The hit musical adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Matilda is currently running on Broadway at The Shubert Theatre. The show, which was first staged and is still running in London, features a book by Dennis Kelly and music and lyrics by Tim Minchin.
Matilda is the story of an extraordinary young girl whose voracious reading habits help her to dream of a better life - as her current life is full of bullies and disregard for her well being - starting from the moment she’s born when her mother, Mrs. Wormwood played by Lesli Margherita, declares: "This the worst day of my life!"
If/Then is a new musical that began previews at The Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York City last night.
With music by Tom Kitt, book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey, and directed by Michael Greif, the show reunites the Tony and Pulitzer Prize winning team who created 2009’s Next to Normal. The production further reunites Greif with acclaimed actors, Idina Menzel and Anthony Rapp.
Outside Mullingar - a new play by John Patrick Shanley - the Pulitzer Prize winning playwright of Doubt and directed by Tony-winning director Doug Hughes, is currently running at the Manhattan Theatre Club’s Samuel J. Friedman Theatre on West 47th Street in New York City.
Tony winner, Brían F. O’Byrne, and Emmy winner, Debra Messing, play Anthony and Rosemary, two introverted misfits straddling 40. Anthony has spent his entire life on a cattle farm in rural Ireland, a state of affairs that - due to his painful shyness - suits him well. Rosemary lives right next door, determined to have him, watching the years slip away.
Outside Mullingar is a very Irish story with a surprising depth of poetic passion, these yearning, eccentric souls fight their way towards solid ground and hope to find some kindness and happiness.
Mary Birdsong is an actor with 57 acting credits on IMDB - she’s likely most recognizable from her work on the Comedy Central Series Reno 911 and in the films Adventureland, and The Descendants.
Mary and 4 other actors - Jason Antoon, Greg Cromer, Tricia O'Kelley and Romy Rosemont - were cast in an NBC sitcom pilot together - the show wasn’t picked up but they were determined to work together more - even if that meant on a low-budget talk-show web-series.
There is an astoundingly riveting production of Samuel Becket’s existential absurdist classic, Waiting for Godot running at The Cort Theatre on West 48th Street in New York City. That is, on the nights that an unbelievably tense and masterful production of Harold Pinter’s No Man’s Landisn’t running in that same space.
Bedlam Theatre in New York City that is currently producing two shows - played in repertory, William Shakespeare’s Hamlet and George Bernard Shaw’s Saint Joan are boldly theatrical, stripped down, immersive productions of classic plays. These two large-cast shows are each played with a company of four - and not only four, but the same four actors in both plays.
Eric Tucker is the the Artistic Director of Bedlam Theatre. He plays Hamlet and a few other roles in their production of Hamlet, numerous characters in Saint Joan, and directed both productions. Bedlam’s Producing Director, Andrus Nichols, plays Joan in Saint Joan and numerous characters in Hamlet - including Gertrude, Ophelia, Guildenstern, the Player King, and the Gravedigger.
Bedlam is a company committed to the immediacy of the relationship between the actor and the audience - they create theatre in a flexible, raw space - and the audience is always included in their productions.
Eric Tucker joins us to tell us more - he has worked with playwrights Tony Kushner, David Henry Hwang, David Ives, Paula Vogel and Ellen McLaughlin. He is founder of the Trinity Shakespeare Summer Project and has worked with Shakespeare and Company in Lenox, MA - including working with Tina Packer on Women of Will.
Stephen Lang is a Tony Award-nominated American actor and playwright who is also well known for his film work - including his roles as George E. Pickett in Gettysburg, Stonewall Jackson in Gods and Generals, Colonel Quaritch in Avatar and many others.
The program features a one man show written and performed by Stephen Lang, original music composed by Robert Kessler and performed by virtuoso double-bassist Timothy Cobb, and the a screening of the short film The Wheatfield, written and performed by Lang, and directed by filmmakers, Alexander and Adrian Smith. The program is hosted by historian Harold Holzer.
The Roundabout Theatre Company’s Roundabout Underground program gives productions to emerging playwrights. Last year, they had a hit with Bad Jews - a play by Joshua Harmon, directed by Daniel Aukin.
The show did so well in their 62-seat Black Box Theatre, in fact, that they brought it back to run in the Laura Pels Theatre (their bigger-small space) as part of their season this year - where it continues to earn excellent reviews and enthusiastic response from audiences.
In the play a young Jewish woman, Diana (played by Tracee Chimo, she prefers to be called by her Hebrew name, Daphna) fights with her cousin, Liam, to get a religious relic left behind by their recently deceased grandfather - who had kept it safe during his years in a concentration camp by holding it beneath his tongue. Liam’s brother (Jonah, played by Philip Ettinger) and girlfriend (Melody, played by Molly Ranson) observe and reluctantly weigh-in as Daphna and Liam argue and insult-sling as only family can.
Michael Zegen plays Liam in Bad Jews. Zegen attended Skidmore College and his other Off-Broadway credits include Liz Meriwether’s Oliver Parker! and Greg Moss’ punkplay. On television he’s been featured in recurring roles on The Walking Dead, Boardwalk Empire, How to Make It in America, Rescue Me, and he’ll appear in the upcoming season of the HBO hit, Girls. His film credits include Adventureland, Taking Woodstock, and Frances Ha.
From London’s West End, the worldwide smash hit musical by Queen and Ben Elton, We Will Rock You, is coming to Proctors in Schenectady, NY this weekend - running on the mainstage November 29th through December 1.
The show is a bona-fide hit and has been running for 11 years in London. This is the first North American Tour of the sci-fi musical-theater extravaganza which by all accounts honors the iconic music that frames it - the music of Queen.
Ryan Knowles plays Buddy (as in “Buddy you're a boy make a big noise playin' in the street gonna be a big man some day”). Ryan’s other credits include off-broadway productions of NEWSical: The Musical, the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, Caligula Maximus, Fools in Love, and National Tours of How the Grinch Stole Christmas! and OZ: The Musical.