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Showing posts from 2021

Review: In "A Venomous Color: Burbank (Act 1)," Mickey's Shorts May Be Red, But He's No Commie

A Venomous Color: Burbank (Act 1) Written and directed by Cameron Darwin Bossert Presented by Thirdwing via its streaming service In an in-person run at the wild project earlier this fall, Thirdwing's terrific A Venomous Color: The Fairest explored Disney's "Nunnery," its sex-segregated department of women painters and inkers, as they worked to complete Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (you can read our review here ). Thirdwing is dedicated to a hybrid model that embraces both live and streaming theater productions; and the entire first act of A Venomous Color: Burbank , which functions as sequel and companion piece to The Fairest but does not require having seen the earlier play to be enjoyed, is now available on Thirdwing's streaming service (starting at $4.99 per month or $49 per year, subscriptions include access to the streaming platform and tickets to live shows; see Thirdwing's site for details of available membership packages). Written and directe

Review: The Art World Runs on Blood in "The Slave Who Loved Caviar"

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The Slave Who Loved Caviar Written by Ishmael Reed Directed by Carla Blank Presented by Theater for the New City 155 1st Ave., Manhattan, NYC December 23, 2021-January 9, 2022 L-R: vampire Baron De Whit (Raul Diaz) and the Baron's agent, Antonio Wolfe (Jesse Bueno). Photo by Jonathan Slaff. Karl Marx famously compared the workings of capitalism to vampirism, and The Slave Who Loved Caviar , bringing the metaphor of vampirism to bear specifically on the capitalism of the art world, and even more specifically, on the relationship between artists Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat. Making its world premiere at Theater for the New City, The Slave Who Loved Caviar is the latest play from storied novelist, essayist, critic, playwright, musician, songwriter, professor, publisher, and more Ishmael Reed. Directed by frequent Reed collaborator Carla Blank, herself a director, dramaturge, writer, and editor, and featuring original music composed and performed by Reed, The Slave Who Loved C

News: Absurdist Sci-Fi Drama "Alma Baya" Now Available On Demand

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  Absurdist sci-fi drama Alma Baya , written and directed by Edward Einhorn, is now available on demand until February 15, 2022. In the play, Alma and Baya live on a hostile planet in a pod designed to sustain just them. When a refugee arrives from another pod, they have to balance survival versus compassion. Watch Cast A or Cast B, or both - when you choose one cast's performance, you will get a discount code for the other show when you order. You can read the writer's note here and our review of the in-person performance here . Tickets are $25 Running time is 75 minutes. (NOTE: There is nudity in the show.) GET A TICKET FOR ALMA BAYA Stranger Arrives, Cast A (low res) from Edward Einhorn on Vimeo . Stranger Monologue, Cast B (low res) from Edward Einhorn on Vimeo . Cast A: Sheleah Harris, Rivera Reese, Ann Marie Yoo Cast B: Maggie Cino, JaneAnne Halter, Nina Mann

News: "Social Alchemix (Live!)" Returns in 2022

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  Social Alchemix (Live!) , an intoxicating hybrid of intimate game night, storytelling, and aligned serendipity, conceived, designed, and hosted by cocktail guru and performer Wil Petre, returns to live performances in 2022. Originally called A Cocktail Party Social Experiment (you can read our review here ), the show inspires audiences to join conversations prompted by a deck of alchemical cards and enjoy tasty libations while going deeper into meaningful exchange of thoughts. In 2022,  Social Alchemix (Live!)  resurfaces after the pandemic isolation and brings more interactive fun, plus a deck of cards the viewers can purchase at the show or online. The upcoming presentations (with more dates to be announced) will take place on Monday nights at two intimate venues: Threes Franklin (113 Franklin Street, Brooklyn, NY – February 14 and March 14, 2022) and Caveat (21 A Clinton Street, Manhattan – February 21, 2022). Times vary; visit the website for details. Tickets are $18 online/$22 a

News: Interactive Family Musical "Petunia's Playhouse Live!: Petunia's Big Day" Opens Dec. 22

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  Photo courtesy Party Claw Productions New Ohio Theatre for Young Minds invites families to its historic Greenwich Village theater for Party Claw Productions’ Petunia's Playhouse Live!: Petunia's Big Day – a new musical puppetry experience based on the award-winning web series Petunia’s Playhouse , conceived during the COVID lockdown as a tool to help children cope with the mental health challenges of our new reality. With a brand-new book and story by Laura Kay Clark, directed by Christina Rose Ashby, the interactive show follows the titular character on her first day of school and weaves together puppetry, original songs by Billy Recce, and participatory activities designed to introduce young audiences to the crucial practice of self-care in times of stress and uncertainty. The show, suitable for young theatergoers aged 6-12, will be presented at New Ohio Theatre (154 Christopher Street, NYC) from December 22, 2021 to January 1, 2022. Tickets ($25; $18 for groups of four o

News: 13th Annual The Fire This Time Festival Announces Schedule [POSTPONED UNTIL JULY 2022]

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Updated Jan. 6, 2022: Due to the recent resurgence of Covid-19, FRIGID New York will regrettably be postponing the 13th Annual The Fire This Time Festival until July 2022. Information on the new performance dates will be announced in the coming months. "Sadly, due to the recent surge of the Covid-19 virus and out of an abundance of caution and an unwavering desire to protect the health and safety of our cast and crew, we are postponing this year's festival,” said Artistic Director, Cezar Williams. “It is our intention to remount the festival this summer. Please stand by for more details as they become available.” Original post:  FRIGID New York will present the 13th Annual The Fire This Time Festival at The Kraine Theater (85 East 4th Street between 2nd Avenue and Bowery), January 17-February 6, 2022. Performances will also be available to livestream from home. Tickets ($20) are available for advance purchase at www.frigid.nyc . The festival will kick-off on Monday, January 1

Review: You Should See "And What Happens if I Don't" No Matter What Your Mother Says

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And What Happens if I Don't Written by Iva Brdar Translated by Ana Brdar Presented by The Cherry Artists' Collective at The Cherry Artspace 102 Cherry St., Ithaca, NY December 3-12, 2021 Clockwise from farthest left: Adar aAlston, RJ Lavine, Elizabeth Mozer, Elizah Knight, Amoreena Wade, and Barbara Geary Cherry Arts' production of And What Happens if I Don't marks not only the world premiere of the play itself but also the premiere of the theater company's Hybrid Show System, which provides live streaming in addition to in-person seating (as non-driving NYC-folk, we attended via the former option). The play, by Berlin-based Serbian playwright Iva Brdar and winner of the 2021 Eurodram English-language Award, uses maternal advice as a series of windows onto life as a woman, vignettes that are at once fascinatingly particular in their details and widely relatable in their broader contours. Barbara Geary, Elizah Knight, RJ Lavine, and Naandi Jamison Staged in the rou

Review: Everything Looks Different by "Candlelight"

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Candlelight Written by John Patrick Shanley Directed by Lori Kee Presented by Nylon Fusion at New Ohio Theatre 154 Christopher St., Manhattan, NYC November 27-December 19, 2021 Ivette Dumeng And Christina Toth. Photo by Al Foote III Candlelight, from which the new play by Pulitzer Prize winner and Bronx native John Patrick Shanley takes its name, can create a flickering, twilight liminality, and, indeed, dreams, reality, and imagination bleed fluidly into one another in this world-premiere production at the New Ohio Theatre. Such illumination also, in Candlelight , is associated with love, which in the play is, if not many-splendored, then certainly multifarious—transformative love; parental love; lost love; unrequited love; dangerous love; a link, or in some cases a tether, to the past and a hope, however well-founded, for the future. Centering the perspectives of two ten-year-old Nuyoricans from Brooklyn, Candlelight entangles whimsy with melancholy, hilarity with heartache, and won

News: John Sims Residency — 2020: (Di)Visions of America, Events 12/1-12/5 at La MaMa

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The acclaimed multidisciplinary creator, activist, performer, and 2021 La MaMa Artist-in-Residence  John Sims  will be presenting 2020: (Di)Visions of America , a series of workshopped-for-stage multimedia performances of works never before seen in New York City that melds performative letter writing, installation art, film, music, dance, and video gaming. This series, based on the themes of the COVID-19 pandemic, American policing, and  Recoloration Proclamation  – a 20-year project that confronts, and confiscates Confederacy iconography and symbols and spaces of American slavery – is a cry for help, hope and healing. The featured pieces are: AfroDixiesRemixes: La MaMa Listening Session Sound and Flag installation. A NYC premiere This audio-visual event presents a giant red, black and green (colors of Black liberation) Confederate flag, along with the listening session of The AfroDixieRemixes – a collection of 14 tracks of Dixie in the many genres of Black music: spiritual, blues, go

News: 9th Annual Hotsy Totsy Burlesque Tribute to "The Star Wars Holiday Special," 12/9

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On December 9, 2021, Hotsy Totsy Burlesque will present its 9th annual tribute to The Star Wars Holiday Special . After the past couple of years of craziness, Cherry Pitz has lost the spirit of the season. Handsome Brad and the team are here to help and show her that despite the bad acting, the terrible script, the ill-conceived notions and just the horror that it was ever made, there really is meaning to be found in The Star Wars Holiday Special , travesty that connects everyone who has ever seen it in a single community of people. We might not agree on everything, but we can agree on one thing: this was the most gloriously bad thing ever to appear on TV. As Cherry points out, if you have not seen The Star Wars Holiday Special , then you have not seen special guest star Bea Arthur sing and dance with the space alien bar patrons from the Tatooine Cantina, ( here is a clip ). The Star Wars Holiday Special was quite possibly the worst holiday special ever conceived. It is literally Sta

News: Czech-American Marionette Theatre's "A Christmas Carol, Oy! Hanukkah, Merry Kwanzaa" Returns 12/22

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Vit Horejs and Scrooge puppet. 2020 live performance. Photo by Jonathan Slaff. After the Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theatre's (CAMT) "A Christmas Carol, Oy! Hanukkah, Merry Kwanzaa" was offered virtually last year, with a series of "pretend" out-of-town performances at venues historic and exotic that were created with virtual backgrounds, it returns for live audiences this December, updated to contemporary sensibilities and restaged for this new Theater for the New City production. You can read our 2020 review of a live production of the show here . "A Christmas Carol, Oy! Hanukkah, Merry Kwanzaa," aimed at audiences aged 5 to 105, will run from December 22, 2021 to January 2, 2022. The show is an adaptation of Dickens' classic with Old World accents and New World inclusiveness. Adapted, directed and reinvented by Vit Horejs, it features over 30 puppets by Milos Kasal, including a quartet of Rockettes in Slovak, Moravian, and Ruthenian folk

News: Set in the Far Future, Epic Political Drama "One Empire, Under God" Continues at The Tank

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One Empire, Under God: A Cautionary Tale in Two Acts ,   the new full-length drama by award-winning playwright Anthony J. Piccione ( A Therapy Session with Myself , The Kraine Theater; Unaffordably Unhealthy , The Tank), continues its live debut at the Obie-award-winning performing arts venue The Tank this week. Set in the far distant future, One Empire, Under God is an epic political drama that tells the story of how an emotionally disturbed young man - with the help of virtual media technology - is able to rise to political power by inciting an uprising against America's openly atheist president, and subverting democratic and military rule throughout Western civilization, paving the way for him and his descendants to rule for generations to come. Every step toward a more perfect union is followed by an enormous reactionary backlash. That historical trend remains very much alive in the future, as seen in this provocative critique of nationalism, imperialism, and religious extremi

News: Mothers Myths Monsters: Matrophobia at Theaterlab, Nov. 19 and 21

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This weekend, Friday, November 19 and Sunday, November 21, 2021 at 6 pm, Theaterlab will present  MOTHERS MYTHS MONSTERS: Matrophobia , curated by Stefanie Nelson and featuring Maya Orchin, Boris Willis, and Maria Takeuchi (ÉMU).  MOTHERS MYTHS MONSTERS is a female artist-led residency series presenting short works focused on the comforting and sometimes terrifying figure of the Mother, with bodies at once fecund and ferocious; the complex Myths that shape our personal and collective identities; and/or the repulsive yet riveting Monster. This year’s iteration of this series, Matrophobia, will feature three short-form pieces centered around the titular fear of becoming like one’s mother and the space/s we make to accommodate this fear. Curator Stefanie Nelson uses this term (coined by the poet Lynn Sukenick) as a starting point for exploration of questions such as how we position ourselves in opposition or agreement with our own mothers, how we shape our relationship with them, and ho

Review: "The Dark Outside" Suggests that You Can Go Home Again

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The Dark Outside Written by Bernard Kops Directed by Jack Serio Presented at Theater for the New City 155 First Avenue (between 9th and 10th Streets), Manhattan, NYC November 6-28, 2021 Austin Pendleton in The Dark Outside , by Bernard Kops, directed by Jack Serio, presented by Theater for the New City. Photo by Emilio Madrid. A father's birthday brings a family together, literally and otherwise, in the world premiere of The Dark Outside by celebrated playwright Bernard Kops, who will himself turn 95 on the final day of the show's run. Since his career began in the 1950s, London-born Kops has written more than 40 plays, in addition to a pair of autobiographies and numerous novels, books of poetry, and radio plays, and he is the first Jewish recipient of a Civil List pension, awarded by the Queen, for his services to literature. In the intimate, lyrical The Dark Outside , encounters with the darkness of the title need not mean capitulation. Set in England, The Dark Outside unfo

Review: "No Pants in Tucson" Illuminates Why It Matters Who Wears the Britches

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No Pants in Tucson Devised by The Anthropologists Director/Writer: Melissa Moschitto Lead Deviser: Mariah Freda Presented by The Anthropologists at A.R.T./New York Theatres 502 W 53rd Street, Manhattan, NYC November 5-14, 2021 Mariah Freda, Kian J. Johnson, April J. Barber, Marissa Joyce Stamps. Photo by Jody Christopherson A divided country replete with attempts to legislatively prescribe and regulate people's gender expression: the United States in the 1860s or the United States in 2021? The answer is both, as No Pants in Tucson makes resoundingly clear. Making its world premiere, this comedy from The Anthropologists, who are dedicated to research-based theater that inspires action, focuses primarily on "masquerade" laws, ordinances that, for example, prohibited the wearing of 'men's' clothes by whom the state considered women, and that underwent an explosive proliferation in 19th-century America. No Pants in Tucson takes a playful, kinetic, intersectional

Review: “That Pony Feeling” Gets Stampeded in "The Antelope Party"

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The Antelope Party Written by Eric John Meyer Directed by Jess Chayes Presented by Dutch Kills Theater at the  wild project 195 E. 3rd Street, Manhattan, NYC November 4-21, 2021 [Update 11/19/21: Extended through December 4, 2021] Quinn Franzen, Anna Ishida, Will Dagger, Edward Mawere & Caitlin Morris. Photo by Bjorn Bolinder I remember loving playing with my sister’s My Little Ponies as a child. We would stage battles between my Legos and her ponies—GI Joe wasn’t my thing. But I had forgotten about them in adulthood until a few years ago when, during the holidays, I saw my niece and nephews playing with the same ponies that my mother still keeps around her house for when the kids visit. Seeing the now-faded plastic toys brought up few emotions for me, but evidently, for some in my generation, those ponies are at the center of their social lives. Awareness of Brony culture entered the mainstream with the 2014 documentary A Brony Tale , which follows the adult men who are fans of My

News: The Fire This Time Festival to Release Anthology with Methuen Drama

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  On February 10, 2022 New York City’s Obie Award-winning The Fire This Time Festival will release an anthology entitled 25 Plays from The Fire This Time Festival: A Decade of Recognition, Resistance, Resilience, Rebirth and Black Theatre . The book, published by Methuen Drama , an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing, contains 25 10-minute plays originally produced by the eponymous festival, which has become the destination for emerging and early career playwrights from the African diaspora. While the past decade proved to be some of the most tumultuous times in modern US history, the resilience and will of the Black community has continually pushed forward by opening up dialogues and sustaining advocacy. Nowhere has this been more apparent than at the Obie Award-winning The Fire This Time Festival in New York City. From inequality in education and healthcare, skewed and negative images of Black people in mainstream media, racism in policing, widespread gentrification and its effects on m