Category Archives: Events

WHEN MILTON MET SHAKESPEARE: POET’S NOTES ON BARD APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN FOUND ·

(Alison Flood’s article appeared in the Guardian, 9/16.)

Hailed as one of the most significant archival discoveries of modern times, text seems to show the Paradise Lost poet making careful annotations on his edition of Shakespeare’s plays

Almost 400 years after the first folio of Shakespeare was published in 1623, scholars believe they have identified the early owner of one copy of the text, who made hundreds of insightful annotations throughout: John Milton.

The astonishing find, which academics say could be one of the most important literary discoveries of modern times, was made by Cambridge University fellow Jason Scott-Warren when he was reading an article about the anonymous annotator by Pennsylvania State University English professor Claire Bourne. Bourne’s study of this copy, which has been housed in the Free Library of Philadelphia since 1944, dated the annotator to the mid-17th century, finding them alive to “the sense, accuracy, and interpretative possibility of the dialogue”. She also provided many images of the handwritten notes, which struck Scott-Warren as looking oddly similar to Milton’s hand.

(Read more)

 

LET’S GO: ‘EN EL OJO DE LA AGUJA (IN THE EYE OF THE NEEDLE)’–ONLY THROUGH 9/22 ·

 

TABULA RASA NYC THEATER AND PERFORMANCE LAB

Proudly Presents the World Premiere of the Spanish Language Version of

“Powerful production by Ramiro Antonio Sandoval.” – Carlos Navedo, Impacto Latino 

EN EL OJO DE LA AGUJA

(In the eye of the needle)

You must have a plan B and know where the nearest exit is……

You better catch them before the wall is up!

Written by

RAMIRO ANTONIO SANDOVAL in association with JOHANNA BOCK

Starring KLARA LOPERA-SÁNCHEZ, ANDRÉS LÓPEZ-ALICEA, 

VANESSA HERNÁNDEZ and JEI FABIANO

Directed by RAMIRO ANTONIO SANDOVAL

LIMITED ENGAGEMENT

SEPTEMBER 7 – 22, 2019 AT THE TANK

TICKETS ON SALE NOW AT WWW.THETANKNYC.ORG

TABULA RASA NYC THEATER AND PERFORMANCE LAB is pleased to announce the world premiere production in Spanish of their collective creative collaboration EN EL OJO DE LA AGUJA (In the Eye of the Needle), written and directed by Ramiro Antonio Sandoval in association with Johanna Bock (Spanish translation is based on a free interpretation by Edna Lee Figueroa from the English original). EN EL OJO DE LA AGUJA will play a three-week limited engagement at Off-Broadway’s The Tank (312 West 36th Street, NYC). Performances begin Saturday, September 7 and continue through Sunday, September 22. Opening Night is Sunday, September 8 (7 p.m.).  Tickets are $30 and available at www.TheTankNYC.org.  

Mad or maddening?

Three characters challenge each other’s imagination on their coexistence in a ‘far-away-so-close’ location from our actual condition. 

“Always have a plan B and know where the nearest exit is”

At the count of four, three, two …missing!

…You better catch them before the wall is up!

EN EL OJO DE LA AGUJA (In the eye of the needle) is a contemporary high tech-tragicomedy.

EN EL OJO DE LA AGUJA (In the eye of the needle) is a personal, social, and political exploration of conflict resolution (or the lack thereof). The deliberate avoidance of conflict or exchange of different points of view, can lead to isolation and alienation. In recent history, governments lack of attention to the needs of the needy, have resulted in not only uprisings, but forced displacements, unwelcomed migrations, and a refugee crisis. 

The patriarchal vision of the contemporary world, may also have a key role in the social crisis sprouting worldwide. The absence of ethics present us with a cruel, almost comedic landscape (due to an almost pathologic state of mind), where a “back to basics” call is required. 

In a world where thought leaders are ostracized and killed while the brute and inhuman rise in control over the land, the environment, women’s and human rights…What is left? 

Who will leave next? 

When will we stop building walls to solve our problems? 

When will we come out of our selfish caves to demand honesty, to create new ideas? 

Will we be able to stop losing human kindness before the wall is up?

The production stars Klara Lopera-Sánchez, Andrés López-Alicea, Vanessa Hernández and Jei Fabiano.

The production features original music by Samuel Torres, stage design by Verónica Álvarez with Omayra Garriga and Edu Canal with Alexis Mendoza and Elisabet Díaz Cintrón, technical direction by Omayra Garriga with Jorge Berrios Cuevas, costume design by Alejandra Laverde with Bibiana Torres Rey, lighting design by Karim Rivera Rosado. Juan Esteban Vélez is the production assistant.

 

EN EL OJO DE LA AGUJA plays the following schedule through 

Sunday 9/15 at 7 pm.

Friday 9/20 at 7 pm;

Saturday 9/21 at 7 pm;

Sunday 9/22 at 7 pm.

Tickets are $30 ($20 students/senior) and are now available online at www.TheTankNYC.org. Tickets may also be purchased in-person at the theater a half hour prior to performances.

Running Time: 75 minutes

Website: www.tabularasatheater.org or https://www.thetanknyc.org/calendar-1/2019/9/7/en-el-ojo-de-la-aguja-in-the-eye-of-the-needle-3f846-wrjxl

Top Photo: David Troncoso; photos courtesy of TabulaRaSaNYC

HARRY POTTER BROUGHT HIM TO BROADWAY. NOW HIS WORK IS EVERYWHERE. ·

(Michael Paulson’s article appeared in The New York Times, 9/4; via Pam Green.)

Eccentric and prodigious, the writer Jack Thorne won a Tony for “Cursed Child.” Up next: “Sunday” at the Atlantic Theater Company, and “His Dark Materials” on HBO..

LONDON — Jack Thorne has no shortage of ways to characterize his own eccentricity. “I’m a slightly deranged adult.” “I’m not very good with other people.” “I’m mental.”

He points out a Ralph Steadman poster on the wall of his book-lined home office, an image grotesque enough to prompt objections from his 3-year-old son. “I like it,” he smiles. “It expresses my self-hatred.”

Mr. Thorne, a 40-year-old English writer, describes much of his life as a succession of dark chapters, including a disabling skin condition that affected him for years.

But now he finds himself in a spot he could never have imagined: a happily married father with thriving stage and screen careers that have made him one of the most prodigious — and sought-after — storytellers of the moment.

(Read more)

Photo: The New York Times 

 

THE RELEASE OF OLEG SENTSOV AND THE PLIGHT OF THOSE LEFT BEHIND ·

(Masha Gessen’s article appeared in the New Yorker, 9/10.)

Russia released its most famous prisoner on Saturday. Oleg Sentsov, a forty-three-year-old Crimean journalist and film director, returned to Ukraine after serving five years of a twenty-year sentence. He was one of thirty-five Ukrainian citizens released by Russia in exchange for Ukraine freeing an equal number of Russian citizens. Human-rights groups around the world, activists, and some politicians had been working to draw attention to Sentsov’s case since he was arrested, in May, 2014. In a moment when the U.S. government appears to have dropped human rights from its international agenda, Sentsov’s story shows that a concerted international effort on behalf of one man can still yield results, but it also highlights the limitations of such efforts. Several dozen more Ukrainian citizens, sentenced on equally spurious charges, remain in Russian prisons.

Sentsov was convicted of terrorism ostensibly for setting fires to the doors of the offices of the ruling Russian party, United Russia, in Crimea, and plotting to blow up a monument to Lenin. The prosecution provided no evidence of Sentsov’s participation in either the fires (an established part of radical protests in Russia, usually regarded as crimes against property) or a plot to destroy the monument. The court offered no explanation for why an alleged plot to blow up an inanimate object was viewed as terrorism.

Sentsov was born in Crimea, in an ethnic Russian family. Like most Crimeans, he grew up speaking Russian, but, like an apparent minority of them, he identified strongly as a Ukrainian citizen, and opposed the Russian occupation. He took part in the revolutionary movement that brought down the Ukrainian President, in February, 2014. At the conclusion of his trial, he declined to ask the Russian court for leniency, because, he said, he did not recognize its authority over him.

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Photograph by Ovsyannikova Yulia / Ukrinform / ZUMA

PETER NICHOLS, PLAYWRIGHT BEST KNOWN FOR JOE EGG, DIES AGED 92 ·

(Chris Wiegand’s article appeared in the Guardian, 9/9.)

The British writer, whose plays include Privates on Parade and The National Health, died on Saturday

The playwright Peter Nichols, who was best known for his anarchic, acerbic and semi-autobiographical black comedies, has died at the age of 92. His agent, Alan Brodie, confirmed that Nichols died on Saturday in Oxford.

Nichols had a hit in 1967 with A Day in the Death of Joe Egg, about a married couple raising their daughter who is severely disabled. The play debuted at the Citizens theatre in Glasgow then transferred to the West End in London and to Broadway, where it was nominated for four Tony awards. For this ground-breaking drama about disability, Nichols drew upon the early years of his marriage and the life of his eldest daughter, Abigail. “She went into hospital at four and stayed there till she died,” Nichols said, describing her life as “a sort of living death”. The play was adapted for a 1972 film, has had several high-profile revivals and returns to the West End this month in a new production at the Trafalgar Studios in London, directed by Simon Evans and starring Toby Stephens, Claire Skinner and Patricia Hodge.

(Read more)

Photo: BBC News

PINTER: ‘BETRAYAL’ WITH TOM HIDDLESTON (SV REVIEW PICK, NY) ·

(Ben Brantley’s article appeared in The New York Times, 9/5.)

How can a naked space seem so full? Feelings furnish the stage in the resplendently spare new production of Harold Pinter’s “Betrayal,” which opened on Thursday night at the Bernard Jacobs Theater, and they shimmer, bend and change color like light streaming through a prism.

Directed by Jamie Lloyd — and acted with surgical precision by Tom Hiddleston, Zawe Ashton and Charlie Cox — this stripped-down revival of Pinter’s 1978 tale of a sexual triangle places its central characters under microscopic scrutiny, with no place to hide. Especially not from one another, as everybody is on everybody else’s mind, all the time. They are also all almost always fully visible to the audience.

This British version is the most merciless and empathic interpretation of this much performed work I’ve seen, and it keeps returning to my thoughts in piercing shards, like the remnants of a too-revealing dream. I had heard good things about this “Betrayal” when it debuted in London earlier this year, but I didn’t expect it to be one of those rare shows I seem destined to think about forever.

“Betrayal” was dismissed as lightweight by Pinter standards when it opened at the National Theater in London four decades ago, and hearing it described baldly, you can sort of understand why. The high concept pitch could be: “Love among the literati in London leads to disaster, when a publisher discovers his wife is having an affair with his best friend!”…

(Read more)

Photo: Merlin, The New York Times

SONDHEIM: ‘COMPANY’ RETURNING TO BROADWAY, WITH A WOMAN AT ITS CENTER ·

(Michael Paulson’s article appeared in The New York Times, 8/30; via Pam Green.)

The revival, starring Katrina Lenk and Patti LuPone, will open next spring on Stephen Sondheim’s 90th birthday.

Goodbye, Bobby. Hello, Bobbie.

re-gendered revival of the 1970 musical “Company,” which had a well-received production in London that opened last year, will arrive on Broadway next spring starring the Tony Award winners Katrina Lenk and Patti LuPone.

The show, with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and a book by George Furth, is about a chronically single about-to-turn 35-year-old wrestling with the judgment of a group of married friends. The original production won six Tonys, including best new musical, in 1971, and it has been revived twice, most recently in 2006.

The new production involves a significant rejiggering of the show’s gender dynamics. The protagonist, who is celebrating a 35th birthday in the show, is now female, implicitly introducing the biological clock into perceptions of her singleness. The production also reverses the genders in one of the show’s married couples, so that there is now a stay-at-home husband and a bread-winning wife, and transfers one of the show’s signature songs, “Getting Married Today,” which is about last-minute wedding jitters, from a straight woman (Amy) to a gay man (Jamie).

The revival is directed by Marianne Elliott, a celebrated British director who won Tony Awards for “War Horse” and “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” and who directed last year’s Tony-winning revival of “Angels in America.”

(Read more)

Photo: The New York Times

 

ETHICAL DRAMA WINS EDINBURGH THEATER PRIZE ·

(Steven McElroy’s article appeared in The New York Times, 8/23; via Pam Green.)

“Mouthpiece” by Kieran Hurley won $25,000 to fund a transfer from the Edinburgh Fringe to New York.

“Mouthpiece,” a two-character play by the Scottish playwright and performer Kieran Hurley, won the 2019 Carol Tambor Best of Edinburgh Award, the prize’s organizers announced on Friday. The award, presented annually by the Carol Tambor Theatrical Foundation, is to support a New York transfer for a production from the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Mr. Hurley’s play explores the complex relationship between two people of different socioeconomic classes: Libby, a struggling 40-year-old playwright, and Declan, a troubled teenager. By having Libby attempt to dramatize aspects of Declan’s difficult life — to be his mouthpiece — Mr. Hurley wrestles with questions of cultural appropriation and exploitation.

The play — which had its premiere at the Traverse Theater in 2018, is being reprised at the Fringe this summer, again produced by the Traverse and directed by Orla O’Loughlin, with Katherine Nesbitt as associate director, but with a different cast (Shauna Macdonald and Angus Taylor).

Mr. Hurley will receive a $25,000 grant — $5,000 to be awarded immediately with no restrictions, and the rest contingent on supporting a production of the show in New York.

(Read more)

Photo: The Stage

 

SONDHEIM:  RICHARD LINKLATER’S ‘MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG’ TO BE FILMED OVER 20-YEAR SPAN ·

(Mia Galuppo’s article appeared in the Hollywood Reporter, 8/29; via the Drudge Report.)

Blake Jenner, Beanie Feldstein and Ben Platt will star in an adaptation of the Stephen Sondheim musical ‘Merrily We Roll Along.’

 Beanie Feldstein, Blake Jenner and Ben Platt will star in an adaptation of the Stephen Sondheim musical Merrily We Roll Along.

Richard Linklater will be directing the project, which is being backed by Blumhouse, and will shoot over a 20-year span. The director shot his Oscar-winning Boyhood over 12 years.

The much-beloved musical, based on the 1934 play of the same name by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart, follows Franklin Shepard, a talented composer of Broadway musicals that abandons his friends and career to become a producer of Hollywood movies. The story begins at the height of his Hollywood fame and moves backwards in time, showing important moments in Frank’s life.

Jenner will portray Shepard, while Feldstein will play Shepard’s friend, theater critic Mary Flynn.

Ginger Sledge will produce with Jason Blum for Blumhouse, along with Jonathan Marc Sherman and Linklater.

Principal photography has been completed for the first segment of the film.

(Read more)

Photo: Justjared.com

MARCEL PROUST’S IN SEARCH OF LOST TIME WITH DEREK JACOBI (LISTEN NOW ON BBC RADIO 4—LINK BELOW) ·

Listen 

Timberlake Wertenbaker’s adaptation from the French of Marcel Proust’s allegorical reflection on time, memory, art and love.

It begins with the vivid memory of a young boy’s childhood summers spent in the French countryside of Combray and the long nights waiting for his mother to come and kiss him goodnight. The young Marcel takes beautiful walks with his parents and has his first sighting of the young Gilberte Swann, daughter of family friend and well-connected Parisian Dandy, Charles Swann and his wife, the courtesan and seductress Odette de Crecy.

Cast:
MARCEL (narrator) ………Derek Jacobi
FATHER ………Oliver Cotton 
FRANCOISE ………Susan Brown 
MOTHER ………Sylvestra le Touzel 
GRANDMOTHER ………Joanna David 
TANTE LEONIE .……Pamela Miles 
GILBERTE (girl) ………Mary Glen 
ODETTE …………..Bessie Carter 
SWANN ………… Paterson Joseph 
MADEMOISELLE VINTEUIL/PROSTITUTE …. Charlotte Blandford 
THE DUCHESS DE GUERMANTES (Oriane) …………… Fenella Woolgar 
MADAME DE VERDURIN ………Frances Barber 
PIANIST …………Daniel Whitlam 
DOCTOR COTTARD …………Lloyd Hutchinson 
MARCEL(boy) ………Isaac Watts 
MONSIEUR VERDURIN …………Jeff Rawle
FEMALE FRIEND……….Phoebe Marshall

Translated and adapted from the French by Timberlake Wertenbaker
Produced and directed by Celia de Wolff
Production Co-ordinator: Sarah Tombling
Recording and Sound Design: David Chilton and Lucinda Mason Brown
Executive Producer: Peter Hoare

A Pier production for BBC Radio 4