Around The Town

William Wolf (1925-2020)

William Wolf Photo: Barry Gordin

Former President of the Drama Desk dies from complications of COVID-19

April 1, 2020: William Wolf, author, critic and educator, who was part of a golden age in magazine journalism, died on Saturday, March 18 in New York.  He was the 22nd president of the Drama Desk and, also served two terms as chair of the New York Film Critics Circle. He began his career in 1964 as a film critic for Cue Magazine. When Cue was absorbed into New York Magazine, he became an editor and critic there. In the 1980s, his film criticism and features were syndicated by Gannett.

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Around The Town

Tony Awards Postponed

THE 74th ANNUAL TONY AWARDS® TO BE POSTPONED

March 25, 2020: The 74th Annual Tony Awards, scheduled to air live on the CBS Television Network on Sunday, June 7th from Radio City Music Hall in New York City, will be postponed and rescheduled at a later date, in coordination with our broadcast partner. The health and safety of the Broadway community, artists and fans is of the utmost importance to us.   

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Features

Terrence McNally

Terrence McNally Photo: Barry Gordin

Theater Community Mourns the Death of Celebrated  Playwright Terrence McNally

By: Ellis Nassour

March 25, 2020: Beloved playwright Terrence McNally, a four-time Tony Award-winner, who wrote Master Class; books of musicals The Rink, Kiss of the Spider Woman, The Full MontyRagtime; and numerous opera librettos, died Tuesday in Sarasota, FL. He was 81. A lung cancer survivor, the reported cause of his death was the result of “complications from the coronavirus.” 

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Features

Lips Together, Teeth Apart

Terrence McNally Photo: Barry Gordin

Free online access to L.A. Theatre Works recording of Lips Together,Teeth Apartin remembrance of playwright Terrence McNally.

March 30, 2020: L.A. Theatre Works will offer free streaming access to its recording of Lips Together, Teeth Apart from now through the end of April as a posthumous tribute to playwright Terrence McNally, who died on March 24.

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Features

Coronavirus Crisis Devastates Broadway

The cast of “Hangmen”

By: David Sheward

March 22, 2020: The COVID-19 or coronavirus outbreak has silenced Broadway and will likely have a devastating impact long after it has passed. To prevent the spread of this highly contagious disease, all theaters in New York City, and many across the country, are closed and two new productions have announced they will not be playing when the stages re-open. Martin McDonagh’s Hangmen and the revival of Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? have officially been cancelled. Producers cited lack of funds and scheduling conflicts respectively as reasons for the shutterings. These will likely not be the only shows to face elimination. All 41 Broadway theaters were shut down on March 12 in response to an order from New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to curtail all gatherings of 500 or more people. 

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Around The Town

Broadway Shut Down

Broadway performances have been canceled until April 12 due to COVID-19

March 12, 2020: Andrew Cuomo and Charlotte St. Martin, President of the Broadway League, announced the cancellation of all Broadway performances until April 12 as a precautionary measure due to COVID-19, the coronavirus.

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Around The Town

BroadwayHD Trailblazers

Beginning in March BroadwayHD Spotlights Diversity with new a rail. 

March 10, 2020:  BroadwayHD CEO, co-founder and Tony Award®-winning producer Bonnie Comley, is announcing a new initiative to put the spotlight on underrepresented voices in the theater community, with a special Trailblazers Category. BroadwayHD will curate this highlighted section on a monthly basis to increase visibility of stellar shows by pioneering members of the women, LGBTQ, people of color, and other underrepresented theater communities. To kick off this initiative, and to honor Women’s History Month, BroadwayHD is presenting a roundup of show stopping performances and awe-inspiring works by female trailblazers will be available on the platform starting March 1.  

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Features

Conscience

5 Reasons Why it Would be Unconscionable to Miss Conscience

By: Iris Wiener

March 9, 2020: “Never have I ever met anyone who can make up things on the spot with such conviction,” spits Senator Margaret Chase Smith as she reflects on Senator Joseph McCarthy in one of many moments of poignant clarity and horrifying irony in the world-premiere of Tony-Award winner Joe DiPietro’s new play Conscience. Now running through March 29th at George Street Playhouse in New Brunswick, Conscience takes audiences behind the scenes of the political world of 1950s Washington, shedding insight on the scandalously atrocious power plays, both political and personal, in the days leading up to and following Smith’s iconic “Declaration of Conscience” speech. After its delivery on the Senate floor on June 1st, 1950, Smith rattled McCarthyism, Congress, and the nation itself. Conscience is an essential theater-going experience, and here is why:

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Reviews

Scott Siegel’s March Birthday Show ****

By: Paulanne Simmons

March 9, 2020: We all like birthday parties. But Scott Siegel’s idea of a birthday bash is unique. Every month Siegel creates, directs and hosts a concert celebrating famous songs by famous people born in that month. The event takes place at Feinstein’s/54 below, and it features many performers who are well-known in their own right. The superb Ross Patterson is at the piano.

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Reviews

Anatomy of a Suicide ***, Cambodian Rock Band ***, The Unsinkable Molly Brown ***

Carla Gugino and Ava Briglia in “Anatomy of a Suicide”

By: David Sheward

March 8, 2020: Fractured narratives are featured in two recent Off-Broadway offerings depicting how families of severe trauma victims cope—or don’t—with their personal tragedies. Three generations of suicidal depression play out simultaneously in Alice Birch’s Anatomy of a Suicide at Atlantic Theater Company after a run at London’s Royal Court, while Laureen Yee’s Cambodian Rock Band, at Signature Theater Company following multiple regional stagings, traces the Khmer Rouge’s brutal legacy on a former rock musician and his daughter. In both plays the storyline twists and turns, sometimes even shatters, occasionally resulting in confusion, but mainly inducing the unsettling, disturbing effects of their respective sources of psychological damage. These are not comfortable pieces of theater, but they are affecting and memorable.

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Around The Town

Paulanne Simmons Unscripted

Why Video?

March 7, 2020: Projections have been part of theater for a long time. But recently we have begun to see video take over a good number of plays.

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Reviews

Cambodian Rock Band ***, Suicide Forest ***

Signature Theatre Cambodian Rock Band By Lauren Yee Directed By Chay Yew Songs By Dengue Fever

By: Isa Goldberg

March 7, 2020: Lauren Yee’s new musical, Cambodian Rock Band at the Signature Theatre introduces a style of popular music that emerged around the country’s capital, Phnom Penh, in the 1960s and ‘70s. A mix of traditional Cambodian music with the jukebox songs American soldiers introduced to Vietnam, along with influences from Europe and Latin America, it defined a flourishing musical movement. 

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