Dear theatre friends,
Do you have a culturally and intellectually stimulating evening planned for tonight?
If not, you can spend it with John Turturro, Frances McDormand and many other brilliant actors. They’ll be performing a dramatic reading of scenes from Sophocles ‘“Oedipus the King,” a Theatre of War production. There will also be a discussion about how the play relates to our current state of affairs.
Written during the plague of 429 BC, which killed a third of the Athenian population, it describes a time of arrogant leadership and unstoppable pestilence.
As Santayana wrote: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
By Friday night, the 8th, you may want lighter fare! Here’s the perfect antidote– Lincoln Center’s gorgeous revival of “The King and I” with the sparkling Kelli O’Hara. It’s scheduled for 9pm
on PBS– tea time in the UK! You may like to read the New York Times’ review, before or after watching.
Are you a member of The Irish Rep? It’s one of the jewels of New York’s theatre world, bringing important plays to its small stage. Brian Friel’s “Molly Sweeney” is engraved in my memory, despite having seen it nearly a decade ago. Here’s the New York Times’ review, which I hope will encourage you to buy a ticket– immediately! It begins May 12th.
Speaking of small stages, in London I always try to see what’s on at the Finborough Theatre. Since 1980, Artistic Director Neil McPherson has led it to produce new and revived plays of extraordinary excellence– in a fifty seat space!
Now we have the chance to see one he’s written– the world premiere production of “It Is Easy to Be Dead,” nominated for the prestigious Olivier Award. It was inspired by the poetry and letters of Charles Hamilton Sorley, whose brief life ended during World War I and included live music and songs from that era. I was sorry to have missed the show, especially after reading this five star review from The Guardian.
As a New Yorker, I’d always assumed the best American productions happened right here. Now, I’m discovering how many regional theatres are doing challenging work– and I have the privilege of seeing them without hopping on a plane!
Theatre Baton Rouge is presenting Paula Vogel’s multi-Award winning “How I Learned to Drive,” — and it hasn’t been cancelled! You may recall that Manhattan Theatre Club was about to revive the play with the original stars, Mary-Louise Parker and David Morse– which, of course, never happened. I look forward to seeing this production, which begins next week, from a theatre I never knew.
That’s all for now– as I receive news I’ll pass it along. But don’t completely fill your calendars yet– more shows are continuing to find their way to our screens.
Aren’t we fortunate to be living during this plague and not Sophocles’?
Again, if you discover other theatre-related news– please get in touch: Carol.
And, need I reiterate? I’d like to continue to write because so many have expressed their enjoyment of reading– but I must have content!
Please send other theatre related information, or do try to recall a story you’d like me to post.
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.