Andrew C. McGibbon
Andrew C. McGibbon has spent the past thirty years working in live theatre as a stage manager, general manager, producer and leader in the convergence of Broadway and online.
Mr. McGibbon worked as a stage manager and general manager for ten years. In 1994 he created a website devoted to live theatre, BroadwayWorld-Wide.com. The site was subsequently bought by, and became Playbill.com. He continued to manage the site for Playbill for four years. In 2000 he became the website manager for TonyAwards.com. With the 2008-09 season he finished his ninth year on the show. He has also worked as a webmaster for the Broadway League and Jazz at Lincoln Center. He is presently the Director of Digital Media for the New Jersey Performing Arts Center.
In addition to his work in the theatrical industry, Mr. McGibbon is also a partner in Simple Solutions Distributing, a manufacturer of filtration equipment for the waste-water industry.
Photo: Elizabeth Leitzell
The Public Theater
The New York Premiere of
The Tricycle Theatre Company’s
The Great Game: Afghanistan
Featuring 12 Plays, In Three Parts,
By Richard Bean, Lee Blessing, David Edgar,
David Greig, Amit Gupta, Ron Hutchinson,
Stephen Jeffreys, Abi Morgan, Ben Ockrent,
Simon Stephens, Colin Teevan, and Joy Wilkinson
Directed by Nicolas Kent and Indhu Rubasingham
November 4, 2010 – The Public Theater (Artistic Director Oskar Eustis; Executive Director Andrew D. Hamingson) announced complete casting today for THE GREAT GAME: AFGHANISTAN, the acclaimed Tricycle Theatre Company production that will be presented in three parts in association with and at NYU Skirball Center from December 1 through December 19 with an official press opening on Tuesday, December 7. Directed by Nicolas Kent and Indhu Rubasingham, THE GREAT GAME: AFGHANISTAN is an ambitious political and theatrical event that was recently nominated for an Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement.
Through the eyes of 12 leading British and American playwrights and the voices of those actively involved in the war and on U.S. & NATO policy in Afghanistan, THE GREAT GAME: AFGHANISTAN explores, in three separate thrilling and provocative parts, the culture and history of Afghanistan since Western involvement in 1842 to the present day. The three parts can be seen in any order; marathon performances will be held on weekends.
“The Great Game is a rare and precious achievement, a theatrical event that actually leaves you knowing far more about the real world. We are in the ninth year of our war in Afghanistan and yet so much of that country's history remains a mystery to us,” said Public Theater Artistic Director Oskar Eustis. “In thrilling, dramatic form The Great Game brings that history to life. Nick Kent and his extraordinary company have my deepest admiration for their vision and integrity. I wish every American could see The Great Game; we would be a better and wiser country if we did.”
THE GREAT GAME: AFGHANISTAN features 12 plays by Richard Bean, Lee Blessing, David Edgar, David Greig, Amit Gupta, Ron Hutchinson, Stephen Jeffreys, Abi Morgan, Ben Ockrent, Simon Stephens, Colin Teevan, and Joy Wilkinson.
The cast for THE GREAT GAME: AFGHANISTAN features Daniel Betts, Sheena Bhattessa, Michael Cochrane, Karl Davies, Vincent Ebrahim, Nabil Elouahabi, Shereen Martineau, Tom McKay, Daniel Rabin, Danny Rahim, Raad Rawi, Jemma Redgrave, Cloudia Swann, and Rick Warden.
Part 1: “Invasions & Independence – 1842-1930,” starts with the first Anglo-Afghan War of 1842 and moves to Afghan independence in the 1920s. Part 2: “Communism, The Mujahideen & The Taliban – 1979-1996,” continues the story from the Russian invasion, through to US/CIA arming of the Mujahideen to the coming of the Taliban. Part 3: “Enduring Freedom – 1996-2010” starts with the events leading up to September 9, 2001 in Northern Afghanistan, through to the overthrow of Taliban, the aid agencies working in the country and the current war against the insurgents.
To further enrich the audiences’ experience, The Public Theater, The Play Company, and New York University’s Skirball Center will present THE GREAT GAME: In Conversation series, which will consist of on-going post-show discussions with notable panelists, a film screening, and a Public Forum event. Be sure to check out our website for the most up-to-date information and to read about the panelists.
THE GREAT GAME: In Conversation Series Schedule:
Wednesday, December 1: “Reporting Afghanistan,” a post-show panel discussion after Part 1.
Tuesday, December 7: Screening of the film Camp Victory, Afghanistan and a post-film discussion with the filmmaker
Thursday, December 9: “The Road to Governing Afghanistan,” a post-show panel discussion after Part 2.
Tuesday, December 14: “Afghanistan after America, America after Afghanistan,” a Public Forum event
Friday, December 17: “Rights and Development in Afghanistan,” a post-show panel discussion after Part 3.
In addition to these special events, The Skirball Center will showcase the work of photojournalists Robert Nickelsberg and Ed Grazda. Around performance times, the Skirball Center lobby will feature a bazaar with books and handmade arts and crafts from Afghanistan in the lobby.
RICHARD BEAN (Playwright). His work for the stage includes The Big Fellah (Out of Joint/Lyric Hammersmith), a stage version of David Mamet’s House of Games (Almeida), English People Very Nice (Olivier National Theatre), The English Game (produced by Headlong), In The Club (Hampstead Theatre), a version of Moliere’s The Hypochondriac (Almeida), Harvest, Honeymoon Suite, Under the Whaleback and Toast (all at the Royal Court), The God Botherers (Bush Theatre), Le Pub!, The Mentalists (Lyttelton Loft, National Theatre), Up On Roof (Hull Truck), Smack Family Robinson (Live Theatre Newcastle) and Mr. England (Sheffield Crucible Theatre).
LEE BLESSING (Playwright). His plays have been seen on and off‐Broadway as well as in resident theatres throughout the U.S. Recent openings have included A Body of Water at Primary Stages, Great Falls in Actors Theatre of Louisville’s Humana New Play Festival and When We Go Upon The Sea at InterAct Theater in Philadelphia, which also transferred to 59E59 Theatre. His work has received nominations for Olivier and Tony Awards, as well as the Pulitzer Prize.
DAVID EDGAR (Playwright) is one of England’s foremost political playwrights. His newly‐commissioned translation of Ibsen’s The Master Builder will be produced at Chichester this year. His recent plays include Testing The Echo for Out of Joint (which premiered in London at the Tricycle) and a stage adaptation of Julian Barnes’ Arthur and George at the Birmingham Rep last year. He won the Arts Council’s John Whiting Award for Destiny, the Laurence Olivier and Tony Awards for Best Play for his adaptation of Nicholas Nickleby, which was premiered by the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford and then transferred to the West End and Broadway, the Plays and Players’ Best Play Award for Maydays and the Evening Standard Best Play Award for Pentecost. His book about playwriting ‐ How Plays Work – was published last year.
DAVID GREIG (Playwright). His award‐winning work includes Dunsinane (RSC at the Hampstead Theatre); Midsummer (Traverse Theatre and Soho Theatre and coming to the Tricycle for Christmas 2010); Creditors (Donmar and BAM in New York), Damascus (Traverse Theatre, also produced in New York in 2009 and at the Tricycle); Brewers Fayre; Outlying Islands and Europe (Traverse Theatre); The American Pilot (RSC, Soho and MTC); Ramallah (Royal Court); Pyrenees (Paines Plough) and The Cosmonaut’s Last Message to the Woman He Once Loved in the Former Soviet Union (Donmar Warehouse). Adaptations include The Bacchae (Edinburgh International Festival and Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith); Tintin in Tibet (Barbican and The Playhouse); When the Bulbul Stopped Singing (Traverse Theatre); Caligula (Donmar) and Peter Pan (NTS, Traverse/Barbican).
AMIT GUPTA (Playwright) wrote his first play, Touch, in 1998, which was a winner of the Royal Court Young Writers’ Competition. Gupta has been a Writer in Residence at the Leicester Haymarket Theatre, and was profiled as one of Screen International’s Writer/Director Stars of Tomorrow. Gupta now writes for stage, screen and radio. He has directed a number of plays, Loveless for Channel 4, and last year wrote and directed an award‐winning short film: Love Story. He is currently working on feature film adaptations of his Radio 4 play Jadoo and Owen Sheers’ acclaimed novel Resistance.
RON HUTCHINSON (Playwright) was Writer In Residence at the Royal Shakespeare Company and has had plays performed at the Royal National Theatre, The Royal Court Theatre, The Goodman, The Public Theater, The Mark Taper Forum and The Old Globe. His plays include Topless Mum and Moonlight and Magnolias (both performed at the Tricycle Theatre 2007/2008), Says I Says He and Rat in the Skull, and an adaptation of Mikhail Bulgakov’s Flight and The Master and Margarita. A winner of the John Whiting Award and other awards including the Dramatist’s Circle Award, he is an Emmy winning feature and television writer whose credits include “Murderers Among Us,” “The Simon Wiesenthal Story,” “The Josephine Baker Story,” “The Burning Season,” “The Ten Commandments,” and “Traffic.”
STEPHEN JEFFREYS (Playwright) is an internationally acclaimed playwright whose work includes Valued Friends, Hampstead Theatre (1989), winner of the Evening Standard and Critics’ Circle Award for Most Promising Playwright; The Clink, Paines Plough (1990), for whom he was Art Council Writer in Residence from 1987‐1989 and The Libertine, which was staged at the Royal Court Theatre to great popular and critical acclaim and went on to produced at Steppenwolf Theatre, directed by Terry Johnson and starring John Malkovich. Jeffreys’ screenplay version of the play was released in 2005 starring Johnny Depp and Samantha Morton. Other plays include A Jovial Crew (RSC); A Going Concern (Hampstead); I Just Stopped By to See The Man (Royal Court); Lost Land (Steppenwolf) and The Art of War (Sydney Theatre Company). Jeffreys is currently writing feature films for Ecosse and Fortune Films.
ABI MORGAN (Playwright). Her plays include Skinned and Sleeping Around (Paines Plough); Tiny Dynamite (Traverse); Tender (Hampstead); Splendour—which won a Fringe First at the Edinburgh Festival in 2000, and Fugee (National Theatre). Her television work includes “My Fragile Heart,” “Murder,” “Sex Traffic,” “Tsunami: The Aftermath,” “White Girl,” and “Royal Wedding.” She is working on her new series called The Hour. Her film writing credits include The Invisible Woman for BBC Films, Suffragettes for Film Four, Focus and Ruby Films, Little Mermaid for Working Title and Iron Lady for DJ Films and Pathe.
BEN OCKRENT (Playwright). His first play, The Pleasure Principle, was produced at the Tristan Bates Theatre in 2007 launching their inaugural IGNITION season. In 2008 he developed Khoa San Road for BBC3/World Productions, and Kidnapped for BBC3/Company Pictures. In 2009 he wrote an episode of Material Girl for BBC1; and was nominated as a Broadcast Magazine “Hotshot”. He is developing a new comedy series for BBC3/Hartswood Film and a new play for the Tricycle Theatre.
SIMON STEPHENS (Playwright) is an award‐winning playwright whose work includes Bluebird (Royal Court, 1998); Herons (Royal Court, 2001); Port (Manchester Royal Exchange, 2002 ‐ Pearson Award for Best New Play); Country Music (Royal Court, 2004); On The Shore of the Wide World (Manchester Royal Exchange / National Theatre, 2005 ‐ Olivier Award for Best New Play); Motortown (Royal Court, 2006); Harper Regan (National Theatre, 2008); Sea Wall (Bush Theatre / Traverse Theatre, 2008‐2009); Pornography (Deutsches Schauspielhaus, Hanover, 2007, Edinburgh Festival / Birmingham Rep, 2008 and Tricycle Theatre, 2009); Punk Rock (Lyric Hammersmith / Manchester Royal Exchange, 2009); The Trial of Ubu (Schauspielhaus, Essen / Toneelgroep Amsterdam, 2010); A Thousand Stars Explode In the Sky, written in collaboration with David Eldridge and Robert Holman (Lyric Hammersmith, 2010) and Marine Parade, a play with songs written by Mark Eotze (Animalink for the Brighton Festival, 2010).
COLIN TEEVAN (Playwright). His plays include How Many Miles To Basra? (West Yorkshire Playhouse); The Diver and The Bee both with Hideki Noda (Soho Theatre); Monkey! (Young Vic); Missing Persons: Four Tragedies and Roy Keane (Assembly Rooms and Trafalgar Studios); Alcmaeon in Corinth (Live! Newscastle); and The Walls (National Theatre). His adaptations include Kafka’s Monkey (Young Vic followed by a world tour); Don Quixote (West Yorkshire Playhouse); Svejk (The Gate); Peer Gynt (commissioned by the National Theatre of Scotland), which had a revival at the Barbican in 2009 before going on tour. His translations include Bacchai (National Theatre), IPH (Lyric Theatre, Belfast); Cuckoos and Marathon (Gate Theatre).
JOY WILKINSON (Playwright). Her play, Acting Leader, opened at the Tricycle in June this year as part of Women, Power and Politics. Joy’s other writing credits include: Fair (Finborough Theatre and Trafalgar Studios); Felt Effects (Verity Bargate Award‐winner, Theatre 503) and The Aquatic Ape (Edinburgh Festival). She recently completed an attachment at the National Theatre Studio and is writing a new play for the Liverpool Everyman/Playhouse.
NICOLAS KENT (Director) is Artistic Director of the Tricycle where he has directed over 35 plays including all the Tricycle Tribunal plays. Most recently he directed the British premiere of John Patrick Shanley’s Doubt and the world premiere of Frank McGuinness’ Greta Garbo Came To Donegal. On BBC television he has directed “The Workshop,” “Pentecost,” “Sharing Time,” “The Colour of Justice,” “Justifying War,” and “Half The Picture,” as well as “Called To Account” and “Bloody Sunday” on BBC Radio. In London he has directed at Hampstead, the Royal Court, Young Vic, Lyric Hammersmith, Donmar Warehouse and the RSC. In the West End he co-directed Ain’t Misbehavin’ and Guantanamo: Honor Bound To Defend Freedom (also in New York); The Colour of Justice at the Victoria Palace and the National Theatre. In America, he has directed Playboy of the West Indies at the Court Theatre Chicago, Walk in the Woods at Northern Stage and The Workshop in New York.
INDHU RUBASINGHAM (Director) is renowned in the U.K. for her work with new writing. She recently commissioned, directed and produced an acclaimed season of nine new plays at the Tricycle Theatre entitled Women, Power and Politics. Prior to this, she directed the European premiere of Lynn Nottage’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Ruined at the Almeida Theatre. Other European premieres include: for the Hampstead Theatre, Yellowman by Dael Orlandersmith (shortlisted for the Pulitzer Prize); Pulitzer Prize-winning Anna in the Tropics by Nilo Cruz, and Fabulation by Lynn Nottage (Tricycle Theatre). World premieres include Detaining Justice; Starstruck (recipient of the George Devine Award) and Darfur: How Long Is Never? (all for the Tricycle Theatre). For the Royal Court Theatre: Lift Off, Clubland—Evening Standard Best New Playwright Award (both by Roy Williams); Free Outgoing—shortlisted for Evening Standard Best New Playwright Award—and Disconnect (both by Anupama Chandrasekhar); Sugar Mummies (by Tanika Gupta). For the Royal National Theatre Indhu has directed The Waiting Room and The Ramayana (also at Birmingham Rep).
NEW YORK UNIVERSITY'S JACK H. SKIRBALL CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS is the premier venue for the presentation of cultural and performing arts events for NYU and lower Manhattan. Led by Executive Producer Jay Oliva (President Emeritus, NYU) and Director Michael Harrington, the programs of the Skirball Center reflect NYU's mission as an international center of scholarship, defined by excellence and innovation and shaped by an intellectually rich and diverse environment. A vital aspect of the Center's mission is to build young adult audiences for the future of live performance. www.skirballcenter.nyu.edu
THE TRICYCLE THEATER has established a unique reputation for presenting plays that reflect the cultural diversity of its community; in particular plays by Black, Irish, Jewish, Asian and South African writers, as well as for responding to contemporary issues and events with its ground-breaking ‘tribunal plays’, and political work. The first of its 'Tribunal Plays': Half the Picture (a dramatization of the Scott Arms to Iraq Inquiry), was the first play ever to be performed in the Houses of Parliament. Other notable theatre productions include the British premiere of The Great White Hope by Howard Sackler (later re-staged for the Royal Shakespeare Company) and the world premiere of The Playboy of the West Indies by Mustapha Matura, which subsequently received more than twenty productions all over the world and was televised for BBC Television. West End transfers from the Tricycle also include The Amen Corner by James Baldwin, Ain’t Misbehavin’ and The Price by Arthur Miller. Transfers to Broadway Kat and the Kings, Stones in His Pockets, and The 39 Steps. The Tricycle is comprised of a theatre, cinema, art gallery, café and bar, which are open all year round and is proud to have its home in the London Borough of Brent.
THE PUBLIC THEATER (Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director; Andrew D. Hamingson, Executive Director)was founded by Joseph Papp in 1954 and is now one of the nation’s preeminent cultural institutions, producing new plays, musicals, and productions of classics at its downtown and at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park. The Public’s mandate to create a theater for all New Yorkers continues to this day onstage and through extensive outreach and education programs. Each year, over 250,000 people attend Public Theater-related productions and events at its downtown headquarters, Joe’s Pub, and Shakespeare in the Park. The Public has won 42 Tony Awards, 151 Obies, 41 Drama Desk Awards and four Pulitzer Prizes. The Public has brought 54 shows to Broadway, including Sticks and Bones; That Championship Season; A Chorus Line; The Pirates of Penzance; The Tempest; Bring In ‘Da Noise, Bring In ‘Da Funk; On the Town; The Ride Down Mt. Morgan; Topdog/Underdog; Elaine Stritch at Liberty; Take Me Out; Caroline, or Change; Well; Passing Strange; the Tony Award-winning revival of Hair; and this fall, the rock musical Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and the 2010 Shakespeare in the Park production of The Merchant of Venice. www.publictheater.org.
THE GREAT GAME: AFGHANISTAN begins performances at NYU Skirball Center on Wednesday, December 1 and continues through Sunday, December 19 with an official press opening on Tuesday, December 7. Full price tickets begin at $70 for each part of the trilogy; a ticket to all three parts is available for a combined discount price of $145. Public Theater Members receive additional discounts on tickets for THE GREAT GAME: AFGHANISTAN.
Single tickets are on sale now and available at (212) 352-3101, www.publictheater.org, or in person at NYU Skirball Center Box Office.
For more information and complete performance schedule, please visit www.publictheater.org
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The LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust provides leadership support for
The Public Theater’s year-round activities.
The Public’s 2010-2011 downtown season is made possible with the generous support of both The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation and The Ian Madover and Arielle Tepper Madover Family Foundation. Time Warner is the Supporting Sponsor of The Public’s 2010-2011 season.
Bank of America is the proud Season Sponsor of Shakespeare in the Park.
Major support for The Public Theater is provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Shubert Foundation, the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Susan Stein Shiva Foundation, the George T. Delacorte Fund at the New York Community Trust—Fund for Performances at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, and by Warren Spector and Margaret Whitton.
Additional generous support is provided by the Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, The Shen Family Foundation, and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.
New York Magazine is the official print and online sponsor of The Public Theater’s 2010-2011
Public support is provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency; and the National Endowment for the Arts, an independent federal agency.
Special thanks to Continental Airlines, the official airline of The Public Theater.
# # #
The Public Theater
“Who Lost America?”
How Our Politics and Culture Have Changed
In The 10 Years Since Bush v. Gore
On Monday, November 15
Hosted by Oskar Eustis,
Politically Charged Public Forum Evening
Features Lisa Kron, Hendrik Hertzberg, and Sam Tanenhaus
Members of The Civilians Will Conclude the Evening
With Songs About America By Michael Friedman
November 4, 2010 –The Public Theater (Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director; Andrew D. Hamingson, Executive Director) announced the line-up today for the second Public Forum event, “Who Lost America? How Our Politics and Culture Have Changed in the 10 Years Since Bush v. Gore”, on Monday, November 15 at 8 p.m. Curated by Jeremy McCarter, The Public Forum is an exciting new series of lectures, debates and conversations that showcase leading voices in the arts, politics and the media. Tickets are $25 and are on sale now.
The season’s second Public Forum event, “Who Lost America?” coincides with The Public’s current production of Lisa Kron’s In The Wake. Leading voices from across the political spectrum and the arts will consider how our society has changed in the decade since Bush v. Gore, and what we can do to fix what ails us today. The provocative conversation will be hosted by Public Theater Artistic Director Oskar Eustis.
The three-part, 90-minute evening will begin with a talk by In The Wake Playwright Lisa Kron. Following the address, a roundtable of brilliant minds who straddle the worlds of politics and culture will debate what the last 10 years has done to our society; the conversation will feature Lisa Kron, Hendrik Hertzberg (The New Yorker), Sam Tanenhaus (New York Times Book Review), and will be moderated by Jeremy McCarter. The evening will conclude with members of The Civilians performing songs about America written by Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson’s acclaimed composer Michael Friedman.
The Public Forum’s fall season will continue on Monday, November 29 with a one-on-one conversation between Stephen Sondheim and Tony Kushner (Angels in America, Caroline, or Change) discussing Sondheim’s book Finishing the Hat, his craft, and the theatrical life. The evening will be hosted by Rocco Landesman, the chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, who has produced shows by both writers. Tuesday, December 14 will conclude the fall Public Forum season with Afghanistan After America, America After Afghanistan, a challenging discussion on the conflicts in Afghanistan held in conjunction with The Public Theater’s presentation of The Great Game: Afghanistanat New York University’s Skirball Center.
OSKAR EUSTIS is the Artistic Director of The Public Theater and has worked as a director, dramaturg, and artistic director for theaters around the country. From 1981 through 1986, he was resident director and dramaturg at the Eureka Theatre Company in San Francisco, and Artistic Director until 1989, when he moved to the L.A.’s Mark Taper Forum as Associate Artistic Director until 1994. Eustis then served as Artistic Director at Trinity Repertory Company in Providence, Rhode Island for eleven years. In 2005 he took the helm at New York’s Public Theater. Throughout his career, Eustis has been dedicated to the development of new plays as both a director and a producer. At The Public he directed the New York premiere of Rinne Groff’s The Ruby Sunrise and Hamlet. At Trinity Rep, he directed the world premiere of Paula Vogel’s The Long Christmas Ride Home (Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Production); Homebody/Kabul (Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Production); the world premiere of Rinne Groff’s The Ruby Sunrise; Angels in America, Part I: Millennium Approaches (Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Director); Angels in America, Part II: Perestroika;as well as world premieres of plays by Philip Kan Gotanda, David Henry Hwang, Emily Mann, Suzan-Lori Parks, Ellen McLaughlin, and Eduardo Machado. He commissioned Tony Kushner’s Angels in America at the Eureka Theatre Company in San Francisco and directed its world premiere at the Mark Taper Forum. Eustis was the lead producer on the Tony Award-winning revival of Hair on Broadway and the current Broadway productions of Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and The Merchant of Venice.
MICHAEL FRIEDMAN. His work at The Public includes the hit Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, which has transferred to Broadway’s Bernard Jacobs Theatre, as well as Paris Commune, Romeo and Juliet, Satellites, The Seagull, and Cymbeline. This fall, he also wrote music for Tony Kushner’s Angels in America at the Signature Theatre. Upcoming projects include Pretty Filthy, a musical about the adult film industry with The Civilians, an adaptation of Jonathan Lethem’s novel, Fortress of Solitude, and commissions from Playwrights Horizons, the Huntington Theatre, and Oregon Shakespeare Festival. His work with The Civilians includes This Beautiful City, [I Am] Nobody’s Lunch, Canard, Canard, Goose? and the long-running Gone Missing. His other work as composer/lyricist includes Saved (Playwrights Horizons), Hoover Comes Alive! (La Jolla Playhouse),The Brand New Kid (Kennedy Center), and In the Bubble (at AMTP). His music has also been heard at NYTW, the Roundabout, Second Stage, Soho Rep, Theater for a New Audience, Signature, and The Acting Company, and regionally at the Guthrie, The Huntington, La Jolla Playhouse, Hartford Stage, Humana Festival, ART, Williamstown Theatre Festival, and internationally at London’s Soho and Gate Theatres, and the Edinburgh Festival.
HENDRIK HERTZBERG is a senior editor and staff writer at The New Yorker, where he frequently writes the Comment, in The Talk of the Town. His work is collected in two books, Obamanos! and Politics.
LISA KRON’s best-known plays include Well(included in Best Plays of 2004and produced on Broadway in 2006 in a production that earned two Tony nominations) and 2.5 Minute Ride (Obie, L.A. Drama-Logue, GLAAD Media Award). Honors include Guggenheim, Lortel, Lark and Sundance fellowships, and awards from Creative Capital and the Alpert Foundation. Lisa is a founding member of the Obie and Bessie-Award-winning theatre company The Five Lesbian Brothers. In the works: a new musical with composer Jeanine Tesori, as well as commissioned plays from the Sloan Foundation with Playwrights Horizons and from Drew University. Kron teaches playwriting at Yale School of Drama.
JEREMY McCARTER is the director of The Public Forum. He writes about culture and politics for Newsweek and is the editor of Bite the Hand That Feeds You: Essays and Provocations by Henry Fairlie (Yale University Press, 2009). Until 2008, he was the drama critic for New York Magazine. He has written for The New York Times, The New Republic, Politico, and The New York Sun.
SAM TANENHAUS is editor of The New York Times Book Review. He writes for The Times and other publications on politics, literature, and culture. His essays, reviews, and articles have also appeared in The New Republic, The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, The New York Review of Books, Slate, and more. His latest book, The Death of Conservatism, was just released in paperback.
THE CIVILIANS are the investigative theater company founded by Steve Cosson which aims to create new theater from creative inquiries into the most vital questions of the present and find new means to connect with a diverse audience, pursuing under-explored subjects including those political and controversial in nature. Shows created by The Civilians include: Gone Missing, This Beautiful City, and (I Am) Nobody's Lunch.
THE PUBLIC THEATER (Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director; Andrew D. Hamingson, Executive Director)was founded by Joseph Papp in 1954 and is now one of the nation’s preeminent cultural institutions, producing new plays, musicals, and productions of classics at its downtown headquarters and at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park. The Public’s mandate to create a theater for all New Yorkers continues to this day onstage and through extensive outreach and education programs. Each year, over 250,000 people attend Public Theater-related productions and events at six downtown stages, including Joe’s Pub, and Shakespeare in the Park. The Public has won 42 Tony Awards, 151 Obies, 41 Drama Desk Awards and four Pulitzer Prizes. The Public has brought 55 shows to Broadway, including Sticks and Bones; That Championship Season; A Chorus Line; The Pirates of Penzance; The Tempest; Bring In ‘Da Noise, Bring In ‘Da Funk; On the Town; The Ride Down Mt. Morgan; Topdog/Underdog; Elaine Stritch at Liberty; Take Me Out; Caroline, or Change; Well; Passing Strange; the Tony Award-winning revival of Hair; and this fall, the rock musical Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson and the 2010 Shakespeare in the Park production of The Merchant of Venice. www.publictheater.org.
All tickets for The Public Forum are $25. Single tickets for “Who Lost America?” on Monday, November 15 at 8 p.m. are on sale now at (212) 967-7555, www.publictheater.org, or in person at The Public Theater Box Office. The Public Theater is located at 425 Lafayette Street.
# # #
The LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust provides leadership support for
The Public Theater’s year-round activities.
The Public’s 2010-2011 downtown season is made possible with the generous support of both The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation and The Ian Madover and Arielle Tepper Madover Family Foundation.
Time Warner is the Supporting Sponsor of The Public’s 2010-2011 season.
Bank of America is the proud Season Sponsor of Shakespeare in the Park.
Major support for The Public Theater is provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the Shubert Foundation, the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Susan Stein Shiva Foundation, the George T. Delacorte Fund at the New York Community Trust—Fund for Performances at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, and by Warren Spector and Margaret Whitton.
Additional generous support is provided by Apollo Management, the Horace W.
Goldsmith Foundation, The Shen Family Foundation, and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.
New York Magazine is the official print and online sponsor of
The Public Theater’s 2010-2011 downtown season.
Public support is provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency; and the National Endowment for the Arts,
an independent federal agency.
Special thanks to Continental Airlines, the official airline of The Public Theater.
# # #
TONY AWARD-WINNING BEST MUSICAL
WELCOMES NEW NINA TO THE NEIGHBORHOOD NOVEMBER 15
The producers of the 2008 Tony and Grammy Award-winning Best Musical In The Heights have announced that Arielle Jacobs will make her Broadway debut as Nina Rosario on Monday, November 15, 2010 at Broadway’s Richard Rodgers Theatre (226 West 46th Street). Jordin Sparks will play her final performance as Nina on Sunday, November 14, 2010. As previously announced In The Heights will play its final Broadway performance Sunday, January 9, 2011 at 7pm, with Tony Award winner Lin-Manuel Miranda re-joining the cast on Saturday, December 25, 2010.
Arielle Jacobs makes her Broadway debut in In The Heights directly from playing Nina in the National tour of In The Heights. She has also played Gabriella in the National tour of High School Musical, and appeared in workshops for the musicals MASK, GoGo Beach, and It Shoulda Been You. TV/film credits include “Commander in Chief,” “Dance War,” “Water Lilies” and “Disney’s 365.” She created the eco-website www.HelpHealTheEarth.com; and is a published author in holistic Journey Magazine and WOMAN.ca.
Now in its third year on Broadway In The Heights began previews on Broadway Thursday, February 14, 2008, after a six-month award-winning 2007 Off-Broadway run. The musical opened on Broadway to critical acclaim Sunday, March 9, 2008, and recouped its $10 million investment in 10 months. In The Heightsis the winner of four 2008 Tony Awards and has a book by Quiara Alegría Hudes, is conceived by Lin-Manuel Miranda, has music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler and is directed by Thomas Kail. With music supervision by Alex Lacamoire, Zachary Dietz is music director of In The Heights and music arrangements are by Alex Lacamoire and Bill Sherman. In The Heights features a scenic design by Anna Louizos, costumes by Paul Tazewell, lighting by Howell Binkley and sound by Acme Sound Partners. In The Heights is produced by Kevin McCollum, Jeffrey Seller, Jill Furman Willis, Sander Jacobs, Robyn Goodman/Walt Grossman, Peter Fine and Sonny Everett/Mike Skipper with associate producers Ruth Hendel and Harold Newman.
In The Heights is about a vibrant and tight-knit community at the top of the island of Manhattan. The music pulses with the hopes and dreams of three generations as they struggle to forge an identity in a neighborhood on the brink of transition.
Tickets for In The Heights range from $41.50 to $131.50, and can be purchased at the Richard Rodgers Box Office or at www.ticketmaster.com. The playing schedule for In The Heights is as follows: Tuesdays and Sundays at 7pm, Monday, Wednesdays – Saturdays at 8pm, with matinees Saturdays and Sundays at 2pm. There will be added performances Wednesday, November 24 at 8pm, Friday, November 26 at 2pm, Wednesday, December 22 at 2pm and 8pm, and Wednesday, December 29 at 2pm and 8pm. There will be no performances Sunday, November 28, Friday, December 24, Saturday, December 25 at 2pm, Friday December 31, and Sunday, January 2 at 7pm. Please contact www.ticketmaster.com for special holiday pricing.
For more information on In The Heights: www.intheheightsthemusical.com
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MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET
TO SING THE NATIONAL ANTHEM
AT THE ING NEW YORK CITY MARATHON
THIS SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 7 AT 9:30 AM
MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET, the hit Broadway musical currently playing at the Nederlander Theatre (208 West 41st Street), will perform the National Anthem to kick off the ING New York City Marathon on Sunday, November 7. The performance will be broadcast live on WNBC (channel 4) between 9:30-9:45 AM. In attendance will be Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and 40,000 runners as they prepare to run 26.2 miles through the city.
On December 4, 1956, an auspicious twist of fate brought Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, and Elvis Presley together. The place was Sun Records' storefront studio in Memphis. The man who made it happen was Sam Phillips, the "Father of Rock and Roll," who discovered them all. The four young musicians united for the only time in their careers for an impromptu recording that has come to be known as one of the greatest rock jam sessions of all time.
Inspired by the actual event, MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET features a treasure trove of the greatest rock and roll, gospel, R&B and country hits from these musicians, including such iconic songs as "Blue Suede Shoes," "Fever," "Sixteen Tons," "Who Do You Love?," "Great Balls of Fire," "Riders in the Sky," "I Walk the Line," "Folsom Prison Blues," and "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On." MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET captures the infectious spirit, freewheeling excitement and thrilling sounds of a singular moment when four of the music industry's most extraordinary talents, all in their creative prime, came together for one of the most memorable nights in music history.
For more information about MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET, visit www.MillionDollarQuartetLive.com.
Follow MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET news on Twitter @milliondquartet and on Facebook.
Tickets for MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET are available online, by calling 877-250-2929, or by visiting the Nederlander Box Office (208 West 41st Street).
MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET's performance schedule is Tuesday at 7PM, Wednesday through Saturday at 8PM. Matinees on Wednesday and Saturday at 2PM and Sunday at 3PM.
NEW REGULAR PERFORMANCE SCHEDULE (BEGINNING MONDAY, JANUARY 3): Tuesday and Wednesday at 7 PM, Thursday through Saturday at 8 PM. Matinees Wednesday and Saturday at 2:30 PM and Sunday at 3 PM.
Tonight At 8 Pm
In Memory Of Celebrated Composer
(New York, NY) November 4, 2010 -- The Broadway community mourns the loss of Jerry Bock, who passed away yesterday at age 81. The marquees of Broadway theatres in New York will be dimmed in his memory tonight, November 4, at exactly 8:00pm for one minute.
Paul Libin, Chairman of The Broadway League and Executive Vice President of Jujamcyn Theaters, called Jerry Bock, “one of Broadway's great composers of more than a dozen memorable musicals; he also wrote the book and lyrics for many of his productions. His work will live forever on Broadway.”
Jerry Bock was an inspired musical composer who wrote the scores to such shows as Fiddler on the Roof and The Apple Tree. Jerrold Lewis Bock was born in New Haven, CT on November 23, 1928. He was raised in Flushing, Queens where he studied piano from a young age and began early compositions. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Madison where he wrote the musical Big As Life. Mr. Bock made his Broadway debut in 1955 with Catch a Star, a musical revue in which he collaborated on music and lyrics.
Jerry Bock was best known for the memorable and thoughtful score for Fiddler on the Roof, which incorporates Jewish prayer and klezmer music within a musical theater score. He also composed the shows Mr. Wonderful, The Body Beautiful, Fiorello!, Tenderloin, Never Too Late, Man in the Moon, She Loves Me, Baker Street, Generation, and The Rothschilds. He scored another musical hit in 1966 with The Apple Tree which was revived on Broadway in 2006. Mr. Bock collaborated with many notable Broadway writers, but he consistently worked with the late Joseph Stein, who wrote the book to Fiddler on the Roof, and his long-time creative partner lyricist Sheldon Harnick, also of Fiddler on the Roof.
Mr. Bock received the 1965 Tony Award® for writing the music to Fiddler on the Roof, which also won the 1965 Tony Award® for Best Musical. He won his first Tony Award® for his Best Musical Fiorello! in 1960. Fiorello! also won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama that same year. He was nominated for She Loves Me (1964), The Apple Tree (1967) and The Rothschilds (1971).
Mr. Bock was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1972. In 2010, Mr. Bock became an Emmy Award winner for Outstanding Original Song — Children's and Animation category — for "A Fiddler Crab Am I," penned with Larry Hochman and Billy Aronson. It was heard on the series "Wonder Pets."
The Jerry Bock Award for Excellence in Musical Theatre was established in 1997 and continues to provide an annual $2,000 grant presented to a composer and lyricist.
He is survived by his wife, Patti, daughter Portia Bock, son George Bock and granddaughter Edie Mae Bock.
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The Broadway League, founded in 1930, is the national trade association for the Broadway industry. The League’s 600-plus members include theatre owners and operators, producers, presenters, and general managers in over 240 North American cities, as well as suppliers of goods and services to the theatre industry. Each year, League members bring Broadway to nearly 30 million people in New York and on tour across the U.S. and Canada. Visit www.BroadwayLeague.com.
Follow on Twitter @TheBwayLeague or on www.Facebook.com/BroadwayLeague.
THE MERCHANT OF VENICE
To Delay Press Opening
Opening Night Celebration and Performance
Still Scheduled For
Sunday, November 7 at 6:45 PM
November 3, 2010 – The Public Theater (Artistic Director Oskar Eustis; Executive Director Andrew D. Hamingson), Jeffrey Richards and Jerry Frankel announced today that Lily Rabe, who plays Portia in THE MERCHANT OF VENICE, will be out of the show for the next several performances due to personal family reasons and as a result, the official press opening will be delayed by at least a week. The opening night celebration and party on Sunday, November 7 at 6:45 PM will continue as scheduled.
Directed by Daniel Sullivan, THE MERCHANT OF VENICE is currently in previews at The Broadhurst Theatre (235 W. 44th Street) and is scheduled to run through Sunday, January 9.
Al Pacino (Shylock), Lily Rabe (Portia), Byron Jennings (Antonio), Jesse L. Martin (Gratiano), Gerry Bamman (Duke of Venice), Heather Lind (Jessica), Matthew Rauch (Solanio), and Richard Topol (Tubal) reprise their roles in this acclaimed production.
New cast members joining the Broadway company include Marsha Stephanie Blake (Nerissa), Christopher Fitzgerald (Launcelot Gobbo),David Harbour (Bassanio), Peter Francis James (Salerio), Isaiah Johnson (Prince of Morocco), Charles Kimbrough (Prince of Arragon), and Seth Numrich (Lorenzo).
The company also features Happy Anderson, Liza J. Bennett, Glenn Fleshler, Luke Forbes, Herb Foster, Bryce Gill, Thomas Michael Hammond, Jade Hawk, Bethany Heinrich, Curt Hostetter, Tia James, Kelsey Kurz, Brian Keith Macdonald, Dorien Makhloghi, Kim Martin-Cotten, and Baylen Thomas.
THE MERCHANT OF VENICE is one of Shakespeare’s most thrilling and controversial plays, rich with love and betrayal, forgiveness and revenge. The Jewish moneylender Shylock makes a loan to Antonio, a Christian merchant. Their loan contract, steeped in prejudice and centered on the play's infamous “pound of flesh,” sweeps the two men and everyone in their worlds into chaos. Only the insightful Portia can imagine a way forward, but for her and those she loves, even "the quality of mercy" has its limits.
The design team for THE MERCHANT OF VENICE features scenic design by Mark Wendland; costume design by Jess Goldstein; lighting design by Kenneth Posner; sound design by Acme Sound Partners; and original music by Dan Moses Schreier.
Tickets are on sale now for this limited engagement at Tele-Charge at 212-239-6200 or www.telecharge.com.
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WINNER! THREE 2010 TONY AWARDS
INCLUDING BEST REVIVAL OF A MUSICAL
BEST ACTOR IN A MUSICAL – DOUGLAS HODGE
BEST DIRECTION OF A MUSICAL – TERRY JOHNSON
LA CAGE AUX FOLLES
STARS KELSEY GRAMMER AND DOUGLAS HODGE
TO SIGN SHOW’S ACCLAIMED CAST RECORDING AT
LORD & TAYLOR, THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 4
Five-time Emmy Award-winner Kelsey Grammer and Tony and Olivier Award-winner Douglas Hodge, the stars of the Tony Award-winning revival of LA CAGE AUX FOLLES, will sign copies of the show’s critically acclaimed new Broadway cast recording from PS Classics on Thursday, November 4 at Lord & Taylor.
The signing will be from 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM at Lord & Taylor’s flagship store at 424 Fifth Avenue, Main Floor.
Lord & Taylor customers will receive a complimentary copy of the LA CAGE AUX FOLLES cast recording with a $50 cosmetic or fragrance purchase*. Customers may also receive two complimentary tickets with any $300 cosmetic or fragrance purchase* and a complimentary LA CAGE AUX FOLLES- inspired Holiday Collection Makeup Palette* with any $75 purchase. (*One per customer; while supplies last).
LA CAGE AUX FOLLES features music and lyrics by Jerry Herman and book by Harvey Fierstein, based on the play by Jean Poiret. This production is choreographed by Lynne Page and directed by Terry Johnson, who won a 2010 Tony Award for his direction of the freshly reconceived production.
LA CAGE AUX FOLLES stars Kelsey Grammer as Georges; Douglas Hodge as Albin; Fred Applegate as M. Dindon/M. Renaud; Alyce Beasley as Mme. Dindon/Mme. Renaud; Chris Hoch as Francis; Elena Shaddow as Anne; A.J. Shively as Jean-Michel; Christine Andreas as Jacqueline; Robin De Jesús as Jacob; Heather Lindell as Colette; Bill Nolte as Tabarro and David Nathan Perlow as Etienne.
Also starring as the notorious and dangerous Cagelles are Matt Anctil as Angelique, Nicholas Cunningham as Hanna, Sean Patrick Doyle as Chantal, Yurel Echezarreta as Phaedra, Logan Keslar as Bitelle and Terry Lavell as Mercedes. The production also features Christophe Caballero, Todd Lattimore, Dale Hensley, Caitlin Mundth and Cheryl Stern.
Douglas Hodge and Nicholas Cunningham are appearing with the permission of Actors’ Equity Association. The producers gratefully acknowledge Actors’ Equity Association for its assistance to this production.
PS Classics, the label dedicated to the heritage of Broadway and American popular song, released the New Broadway Cast Recording for LA CAGE AUX FOLLES on September 28. The recording is produced by PS Classics co-founder Tommy Krasker. PS Classics co-founder Philip Chaffin will serve as Executive Producer. The album is currently available for pre-orders at www.psclassics.com.
LA CAGE AUX FOLLES recently made Tony Awards history as the first show to ever win the Tony Award three times for best production. The classic musical comedy by Jerry Herman and Harvey Fierstein originally won six Tony Awards in 1984, including Best Musical. A Broadway revival won two 2005 Tony Awards including the Best Revival of a Musical prize. LA CAGE won the 2010 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical, as well as Tony Awards for Best Actor in a Musical (Douglas Hodge) and Best Director of a Musical (Terry Johnson).
LA CAGE is also the winner of three Drama Desk Awards, including Outstanding Revival of a Musical, Outstanding Actor in a Musical (Douglas Hodge) and Outstanding Costume Design (Matthew Wright), four Outer Critics Circle Awards, including Outstanding Revival of a Musical, Outstanding Actor in a Musical (Douglas Hodge), Outstanding Director of a Musical (Terry Johnson) and Outstanding Costume Design (Matthew Wright) and the Drama League Award for Distinguished Revival of a Musical.
Georges (Kelsey Grammer) is the suave owner of a glitzy drag club on the French Riviera. Partnered romantically with his high-strung star performer, Albin (Douglas Hodge), the pair live a charmed life—until Georges’ son announces his engagement to the daughter of a conservative right-wing politician who’s coming to dinner.
The original production of LA CAGE AUX FOLLES was one of Broadway’s biggest hits of the 1980s. It opened August 21, 1983 at the Palace Theatre, where it played for over four years and 1,761 performances. The show won six Tony Awards in 1984, including Best Musical, Best Score (Jerry Herman) and Best Book (Harvey Fierstein).
The new production of LA CAGE AUX FOLLES played from November 23, 2007 to March 8, 2008 at the Menier Chocolate Factory, earning across the board raves and moving to the West End’s Playhouse Theatre on October 30, 2008, where it was nominated for seven 2009 Olivier Awards, winning for Best Musical Revival and Best Actor in a Musical for Douglas Hodge and won the 2009 Critics’ Circle Theatre Award for Best Musical. The Broadway production opened at the Longacre Theatre on April 18, 2010.
LA CAGE AUX FOLLES features set design by Tim Shortall, costume design by Matthew Wright, lighting design by Nick Richings, sound design by Jonathan Deans and wig and makeup design by Richard Mawbey. Musical supervision, orchestrations and dance arrangements are by Jason Carr. Musical director is Todd Ellison.
LA CAGE AUX FOLLES is produced by Sonia Friedman Productions, David Babani, Fran and Barry Weissler and Edwin W. Schloss, Bartner/Tulchin, Broadway Across America, Matthew Mitchell, Raise the Roof 4 Richard Winkler/Bensinger Taylor/Laudenslager Bergère, Arlene Scanlan/John O’Boyle, Independent Presenters Network, Olympus Theatricals, Allen Spivak, Jerry Frankel/Bat-Barry Productions, Nederlander Presentations, Inc/Harvey Weinstein.
Tickets ($132.50 - $36.50; Premium $251.50; Table Seating $251.50) are on sale through Telecharge.com at 212-239-6200, online at www.telecharge.com and at the Longacre Theatre box office (220 West 48th Street). Performances are Tuesday through Saturday at 8:00 PM, with matinees Wednesday and Saturday at 2:30 PM, Sunday at 3:00 PM.
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The Fortune Society, the not for profit organization that assists in issues of criminal justice and prisoner re-entry, will honor theatrical producer Eric Krebs at its annual Fortune Society Benefit on November 15th. The event will be held at the Laura Pels Theater, 111 West 46th Street.
Krebs will receive the "Corporate Leader for Change Award" for his production of THE CASTLE. Also to be honored will be Cory Booker, Mayor of Newark, NJ, who will receive the David Rothenberg Achievement Award. The Award is named for Rothenberg who founded the Fortune Society in 1967 after producing the play Fortune and Men's Eyes Off-Broadway.
THE CASTLE, a play based on the first-person life stories of four ex-convicts with a total of 70 years in prison, was produced Off-Broadway at New World Stages for 14 months in 2008-2009. It continues to tour to colleges, prisons and religious institutions. A full-length documentary film of THE CASTLE is currently in production.
What started out as an modest reading conceived and directed by former theatrical press agent David Rothenberg, has played over 200 performances. "I first saw THE CASTLE in a little community room at the Fortune Society residence," commented Krebs. "After 10 minutes, I knew that I had to produce this as an Off-Broadway play. It was powerful, relevant and most dramatic."
Also featured at the Fortune Society benefit will be the film documentary Bring Your A Game.
Upcoming performances of THE CASTLE include Rutgers University on November 18 and Attica Maximum Security Prison on December 3. For further information on the production of THE CASTLE, visit www.thecastletheplay.org. or call 212/967-7079.
Drama Desk Award-Winning Mint Theater Announces Its 2011 Offerings:
What the Public Wants
by Arnold Bennett, Directed by Matthew Arbour
January 13th through March 13th, 2011
The Drama Desk and Obie Award-winning Mint Theater Company today announced its plans for 2011. First up will be Arnold Bennett's comedy, What the Public Wants, beginning January 13th through March 13th at the Mint’s home in the heart of the theater district, at 311 West 43rd Street.
What The Public Wants is Arnold Bennett’s sly satire on tabloid journalism — a lively look at life behind the headlines and proof that the more things change, the more they stay the same. This clever 1909 comedy charts the efforts of media mogul Sir Charles Worgan to boost circulation as well as his social standing. He owns forty different publications and claims to have “revolutionized journalism.” He employs over a thousand people and is worth millions — and yet Worgan wants more — he wants respect from the “superior people” who look down their noses at him. But is he willing to pay the price?
“One of the best comedies of our time,” wrote Max Beerbohm of the play’s London premiere in The Saturday Review. “No one but Bernard Shaw sends up ideas as skyrockets more successfully than Mr. Bennett,” wrote the Chicago Evening Post of the play’s American debut in 1913.
Loosely inspired by the rise of Lord Northcliffe, founder of Britain’s leading tabloid, The Daily Mail, What The Public Wants was first produced by The Stage Society in London in March 1909. “A brilliantly illuminating satire,” declared The London Times, and the play promptly transferred to the West End where it was hailed as “a very amusing and often very witty farce.” What The Public Wants proved so popular it was published in three different editions between 1909 and 1911.
What The Public Wants was first seen in the U.S. in 1913, when the Manchester Repertory Company toured Boston and Chicago. The Boston Globe described the play as a “delightfully clever satire, often of scintillating brilliancy, thoroughly interesting and constantly entertaining,” while the Chicago Tribune praised Bennett’s play as “luminous and watchful, a gem.” In 1922, the Theatre Guild produced the New York premiere.
Bennett’s prescient comedy has been revived numerous times in England; each time critics have commented on how the play never shows its age. “The thing that impresses one most about What The Public Wants is its curious up-to-dateness… Indeed, its purpose is all the more urgent now, since the ills of the Press, which the play diagnoses so well, have grown alarmingly, especially in the last few years,” wrote The Stage. “The satire is as topical, the wit as keen, and the humor as penetrating.” 100 years after it was written, Bennett’s savage wit still hits the target.
There was a time, in the first quarter of the last century when Arnold Bennett was one of the world’s most famous and successful authors. When he was dying, the streets beneath his window were laid with straw to deaden the noise—Bennett was the last person in London to be accorded this honor. When he died on March 27, 1931, it was front-page news in The New York Times. Only 64, he was still “in the full tide of his prodigious literary output, which had brought him more readers and more riches than any other British author.” “More riches” turned out to be literally true: The Times later reported that Bennett “disposed of what is expected to rank as the largest literary fortune in history” ($500,000). Tributes came pouring in from all over the world. Today, even his most famous work “The Old Wives Tale”, “Clayhanger”, “These Twain” has been forgotten.
In the late 1890’s, on the advice of friends, Bennett decided to try playwriting. He began with “curtain raisers,” short one-acts that preceded full-length plays, but it was not until he established himself as a novelist that Bennett’s playwriting career blossomed. In 1908 the Stage Society produced his first full-length play, Cupid and Commonsense, an adaptation of his 1902 novel Anna of the Five Towns. Reviews were strong, and in 1909, they produced Bennett’s second play, What the Public Wants, based on his own journalistic experience.
Mint Theater Company, “that truffle hound of half-buried treasures from the past” (Village Voice), has a celebrated reputation for re-discovering worthy but neglected gems and has brought new vitality to timeless but timely plays since 1992. The Mint was awarded an Obie for “combining the excitement of discovery with the richness of tradition.” Mint was awarded a special Drama Desk Award for “Unearthing, presenting and preserving forgotten plays of merit.”
Next at the Mint will be A Little Journey by Rachel Crothers (May 5 to July 3, 2011), a nominee for the first Pulitzer Prize for Drama and not produced anywhere since 1918. Crothers’ legacy was largely forgotten until the Mint revived Susan and God in 2006. “A voice that remains fresh,” lauded The New York Times, while Terry Teachout wrote in the Wall Street Journal: “It is a major event, a pitch perfect production of a 69-year-old play whose subject matter is so modern in flavor that it could have been written last week.” A Little Journey tells the story of a disillusioned young woman whose money and luck have run out. With no other options, and embittered by her personal and economic failure, she leaves New York, boarding a train at Grand Central Station where she find an unexpected chance at redemption.
In July 2011, as promised, Mint will return to the work of Teresa Deevy (Wife to James Whelan) with Temporal Powers. Winner of the Abbey Playwrighting competition in 1932, Deevy’s drama ran for seven performances in 1932. The Irish Times greeted it’s initial performance with the claim that it was “one of the most thoughtful works seen for some time at the Abbey,” giving evidence of Deevy’s “deep thought and fine powers of observation.” The last line of the Time’s entirely favorable review predicted that the play “should have a successful future in the Abbey repertoire.” Temporal Powers was revived once, for six performances in 1937 and then disappeared entirely. Mint will present the American Premiere.
Performances for What the Public Wants will be Tuesday through Thursday at 7 PM, Friday at 8 PM, Saturday at 2 PM & 8 PM, and Sunday at 2 PM. Tickets are $40 (January 13th – 30th only) and $55 thereafter. All performances will take place on the Third Floor of 311 West 43rd Street. Advance tickets are available by calling the Mint box office at 212/315-0231 or go to www.minttheater.org.
And, introducing a new inexpensive way to discover Mint productions - CHEAP TIX:Everyone appreciates a bargain, especially these days. Mint Theater Company is now offering a limited number of seats for every performance at half-price ($27.50).
The Time Out New York Lounge, in association with New World Stages and 21st Century Life, moves on to Week Three of SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DRAG! This sassy elimination competition spanning six Wednesdays will feature themed performances, ruthlessly scrutinized by a rotating panel of celebrity judges, at the Time Out New York Lounge at New World Stages, 340 West 50th Street (between Eighth & Ninth Avenues).
The next set of judges will be Frank DiLella of the NY1 "On Stage" and Les Cagelles Broadway’s La Cage Aux Folles. Among the judges in upcoming weeks will be Charles Busch, Brandon Voss (The Advocate), John Tartaglia, Everett Quinton, and cast members from Divine Sister, among others.
SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DRAG is hosted by Paige Turner, who has been working the NYC boards for the past several years. A cross between Debra Messing and Elle Woods, with a little retro flair and a whole lot of musical theater, she has headlined at Splash, Therapy, Pieces, The Ritz, among others. She has hosted bingo and karaoke more times than she'd like to admit. Paige and her gal pal Eve Starr hosted the well received Glitz Crackers in midtown for over a year, showcasing Broadway's hottest newcomers. Paige hailed by critics: "this showbiz spitfire is not to be missed and continues to amaze!"
New contestants are accepted each week for the chance to win cash and prizes awarded to the most fabulous of the week. The Grand Finale, filled with the favorites from previous weeks, will be on Wednesday, December 1st. Audience votes determine the fiercest queen of them all, who will receive a cash prize and the opportunity to host a drag night at the Time Out New York Lounge at New World Stages!
For more information, visit www.timeoutnylounge.com/soyouthinkyoucandrag