by Kenneth Lonergan focuses on a world-famous country singer who questions his celebrity after his mother’s death, and moves back to his hometown; “it doesn’t go well.”

Feb 24 — April 3, 2016

The Band’s Visit 

May 19 – July 10

A musical by composer David Yazbek and playwright Itamar Moses, based on the funny 2007 Israeli film about an Egyptian military police band who get the wrong directions and wind up in a small forgotten town in the Isareli desert.

This is the new musical directed by Harold Prince.

Update: Harold Prince dropped out, and The Band’s Visit will now be directed by David Cromer — in the Fall.

MTC logoMTC AT CITY CENTER*

131 West 55th Street Twitter: @MTC_NYC

This theater was publicly criticized for the lack of diversity in its season.

season-2015-16-headers-ProdigalSon

 Prodigal Son

January 19 – March 20. Opens February 9
John Patrick Shanley’s new play, which he directs, stars Robert Sean Leonard, and Timothée Chalamet as a brilliant, troubled young man from the Bronx at a New Hampshire private school.

The Ruins of Civilization

May 4 – . Opens May 18.

A couple open their home to a stranger in need sometime in the future, with unexpected results. Written by Penelope Skinner (The Village Bike)

Incognito

May 3 to June 26, 2016. Opens May 24.

Written by Nick Payne (Constellations) and directed by Doug Hughes (Doubt.) “A pathologist steals the brain of Albert Einstein; a neuropsychologist embarks on her first romance with another woman; a seizure patient forgets everything but how much he loves his girlfriend.”

OTHER (POTENTIAL) HIGHLIGHTS

 

GloryoftheWorld

The Glory of the World at Brooklyn Academy of Music – Jan 16 – Feb 6, by Charles Mee, about Catholic monk Thomas Merton.

sojourners

Sojourners at Playwrights Realm, January 21 – February 13 – written by Mfoniso Udofia, directed Ed Sylvanus Iskandar. A Nigerian immigrant wants to return home after she gets her degree; her arranged-marriage husband wants to stay.

Buried Child at The New Group,  February 2 – March 13. revival of Sam Shepard play with a stellar cast including Ed Harris and Amy Madigan.

 Pericles at Theater for a New Audience February 14 – March 27.The Shakespearean play will be directed by Trevor Nunn with music composed by Shaun Davey and performed by PigPen Theatre Co.

NiceFish

Nice Fish at St. Ann’s Warehouse February 14 – March 13. Mark Rylance stars in a play he co-wrote with his favorite poet, Louis Jenkins, about two men ice-fishing.

Other companies worth checking out:

59e59

Ars Nova

Irish Repertory Theater

Ma-Yi Theater Company

Mint Theater Company

Primary Stages

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater

 

There are also commercial Off-Broadway shows, put together by independent producers that appear in theaters for rent, such as:

Cherry Lane Theatre
Daryl Roth Theatre
Gym at Judson
Lucille Lortel Theatre
New World Stages
Orpheum Theater
The Players Theatre
Snapple Theater Center
Theatre Row
Union Square Theater
Westside Theatre

*THE ASTERISK: Off-Broadway AND Broadway

*Just to complicate matters, several of the resident theaters also present shows on Broadway –  Lincoln Center, Manhattan Theater Company (MTC), the Roundabout Theater Company, and starting this season, Second Stage Theatre, which has bought the Helen Hayes. Their Broadway offerings are listed in my Broadway Spring 2016 Preview Guide

What Is Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off Broadway?

Off-Broadway theaters, by definition, have anywhere from 100 to 499 seats. If a theater has more seats than that, it’s a Broadway house. If it has fewer, it’s Off-Off Broadway.

There are some terrific Off-Off Broadway theaters, sometimes confused for Off-Broadway. These include (but are not limited to) The FleaLabyrinth Theater, and LaMaMa ETC.

Monthly Calendar of Openings

Because there are so many shows Off-Off Broadway, and their runs are so limited, I include them in my monthly theater preview (along with Broadway and Off Broadway openings) posted near the beginning of each month.

My latest monthly calendar guide

FOR MORE INFORMATION

For more information about Off-Broadway, go to  The League of Off-Broadway Theatres and Producers (aka The Off-Broadway League).  This should not be confused with the Off-Broadway Alliance, which is a separate organization (though they should probably merge, no?)

Winter Theater Festivals in New York 2016

WinterFestival2016logocollageA liberal has a respectful conversation with a white supremacist in “Confirmation,” while a feminist artist interviews ‘the Internet’s most infamous misogynist’ in “Tightrope Routines.”   In “Germinal,” four performers construct the world from scratch, while in “Dog Days,” a man dressed as a dog begs for food in a world that’s fallen apart.  These are some of the theater pieces in the more than dozen New York festivals this month.

January became the month for theater festivals in the city — more than at any time other than the summer – because of the presence of thousands of members of the Association of Performing Arts Presenters here each year for their convention. But with some of the festivals going back a dozen years, and new ones springing up all the time (2016 being no exception), they are now welcomed each year anew by local theatergoers, who are more than fine with the experimental, mixed-genre, multimedia approach and international flavor of much of the work. The cheaper ticket prices are nice too: Most are $25 or under; some are free.

Below are a selections of festival shows, organized chronologically by each festival’s starting date.

Coil Festival

January 5 – 17

Twitter feed: @PS122

Coil16logo

Now in its 11th year, the  Performance Space 122 festival is offering 16 productions, only a few of which should probably be considered theater pieces as opposed to dance or music concerts or art installations. The artists hail from Australia, Austria, England, China, France, and Norway, as well as the United States, and their works are being presented in some dozen venues throughout the city while PS 122’s East Village home continues to be renovated.

Here is a PDF of the COIL 2016 brochure , which includes a calendar of performance times.

Confirmation

Chris Thorpe interviewed a British right-wing political activist and now re-creates those conversations to explore the psychological phenomenon of confirmation bias.  The show is directed by Rachel Chavkin, who is making her Broadway directorial debut later this year in Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812

COILGoForth

Go Forth

In seven vignettes inspired by the Egyptian Book of the Dead and by the sudden death of her own father from malaria,  Kaneza Schaal explores through performance and photographic installation both burial rites and “the intimate relationship between black people and death around the world.”

The Holler Sessions

Frank Boyd plays a radio dj obsessed with jazz.

Yesterday Tomorrow

Humans and computer algorithms work together to gradually break down the Beatles’ “Yesterday” and then reconstruct it as “Tomorrow” from the musical “Annie.”

 

Under the Radar


January 6 – 17

Twitter: @UTRFestival

UndertheRadar2016poster

 

The 12th annual festival at the Public features 18 works by artists from Chile, France, Belgium, Rwanda, and Japan, as well as the United States. A third of these are works-in-progress that are part of the second annual “Incoming” festival-within-the-festival by the Public’s Devised Theater Working Group.

Germinal. Defoort-Goerger -¬ Alain Rico-4

Germinal

Starting on an empty stage, with a mix of visual art, theater, music, and sociology, four performers construct the world, along with its “laws of physics, philosophy, music, language, and social interaction.”

Samedi Detente

Samedi détente was a popular Saturday radio program in Rwanda.  Dorothée Munyaneza was 12 in 1994 during the Rwandan genocide.  Twenty years later, she invents her own Samedi détente. Accompanied by Ivorian dancer Nadia Beugré and French musician Alain Mahé, she returns to thememories of her childhood with music, movement…and testimony.

Escuela

In Chile in 1987,  a group of young left-wing activists wearing ski masks to shield their identity from one another gather in a drab living room to receive paramilitary instruction aimed at overthrowing the military dictatorship.

The Institute of Memory (TIMe)

Featuring archival wire-tap transcriptions, the missives of communist spies, and MRI brain scans, The Institute of Memory (TIMe) conjures a portrait of director Lars Jan’s enigmatic father — a Cold War operative

The_Art_of_LUV_1-ROKE-photo by Maria Baranova-Tei Blow _ Sean McElroy_5513

The Art of Luv (Part 1: Eliot)

On May 23, 2014, Elliot Rodger killed 6 people and injured 13 in a rampage motivated by his lack of success with women. Royal Osiris Karaoke Ensemble (i.e. theater artists Sean McElroy and Tei Blow) responds with a multimedia lip-synched, ritual-performance piece using love stories found on old VHS videotapes.

Prototype Festival

January 6–17, 2016

Twitter: @Prototypefest

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Billing itself as the “premiere festival of opera-theatre and music-theatre,” the Prototype Festival, now in its fourth year, will feature seven works.

Dog Days photo_by_James_Matthew_Daniel

Dog Days

a man in a homemade dog costume, who seems convinced he is a dog, begs for food from a family who has collapsed in a post-apocalyptic world.

Angel’s Bone

A couple nurse and then enslave two angels who were injured in the long journey back to earth. The opera “melds chamber music, theatre, punk rock, opera, cabaret, and electronics, exploring the dark effects and motivations behind modern-day slavery and the trafficking industry.”

The Good Swimmer

Heidi Rodewald, co-composer of Passing Strange, has written the score for this piece that recast “Antigone” as a team of young lifeguards on a beach during the Vietnam War. Librettist Donna Di Novelli has put together the song lyrics from found texts (historical quotations, defunct manuals.)

American Realness Festival

January 7-17, 2016

Twitter: @AmericanRealnes

American-Realness logo

Primarily a festival of dance now in its seventh  year at Abrons Arts Center, American Realness features 20 works. Many of the pieces shade into performance art — and isn’t performance art theater?

Erin Markey & Becca Blackwell - A Ride On The English Cream

Erin Markey & Becca Blackwell – A Ride On The English Cream

A Ride on The Irish Cream

Written and starring Erin Markey, this musical presents “the thrills and terrors of a relationship between Reagan (Markey), a vainglorious self-made girl, and Irish Cream (Becca Blackwell, her actual life partner), her family’s pontoon boat/horse. They are in love, but when their relationship is tested by dust ruffles, sex for money, severe T-storms, and a secret cellar, the only way to stay together is to remember all the parts of themselves their bodies tried to forget.”

#NEGROPHOBIA

“Part social commentary and part self-critique,” Jaamil Olawale Kosoko’s piece looks at “the erotic fear associated with the black male body” and features the “UK based model, performance artist, and night-life personality IMMA/MESS.”

The Exponential Festival

January 13 – January 30

Twitters: @Bricktheater @BushwickStarr @CloudCityb @TheSilentBarn

TheExponentialFestival

This is the first year of this festival, which makes two boasts, both of which motivated the organizers to found it in the first place: 1. All four of the venues/partners of the festival are in Brooklyn: The Brick, The Bushwick Starr, Cloud City, and Silent Barn. 2. Several (but not all) of the seven shows being presented at the festival had recent runs in New York – runs too short to accommodate everybody who wanted to see them.

01EXPONENTIALLongYarn

LongYarn

At the Bushwick Starr, a “shaggy-dog folktale of the adventurous and long-lived “Mother”, a character based on strong, peculiar and compelling women from history. The outlandish poetic adventures of her youth include tales of riverboat piracy, a stint as a professional wrestler, lost days as a crack addict and being raised by a family of cows…”

ExponentialBiter

Biter (Every Time I Turn Around)

A reprise from last year, now at the Silent Barn, this acclaimed exercise in fierce and comic anarchy and violence is really two plays, Biter, described as “a sincere slapstick gore-fest ” and then an abrupt shift into Every Time I Turn Around.

Sara Hylton

Toilet Fire

In a reprise of a (more or less) solo show, now at The Brick, Eliza Bent celebrates “the one thing that unites us all: our need to go. “Using the structure of an ancient religious ritual to talk about matters of digestion, philosophy, and faith, Toilet Fire, performed by Bent and Alaina Ferris, explodes with song and audience participation.” I’ll admit this description is off-putting, especially that “audience participation,” but it turned out to be less embarrassing than it sounds.

Circus Now

January 14- 16

Twitter: @CircusNowUSA

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Circus acts from Canada, Sweden, England and the United States at NYU’s Skirball Center for the Performing Arts.

Special Effects Festival

January 15-17, 2016

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Five of the 10 “experimental performance works” in the third year of this festival are grouped together under “Gray Spaces.” One of these is Happy To See You, in whichaudience members will act as subject and spectator as they are watched (and watch themselves being watched) by cameras, an audience and a drone.”

In Steve of Tomorrow , which uses video puppetry and toy theater, a sci-fi blogger gets visited by a time traveler from the future, but he turns out to be shlub.

TightropeRoutines

Tightrope Routines is based on seven months of exchanges between Angela Washko and the author of books about how to pick up women.

LA MAMA’S SQUIRTS

January 15 – 24

“New voices in queer theater.” Each of the six evenings features a different “guest of of honor” — Kate Bornstein, Holly Hughes, Carmelita Tropicana, et al — and a couple of “guest squirts.”

The Fire This Time Festival

January 18 – February 6

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Now in its seventh year, this festival is a a platform for new work by rising playwrights of African and African American descent

 

New Year’s Eve in New York City 2016 Last Minute Plans

HappyNewYearclock

My annual New Year’s Eve guide features the Broadway show schedule for New Year’s week, and other shows, parties, concerts, intimate dinners, cruises, outdoor events and quiet alternatives you can still do on New Year’s Eve 2016 (when 2015 turns into 2016) in New York City. Also free events — and TV listings.

Only eight percent of Americans reportedly say they plan to go out on New Year’s Eve. For those who haven’t made those plans yet, here are some ideas:

TIMES SQUARE

The New Year’s Eve tradition in Times Square began in 1904 with a rooftop celebration to greet the New Year. Three years later, they started lowering a ball.

From the organizers comes this overview of New Year’s Eve in Times Square, so you know what is in store for you if you decide to stand at the Crossroads of the World for New Year’s Eve

3 p.m. Revelers start arriving late in the afternoon on New Year’s Eve. By approximately 3:00 PM., the Bowtie of Times Square (42nd to 47th Sts. between Broadway & 7th Ave.) is fully closed to traffic.

6 p.m. The celebration begins with the lighting and raising of the New Year’s Eve Ball atop One Times Square.

Following is an evening of entertainment. The last two musical performers before the ball drops — Carrie Underwood and Jessie J.

(Do keep in mind that the highlights will be televised. See What’s on TV, below.)

DINING OUT ON NEW YEAR’S EVE

Open Table lists some 800 restaurants  with “New Year’s Eve offers” Most of them offer a choice of seatings – either earlier in the evening, so that you can make it in time elsewhere for the stroke of midnight, or party-hat-equipped seatings that lead up to midnight, where you can often turn on a TV so that you can watch the ball drop in Times Square. Open Table enables you to look for one in your neighborhood.

THEATER ON NEW YEAR’S WEEK

King and I

King and I

Only six of the shows currently on Broadway will be offering performances on New Year’s Eve — all but one of them matinees. (They’re almost all in Times Square, remember; only the King and I is away from the madness, at Lincoln Center.) But, as you can see in the schedule below, almost every show has performances on Monday (a day when almost all shows are usually dark), and some have added extra performances in the weekend after New Year’s.

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Keep in mind that a good number of these shows are closing soon, so this is your last chance to see them.

Closing January 3, 2016: Dames at Sea, Hand to God, The Illusionists, Lord of the Dance, Sylvia, Therese Raquin

Closing January 10, 2016: The Gin Game

Closing January 17, 2016: Gentleman’s Guide

Closing January 24, 2016: Spring Awakening

Closing January 31, 2016: China Doll, King Charles III

Of course, New York theater is far more than just Broadway, and some Off-Broadway and Off-Off Broadway shows are not just happening, but getting into the whole excess thing that means New Year’s Eve to so many in New York. For example:

Queen of the Night” is offering TOMORROW NEVER DIES, a James Bond-inspired Black Tie Gala “featuring evil villains from the Bond franchise, international DJs, live performances” etc.  The cost of the event — as little as $450, and as much as $25,000. (Perhaps in a sign that such decadence cannot last forever: Queen of the Night will close that night after two years.)

At The McKittrick Hotel, your evening can begin with a “Royal Feast,” then “Sleep No More,” the immersive Macbeth that requires we wear a mask and sensible shoes, followed by “the truly decadent The King’s Winter Masquerade,” all for only $600.

scene from sleep-no-more

Scene from Sleep No More. The people in the masks are members of the audience

An intriguing choice this year is First Noel: New Year’s Show: “The Classical Theatre of Harlem, in its debut at the Apollo Theater, brings a new Harlem-based holiday musical that crosses genres – from disco to rock to gospel…”

NEW YEARS EVE PARTIES AT NIGHTCLUBS & WEIRD PLACES

New Year’s Eve Central website lists more than 100 New Year’s Eve parties at New York nightclubs 

Justice, the DJ duo, hold an annual New Years Eve party in an undisclosed warehouse in Brooklyn.

Of particular interest this year is the debut of Party for a Purpose at Housing Works Bookstore Cafe, which is “set” in 1942 Casablanca. “All party proceeds help to battle the dual crises of homelessness and HIV/AIDS.”

CONCERTS

St. John the Divine Concert for Peace. An annual event since 1984, when it was founded by Leonard Bernstein. Free.

New York Philharmonic’s La Vie Parisienne – a “musical love letter to Paris.” (This will be televised on PBS)

Phish

Phish at Madison Square Garden

Jimmy Buffett and Huey Lewis at Barclay’s Center

Some three dozen more concerts via New York Times. (Some will be sold out)

CABARET

Tip: Most cabarets offer two seatings on New Year’s Eve. The one earlier in the evening is far less expensive.

Annaleigh Ashford at Feinstein’s/54 Below

Annaleigh Ashford

Annaleigh Ashford

Sandra Bernhard at Joe’s Pub

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Natalie Douglas at the Duplex — her 17th New Year’s there

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Marilyn Maye at the Metropolitan Room

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Marin Mazzie at Feinstein’s/54Below (early show)

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CONCERTS

 

FIREWORKS

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Annual Prospect Park Fireworks – free. at Grand Army Plaza

Coney Island New Year’s Eve Celebration – free fireworks on the boardwalk

Central Park Fireworks (See also midnight run below)


HARBOR CRUISES

Big selling point of all these cruises — a close-up of the New Years Eve fireworks over the water. Most include a buffet, open bar, and dancing with a dj. Drawbacks: These cost hundreds of dollars, and many are already sold out.

Circle Line New Year’s Eve Fireworks Cruise

 Zephyr New Year’s Eve Cruise

A MEDITATIVE ALTERNATIVE
The Kadampa Meditation Center in Chelsea, $30 for non-members, provides a way for you to “ring in the New Year “with compassion and beneficial intentions!” — hors d’oeuvres, meditation, and no alcohol.
WALKING AND RUNNING
New York Road Runners’  Emerald Nuts Midnight Run in Central Park
Shorewalkers Happy New Years Day Hike — Hiking the shores and parks of upper Manhattan starting at noon on New Year’s Day, which gives you a good excuse to go to bed early.
WHAT’S ON TV
ABC: Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve With Ryan Seacrest. Fergie and Carrie Underwood.
CNN: New Year’s Eve Live With Anderson Cooper and Kathy Griffin

Fox: Pitbull’s New Year’s Revolution. from Miami.

FXX – “The Simpsons New Year’s Resolutions,” 26 resolution-themed episodes back to back.

NBC: New Year’s Eve With Carson Daly.  Gwen Stefani and Andy Cohen.

PBS: Live from Lincoln Center New York Philharmonic concert, followed by Downton Abbey marathon.
The Midnight Hour

The Midnight Hour

Broadway Spring 2016 Preview Guide

A new musical by Steve Martin and Edie Brickell, the revival/reimagining of a groundbreaking African-American musical from 1921, the sixth Broadway revivals of dramas by both Arthur Miller and Eugene O’Neill, and transfers from Off-Broadway of several acclaimed new dramas: Another exciting season on Broadway is on offer. The preview below is organized chronologically by opening dates. Consider it a work in progress; some of this WILL change — dates, whole shows will disappear, others materialize. Expect updates.

Also check out my Off-Broadway Spring 2016 Preview Guide

January

noisesofflogoNoises Off

American Airlines Theater
Written by: Michael Frayn
Director: Jeremy Herrin
First preview: December 17, 2015
Opening: January 14, 2016
Closing: March 6, 2016
Cast: Andrea Martin, Tracee Chimo, Megan Hilty, Rob McClure, Campbell Scott and Jeremy Shamos
Twitter feed: @RTC_NYC
An impressive cast of the go-to Broadway stars of the moment undertakes the third Broadway production of this backstage comedy. “The Opening Night performance of the farce Nothing On is just hours away, and as the cast stumbles through their final dress rehearsal, things couldn’t be going any worse.”

OurMothersBriefAffairlogoOur Mother’s Brief Affair

Samuel J. Friedman Theater
Written by Richard Greenberg
Directed by Lynne Meadow.
First preview: December 28, 2015
Opening: January 20, 2016
Closing: March 6, 2016
Cast: Linda Lavin, Kate Arrington, Greg Keller, John Procaccino
Twitter feed: @MTC_NYC
On the verge of death for the umpteenth time, Anna (Linda Lavin) makes a shocking confession to her grown children: an affair from her past that just might have resonance beyond the family.

February

The Humans

TheHumanslogo
Helen Hayes Theater
Written by Stephen Karam
Directed by Joe Mantello
First preview: January 23, 2016
Opening: February 18, 2016
Cast: Cassie Beck, Reed Birney, Jayne Houdyshell, Lauren Klein, Arian Moayed, Sarah Steele
Breaking with tradition, Erik Blake has brought his Pennsylvania family to celebrate Thanksgiving at his daughter’s apartment in lower Manhattan. As darkness falls outside the ramshackle pre-war duplex, eerie things start to go bump in the night.
My review of The Humans, when it was Off-Broadway, with the same cast.

Hughie

Hughielogo
Booth Theater
Written by Eugene O’Neill
Directed by Michael Grandage.
First preview: February 8, 2016
Opening: February 25, 2016
Cast: Forest Whitaker, Frank Wood
Twitter feed: @HughieBroadway
1928. New York City. A hotel lobby. A small-time gambler and big-time drinker (Forest Whitaker) makes his way back to Room 492. With a new night clerk (Frank Wood) on duty, he is forced to confront his personal demons and discover the real end to his own story

March

EclipsedlogoEclipsed

Golden Theater
Written by Danai Gurira
Directed by Liesl Tommy
First preview: February 23, 2016
Opening: March 6, 2016
Cast: Lupita Nyong’o, Pascale Armand, Akosua Busia, Zainab Jah, Saycon Sengbloh.
Twitter feed: @eclipsedbway
Eclipsed is the story of five extraordinary women brought together by upheaval in their homeland of Liberia

 

Disaster!

DisasterLogoNederlander Theater
Written by Seth Rudetsky, Jack Plotnick.
Directed by Jack Plotnick
irst Preview: February 9, 2016
Opening: March 8, 2016
Cast: Roger Bart, Kerry Butler, Kevin Chamberlin, Max Crumm, Lacretta Nicole, Adam Pascal, Faith Prince, Seth Rudetsky, Jennifer Simard, Rachel York.
Twitter feed: @DisasterMusical
A spoof of 1970s disaster films, using the popular music from that era.

Blackbird

BlackbirdlogoBelasco Theater
Written by David Harrower
Directed by Joe Mantello
First preview: February 5
Opening: March 10
Closing: June 12
Cast: Jeff Daniels, Michelle Williams
Ray had sex with Una when she was 12 years old, and went to jail for it. Fifteen years later, she tracks him down.

She Loves Me

shelovesmelogoStudio 54
Music by Jerry Bock. Book by Joe Masteroff. Lyrics by Sheldon Harnick. Based on a play by Miklos Laszlo.
Directed by Scott Ellis with choreography by Warren Carlyle
First preview: February 19, 2016
Opening: March 17, 2016
Closing: July 10, 2016
Cast: Laura Benanti, Gavin Creel, Byron Jennings, Jane Krakowski, Zachary Levi, Michael McGrath.
Twitter feed: @RTC_NYC

At the parfumerie where both work, Amalia and Georg hate each other. But as secret anonymous pen pals, they are falling in love.

I am partial to the musical, since I acted in it in junior high school, something I’ve written about: She Loves Me: The Broadway Musical That Changed Our Lives 

Bright Star

BrightStarlogo
Cort Theater
Book by Steve Martin, music by Steven Martin and Edie Brickell, lyrics by Edie Brickell
Directed by Walter Bobbie
First Preview: February 25, 2016
Opening: March 24, 2016
Cast: Carmen Cusack, Paul Alexander Nolan, Michael Mulheren, AJ Shively, Hannah Elless, StephenBogardus, Dee Hoty, Stephen Lee Anderson, Emily Padgett, Jeff Blumenkrantz, Maddie Shea Baldwin, Allison Briner, Max Chernin, Patrick Cummings, Sandra DeNise, Richard Gatta, Lizzie Klemperer, Michael X. Martin, William Michals, Tony Roach, Sarah Jane Shanks, William Youmans
Twitter feed: @BrightStarBway
Based on a true story, the musical tells of the meeting between successful literary editor Alice Murphy and an ambitious young soldier just home from World War II. Their connection inspires Alice to confront a shocking incident from her past.

April

The Crucible

TheCruciblelogo
Walter Kerr Theater
Written by Arthur Miller
Directed by Ivo van Hove
First preview: February 29, 2016
Opening: April 7 ,2016
Closing: July 17, 2016
Cast: Ben Whishaw, Sophie Okonedo, Ciaran Hinds, Saoirse Ronan, Bill Camp, Jason Butler Harner, Tavi Gevinson, Jim Norton, Tina Benko, Thomas Jay Ryan, Ray Anthony Thomas, Erin Wilhelm
This is the sixth Broadway production of Miller’s popular account of the Salem witch trials of the 1690’s, but it is being directed by the experimental Belgium director Ivo van Hove, who made his Broadway debut in 2015 with another Miller play, A View From The Bridge.

The Father

TheFatherlogoSamuel J. Friedman Theater
Written by Florian Zeller. Translation by Christopher Hampton
Directed by Doug Hughes.
First preview: March 22, 2016
Opening: April 14, 2016
Cast: Frank Langella
Twitter: @MTC_NYC
A look inside the mind of Andre (Frank Langella), a retired dancer living with his adult daughter Anne and her husband. Or is he a retired engineer receiving a visit from Anne who has moved away with her boyfriend? Why do strangers keep turning up in his room?

Waitress

Waitresslogo2Brooks Atkinson Theater
Music and lyrics by Sara Bareilles. Book by Jessie Nelson.
Directed by Diane Paulus. Choreographed by Lorin Latarro.
First Preview: March 25, 2016
Opening: April 24, 2016
Cast: Jessie Mueller, Eric Anderson, Christoher Fitzgerald, Drew Gehling, Kimiko Glenn, Dakin Matthews, Jessie Mueller, Keala Settle Charity Angél Dawson, Jeremy Morse, Stephanie Torns
Twitter: @WaitressMusical
Based on the 2007 movie written by Adrienne Shelly, the musical focuses on Jenna (Jessie Mueller), a waitress and expert pie maker, who is stuck in a small town and a loveless marriage… until a baking content in a nearby county and the town’s handsome new doctor .

American Psycho

americanpsychologo
Gerald Schoenfeld Theater
Book by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa; Music and lyrics by Duncan Sheik
Directed by Rupert Goold
First Preview: March 24, 2016
Opening: April 24, 2016
Twitter: @APtheMusical
Cast: Benjamin Walker, Jennifer Damiano, Alice Ripley, Helene Yorke
A musical based on the novel by Bret Easton Ellis about a stylish serial killer

Fully Committed

FullyCommittedLogo
Lyceum Theater
Written by Becky Mode
Directed by Jason Moore
First Preview: April 2, 2016
Opening: April 25, 2016
Closing: July 24, 2016
Cast: Jesse Tyler Ferguson
Twitter: @FullyBroadway

Ferguson portrays 15 character involved with a high-class restaurant

 

Tuck Everlasting

TuckEverlastinglogo2
Broadhurst
Book by Claudia Shear and Tim Federle. Music by Chris Miller. Lyrics by Nathan Tysen.
Directed and choreographed by Casey Nicholaw
First preview: March 31, 2016
Opening: April 26, 2016
Cast: Fred Applegate, Carolee Carmello, Andrew Keenan-Bolger, Robert Lenzi, Sarah Charles Lewis, Terrence Mann, Michael Park, Michael Wartella, Valerie Wright.
Twitter: @TuckMusical
Based on the novel by Natalie Babbitt, the musical tells the story of Winnie Foster, who embarks on a life-changing adventure after she discovers the secret of the Tuck family (hint of what it is in the title.)

Long Day’s Journey Into Night

longdaysjourneylogo
American Airlines Theater
Written by Eugene O’Neill
Directed by Jonathan Kent
First Preview: March 31, 2016
Opening: April 27, 2016
Closing: July 17, 2016
Cast: Gabriel Byrne, John Gallagher Jr., Jessica Lange, Michael Shannon.
Twitter: @RTC_NYC
The sixth production of O’Neill’s riveting play about the Tyrone family, undisguised as his own.

Shuffle Along, Or, The Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed

Shufflealonglogo
Music Box Theater
Music and lyrics by Noble Sissle and Eubie Blake
Book by George C. Wolfe (original book by F. E. Miller & Aubrey Lyles)
Directed by George C. Wolfe, choreography by Savion Glover
First Preview: March 15, 2016
Opening: April 28, 2016
Cast: Audra McDonald*, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Billy Porter, Brandon Victor Dixon, Joshua Henry, Brooks Ashmanskas, Felicia Boswell, Amber Iman, Adrienne Warren, Phillip Attmore, Darius de Haas, C.K. Edwards, Afra Hines, Curtis Holland, Adrienne Howard, Kendrick Jones, Lisa LaTouche, Alicia Lundgren, J.C. Montgomery, Erin N. Moore, Janelle Neal, Brittany Parks, Arbender Robinson, Karissa Royster, Britton Smith, Zurin Villanueva, Christian Dante White, J.L. Williams, Pamela Yasutake, Richard Riaz Yoder
In May 1921, the new musical Shuffle Along became a hit,
significantly altering the face of the Broadway musical. This is both that musical and the story of that musical.

Broadway Christmas Week Schedule 2015, “Show Day,” and Holiday Shows

Radio City Christmas SpectacularThere is a push to make the day after Christmas a new event called “Show Day,” in the way that the day after Thanksgiving is “Black Friday” — except instead of shopping, people are encouraged to see live entertainment.

 

There’s certainly plenty to see. All Broadway shows are offering performances on “Show Day,” and a good number have added extra performances either the Monday before Christmas or the Sunday afterward, or both. Twenty-one are planning to offer performances the evening of Christmas Day.  (Scroll to the bottom of this post for the complete Broadway Christmas week schedule.)

Of course, a show on Christmas Day – or on Show Day – is not necessarily the same thing as a holiday show, of which there are plenty. Not all of them are happening on Christmas Day; several have already ended their runs this year. One, the 17th annual reading of Times Square Angel written by and starring Charles Busch at Theater for the New City, is happening Monday, December 14th, 2015.

Below are a selection of holiday shows that vary in tone and intended audience.

Family Entertainment

Radio City Christmas Spectacular – Radio City Music Hall, through January 3, 2016

This 90-minute Christmas show, an annual event since 1933,  features an original score, and more than 1,300 costumes, worn by some 140 performers, including the Rockettes, the 36-strong dance troupe famous for their synchronized kicks. Tickets start at $50 (although there are some deals online) and run as high as several hundred dollars apiece.

George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker – New York City Ballet, through January 3, 2016

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The version of Tschaikovsky’s score that launched a holiday tradition. Tickets range from $75 to $265.

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Hard Nut, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Dec 12 – 20

A modern(ist), humorous version of the Nutcracker, with choreography by Mark Morris. Tickets start at $25, and go up to $115.

Hip Hop Nutcracker, NJPAC (Newark), December 19.

A touring company that is only performing once in the tri-state area this month, with tickets from $49 to $79

 

A Child’s Christmas in Wales, Irish Rep, through January 3, 2016

The peculiar habits of people during the season of feasting and merriment as seen through the eyes of a little boy

Elf, The Theater at Madison Square Garden, December 9 – 27, 2015.

A stage adaptation of the movie about a human taken in by Santa who travels to New York to find his real family.

A Christmas Story, Papermill Playhouse, through January 3, 2016

The Pasek and Paul musical adapted from the 1983 movie: Ralphie wants only one thing for Christmas: An Official Red Ryder® Carbine-Action 200-shot Range Model Air Rifle. (My review of the Broadway production three years ago.) This production is in Milburn, New Jersey.

A Christmas Carol(s)

It’s not really possible to keep on top of all the various stage versions of the Dicken’s story featuring Tiny Tim and Scrooge.

A Christmas Carol

At the Players Theater in the Village for the seventh year, now through December 30.

At Theater for A New City, December 17-20

At Theatre Row by Mod Company, December 16 – December 23

At Queens Theatre by Titan Theatre Company now through December 20.

Off-Beat

Every Christmas Story Ever Told (And Then Some) – Wild Project, December 14-16

A production of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol goes awry when the actors mutiny and decide to create their own show

Santasia

Santasia – A Holiday Comedy, St. Luke’s Theater, through December 23

Yuletide snark and sentiment, sketch comedy and claymation movies

The Greatest Pirate Holiday Spectacularrr! (Theatre 54), Dec 24-Jan 3

‘A Christmas Carol’ with a pirate twist and audience suggestions.

A Very Jewish Christmas – Gotham Comedy Club December 24

An evening of comedy with Jewish comedians Marion Grodin, Jon Fisch, Gregg Rogell (7:30 show), Gary Vider (9:30 show), Sherry Davey and Jon Laster/

 

NOT For Children

At The Laurie Beechman Theater:

  1. Holiday High Jinkx – Dec 16-20

RuPaul’s Drag Race winner Jinkx Monsoon & her piano man Major Scales return with new holiday show.

2. Your Christmas is Terrible, Dec 17-20

RuPaul’s Drag Race star Alaska and sidekick Handsome Jeremy return with Seasons Greetings.

JackieMeat300x175

3. Jackie Beat: White Meat or Dark?

NYC’s Favorite Grinch serves up her 18th annual non-denominational holiday comedy feast.

Nutcracker-Rouge-–-Company-XIV-C-Mark-Shelby-Perry

Nutcracker Rouge, Minetta Lane Theater through January 17, 2016

The Burlesque version of the Nutcracker Suite.

 

 

Broadway Theater Schedule on Christmas Week

The schedule below, which comes from the Broadway League, could change without notice. Please check the website or box office of any specific show.

  • Crossed out dates = canceled performance (sometimes just blank)
    Bold faced dates = added performance
    Italic dates = different curtain time

    Show Title Mon. Dec. 21 Tues Dec. 22 Wed. Dec. 23 Thurs. Dec. 24 Fri. Dec. 25 Sat. Dec. 26 Sun. Dec. 27
    Aladdin DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 1pm 2pm, 8pm 1pm, 6:30pm
    Allegiance DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm
    American in Paris, An DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm 2pm, 8pm 1pm, 7pm
    Beautiful: The Carole King Musical DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm
    Book of Mormon, The 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm
    Chicago 8pm 8pm 8pm 8pm 8pm 2:30pm, 8pm 3:00pm, 7:30pm
    China Doll DARK 7pm 7pm 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
    Color Purple, The 7pm 7pm 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm
    Curious Incident 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30
    Dames at Sea DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm
    Fiddler on the Roof DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30
    Finding Neverland DARK 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7:30pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm
    Fun Home 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm
    Gentleman’s Guide… DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
    Gin Game, The 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
    Hamilton 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm
    Hand to God 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm, 7:30pm
    Illusionists, The: Witness the Impossible DARK 7pm 7pm 7pm 7pm 11am, 3pm, 8pm 11am, 3pm, 7:30pm
    Jersey Boys 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm
    King and I, The DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 1pm, 7pm
    King Charles III 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
    Kinky Boots DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm
    Les Misérables DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 1:30pm, 7:30pm
    Lion King, The DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm 2pm, 8pm 1pm, 6:30pm
    Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games 7:30pm 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7:30pm 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm
    Matilda DARK 7pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm
    Misery DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm
    Noises Off 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm
    On Your Feet! 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm
    Phantom of the Opera, The 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm
    School of Rock 7:30pm 7:30 2pm, 7:30pm 7:30pm 7:30 2pm, 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm
    Something Rotten! DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm
    Spring Awakening 7pm 7pm 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm, 7:30pm
    Sylvia DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm
    Thérèse Raquin 7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm
    View from the Bridge, A DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7:30pm
    Wicked DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm

 

Keep in mind there is much more theater Off-Broadway and Off-Off Broadway. Want to see a show on Christmas Day? Check out The Golden Bride.

December 2015 Theater Openings Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off Broadway

Four shows are opening on Broadway in December:  “School of Rock” is Andrew Lloyd Webber’s first new musical on Broadway since 2005.  Jennifer Hudson makes her Broadway debut in a first revival of The Color Purple; the original opened in 2005. The sixth production of Fiddler on the Roof comes (you guessed it) a decade after the fifth. Al Pacino and David Mamet are pairing up once again for Mamet’s new play China Doll, which was originally scheduled to open in November.

The hottest-selling opening in December, however, is Off-Broadway – “Lazarus.” And then there are the Christmas plays up the wazoo — too numerous to include them all.

Below is a selection of the plays, musicals and less easily categorized theater pieces opening in December, organized chronologically by opening date. Each title is linked to a relevant website.
Color key: Broadway: Red. Off Broadway: Purple or Blue. Off Off Broadway: Green.
To look at the Fall season as a whole, check out Broadway Fall 2015 Preview and Off-Broadway Fall 2015 Preview.

December 1

A Child’s Christmas in Wales (Irish Rep)

The peculiar habits of people during the season of feasting and merriment as seen through the eyes of a little boy

December 2

Griffin Matthews

Griffin Matthews and cast

Invisible Thread (Second Stage)

Griffin Matthews co-wrote and stars in this musical directed by Diane Paulus and inspired by the true story of this black, gay New Yorker’s experience volunteering for an aid project in Uganda.

December 3

GiganticforCalendar

Gigantic (Vineyard Theatre at Theatre Row)

A musical comedy about a group of outcast teens who have been sent to a weight-loss camp in Pennsylvania.

That Physics Show (Playroom Theater)

David Maiullo brings his physics experiments to the  stage, demonstrating such concepts as motion, momentum, vacuum, friction, energy,and sound vibration.

C.S. Lewis’ The Great Divorce (The Pearl Theatre)

Three actors portray a dozen characters taking a day trip from Hell to Paradise—a trip that leaves no one unchanged — in this morality tale adapted from Lewis’s book.

How to Get Into Buildings (The Brick)

A play that chronicles an ‘exploded view’ of love, featuring two couples, a famous author, and a telethon.

December 4

Al Pacino in China Doll

Al Pacino in China Doll

China Doll

Al Pacino stars in David Mamet’s new two-character play about a billionaire, Mickey Ross (Pacino), who has just bought a new airplane for his young fiancée as he prepares to go into semiretirement; on his way he suddenly gets a phone call.

December 6

SchoolofRockforCalendar

Alex Brightman and cast in School of Rock

School of Rock – The Musical (Winter Garden)

An adaptation by Andrew Lloyd Webber of the 2003 Jack Black movie about a really bad substitute teacher who enlists his fifth-grade class to form a rock group to compete in the Battle of the Bands.

Pylade (La MaMa ETC)

Written by the late, provocative film director Pier Paolo Pasolini, “Pylade” is a contemporary reinterpretation of the relationship between Pylades and Orestes from Greek mythology

 

December 7

LazarusforCalendar

Lazarus (New York Theater Workshop)

Based on the’1963 science fiction novel The Man Who Fell to Earth’ by Walter Tevis, Lazarus is written by David Bowie (including both familiar and original songs) and Enda Walsh (Once) and directed by Ivo van Hove (the experimental director who made his Broadway debut last month with Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge.) The musical, which stars Michael C. Hall and Sophia Anne Caruso, is about a human-looking alien who comes to Earth seeking a way to bring water back to his home planet. Tickets sold out to the original run of this musical in a few hours (before it was extended), which must be a record for Off-Broadway.

December 8

OurFriendstheenemy for calendar

Our Friends The Enemy (Theater Row’s Lion Theatre)

A play inspired by the true event of Christmas 1914, when British and German soldiers stopped their fighting, emerged from their trenches and met between the firing line

Thorton_Wilder

A Wilder Christmas (Theatre at St. Clement’s)

The Long Christmas Dinner and Pullman Car Hiawatha, two one-act plays by Thornton Wilder (Our Town),  directed by Dan Wackerman. The first “traverses 90 years in the life of a single American family as they gather around the dining room table for a holiday celebration.” The second a disparate collection of characters bound for Chicago during the holiday season. No ordinary train, this Pullman car allows us to eavesdrop on the thoughts and feelings of its many passengers

December 9

The Golden Bride (The Museum of Jewish Heritage)

National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene presents one of the most-popular operettas of the Roaring Twenties about a beautiful young woman named Goldele, abandoned by her parents in the shetl, who makes her way to America.  Presented in Yiddish with English and Russian supertitles.

December 10

The Color Purple (Bernard B. Jacobs Theater)

Color Purple 3_Cynthia Erivo and Jennifer Hudson photo by Matthew Murphy

Based on the Pulitzer Prize winning novel by Alice Walker, this musical follows the life of a young black girl named Celie (Cynthia Ervio.)

Tunabill

Oh, Hello (Cherry Lane Theater)

Nick Kroll (Comedy Central’s Kroll Show) pairs up with Saturday Night Live writer John Mulaney to portray two oddball characters, Gil Faizon and George St. Geegland, “a pair of Alan Alda-obsessed, Upper West Side, middle-aged divorcees who love tuna.”

December 13

Once Upon A Mattress (Transport Group at Abrons Arts Center)

A revival of Mary Rodgers’ wacky musical adaptation of ‘The Princess and the Pea,’ featuring Jackie Hoffman as Princess Winnifred and John “Lypsinka” Epperson as Queen Aggravain.

 

Plaid Tidings (York Theatre Company)

A kind of spin-off from the musical Forever Plaid, this revue features the 1950s boy band, the Heavenly Plaids singing seasonal holiday music, plus a three-minute version of “The Ed Sullivan Show.

December 14

mar_carousel-artwork.jpg__960x480_q85_crop_upscale

Marjorie Prime (Playwrights Horizons)

A play by Jordan Harrison in which Lois Smith portrays an 85-year-old woman in decline whose family enlists a “prime:”a handsome new companion who’s programmed to feed the story of her life back to her.

December 15

ThesePaperBullets

These Paper Bullets (Atlantic Theater Company)

This play with music by Billie Joe Armstrong (Green Day, American Idiot) mashes up a story of a Fab Four rock band with the plot of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing.

December 16

A Christmas Carol (Theater Row)

A new look at Scrooge from MOD theater company.

Annie (Kings Theater)

Annie the Musical Issie Swickle Annie

Directed by original lyricist and director Martin Charnin (for the 19th time), with a 25-member company, this production of “Annie,” about the orphan girl who advises the president, marks the first major theatrical event in the history of glorious Kings Theater, a former movie palace that re-opened earlier this year after a $95 million restoration.

December 20

Fiddler on the Roof (Broadway Theater)

The fifth Broadway revival of the hugely and justly popular 1964 musical about a Jewish milkman and his three daughters in hostile 19th century Russia.

 

December 24

The Greatest Pirate Holiday Spectacularrr! (Theatre 54)

‘A Christmas Carol’ with a pirate twist and audience suggestions.

 

 

Broadway Thanksgiving Week Schedule 2015: What to See on Broadway

Below is the schedule for Broadway shows during Thanksgiving week.

The titles are linked to my reviews or other information, and a collection of photographs, about each show. (Those shows without links are in previews and have not yet opened — i.e. have not yet been reviewed.) The asterisks are next to the ten shows that are my personal favorites and particular recommendations. But tastes vary, as do budgets. Speaking of which, Off Broadway is open this week as well.

You’ll see there are five shows playing on Thursday, Thanksgiving Day itself: Chicago, Dames at Sea, Finding Neverland, On Your Feet, and The Phantom of the Opera. A whopping 28 Broadway shows have added a Friday matinee this week. (Update And 24 of the 28 are available at a discount, usually 50 percent off, at the TKTS booth.)

Crossed out dates means canceled performances this week.
Bold faced dates means added performances for this week
Italic dates means different than usual curtain time

The information, which comes from the Broadway League, is subject to change. Please check the show’s website or the theater box office where it’s playing.

Show Title

(Theater)

Mon. Nov. 23 Tues Nov. 24 Wed. Nov. 25 Thur. Nov. 26 Fri. Nov. 27 Sat.Nov 28 Sun. Nov. 29
Aladdin

(New Amsterdam)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm, 6:30pm
Allegiance

(Longacre)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
*American in Paris, An

(Palace)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm,8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Beautiful: The Carole King Musical

(Stephen Sondheim)

 

DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
*Book of Mormon, The

(Eugene O’Neill)

7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 7pm
Chicago

(Ambassador)

8pm 8pm DARK 8pm 2:30, 8pm 2:30pm, 8pm 2:30pm, 7pm
China Doll

(Schoenfeld)

DARK DARK DARK DARK 8pm 3pm, 8pm 3pm
Color Purple, The

(Jacobs)

8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm DARK
*Curious Incident

(Barrymore)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Dames at Sea

(Helen Hayes)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Fiddler on the Roof

(Broadway)

8pm 8pm 8pm DARK 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Finding Neverland

(Lunt-Fontanne)

DARK 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7:30pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Fool For Love

(Samuel J. Friedman)

7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm
*Fun Home

(Circle in the Square)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Gentleman’s Guide…

(Walter Kerr)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
*Gin Game, The

(Golden)

7pm 7pm 2pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
*Hamilton

(Richard Rodgers)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
*Hand to God

(Booth)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Illusionists, The: Witness the Impossible

(Neil Simon)

DARK 7pm 7pm 8pm 11am, 3pm, 8pm 11am, 3pm, 8pm 11am, 3pm
Jersey Boys

(August Wilson)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
*King and I, The

(Vivan Beaumont – Lincoln Center)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
King Charles III

(Music Box)

7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Kinky Boots

(Hirschfeld)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm DARK 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Les Misérables

(Imperial)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm, 7:30pm
*Lion King, The

(Minskoff)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm, 6:30
Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games

(Lyric)

7:30pm 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm 2pm, 7:30pm 3pm
Matilda

(Shubert)

7pm 7pm 2pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm, 6:30pm
Misery

(Broadhurst)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Old Times

(American Airlines)

7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm
On Your Feet!

(Marquis)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Phantom of the Opera, The

(Majestic)

8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm DARK
School of Rock

(Winter Garden)

8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Something Rotten!

(St. James)

8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
*Spring Awakening

(Brooks Atkinson)

7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm, 7:30
Sylvia

(Cort)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 7pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Thérèse Raquin

(Studio 54)

7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 8pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm
View from the Bridge, A

(Lyceum)

DARK 7pm 2pm, 8pm 7pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm
Wicked

(Gershwin)

7pm 7pm 2pm, 7pm 8pm 2pm, 8pm 2pm, 8pm 3pm

 

November 2015 Theater Openings Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off Broadway

The shows opening in November, along with the usual complement of stars (Al Pacino, Bruce Willis, George Takei) are unusually diverse – a play about British royalty and another about a lower middle-class midwestern family with a transgender son;  a musical about a celebrated Latina musician and another about Japanese-Americans interned in U.S. detention camps during World War II. There are also two separate plays about gay parents.

In the centennial year of his birth, playwright Arthur Miller is represented by two revivals opening this month (and more on the way.)

Below is a selection of the plays, musicals and “immersive” theater pieces opening in November, organized chronologically by opening date. Each title is linked to a relevant website.

Color key: Broadway: RedOff Broadway: Purple or BlueOff Off Broadway: Green.

To look at the Fall season as a whole, check out Broadway Fall 2015 Preview and Off-Broadway Fall 2015 Preview.

November 1

King Charles III Music Box Theatre

King Charles III (Music Box)

A Broadway transfer of the 2015 Olivier award for best new play imagining Prince Charles’ ascent to the throne

The Head Hunter (Dorothy Strelsin Theatre in Abingdon Theater Complex)

A revival of the 15-year-old play by Mark Borkowski about a screenwriter whose cousin, a mobster hit man, gets involved in his career.

November 4

God Is A Verb (The Actors Fund Arts Center in Brooklyn)

Inspired by an actual event organized by R. Buckminster Fuller in 1969, the play tells the story of an eccentric professor who gathers a team of offbeat academics to play a game with one goal: make the world work for all humanity.

November 5

The cast of On Your Feet

On Your Feet (Marquis)

Singer Gloria Estefan tells the story of her and her husband Emilio.

Comedy of Errors 1

The Comedy of Errors (The Public Theater)

Shakespeare’s comedy directed by Kwame Kwei-Armah

November 7

Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus (New World Stages)

Based on the best-selling book by John Gray, performer Peter Story stars in a one man play about how couples can bridge the interplanetary gulf between the sexes.

November 8

Allegiance1

Allegiance (Longacre)

A new musical based on George Takei’s family’s experiences in an American internment camp for Japanese-Americans during World War II. The 78-year-old Takei is making his Broadway debut. Also starring Lea Salonga and Telly Leung.

 Kristine Nielsen


Kristine Nielsen

Hir (Playwrights Horizons)

Written by Taylor Mac, the gender-bending theater star of many talents, this comic and dramatic exercise in what Mac calls “absurd realism” features the extraordinary Kristine Nielsen (Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike) as a mother who sees herself as liberated from an oppressive marriage. Her son Isaac, returning from military service, sees her as abusive towards his father (Daniel Oreskes) who’s had a stroke. “Hir” is pronounced “here” and is the pronoun preferred by Isaac’s transgender sibling Max, portrayed by Tom Phelan (The Fosters)

November 9

DadaWoofPapaHotforCalendar

Dada Woof Papa Hot (Lincoln Center Theater)

In this new play by Peter Parnell (QED), two gay couples who met at a parents group get to know one another and reveal the cracks in their marriages, and that of their straight friends. The cast includes Tammy Blanchard, Patrick Breen, John Benjamin Hickey

L

L

Lost GIrls (MCC at Lucille Lortel)

In a new play by John Pollono (Small Engine Repair), stressed-out retail clerk reunites with her recovering alcoholic ex-husband after their teenage daughter goes missing. Stars Piper Perabo.

November 10

LordoftheDance

Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games (Lyric)

Irish dancer Michael Flatley (creator of Riverdance) makes his Broadway debut in his final world tour production as a performer.

November 11

HenryIV

Henry IV (St Ann’s Warehouse)

An all-female production of this Shakespeare history play (combining action from both parts 1 and 2) by the same team that brought us the terrific all-female Julius Caesar, including Dame Harriet Walter

ShearMadnessforcalendar

Shear Madness (New World Stages)

The New York premiere of America’s longest running comedy is a whodunit set in an upscale hair salon,

November 12

AViewfromtheBridge2

A View from the Bridge (Lyceum)

This is the fifth production on Broadway of Miller’s Greek tragedy of a play set on a Brooklyn waterfront in the 1950s; the last was in 2010 starring Scarlett Johansson and Liev Schreiber. However, it marks the Broadway debut of the much-praised Belgium avant-garde director Van Hove, who wowed New York audiences just last year with his innovative Off-Broadway productions of Scenes from a Marriage and Angels in America. His View from the Bridge is a transfer from London.

November 14

The King of Chelm (Kraine)

This musical for kids ages 4-12 is about a young boy dreaming about being a super-hero, who one day finds himself magically transported from his own room to the strange and whimsical town of Chelm.

November 15

Misery Broadhurst Theatre Laurie Metcalf Bruce Willis

Misery (Broadhurst)

Bruce Willis makes his Broadway debut with Laurie Metcalf in William Goldman’s adaptation of Stephen King’s novel about a popular writer held hostage by an insane fan

November 16

Incident at Vichy (Signature)

Arthur Miller’s play looks at Vichy, France at the height of World War II, when nine men and a boy are rounded up. As they disappear one by one, they battle over politics, philosophy and how to escape.

Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom (The Flea)

In another cautionary tale about online life by Jennifer Haley (The Nether),  the residents of a quiet cul-de-sac cannot control the growing addiction to a new online game, and real life and virtual reality blur dangerously. The play is directed by Joel Schumacher, best-known as a director of films ranging from Batman blockbusters to The Phantom of the Opera.

November 18

Steve (New Group at Signature)

A play by Mark Gerrard, directed by Cynthia Nixon, featuring Mario Cantone. “As Steven, a failed Broadway chorus boy turned stay-at-home dad, celebrates yet another birthday, he finds himself filled with fear and uncertainty. Is Stephen, his partner of 14 years, cheating on him?”

November 19

China Doll (Gerald Schoenfeld)

UPDATE Nov 9: The opening of China Doll has been delayed until December 4, 2015.

Al Pacino stars in David Mamet’s new two-character play about a billionaire, Mickey Ross (Pacino), who has just bought a new airplane for his young fiancée as he prepares to go into semiretirement; on his way he suddenly gets a phone call.

Illusionists2015
The Illusionists: Live on Broadway (Neil Simon)

A return of the touring magic act.

November 22

Night Is a Room (Signature)

A new play by Naomi Wallace about a middle class couple whose lives are turned upside down by a working class woman

Nora (Cherry Lane)

Austin Pendleton directs Swedish filmmaker Ingmar Bergman’s adaptation of ‘A Doll’s House’ by Henrik Ibsen in its English-language premiere.

November 23

Important Hats of the 20th Century (MTC)

A cutthroat rivalry between milliners in 1930s New York offers an intriguing explanation for the source of one of the fashion designer’s ideas. “Circa 1996: a teenager stoner keeps losing articles of clothing, and a man keeps bursting out of his closet to take them.”

In The Soundless Awe (Access Theater)

The play focuses on Charles Butler McVay III, the wrongly court-martialed and disgraced Captain of the U.S.S. Indianapolis, two decades after only 300 of his 1,200 men survived Japanese torpedoes.

November 30

The Bellagio Fountain Has Been Known to Make Me Cry (Here Arts)

Scratching lottery tickets and dreaming of fountains in Las Vegas, two Floridians indulge in fantastic plans of escape, while a minor problem unfolds: the ground is sinking beneath them.

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