Dear theatre friends,
Just six years ago, David Bowie’s “Lazarus” premiered at New York Theatre Workshop. In the middle of the run, on Monday, January 11th, the cast was gathered to hear of David Bowie’s death, to their shock and horror. I remember it all too well, because I was presenting “Key Change” in NYTW’s adjacent, smaller space and we shared the communal rehearsal/dressing downstairs floor.
I was reminded of those tear and milk-filled days, when I read that you can stream the London production of “Lazarus,” which was taped live onstage at London’s Kings Cross Theatre, from Friday, January 8th.
Starting today, the Mint Theater is streaming Lillian Hellman’s “Days to Come,” one of six plays the Mint will be offering in, excuse the repitition, days to come! These beautifully filmed, archived versions are free to all, but do please contribute what you can to this costly enterprise.
Although the play was first performed in 1936, I found the tension and conflict utterly believable when it was performed in 2018. This is a terrific opportunity to see one of Hellman’s lesser known works. The Mint’s revival received decidedly mixed notices, but I hope you’ll think it “refreshing and exciting,” as did the writer of this review.
Every January, “The Under the Radar Festival” has graced the Public Theatre and overflowed to other downtown spaces. Mark Russell, the globe-trotting impresario, has gathered a similarly international group of avant garde works, despite seriously constrained circumstances.
Although it may be unfair to ask which of your children you love most, I did ask Mark what couldn’t be missed. Off the top of his head, he mentioned Inua Ellams’ “Borders and Crossings.” After seeing his “Barbershop Chronicles” at London’s National Theatre, I wasn’t surprised to read The Guardian’s ebullient review of that play, which subsequently transferred to NY, with similar raves.
Only until January 12th, you can see a rehearsed reading of Mike Bartlett’s “An Intervention,” coming from London’s Old Fire Station. If Bartlett’s name rings a bell, it may be because his “King Charles III,” transferred to NY, after winning the coveted Olivier Best Play Award. In his review for The New York Times, Ben Brantley called the play a “brilliant portrait”– I’d have called it entirely brilliant, period!
I must urge you again to look the marvelous collection, National Theatre At Home. There are new, archived plays being added often. The quality of the taping is unmatched– you may forget you are not actually in the front row of the theatre!
I’m still smarting from the cancellation of Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2020, but heartened by a program offered online from one of the main venues– The Space. Online At the Space will bring a diverse group of comedy, music, cabaret and yes, theatre, too. All free, beginning January 8th and running all month. A delightful, lighthearted way to begin this new year.
That’s all for now!
Aren’t we fortunate to be living during this plague and not Sophocles’? Or, are you overwhelmed by choice?
Again, if you discover other theatre-related news– please get in touch: Carol@BestofEdinburgh.org.
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.