Dear theatre friends,
You may ask why I have today’s date in bold at the top of each of these emails– it’s because the days are blurring together and important “appointments” are being forgotten!
Only until tomorrow, the 23rd, can you see National Theatre Live’s “Treasure Island” adapted by the wonderful playwright, Bryony Lavery. I had thought the show was made for the 12-and-under set, but then read this review. Now, I think the show is a perfect escape for us all from our current reality.
Of course, then you have a week to see NTL’s broadcast of Tamsin Grieg in “Twelfth Night.” Shakespeare’s glorious diversion!
Another important date to mark down– in red– is April 25th. I don’t want to be a nag, and have given you this info before, but anyone who loves intelligent theatre needs to see the work of Milo Rau. From 6:30pm Berlin time (12:30pm in NY) you’ll be able to see Schaubuhne’s “Lenin.” Rau hasbeen described as the most creative, influential and controversial director of our time.
One of the positive results of this isolation is that we’re reaching out to acquaintances for the first time in too long. I’ve just heard from my friends at both Kneehigh, and Wise Children. Kneehigh was the company where Emma Rice began her inimitable direction and adaptation of fabulous classics, such as “Brief Encounter.” Oh yes, her sublime “Flying Lovers of Vitebsk” about Chagall then won my Award in Edinburgh. To find out more about this highly creative company, going back to the 1980’s, please check out the Kneehigh Cookbook — don’t worry, no sourdough recipes!
Emma Rice then went on to found her own company, Wise Children. Her first production was a play of the same name, after a book by Angela Carter, which premiered at London’s Old Vic.Her playful spirit is evident in her “Tea and Biscuits” radio series, as well as this podcast about the creation of her first two shows, “Wise Children” and “Malory Towers.”
Closer to home, we have Primary Stages giving us two readings on Zoom for our virtual pleasure. The first, April 26th, will be Kate Hamill’s reading of “Little Women.” Just click on ‘Readings and Meet-Ups’ to see the calendar. Then, you can RSVP for it and May 3rd’s reading of David Ives’ “All In the Timing.” Primary Stages recently had a 20th anniversary production of this brilliant comic classic and again, I laughed until I cried!
With great effort, the Park Square Theatre in St. Paul Minnesota has put together their online adaptation of “Diary of Anne Frank.” They had the intention of reaching 12,000 middle and high school students– however, it just may be a play for all of us to revisit.
Here are Anne Frank’s words– they resonate loudly in today’s environment:
“It’s utterly impossible for me to build my life on a foundation of chaos, suffering and death. I see the world as slowly being transformed into a wilderness… I hear the suffering of millions. And yet, when I look up at the sky, I somehow feel that everything will change for the better.”
I, too am looking up at the sky and looking forward to Spring. I hope this missive will convey a bit of the hope which has always pervaded the theatre community. How else would all these wildly creative people create work over many, many years for each of us to enjoy?
I’d like to continue to write because so many have expressed their enjoyment of reading– but I must have content! Do try to recall a story you’d like me to post.
No matter how bleak the current theatre scene looks– remember, we’re all in this together!
Carol Tambor publishes a monthly newsletter, which announces worthy shows coming to New York, along with occasional information about London theatre and, of course, the Edinburgh Fringe.