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Wednesday, 11 September 2013 16:41

Drama League Announces 2013 Fall Theater Center Events with Laura Benanti, Cherry Jones,Judy Kaye, Tony Danza, and More








New York, NY (September 11, 2012) – The Drama League (Executive Director, Gabriel Shanks; Artistic Director, Roger T. Danforth) has announced their Fall 2013 Programming Schedule of special performances, events and educational offerings at the new Drama League Theater Center in Tribeca and elsewhere.  Highlights include intimate evenings with Tony® Award winners Laura Benanti, Cherry Jones and Judy Kaye, plus actor Tony Danza.  Theatre journalist Peter Filichia will take a look at "Strippers, Showgirls and Sharks," and conductor/composer David Friedman will discuss "Conducting Disney," and more.

The October calendar includes a special pre-release concert of the studio recording of the new musical Perfect Picture featuring Tony® Award winner Debbie Gravitte, Tony® Award nominee Andrea McArdle, and Tony® Award winner Lillias White.

There will be workshops for actors, directors and other artists offered in Butoh, an avant-garde Japanese physical discipline, and a weekend workshop exploring Strindberg's Miss Julie with the internationally-acclaimed director Petar Todorov following his Kennedy Center debut in Washington, D.C.

The Drama League also offers special performances on Broadway and Off-Broadway, as well as open rehearsals, backstage tours, play readings, intimate gatherings with legendary stars, behind-the-scenes discussions with industry titans, day trips to world-class theatres, and more.  To see the entire Fall Program Guide, visit

"Having opened The Drama League Theater Center in May, we’re excited to begin our first full season of event programming in our new home,” shared Gabriel Shanks, Drama League Executive Director.  “It’s truly remarkable to be welcoming old friends like Cherry, Laura, Peter and Lillias as the first guests in our new series.”

Selected highlights from the 2013 Fall Schedule Calendar

Intimate discussions with leading theatre artists all to be held at the
Drama League Theater Center, 32 Avenue of the Americas

(unless otherwise noted)


Up Close: Laura Benanti

Moderated by Susan Blackwell

Tuesday, September 24 at 7:00 p.m.

Free (Drama League Members-Only Event)

With one of the most acclaimed careers in modern musical history – including her Tony-winning performance in Gypsy, The Wedding Singer, Nine, In The Next Room (or the Vibrator Play), Into The Woods, and this season’s upcoming The Most Happy Fella – the incredible Laura Benanti joins fellow Broadway star Susan Blackwell ([title of show]) for an intimate conversation about her career on stage and screen.

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Up Close: Tony Danza

Moderated by Tony® Award nominee Rob McClure (co-star in Honeymoon in Vegas) 

Tuesday, October 15 at 7:00 p.m.

Tickets: $45 (premium seating)/$25 (general seating)

Currently starring in the Broadway-bound new musical Honeymoon in Vegas at Paper Mill Playhouse, Mr. Danza’s extensive career has included Broadway (The Iceman Cometh, The Producers), film (Angels in the Outfield), and Golden Globe-winning television roles (Taxi, Who’s The Boss).  Mr. Danza will share stories from his career and backstage anecdotes about developing this new musical with award-winning composer Jason Robert Brown (Parade, 13, The Last Five Years).

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Up Close: Cherry Jones

Moderated by Tony® Award nominee Celia Keenan-Bolger (co-star in The Glass Menagerie) 

Monday, October 21 at 7:00 p.m.

Tickets: $45 (premium seating)/$25 (general seating)

One of the living legends of American theatre, Emmy and Tony winner Cherry Jones will join audiences at the Drama League Theater Center to discuss her illustrious career, including her unforgettable roles in Doubt, The Heiress, 24, Mrs. Warren’s Profession, and as Amanda Wingfield in the current Broadway revival of The Glass Menagerie.

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Up Close: Judy Kaye

Wednesday, November 6 at 7:00 p.m.

Free (Drama League Members-Only Event)

In 2012, she won a Tony Award while swinging on a chandelier in Nice Work If You Can Get It.  In 1988, she won a Tony Award as an imperious diva in Phantom of the Opera.  And with everything from Mamma Mia to Ragtime in between, Judy Kaye has proven to be one of America’s most engaging musical performers.  A rare, intimate opportunity to hear Ms. Kaye share her thoughts, experiences, and wisdom gleaned from a remarkable career.


Perfect Picture: The Album Pre-Release Concert

featuring Lillias White, Andrea McArdle and Debbie Gravitte

Hosted by Eileen Bluestone Sherman

Monday, October 7 at 7:00 p.m.

Ticket: $25

Celebrate the upcoming studio cast recording of the new musical Perfect Picture, which features the voices of a dozen of Broadway's most celebrated stars.  Tony® Award winner Debbie Gravitte (Jerome Robbins Broadway), Tony® Award nominee Andrea McArdle (Annie), and Tony® Award winner Lillias White(The Life) will debut songs they originated for the recording during an exclusive pre-release concert.  Lyricist Eileen Bluestone Sherman hosts this evening of songs from this new musical.  Tickets purchase includes the concert and a copy of the Perfect Picture CD recording. Following the concert, attendees will have the opportunity to enjoy a glass of wine as performers autograph copies of the CD.


Strippers, Showgirls and Sharks: A Conversation with Peter Filichia

Moderated by Drama League Executive Director Gabriel Shanks

Thursday, September 19 at 7:00 p.m.

Free Admission (RSVP Required)

What mark of infamy do classic musicals like Gypsy, Follies, and West Side Story share?  None of them won the Tony Award for Best Musical.  Join noted author, critic, and theatre expert Peter Filichia for a rip-roaring discussion of the also-rans and shoulda-beens of Broadway musical history!  Filichia will explore five decades of unforgettable theater experiences and his latest book Strippers, Showgirls and Sharks: A Very Opinionated History of the Broadway Musicals that Did Not Win the Tony Award.

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The IT Factor: Secrets of Personal Branding and Marketing

Wednesday, October 2 at 6:30 p.m.

Free Admission (RSVP Required)

Join cutting-edge marketer Brad Ross from Disney World Tour for a rare, inside-the-industry talk on how to use branding techniques to grow your business, position yourself within your marketplace, and skyrocket your career.

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Conducting Disney: A Conversation with David Friedman

Monday, November 11 at 7:00 p.m.

Free Admission (RSVP Required)

Having conducted the orchestras for classic Disney films such as Beauty & the Beast, Aladdin and Pocahontas, David Friedman has an intimate connection to some of the greatest music of the last century.  As a composer of Broadway musicals in his own right, he has a unique experience of what it truly takes to make the songs take flight.  In an unforgettable evening, Friedman will discuss his collaboration with Kathie Lee Gifford on Scandalous and his upcoming shows Chasing Nicolette and Front Page Girl.


Butoh For Actors

Drop-In Classes:

October 13 and 20 at 1:00 p.m.

October 16 and 23 at 7:00 p.m.

$10 per class (RSVP Required)

Butoh, an avant-garde physical discipline developed in post-war Japan, is rooted in expressing the emotional body and learning new ways to relate to space and time.  With over a decade of experience as a Butoh Master, director/performance artist Shakina Nayfack will introduce novices and experienced performers to Butoh through an enjoyable, on-the-feet class.  For professional actors, musicians, and dancers, it’s an exciting new set of tools to create expressive movement.

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Ultimate Desire: Strindberg’s “Miss Julie” with Petar Todorov

A Drama League Directors Project Master Workshop

Friday-Sunday, November 15-17

Workshop Fees:

$199 (General)

$89 (SDC/AEA/Drama League Members)

$45 (Directors Project Alumni)

Open to actors and directors

Internationally-acclaimed director Petar Todorov has received universal praise for his groundbreaking European productions (including his latest, Garbage For Plums, making its North American debut this month at The Kennedy Center). His physically-charged technique, called “The Sacred Box,” creates a unique way to transform psychologically-driven texts into dynamic physical expression.  Utilizing the personal desires of the participants and Strindberg’s classic sensual drama, Miss Julie, as the foundation for this three-day workshop, Mr. Todorov will share his techniques with American actors and directors in an active, on-the-feet workshop designed to enhance creativity and imagination.  Workshop is strictly limited in number of participants; for more information, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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Drama League DirectorFest 2013

Thursday-Sunday, December 12-15, 2013

TBG Theatre, 312 West 36th Street

Tickets: $18

The Drama League presents its annual festival of the country’s most exciting emerging directors.  This year’s four short plays (which play together in a full-length evening) will be directed by Liz Carlson, Alex Mihail, Danny Sharron and Nicole Watson.  For tickets or for more information, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The Drama League Theater Center, a new, state-of-the-art facility, brings world-class theater artists, emerging talents, and New York theatergoers together under one roof.  The Center is located on the lobby level of the historic former AT&T Building at 32 Avenue of the Americas, in the heart of TriBeCa’s arts district.

To become a member of The Drama League, please call (212) 244-9494

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