Latest Theater News

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Review: Tony Winner Reed Birney Flies From Agony To Ecstasy In ‘Man From Nebraska’

Reed Birney and Heidi Armbruster in "Man From Nebraska."

That remarkable actor Reed Birney, a Tony winner last season for his haunted portrayal of a dad in crisis in The Humans, plays a related role in Tracy LettsMan From Nebraska, which opened last night at off-Broadway’s Second Stage. One night that has been much like any other in the life of this comfortably secure Bread Basket Baptist, Birney’s Ken Carpenter abandons bed for bathroom, where he begins weeping. Sobbing, really, the uncontrollable kind that makes audience… Read

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Oscar Nominee Demian Bichir Leads LA’s Acclaimed ‘Zoot Suit’ Revival

Demian Bichir and Matias Ponce in the revival of “Zoot Suit.”

In 1978, the late Gordon Davidson presented El Teatro Campesino’s prescient multimedia drama Zoot Suit, first at Los Angeles’ Mark Taper Forum and then at New York’s Winter Garden Theatre, where it landed as Broadway’s first Chicano show. Riffing on a notorious 1942 murder, the play (and subsequent film) launched the career of a charismatic young actor named Edward James Olmos and focused a hard-won spotlight on the writer and director Luis Valdez, and his… Read

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Harvey Fierstein’s Landmark ‘Torch Song’ Set For Fall Revival With Michael Urie

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Second Stage Theatre will present a revival of Harvey Fierstein's groundbreaking seriocomedy Torch Song Trilogy, renamed simply Torch Song and staged by Moisés Kaufman, this fall at the company’s off-Broadway Tony Kiser Theatre on West 43rd Street. Previews will begin September 26. Michael Urie, winner of the Drama Desk, Lucille Lortel and LA Critics Award for his performance in Buyer & Cellar, will star as Arnold Beckoff, the role created by and originally… Read

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2018 Pantages Season Includes ‘Waitress’, ‘Aladdin’, Two From Lloyd Webber

The Broadway cast of "School of Rock."

The Hollywood Pantages, owned by the New York-based Nederlander Organization, this morning announced its 2018 season which will include touring stands of current Broadway hits including Sara Bareilles’ Waitress and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s School Of Rock. The six-show season, beginning next January, also includes an Australian production of Lloyd Webber’s Love Never Dies, a sequel to The Phantom Of The Opera set in Coney Island a decade after Phantom‘s end. Disney… Read

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‘American Horror Story’s Jamie Brewer Sets 2018 Off-Broadway Debut

Jamie Brewer

Actress and model Jamie Brewer (American Horror Story: Murder House) has been cast in the title role of Amy and the Orphans, a new play by Lindsey Ferrentino (Ugly Lies the Bone) that will have its world premiere a year from now at Roundabout Theatre Company’s off-Broadway Laura Pels Theatre. Seven-time Tony nominee Scott Ellis (She Loves Me) will direct the Roundabout commission, slated to begin performances February 1, 2018. Brewer made her television debut as Adelaide… Read

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Off-Broadway League Sets Honors For Designer William Ivey Long & Playwright Lynn Nottage

William Ivey Long

William Ivey Long, the costume designer every female stage star longs to be dressed by, and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage (Ruined) will be honored May 7 at this year’s Lucille Lortel Awards, presented by the Off-Broadway League. Also honored will be Harold Wolper, one of the industry’s most admired and longest-running off-stage execs. Adam Hess, President of the League, also announced the addition to the awards of  Outstanding Projection Design, a new… Read

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‘Tell Hector I Miss Him’ Review: ‘Orange Is The New Black’ Stars Add Luster To A Fresh New Voice

Sean Carvajal and Analisa veleZ in Paola Lázaro's 'Tell Hector i Miss Him' at the Atlantic Theatre Company in New York.

You’ve probably never heard of Paola Lázaro, but that will change. Currently playwright in residence at the David Mamet- and William H. Macy-founded Atlantic Theater Company, Lázaro is a spinner of vivid tales possessed of a sharp ear for language and a keen eye for the humane comic detail. Tell Hector I Miss Him, which opened Monday on the Atlantic’s Stage 2 (the main stage was, until recently, home to The Band’s Visit, the best new musical of 2016) stuffs a crowd of… Read

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The Best Of Broadway (And Beyond) In 2016

Josh Groban and the company of 'Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet Of 1812.'

Looking back on a year that offered an extraordinary range of shows, from intimate (Heisenberg, Blackbird) to spectacular (Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet Of 1812), it’s the performances by some of our most dazzling artists that stand out in the memory: Maryann Plunkett anchoring the Gabriel family, as she did the Apples, in Richard Nelson’s second Hudson Valley trilogy. Leon Addison Brown quietly compelling a schoolboy to confront his own demons in “Master Harold”…and T… Read

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Zero Pay For Some L.A. Stage Actors As Minimum Wage Rule Kicks In

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As new Actors’ Equity rules go into effect today that require small theaters in Los Angeles to begin paying their union actors at least minimum wage, some small non-union venues, it turns out, aren't paying their actors anything at all. Last week, a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit filed by for SAG president Ed Asner that would have prevented Actors' Equity from requiring small Los Angeles-based theater companies that sign its contract to pay their actors at least… Read

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David Oyelowo & Daniel Craig Lead A Modern-Dress ‘Othello’ – Review

David Oyelowo and Daniel Craig star s Othello and iago in the New York Theatre Workshop presentation of the Shakespeare tragedy.

David Oyelowo and Daniel Craig bring exceptional technical skill and at times riveting commitment to the roles of Othello and Iago in the off-Broadway revival  of the Shakespeare tragedy, which opened tonight at the New York Theatre Workshop. That should not surprise anyone familiar with the fact that the two actors famed for their screen work (Craig as James Bond; Oyelowo as Martin Luther King Jr. in Selma and currently seen as chess coach Robert Katende in Queen Of Katwe… Read

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‘The Band’s Visit’, Based On The 2007 Israeli Film, Is The Season’s Best New Musical – Review

Tony Shalhoub and Katrina Lenk in 'The Band's Visit.'

Some shows are so full of heart and so overflowing with integrity — of talent, of skill and of purpose – that a critic is torn between singing its praises from the rooftops and wanting to protect something rare and fragile. Even when, truth to tell, a great show is usually a tough one as well, able to withstand the pressure of raves and the demand to sacrifice a little bit of proximity to reach a wider audience. That was true of Rent, and Spring Awakening and, of course, H… Read

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Judge Dismisses Ed Asner Suit Vs. Actors’ Equity; Small L.A. Theaters Must Pay Minimum Wage

actors equity logo

A federal judge in Los Angeles has dismissed a lawsuit that would have prevented Actors’ Equity from requiring small L.A.-based theater companies that sign its contract to pay their actors at least minimum wage.   The suit, whose lead plaintiff was former SAG President Ed Asner, argued that forcing small companies to pay minimum wage will put many of them out of business, thus reducing opportunities for local actors. Actors currently make as little as $7 a day at some… Read