An 2020 Obie winning play about conservatives who hurt too; Julianne Moore as a mother whose daughter complains about her plastic surgery; a starry anthology on the theme of “promise.” These three shows are available only this weekend. Another three, expiring later, are worth seeing this weekend, if you have the time.
Heroes of the Fourth Turning
Saturday, July 18, 8 to 11 p.m. Live Only
A one-time only reading of Will Arbery’s 2020 Pulitzer Prize finalist and Obie-winning play, with the original Off-Broadway cast. ( after postponing the June 13 reading in solidarity with Black Lives Matter.) My review of the play when it was at Playwrights Horizons (which is where the photograph above comes from):Conservatives don’t all think alike; some of them hate Trump; some don’t see Liberals as evil (some do.) Some are deeply weird. It is a sure sign of the political divisiveness in America that these observations may well seem like revelations to some theatergoers attending Will Arbury’s play at Playwrights Horizons. “Heroes of the Fourth Turning” allows us to eavesdrop on what feel like astute and authentic conversations at a gathering of former classmates at a conservative Catholic college in Wyoming.” The producer suggests turning up the brightness on your computer to the maximum. This is a dark play.
The Homebound Project 4
Eleven starry new short plays on the theme of “promise.” In my review, I single out “Assets,” a campy six–minute play by Diana Oh directed by Lena Dunham starring Tommy Dorfman, as the funniest; an astonishing performance by Judith Light in “All The Old Familiar Places” by Jon Robin Baitz, and Cherry Jones in Erin Courtney’s “Emily,” because it’s Cherry Jones!
Good As New
Julianne Moore and Kaitlyn Dever star in this funny, point play about a bickering mother and teenage daughter driving back from the mother’s plastic surgery. (My review.) It’s steeply priced given that the play is only 25 minutes long, but is a benefit to MCC Theater, which has been offering such quality plays for free during this unique season.
The Copper Children
Expires July 22
“The Copper Children” (which was extended a week) is a play by Karen Zacarias based on a horrifying true story of immigrant toddlers shipped from New York City to Arizona in 1904 that led to a custody case newspapers dubbed the trial of the century. If there are echoes in this historical drama of the current family separations at the border, the specific series of events depicted in this arresting play chronicles an almost surreal combustion of desperation and bigotry. (My review)
Expires July 23
Lucian Msamati portrays the envious court composer Antonio
Salieri who is envious of the obnoxious genius Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
In this popular play by Peter Shaffer that was turned into an Oscar-winning film.
Expires August 4
In this latest documentary play by the team that produced “The Exonerated” and “Coal Country,” a starry, spot-on cast portray seven real-life frontline medical workers in New York– two doctors, three nurses, an Emergency Medical Technician and a paramedic — who tell their wartime stories of dealing with COVID-19. The concrete details of their lives and the stories they tell are devastating. (My review)