Monthly Archives: November 2017

LLOYD WEBBER/RICE: ‘EVITA’  (REVIEW FROM LONDON) ·

By Marit E. Shuman

 Rainbow High or Rainbow Low?

In the revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Evita, at the Phoenix Theatre in London, panache seems to overtake sincerity in this gilded, but nonetheless, enjoyable production. Title-role: Emma Hatton, no stranger to the West End (her credits include Elphaba in Wicked) or to the world of jazz and blues, seems to rely heavily on the latter in the delivery of her performance.

A vocally taxing role, Evita swoops from dusky, barely audible low notes all the way up to belted passagio, and then some. To quote Patti LuPone, originator of the role of Evita on Broadway, “There’s a couple of notes that aren’t as strong as your top notes or your bottom notes and that’s exactly where the score sits.” Where LuPone punched through the Es, Fs, and Gs, that characterize the vocal line (at the cost of her vocals, to be fair), Hatton backs down and floats them, in a breathy, bluesy manner. This approach adds a layer of sensitivity to Evita, by the addition of more dynamic contrast, but at what cost? Some of the strength, drive, and fearlessness of Eva Perón seem to be lost.

 

Playing opposite Hatton, making his West End debut in the role of Che, is Gian Marco Schiaretti.  Extremely handsome, he moves about the stage with ease and confidence.  Classic Che beard tightly clipped, army reliefs tightly fitted, and vibrato tightly coiled, this “boyband Che” brings charisma to the role, and, when he moves to his higher register and gives up trying to speak-sing, reveals an expressive and powerful voice. Unfortunately, the honesty and gravity of Che, as narrator, are glossed over by all the glitz.

Whereas the roles of Evita and Che seem to be lacking something, in terms of integrity, so too does the music. As is the norm nowadays, with theatres trying to cut costs, the orchestra that Webber’s iconic songs were written for consists of three keyboards–playing the parts of various instruments, such as strings and harps–a couple of trumpets, and a guitar.

All in all, a fun production but fluffy–ephemeral and insubstantial.

© 2017 by Marit E. Shuman.  All rights reserved.

Photos: Pamela Raith

BRIAN FRIEL: ‘FATHERS AND SONS’, AFTER TURGENEV (LISTEN NOW ON BBC, RADIO 3—LINK BELOW) ·

Listen at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09czx1d

‘Fathers and Sons’ by Brian Friel, after the novel by Ivan Turgenev. Fathers: Charles Dance, James Fleet. Sons: Edward Bennett, George Blagden.

In Turgenev’s prescient 1859 story of generational collision, both young heroes seem, at first, passionate revolutionaries, believing the old Russia should be swept away. But they’re unsure what they’d replace it with. This clash of values is dramatic, funny and recognisably up-to-date, with Julia McKenzie as a batty princess, Lisa Dillon a self-searching widow, Gabrielle Lloyd a loving mother and Martin Jarvis as odd-ball Uncle Pavel. 

Turgenev’s darkly observant human comedy examines a particular period in Russian history which, in this epic production, foregrounds the eventual political struggle. And Friel, with benefit of hindsight, allows a glimpse of the future. Movingly, the play reminds us that it’s the eternal values of love, friendship, loyalty and devotion that will, ultimately – hopefully – survive.

Nikolai Kirsanov … James Fleet 
Arkady … George Blagden 
Vassily Bazarov … Charles Dance 
Yevgeny … Edward Bennett 
Princess Olga … Julia McKenzie 
Anna Sergeevna … Lisa Dillon 
Pavel … Martin Jarvis
Arina … Gabrielle Lloyd
Fenichka … Lucy Phelps
Dunyasha … Joanna Cassidy
Katya … Matilda Wickham
Piotr … Kieran Hodgeson 
Fedka … Darren Richardson
Prokofyich and Timofeich … Nigel Anthony

Musicians: Michael Lan, Stavros Dritsas, Louis Baily, 
Djordje Gajic, Richard Sisson 
Music advisers: Lucy Parham, Richard Sisson
Sound design: Mark Holden

Produced and directed by Martin Jarvis and Rosalind Ayres 
A Jarvis and Ayres Production for BBC Radio 3.

 

AFTER A NOMINATOR IS DENIED ACCESS, ‘1984’ IS INELIGIBLE FOR TONYS ·

(Michael Paulson’s article appeared in The New York Times, 11/10; via Pam Green.)

This year’s Broadway production of “1984” will be ineligible for Tony Awards because the production refused to allow the journalist Jose Antonio Vargas, who is a member of the nominating committee, to see the play.

 The play’s lead producer, Scott Rudin, did not explain why Mr. Vargas was denied access, and neither Mr. Rudin nor Mr. Vargas immediately offered any comment. Another lead producer, Sonia Friedman, said, “I don’t have a comment on the matter other than I am disappointed with the outcome.”

The Tony Awards administration committee made the unusual decision to disqualify “1984” during a meeting on Thursday. The awards rules require that producers invite all members of the Tony nominating committee — there are currently 49 — to a performance.

“It was determined that not all elements of the required eligibility were fulfilled,” the awards administrators said in a statement Friday. “Both the production and the committee have discussed the matter in private. While all parties involved do not necessarily agree on the outcome, all parties agree that the issue was handled properly.”

A Tonys spokeswoman would not confirm that Mr. Vargas was denied access to the play, but several theater industry leaders confirmed that he was the excluded nominator. Last season, his first as a Tony nominator, he recused himself from voting.

Continue reading the main story

CHARLES LUDLAM: ‘CONQUEST OF THE UNIVERSE  OR WHEN QUEENS COLLIDE’ (REVIEW FROM NEW YORK) ·

By Bob Shuman

Theatregoers looking for an artistic reflection of the age of Harvey Weinstein might sit in on Conquest of the Universe or When Queens Collide, written by Charles Ludlam, a 1967 work from the Theatre of the Ridiculous, now playing at La MaMa until November 19.  Superficially, the comedy is about the takeover of the solar system, a retelling of Christopher Marlowe’s Tamburlaine—there, the conqueror subjugates the Arab world–but elements of Hamlet, Candide, and Titus Andronicus, to name three, are also apparent.  Offering a premonition of today, Ludlam’s unfeeling characters manipulate, objectify, and abuse subordinates in their lust for power and sex. Unlike the sickening Titus Andronicus, however, Ludlam’s pileups of abuses aren’t shocking or alarming–and no one needs to leave the theatre feeling queasy. 

Much like listening to what is coming out about Hollywood and show business, those in the play know offenses are happening, but they’re too self-involved and power hungry to notice.  Shakespeare might think the elements in Conquest of the Universe should add up to tragedy but Ludlam’s characters only see momentary diversions and opportunities for histrionics.  Although this makes the cast difficult to distinguish—actors might play the opposite sex or take multiple parts—perhaps what is most important to emphasize is that, in this world, no one is in real pain–they can no longer feel it and they’re too busy anyway.  Virtually all the assembled components stand in the way of finding what’s human:  loud and garish sets and props (blacklight planets, huge plastic phalluses, and even a seashell worthy of Bette Midler); costumes of neon green, orange, red, silver, and blue; scene structuring with no builds or modulation; as well as the artificiality of the language: “I free mankind from the yoke of reason, which weighs upon it.  Rape and behead them.”

Identification with real, nuanced emotional distress is a point that recently flummoxed Alec Baldwin and made him shut down his twitter account—he couldn’t see that anyone was being hurt in the sex-to play schemes of the entertainment world.  Despite her own protests regarding her rape, Rose McGowan believes, “no one cared.”  Being ignored, but used, is captured in the lively, blaring, attention-grabbing, “anti-moral” Theatre of the Ridiculous–perhaps this is its point–evidenced by what was happening during the time in which it was born: deep discrimination against gays and minorities, the Vietnam War, and to come, the AIDS epidemic. America, in the ‘60s, would probably be seen as rather heartless compared to what is politically correct today—and the Weinstein story is a holdover from years when many felt they had to accept the unacceptable (in fact, felt they had to be tough enough to take it).  Like a 3,000-year-old shark with razor-sharp teeth, dredged up from the bottom of the sea, Weinstein reminds us of what’s inhuman, in a hypercompetitive business, ironically one about feelings.  

Like a three-dimensional Drudge Report, Ludlam’s theatre demonstrates why society is too preoccupied to care.  The playwright offers distractions, from blood-craving stories of the Renaissance to dirty jokes and puns from below Fourteenth Street; from discussion of the conflict in Indo-China (“Life is a war that never ends”) to references to Elmer Fudd and the Three Stooges; from poetry, stylized or lewd, to the tough talk of the city and boroughs.  Conquest of the Universe is an allegory about the Weinstein era, written long before anyone ever heard of him.  Entertaining as it is, the play also shows the significance of Ludlam’s vision and work.  Like a Rorschach, important art can announce itself without being premeditated—it simply describes where we are, now.  At the end of the play, Ludlam explains it is time to stop: a witch says: “Life is but a lying dream.  He only wakes who casts the world aside.”  Previous to this, the author has been temporally prescriptive:  “The vast majority of men as well as women are sexually disturbed. . . .  What is necessary, therefore, is the establishment of a sufficient number of clinics for . . .  treatment.”  Harvey Weinstein’s lawyers might have been listening.  As many know, the tyrannical producer was booked into an Arizona sex addiction clinic–for a week.  

Ridiculous?

As it was, he missed counseling.

© by Bob Shuman.  All rights reserved.  

Visit La MaMa: http://lamama.org/

ABOUT THE ARTISTS:

Charles Ludlam was an American actor, director, and playwright. Ludlam joined John Vaccaro’s Play-House of the Ridiculous, and after a falling out, became one of the founders of the Ridiculous Theatrical Company in New York City in 1967. He taught or staged productions at New York University, Connecticut College for Women, Yale University, and Carnegie Mellon University. He won fellowships from the Guggenheim, Rockefeller and Ford Foundations and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Council on the Arts. He won six Obie Awards, the Rosamund Gilder Award for distinguished achievement in the theater in 1986 and in 2009, Ludlam was inducted posthumously into the American Theater Hall of Fame. He wrote nearly 30 plays, some of which include: Turds in Hell, an adaptation of The Satyricon (1969); Bluebeard (1970), an adaptation of H. G. Wells’s TheIsland of Dr Moreau; Corn (1972); Camille (1973); Der Ring Gott Farblonjet (1977), an adaptation of The Ring Cycle; The Enchanted Pig (1979); Exquisite Torture (1982); The Mystery of Irma Vep (1984); Galas (1983), inspired by the life of Maria Callas; and The Artificial Jungle (1986)

Everett Quinton recently directed Charles Ludlam’s, THE ARTIFICIAL JUNGLE with Theater Breaking Through Barriers.  Everett also directed IN THE BAR OF A TOKYO HOTEL by Tennessee Willliams with Theater 292 and THE WINTER’S TALE by William Shakespeare with Yorick Theater. As an actor Everett recently appeared as Enobarbus and one of five Cleopatras in Shakespeare’s ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA.  Everett also appeared as Paulina and Autolycus in THE WINTER’S TALE, and Idris Seabright in DROP DEAD PERFECT, to name a few. Everett is a long time member of THE RIDICULOUS THEATRICAL COMPANY where he appeared in Charles Ludlam’s CAMILLE, BLUEBEARD AND THE SECRET LIVES OF THE SEXISTS.  Georg Osterman’s DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE and BROTHER TRUCKERS.  As well as his own plays, A TALE OF TWO CITIES, LINDA AND CARMEN.

CONQUEST OF THE UNIVERSE cast includes: Everett Quinton, Géraldine Dulex,
Beth Dodye BassGrant Neale, Jeanne Lauren SmithJohn GutierrezLenys SamáSommer CarbucciaShane Baker, Brian Belovitch & Eugene the Poogene.

Production images by Theo Cote

(from top):  Shane Baker, Beth Dodye Bass and Everett Quinton

production postcard

Shane Baker and Everett Quinton

Ludlam photo: Pig Iron Theatre Company

 

“CONQUEST OF THE UNIVERSE OR WHEN QUEENS COLLIDE” BY CHARLES LUDLAM–ONLY UNTIL 11/19 AT LA MAMA ·

LA MAMA

In Association with HOWL ARTS

Proudly Presents

“CONQUEST OF THE UNIVERSE OR WHEN QUEENS COLLIDE”

By Charles Ludlam

The 50th Anniversary Production

 

Strictly Limited Engagement // November 2nd – 19th, 2017

Opening Night: Monday, November 6 at 8pm

CONQUEST OF THE UNIVERSE OR WHEN QUEENS COLLIDE – which marked the birth of the The Ridiculous Theatrical Company, co-founded by the late groundbreaking playwright and performer Charles Ludlam in 1967 – will return on the occasion of the play and the company’s 50th anniversary with a production, starring and directed by Everett Quinton, a long-standing member of RTC who assumed leadership as Artistic Director when Mr. Ludlam died 30 years ago, in 1987.  With previews starting November 2 prior to an official press opening on Monday, November 6 at 8pm, CONQUEST OF THE UNIVERSE OR WHEN QUEENS COLLIDE is presented by La MaMa in association with Howl Arts at the Ellen Stewart Theatre (66 E. 4 St.) in Manhattan.

CONQUEST OF THE UNIVERSE is an epic collage inspired by Marlowe’s Tamburlaine the Great that is as outrageous and timely today as it was when first performed in 1967. It’s a futuristic tale of war across the universe. Tamburlaine, President of Earth, proceeds from planet to planet, capturing and enslaving Bajazeth and Zabina-King and Queen of Mars-Venus, and Natolia, Queen of Saturn, among others. Cosroe-a Martian prince and twin brother of Zabina-leads the rebel forces against Tamberlaine in Ludlam’s mind-bending experimental classic, his theater of “sexual, imperialistic war.” Literary, film, and dramatic treasures are ransacked and pillaged, resulting in hilarious dialogue and multiple ts in this original, humorous tale of unbridled space queens!

The play embodies Mr. Ludlam’s core belief, and the mandate for The Ridiculous Theatrical Company:  that every play/production was an experiment.  According to Mr. Quinton, even Ludlam’s breakout ‘commercial’ success – THE MYSTERY OF IRMA VEP, a long-running hit at the Sheridan Square Theatre – was totally abstract and as such, an experiment.  Mr. Quinton adds that RTC and its trademark outlandishness resulted as a reaction to the cultural upheaval of the 50’s and 60’s and the perceived Fascism during that time. 

“There was much to rage at in the 60’s,” Mr. Quinton states.  “And the theater of rage often made good company with the high comedy.”

Performance Schedule

November 2 through 19:  Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 8:00 PM; Sunday at 4:00 PM and Monday, Nov. 6th at 8:00 PM.

VENUE: The Ellen Stewart Theatre at La Mama, 66 E. 4th St., NYC

TICKETS: All tickets $30 // $25 students and seniors

To purchase, please visit: www.lamama.org or call OvationTix at: 212-352-3101

 

ABOUT THE ARTISTS:

Charles Ludlam was an American actor, director, and playwright. Ludlam joined John Vaccaro’s Play-House of the Ridiculous, and after a falling out, became one of the founders of the Ridiculous Theatrical Company in New York City in 1967. He taught or staged productions at New York University, Connecticut College for Women, Yale University, and Carnegie Mellon University. He won fellowships from the Guggenheim, Rockefeller and Ford Foundations and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Council on the Arts. He won six Obie Awards, the Rosamund Gilder Award for distinguished achievement in the theater in 1986 and in 2009, Ludlam was inducted posthumously into the American Theater Hall of Fame. He wrote nearly 30 plays, some of which include: Turds in Hell, an adaptation of The Satyricon (1969); Bluebeard (1970), an adaptation of H. G. Wells’s TheIsland of Dr Moreau; Corn (1972); Camille (1973); Der Ring Gott Farblonjet (1977), an adaptation of The Ring Cycle; The Enchanted Pig (1979); Exquisite Torture (1982); The Mystery of Irma Vep (1984); Galas (1983), inspired by the life of Maria Callas; and The Artificial Jungle (1986)

Everett Quinton recently directed Charles Ludlam’s, THE ARTIFICIAL JUNGLE with Theater Breaking Through Barriers.  Everett also directed IN THE BAR OF A TOKYO HOTEL by Tennessee Willliams with Theater 292 and THE WINTER’S TALE by William Shakespeare with Yorick Theater. As an actor Everett recently appeared as Enobarbus and one of five Cleopatras in Shakespeare’s ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA.  Everett also appeared as Paulina and Autolycus in THE WINTER’S TALE, and Idris Seabright in DROP DEAD PERFECT, to name a few. Everett is a long time member of THE RIDICULOUS THEATRICAL COMPANY where he appeared in Charles Ludlam’s CAMILLE, BLUEBEARD AND THE SECRET LIVES OF THE SEXISTS.  Georg Osterman’s DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE and BROTHER TRUCKERS.  As well as his own plays, A TALE OF TWO CITIES, LINDA AND CARMEN.

CONQUEST OF THE UNIVERSE cast includes: Everett Quinton, Géraldine Dulex,
Beth Dodye Bass, Grant Neale, Jeanne Lauren Smith, John Gutierrez, Lenys Samá, Sommer Carbuccia, Shane Baker, Brian Belovitch & Eugene the Poogene.

About La MaMa

La MaMa is dedicated to the artist and all aspects of the theatre. The organization has a worldwide reputation for producing daring performance works that defy form and transcend barriers of ethnic and cultural identity. Founded in 1961 by award-winning theatre pioneer Ellen Stewart, La MaMa has presented more than 5,000 productions by 150,000 artists from more than 70 nations. A recipient of more than 30 Obie Awards and dozens of Drama Desk, Bessie, and Villager Awards, La MaMa has helped launch the careers of countless artists, many of whom have made important contributions to American and international arts milieus.

Our 56th season reflects the urgency of reaffirming human interconnectedness. Our stages will embrace diversity in every form and present artists that persevere with bold self-expression despite social, economic, and political struggle.

MEMBERSHIPS — La MaMa continues its popular Experimental Theatre Club Memberships, offering $10 Tickets to all shows and other perks to members for the full season. Memberships start at $56.

www.lamama.org

 

***** IVO VAN HOVE/LEE HALL: ‘NETWORK’ (SV PICK, UK) ·

(Michael Billington’s article appeared in the Guardian, 11/13.)

I am normally wary of people ransacking the movie archive to make plays, but this version of the Oscar-winning Network is an almost total triumph. Lee Hall has kept the best of Paddy Chayefsky’s 1976 script while excising its excesses. Bryan Cranston, best known for the hit series Breaking Bad, brings a wiry magnetism to the role of the TV news anchor, Howard Beale. Ivo van Hoveand his designer, Jan Versweyveld, have also transformed the National Theatre’s normally inflexible Lyttelton stage into an extraordinary blend of television studio and public restaurant.

The most obvious point to make about the Chayefsky script is how uncannily prophetic it seems. It is famously based on the idea of a veteran newsman experiencing a public breakdown. Having first threatened to kill himself on air, he launches a series of on-screen jeremiads, which turn him into a pop Savonarolaand rescue a failing network by achieving astronomical ratings.

As a satire it hits several targets dead centre. It imagines a world where news becomes a branch of show business, where profit margins dictate editorial content and where nation states are subordinate to “a college of corporations”. But Beale’s success lies in articulating public rage and persuading people to open their windows and shout: “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this any more.” Even if the internet has now replaced network television as the new reality, Chayefsky foresaw how power could be achieved by tapping into popular anger. While preserving the original’s insights, Hall has subtly altered the balance of the story.

Read more

https://www.theguardian.com/stage/2017/nov/13/network-review-bryan-cranston-lyttelton-national-theatre-lee-hall

Photo: The Stage

SHAKESPEARE AND WAR: STEPHAN WOLFERT ·

(from the Folger Shakespeare Library; via Pam Green.)

Shakespeare Unlimited: Episode 81

In his one-man show Cry Havoc! actor Stephan Wolfert, a US Army veteran, draws together lines in Shakespeare’s plays spoken by soldiers and former soldiers—including MacbethOthello, and Richard III.

He puts those words to the task of explaining the toll that soldiering and war can take on the psyches of the men and women who volunteer for military duty. Wolfert also runs free weekly veterans-only acting classes aimed at helping them readjust to life as civilians.

He is interviewed by Barbara Bogaev. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From the Shakespeare Unlimited podcast series. Published September 5, 2017. © Folger Shakespeare Library. All rights reserved. This episode, To the Battle Came He, was produced by Richard Paul. Garland Scott is the associate producer. It was edited by Gail Kern Paster and Esther Ferington. Esther French is the web producer. We had help from Beth Emelson, Associate Artistic Producer of Folger Theatre; Eric Tucker, Artistic Director of Bedlam; Melissa Kuypers at NPR-West in Culver City, California; and from Ray Cruz at Hawaii Public Radio.

For more information on Cry Havoc!, or to find one of the acting classes Wolfert offers for veterans, visit decruit.org.

(Read more)

https://www.folger.edu/shakespeare-unlimited/war-stephan-wolfert

Photo: Berkshire On Stage

 

CAN YOU MATCH THE FAMOUS SHAKESPEARE LINE TO ITS PLAY? ·

(Annette’s quiz appeared in How Stuff Works; via Pam Green.)  

All the world is a quiz, and the wrong answers are merely failures. In this quiz, we’ll test your knowledge of Shakespeare’s most famous quotes. Can you match each of them to the right play?

  1. “To be, or not to be: that is the question.”

King Lear

Macbeth

Hamlet

(Read more)

http://quizzes.howstuffworks.com/quiz/can-you-match-the-famous-shakespeare-line-its-play?acct=act_10153036824292945&utm_medium=paid&utm_source=facebook&asid=6094320928364&adid=6094320930564&mkcpgn=e3016e6add0a4261be838bf067e725f7&sg_uid=e3016e6add0a4261be838bf067e725f7

YAZBEK/MOSES: ‘THE BAND’S VISIT’ (SV PICK, NY) ·

(Ben Brantley’s article appeared in The New York Times, 11/9; via Pam Green.)

Breaking news for Broadway theatergoers, even — or perhaps especially — those who thought they were past the age of infatuation: It is time to fall in love again.

One of the most ravishing musicals you will ever be seduced by opened on Thursday night at the Barrymore Theater. It is called “The Band’s Visit,”and its undeniable allure is not of the hard-charging, brightly blaring sort common to box-office extravaganzas.

Instead, this portrait of a single night in a tiny Israeli desert town confirms a lyric that arrives, like nearly everything in this remarkable show, on a breath of reluctantly romantic hope: “Nothing is as beautiful as something you don’t expect.”

With songs by David Yazbek and a script by Itamar Moses, “The Band’s Visit” is a Broadway rarity seldom found these days outside of the canon of Stephen Sondheim: an honest-to-God musical for grown-ups. It is not a work to be punctuated with rowdy cheers and foot-stomping ovations, despite the uncanny virtuosity of Mr. Yazbek’s benchmark score.

(Read more)

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/09/theater/the-bands-visit-review-broadway-tony-shalhoub.html?rref=collection%2Fbyline%2Fben-brantley&action=click&contentCollection=undefined&region=stream&module=stream_unit&version=latest&contentPlacement=2&pgtype=collection

TARGET MARGIN THEATER OPENS FIRST PERMANENT HOME ·


7,500 Sq. Ft. Space in Brooklyn Includes Theater, Offices, Two Rehearsal Studios

2017-18 Season Includes Multi-Year Focus on 
The Thousand and One Nights

After a five year search, Target Margin Theater is proud to announce the opening of the Company’s first permanent home. Located in the Sunset Park section of Brooklyn, the modern, industrial space includes two large rehearsal studios, office space, and a column free, 3,250 sq. ft. performance space with generous 18 ft. ceilings. The theater is named The DOXSEE after founding member and resident designer Lenore Doxsee (1965-2017).

For over 25 years, Target Margin Theater (Founding Artistic Director David Herskovits, Associate Artistic Director Moe Yousuf, General Manager Lu Liu) has been praised for its aggressive interpretations of classic texts, lesser-known works, and new plays inspired by existing sources. In addition, Target Margin has served over 1,000 artists through its annual incubator LAB festival and has nurtured the next generation of theater makers via a yearlong fellowship program. This work has happened, locally, across three boroughs in over 20 theaters, 50+ rehearsal studios and 4 offices.

“Having a permanent home finally gives us the freedom to work on each project just as it demands,” says Target Margin’s Founding Artistic Director David Herskovits. “The space is a natural result of the growth of our mission. Target Margin now involves more artists than ever, with fellowship, community, and production programs, growing steadily in recent years. Our leadership has expanded too, with the promotion of Moe Yousuf and recent addition of Lu Liu. Target Marging has matured into a more diverse and democratic company. The building gives us a real, local home for the first time ever. Alternative performances spaces where young talent can make work on the cheap are vanishing. The DOXSEE will help fill that void and keep New York City at the forefront of theatrical innovation.”

The DOXSEE is set to open on November 9–11 with Grand Festival Opening, three days of performances including a sneak peek of a new work by Target Margin and the work of over 40 theater and performance artists. This year Target Margin will also launch a new Residency Program providing space and time for companies and individual artists to develop new and challenging works.

The 2017–2018 season continues with a multi-year exploration of The Thousand and One Nights, a collection of Silk Road, MENA (Middle Eastern / North African), and South Asian stories. Huge in scope, mystical, political and problematic, the folk tales will be examined in One Night(March 22 – April 21), the first section of a larger theatrical adaptation directed by Herskovits, and in 1001 LABS (May 31–June 23), four productions of various tales lead by four diverse artists. The season will also feature a series of free community events in early 2018, bringing local residents, artists, activists, and scholars together to discuss the political, social and artistic influence of The Thousand and One Nights.

Details on Target Margin’s 2017-2018 season can be found below. The DOXSEE and Target Margin Theater’s new home is located at 232 52nd Street in the Sunset Park section of Brooklyn. Tickets are now on sale for Grand Festival Opening and can be purchased by calling 212.352.3101 or visiting targetmargin.org.

TARGET MARGIN THEATER 2017-18 SEASON

Grand Festive Opening
November 9–11 at 7pm; $20
Target Margin Theater celebrates the opening of The DOXSEE with three days of performances featuring new work by Target Margin and over 40 theater and performance artists. Participating artists include:

Thursday, November 11 at 7pm
Avi Amon, William Badgett, Tom Cabaniss, Ann Marie Dorr, Jesse Freedman / Meta Phys Ed, James Hannaham, Kristine Haruna Lee, Michael Levinton / Little Lord, Katie Rose McLaughlin / Designated Movement Company, Mary Neufeld, and Kathleen Kennedy Tobin.

Friday, November 10 at 7pm
Nic Adams, Clare Barron, Tanisha Christie, John Del Gaudio, Lane Dombois, James Tigger! Ferguson, Rebecca Hart, Sherrine Azab & Jake Hooker / A Host of People, Yehuda Hyman, Claire Moodey, Shannon Sindelar, and Peter Mills Weiss.

Saturday, November 11 at 7pm
Alex Borinsky, William Burke, Corinne Donly, Daniel Fish, Joshua William Gelb, Kara Feely & Travis Just / Object Collection, Paul Ketchum, John Kurzynowski / Theater Reconstruction Ensemble, Brian Rady, David Rosenmeyer & Melena Dayen, Sugar Vendil, Eva von Schweinitz and Tracy Weller / Mason Holdings.

2018 TMT Institute
January 2018
Target Margin begins the fifth year of the TMT Institute, the Company’s year-long fellowship program. Under the guidance of David Herskovits and Associate Artistic Director Moe Yousuf, five emerging theater artists discover ways to expand their artistic practice. Built on Target Margin’s history of nurturing emerging talent, The TMT Institute provides support and space for open-ended questioning and experimentation within, and at, the edges of the form of theater.

BYO Stein
January 20, 2018
Stars of downtown theater read from the work of Gertrude Stein. Audiences are encouraged to bring their own selection and join the readers. One night only with discussion.

One Night
March 22 – April 21, 2018
Under the direction of David Herskovits, One Night will be the first section of a larger theatrical adaptation of The Thousand and One Nights, a collection of Silk Road, MENA (Middle Eastern and North African), and South Asian stories and folk tales.

1001 Labs
May 31 – June 23, 2018
This year’s edition to the TMT Lab Festival, 1001 Labs, will present four intertwining tales from The Thousand and One Nights in four new productions. The Lab will also include special events to enrich the conversation and engage the local Sunset Park community including potluck dinners, intergenerational storytelling program, a film series, as well as a discussion series focusing on the problematic adaptations of the text including Aladdin, Sinbad, Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. 

About Target Margin Theater

For 25 years, Target Margin has been praised for its aggressive interpretations of classic texts, lesser-known works, and new plays inspired by existing sources. They exist to build a world where all people embrace the original, the challenging and the different. They challenge audiences with their plays, energetically expand the possibilities of live performance, and engage their community at all levels through partnerships and programs. The range of programming has been enormous, including classics, opera, new writing, and adaptation of literature and historical sources. The Company has served over 1,000 artists (emerging and established) through its annual LAB and is committed to nurturing the creative aspirations of the next generation of theater makers in the TMT Institute, the Company’s yearlong fellowship program. 

Target Margin’s artistic and cultural vision has resulted in 41 Mainstage productions including 11 world premieres, 8 company-created works, 3 U.S. premieres and 5 new translations, which have garnered 4 OBIE Awards and employed over 500 Equity actors and hundreds of other theater artists. The Company’s production of Mamba’s Daughters received an OBIE Award, and their epic 2004-06 production of Goethe’s Faust received extensive critical acclaim. Recent productions include Uncle Vanya and The Tempest at HERE, Uriel Acosta: I Want That Man! at The Chocolate Factory, Composition…Master-Pieces…Identity, a new solo performance piece from OBIE Award-winner David Greenspan at The Connelly Theater, Drunken With What at Abrons Arts Center, Reread Another at The Brick, called “something kind of wonderful” by Ben Brantley in The New York Times, their New York Times acclaimed Iceman Lab—a radical interpretation of The Iceman Cometh at HEREand, most recently, Mourning Becomes Electra at Abrons Arts Center, of which Laura Collins-Hughes in her New York Times Critic’s Pick review said, “I didn’t check my watch once in the five hours of David Herskovits’s bold, astringent revival for Target Margin Theater.”

Press:  John Wyszniewski at Everyman Agency