Around The Town

UniverSoul Circus

UniverSoul Circus Plays the New York Area Under the Big Top through May 29

By: Ellis Nassour

The tent is pitched, sawdust has been spread. There’re funnel cakes, nachos, cotton candy, and ice-cold drinks aplenty as the 24th edition of UniverSoul Circus — acclaimed as one of the nation’s Top 10 Most Requested Family Events — plays the NY area — Queens, Newark, and for the first time ever, Mount Vernon — through May 29. 

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Around The Town

The NY Pops’ “Something Wonderful”

The New York Pops 34th Birthday Gala “Something Wonderful”

By: Iris Wiener

Those of us who frequent Broadway musicals easily forget how epically different a piece of music can be when performed in larger formats. It’s truly “Something Wonderful” when The New York Pops take to the stage, as was demonstrated on May 1st with their 34th Birthday Gala, honoring Tony winners Kelli O’Hara and Bartlett Sher, and Karen van Bergen, the CEO of Omnicom Public Relations Group. The concert, which was conducted and directed by Steven Reineke, celebrated the decade long partnership between O’Hara and Sher, as well as individual triumphs that have won them several accolades.

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Around The Town

A Salute to the 2017 Tony Awards

Musicals on TV: Paley Centers, NY/LA Salute the 2017 Tony Awards with Screenings of Musical Film Adaptations

By: Ellis Nassour

Sundays this merry month of May, a month that leads up to the hotly competitive Tony Awards, telecast on CBS on June 11, the Paley Centers [New York and Los Angeles] for Media, with Playbill, are saluting Broadway musicals adapted for TV and screen. There are classic tunes galore, along with the work of notable choreographers and lavish costuming. Along with the adaptations, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella, which was commissioned for TV [with the stage adaptation to come later], will be shown.

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Reviews

Gentley Down The Stream **1/2

Harvey Fierstein

Harvey Fierstein stars in Martin Sherman’s new play at the Pubic.

By: Patrick Christiano

Martin Sherman’s Gently Down the Stream opens in the well-appointed London flat of Beau, an aging gay 61-year-old lounge pianist, played by the legendary Harvey Fierstein.  Beau has picked up someone from an online dating service and invited him home, where he has just lived out most aging gay men’s fantasy of having sex with a well-built younger man. The man named Rufus is a 28-year-old attorney played by Gabriel Ebert, a Tony winner for Matilda the Musical and a cast member from Fierstein’s Broadway play about a get-away for cross dressers, Casa Valentina. Aside from the sex, which takes place off-stage before the play begins, Derek McLane’s impeccably imagined design for the pianist’s home lined with towering bookshelves filled with a lifetime of memories may be the highlight of the evening directed by Sean Mathias.

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Reviews

Bandstand *** 1/2 Anastasia **

Corey Cott, Laura Osnes in “Bandstand”

By: David Sheward

As the Tony Award deadline approaches, Broadway is flooded with new musicals. Two of the last on the current season’s roster follow familiar templates but have varying degrees of success departing from them. Bandstand employs the scrappy-underdogs-making-it-against-the-odds formula, while Anastasia attempts the plucky-heroine-triumphs-and-finds-love trope. The former at least adds a few new wrinkles and the latter is just wrinkled.

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Around The Town

Grace Hartigan @ ACA Galleries

Dorian Bergen, Rex Stevens, Mikaela LaMarche

Grace Hartigan (1922-2008)
ACA Galleries features paintings and works on paper by Grace Hartigan through June 3, 2017

On Saturday April 29th ACA Galleries at 529 West 20th Street in the gallery district hosted an opening reception of an exhibition of paintings and works on paper by Grace Hartigan form the 1940s to 2000s that will be on view until June 3, 2017. She was the recipient of numerous awards during her lifetime.

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Gordin's View

DRAMA DESK 2017 NOMINATIONS

Javier Munoz, Laura Benanti

Hello Dolly leads with 10 nominations followed by Anastasia and Come From Away with 10 each.

Laura Benanti and Javier Muñoz announced the nominations for the for 62nd Annual Drama Desk Awards at Feinstein’s 54 Below on Thursday morning, April 27, 2017. The awards will be presented by TheaterMania on Sunday June 4, at 8:00 PM in a ceremony hosted by Michel Urie at The Town Hall in Manhattan and produced by Joey Parnes Productions.

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Around The Town

James Earl Jones To Receive Special Tony

James Earl Jones

JAMES EARL JONES TO BE HONORED WITH THE 2017 SPECIAL TONY AWARD FOR LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT IN THE THEATRE

Two-time Tony Award winner and icon of stage and screen James Earl Jones will be this year’s recipient of the Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre.

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Reviews

The Lightning Thief *** 1/2

Chris McCarrell

Theatreworks NYC presents a new version of The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical at Lucille Lortel Theatre

By:  Patrick Christiano

Joe Tracz adapted the book for The Lightning Thief from the best-selling young adult fiction series of the same name by Rick Riordan, and Rob Rokicki, wrote the music and lyrics. The musical presented by Theatreworks NYC, a group that has produced over 130 children oriented shows since 1961, and directed by Stephen Brackett is a fast- paced fun filled delight. Low budget, yet thoroughly entertaining the evening for children of all ages centers on a young man, Percy Jackson intensely played by Chris McCarrell, who suddenly realizes he has powers he can’t fully control, when he discovers he is the son of Poseidon, the god of the sea. . 

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Around The Town

Broadway Unplugged

Scott Siegel Launches 15th Annual Broadway Unplugged,
Town Hall, May 1

By: Beau Jared

Among Scott Siegel’s headliners for his launch of the 15th Annual Broadway Unplugged on May 1 at 8 P.M. at Town Hall will be Tony, Drama Desk-nominee Stephanie J. Block (DD nominee, Falsettos revival; Mystery of Edwin Drood revival; headliner on first Unplugged); Tony, DD-nominee Emily Skinner (Billy Elliot, original Side Show, upcoming Prince of Broadway); and Tony, DD-nominee Max von Essen (An American in Paris, Evita revival).

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Around The Town

Outer Critcs Circle NOMINATIONS

Christy Altomare and Derek Klena in “Anastasia” Photo: Matthew Murphy

Anastasia leads with 13 nominations followed by Hello Dolly with 10, while The Band’s Visit and Come from Away received 7 each.

The Outer Critics Circle, the organization of writers covering New York theatre for out-of-town newspapers, national publications and other media beyond Broadway, welcomed Danny Burstein and Jane Krakowski to announce the nominees for the 2016-17 season on Tuesday, April 25th in the Oak Room at New York’s renowned Algonquin Hotel. 59 West 44th Street.

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Reviews

The Little Foxes *****

Laura Linney and Cynthia Nixon in “The Little Foxes”

By: Paulanne Simmons

It’s an old play. And it could have been written yesterday. Lillian Hellman penned The Little Foxes in 1939. Set in a small town in Alabama in 1900, it chronicles the struggles of the avaricious Hubbards over who will control the family business. They are ruthless, deceitful and conniving. They know they will inherit the earth. And if you look around today, you may be convinced they are right.

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Around The Town

Urban Stages to Honor Tony Walton

Tony Walton, Melissa Errico Photo: Barry Gordin

Tony Walton to be honored at The Central Park Boathouse

Urban Stages Board of Directors and Frances Hill, the founding artistic director, will celebrate “The Magic of Set and Costume Design” at their Gala/Benefit on May 15 at the Boathouse in Central Park. Legendary Oscar, Tony, and Emmy award winning set and costume designer Tony Walton will be presented with the 2017 Urban Stages’ Lifetime Achievement Award.  Special guest Melissa Errico, a Tony Nominated Broadway, film and television star, will present the honor to Mr. Walton.

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Around The Town

BC/EFA’s Easter Bonnet Competition

BC/EFA’s Easter Bonnet Competition Raises Record-Breaking $6,379,572

By: Ellis Nassour

Broadway audiences and show auctions helped Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS break another fund-raising record with their donations: $6,379,572. Results were announced and awards were presented at Tuesday’s Easter Bonnet Competition finale at Nederlander’s Minskoff Theatre, home to The Lion King. The total far surpassed last year’s record-setter of $5,528,568.

The top overall fundraising award went to Glenn Close and company of Sunset Boulevard, which raised a jaw-dropping $509,246.

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Reviews

Daniel’s Husband **1/2

Ryan Spahn, Lou Liberatore, Leland Wheeler, Matthew Montelongo

Primary stages presents sentimental drama by Michael McKeever at Cherry Lane Theater.

By: Patrick Christiano

Playwright Michael McKeever tackles weighty thought provoking territory in his latest play, Daniel’s Husband, about the relationship of a successful gay couple, Daniel an architect played by Ryan Spahn, and his partner Mitchell, a writer of gay fiction played by Matthew Montelongo. For the past seven-years the two men have lived in their perfectly appointed home, which Daniel designed and where the play is set. Their story begins amusingly with some witty banter just after a dinner that Daniel, also an excellent chef has prepared for Mitchell’s agent Barry, an aging gay man played by Lou Liberatore, and his latest conquest Trip, a 23 year- old special home care aid played by Leland Wheeler. 

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