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The Power Of Theatre: “Hamilton” In Puerto Rico

In bringing “Hamilton” to Puerto Rico, Lin Manuel Miranda called international attention to the island’s progress and also to its daunting obstacles. The island, in return, projected both its hopes and its frustrations onto the show. – The New Yorker
Tags: Art, Theatre, Hamilton, Puerto Rico, SJ, 01.18.19, Puerto Rico Lin Manuel Miranda


Is It Problematic To Present All-Male Plays?

White, black, young and old: this is what an inclusive theatre looks like. That is absolutely what theatre should aspire to, but it does not mean that works of art should not tell stories that are rooted in specific communities. – The Stage
Tags: Art, Theatre, SJ, 01.16.19


Generational Change: Regional Theatre Pioneer Emily Mann Leaves McCarter

Mann didn’t just lead Princeton’s $23 million theatre from a respected regional outpost to a Tony-winning incubator of new work and new talent. While there she also built on an already ground-breaking career as a documentary-play creator and feminist director to create signature American works as Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters’ First 100 Years. Her stamp is on not only generations of theatre artists but creative administrators as well. – American Theatre
Tags: Art, Theatre, Princeton, Tony, Mann, 01.15.19, Emily Mann Leaves McCarter


Playwright Ishmael Reed’s Problems With “Hamilton”

It’s a global phenomenon, and people ask me, “Why take on a global phenomenon?” You know what else is a global phenomenon? Gone With the Wind. I think Hamilton is probably the biggest consumer fraud since The Blair Witch Project. – The Observer (UK)
Tags: Art, Theatre, Hamilton, Ishmael Reed, 01.15.19


Developing Authentic Disability Theatre, And Bringing It To The Public

“Theatre has the power to help us recognize the social forces that we have created as a society and allows us to envision how we can change them. To incite positive social change and critically alter the way society views differences, voices from the disability community must be included in what we present onstage.” Seattle dramaturg Andrea Kovich, who identifies as disabled, writes about two projects focused on the work of Deaf and disabled playwrights that she recently did with Sound Theatre ...
Tags: Art, Theatre, Seattle, SJ, 01.17.19, Andrea Kovich


Lin-Manuel Miranda Sees Audience Member Shooting Video, Calls Her Out From Stage Literally Without Missing A Beat

The creator of Hamilton, playing the title role in the musical’s high-profile run in Puerto Rico, was in the middle of the song “My Shot” when he spotted someone recording the show on her phone — and ad-libbed, in rhythm, “Lady filming in the 4th row, please stop it.” (After the show he tweeted “Please don’t make me do that shit again.”) — CBS
Tags: Art, Theatre, Hamilton, Puerto Rico, Lin Manuel Miranda, 01.17.19


English Villagers Lose Hundreds Of Thousands Of Pounds As Their Church’s Bible-Themed Musical Collapses In Debt

An evangelical parish called The International Church in the Midlands village of Mansfield Woodhouse encouraged its members to donate thousands (it would be “giving to God”) to develop a show about Adam and Eve, titled Heaven on Earth, that would tour to stadiums around the UK. The project has now gone bust, with debts of £2.6 million. — BBC
Tags: Art, UK, Theatre, Adam, Midlands, 01.13.19, International Church, Mansfield Woodhouse


Why We Need Theatre That Hurts, That’s Unpleasant, That’s Uncomfortable

“I don’t fault my friend for fleeing the theatre. This is art that hurts, though, to me, the pain seems entirely appropriate, even welcome. It’s not art of the cloying variety; it doesn’t depict pain that is pity-seeking, or that aims to emotionally hijack an audience on a ride through some dreary personal catharsis.” – The New Yorker
Tags: Art, Theatre, 01.15.19


Broadway’s Next Evan Hansen Is An Actual Teenager

“The role is wrenching, vocally and emotionally, and [Andrew Barth Feldman] will be the first teenager to tackle it on Broadway. The character is 17, but adolescent boys are often thought to be too immature to play adolescent boys, and all of his predecessors have been in their 20s.” — The New York Times
Tags: Art, Theatre, Broadway, EVAN HANSEN, Andrew Barth Feldman, 01.16.19


Why The National Theatres In The British Isles Are So Fraught (And Fought Over)

“In London, it is possible to stage a state-of-the-nation play while remaining vague about the nation you mean. Not so elsewhere.” Just ask the folks at the national theatres of Scotland, Wales, and Ireland — the latter two of which are currently caught up in arguments that go right to the heart of their “national” status. — The Guardian
Tags: Art, London, Theatre, Ireland, Scotland Wales, 01.15.19


The tortures of adapting Samuel Richardson’s ‘Pamela’

The term “bestseller” is a bit of a stretch for the eighteenth century, when books were expensive (though widely shared), and information about print-runs is hard to come by. But if any early novel deserves the title, it’s Samuel Richardson’s Pamela, which on publication in 1740 rapidly caught the imagination of Britain, Europe, and indeed America (the Philadelphia printing by Benjamin Franklin was the first unabridged American edition of any novel).The author of this innovative novel was a lead...
Tags: Books, London, Featured, Theatre, America, Paris, Adaptation, Literature, Philadelphia, National Theatre, Dublin, Benjamin Franklin, Richard III, Cate Blanchett, OWC, Carlo Goldoni


La Cage aux Folles

"We are what we are,And what we areIs an illusion."That's the first lyric in La Cage aux Folles, and though on the surface, it's talking about drag, it's saying way more than that. Just like the show it introduces. Those few line encapsulate the entire story and all its themes.Nobody realizes that the first time they hear it, but it's all there.It introduces us to two ideas that will permeate every moment of the show. First, "we are what we are" -- in other words, we accept and embrace ourselve...
Tags: Musicals, Theatre, Gay, New York Times, Broadway, Theater, St Louis, Zaza, Scott Miller, La Cage aux Folles, Harvey Fierstein, Ben Brantley, Brantley, Jean Michel, Georges, Douglas Hodge


How Do You Cast Kids Who Are Supposed To Be Musical Prodigies?

The “School of Rock” features very talented students who can really play their instruments and sing. So just where do you find the talent that can carry the show?
Tags: Art, Theatre, 01.10.19


Stratford CT’s American Shakesepeare Theatre Burns To The Ground

The mayor called the structure an “iconic and historic theater that holds a special place in the hearts of Stratford residents.” The fire was just devastating, she said. – Hartford Courant
Tags: Art, Theatre, Stratford, 01.13.19, Stratford CT


When Broadway Captured The Popular Imagination

When exactly did Broadway theatre become a popular phenomenon? When it embraced other media that spilled into the public consciousness. – Commentary
Tags: Art, Theatre, Broadway, Audience, 01.19


Actors Union Threatens Broadway Strike. Is This An Overreach?

The union says actors wages for staged readings in developing projects haven’t increased since 2007. But it believes that actors in this early stage ought to get a cut of future profits. An interesting idea, but it immediately raises questions about who owns what and how they should be rewarded. – Clyde Fitch Report
Tags: Art, Theatre, 01.14.19


After 30 Years, Emily Mann To Retire From McCarter Theatre Center

“In her role at McCarter Theatre Center in Princeton, Mann has overseen more than 160 productions, including more than 40 world premieres, since she became [the artistic director and resident playwright] in 1990. In that time, the theater won a Tony Award for outstanding regional theater, and Mann was twice nominated for Tony Awards as a playwright and director, as well as winning a Peabody Award and numerous NAACP awards.” — NJ.com
Tags: Art, Theatre, Naacp, Mann, Emily Mann, McCarter Theatre Center, 01.11.19, Princeton Mann


IHeartRadio Launches A New Broadway Shows Channel

The new channel will compete with SiriusXM’s “On Broadway,” which also features songs and such hosts as Seth Rudetsky and John Tartaglia. – Washington Post
Tags: Art, Theatre, Seth Rudetsky, 01.14.19, IHeartRadio Launches A New Broadway Shows Channel


Radio City With Jon Grayson & Rob Ross: Episode Ninety-Seven

Radio City With Jon Grayson & Rob Ross:  Episode Ninety Seven Episode 97 is the first newly-recorded show of 2019, done on Rob’s birthday (!) and is no less than a stellar power-hour of non-stop smart, thoughtful conversation, a lot of comedy and informative elements, including a breakdown of the brilliant new album from Chris Korzen (under the name “Nezrok”); the deaths of several celebrities we grew up with to begin the year; a glimpse at MTV’s new series with Lindsay Lohan (!); the N.F.L. p...
Tags: Food, Art, Books, Podcast, Music, Politics, Television, Film, Theatre, Sports, Current Events, Mtv, Rob, Satire, Lindsay Lohan, Popular culture


The schoolgirls who warned of Rwanda's genocide

Katori Hall’s play Our Lady of Kibeho is the story of three friends who insisted that they were visited by the Virgin Mary and told of the horror that lay aheadThe 16-year-old schoolgirl Alphonsine Mumureke said she was in the cafeteria of the Catholic boarding school Kibeho College, Rwanda, when she heard a voice “soft as air and sweeter than music”. She saw a beautiful woman – neither white nor black – floating above the floor in a flowing seamless dress, with a veil that covered her hair. She...
Tags: Education, Africa, Religion, Theatre, World news, Culture, Catholicism, Stage, Schools, Catholic, Rwanda, Virgin Mary, Katori Hall, Kibeho, Alphonsine Mumureke, Kibeho College Rwanda


How Can Artistic Leaders Focus On Culture, Not Just Their Institutions?

Not to be melodramatic, but, well, “This is a moment where we can either save the world or we don’t.” – HowlRound
Tags: Art, Theatre, Audience, 01.13.19


Historic Shakespeare Theater In Connecticut Is Destroyed In A Fire

The theatre, built with the help of Lincoln Kirstein and Joseph Vernor Reed, and a stage where many actors, including Katherine Hepburn, had performed, had been vacant for years. – Connecticut Post
Tags: Art, Theatre, Connecticut, Katherine Hepburn, Lincoln Kirstein, 01.13.19, Joseph Vernor Reed


Checking In On Hamilton In Puerto Rico (With A Certain Creator Back In The Title Role)

Lin-Manuel Miranda kicked off the latest of six tours for his musical Hamilton in Puerto Rico, where he once again played the role that, so far, has brought him the most fame. But how does the song “Hurricane” play on an island still traumatized by 2017’s devastation? – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Theatre, Hamilton, Puerto Rico, Lin Manuel Miranda, 01.12.19


Hamilton in Puerto Rico: a joyful homecoming ... but it's complicated

Musical is dividing residents on island where creator Lin-Manuel Miranda spent childhood summersJavier Ortiz likes to look on the bright side in San Juan, the pretty and gritty capital of Puerto Rico. “I’m an optimist,” he says. “I’m the owner of a bookstore, so I have to be.”Ortiz has survived not only the onslaught of Amazon but also Hurricane Maria, which forced him to close for 10 days then manage the store without electricity – running a cash machine off a battery – for two months. Now, as ...
Tags: Amazon, Americas, Theatre, World news, US news, Culture, Stage, Broadway, Hamilton, Puerto Rico, San Juan, Ortiz, Lin Manuel Miranda, Hurricane Maria


Upright Citizens Brigade To Close One Of Its Theaters

“[UCB], facing substantial financial pressures, announced on Wednesday that it would be closing its East Village location in Manhattan, a month after laying off several staff members. That will leave the comedy theater with three venues: Its struggling flagship in Hell’s Kitchen, which opened last year, and two locations in Los Angeles.” — The New York Times
Tags: Art, Theatre, Los Angeles, Manhattan, UCB, 01.10.19


Fascinatin' Rhythm

When I wrote my history book, Strike Up the Band, I had two primary agendas. One was to reject the premise of all other musical theatre history books, that the Rodgers & Hammerstein musical was the pinnacle of the art form. It wasn't. The other agenda was to include in the story of our art form all the people of color, the women, the people with disabilities who helped shape the American musical theatre but get left out of almost all history books. I hope I did a decent job of re-balancing our ...
Tags: New York, Cook, Musicals, Boston, Berlin, New York City, Theatre, America, New Jersey, Broadway, African American, Manhattan, Theater, Johnson, Black, Chinatown


Artists Protest Dublin’s Abbey Theatre: “We’re Being Paid What We Earned 20 Years Ago”

“Actors feel they’re being shoved to the bottom of the food chain again. The Abbey’s success is at our expense. They have managed with this model to reduce our already poor remuneration to pre-millennium levels.” – Irish Times
Tags: Art, Theatre, Dublin, Abbey, 01.09.19


How Did A Quiet Belgian Director Become ‘The Most Important Auteur On The International Stage Circuit’? Three New York Times Critics Debate Ivo Van Hove

“In this edited conversation, Ben Brantley, co-chief theater critic for The Times, and the critics Elisabeth Vincentelli and Jason Zinoman aim to make sense of Mr. van Hove’s ascent, from Off Broadway to a Tony Award, David Bowie to All About Eve.” — The New York Times
Tags: Art, Theatre, David Bowie, Broadway, The Times, Ivo van Hove, Van Hove, Ben Brantley, Jason Zinoman, Elisabeth Vincentelli, 01.09.19, International Stage Circuit, New York Times Critics Debate


Hollywood’s Next Stage Theatre Closes After 30 Years

It was a theatre committed to helping theatre artists work. The theater would allow people to come in with their scripts and put them up with no upfront costs, which is an unusual approach in the L.A. theater scene. In return, the theater would take half of the door proceeds. – LAist
Tags: Art, Hollywood, Theatre, 01.09.19


The Truth Behind The Genesis Of Monty Python’s ‘Spamalot’ (An Oral History)

It all started years before, when Eric Idle told Mel Brooks he wanted to do a musical version of The Producers. Brooks rejected the idea — then. When he changed his mind later and made gobs of money, Idle decided he could do the same thing. (Well, that’s how Idle tells it …) — Vulture
Tags: Art, Theatre, Mel Brooks, Eric Idle, Brooks, 01.08.19