SOCRATES at THE PUBLIC THEATER

Lecture, exhortation, dissertation, harangue. These are all synonyms for “talking”, which is what the subject of actor/director/playwright Tim Blake Nelson’s new play Socrates --- now playing at The Public Theater extended through June 2nd as the anchor of Onassis USA Festival 2019: Democracy is Coming --- is best known for. In fact, he made a life, death and immortality out of being a relentless orator, so much so that a man born in 470 B.C.E. is still a topic of modern tongues and his tradition of thought, theories and philosophies are taught as required curriculum at any liberal arts school

Diary of One Who Disappeared at BAM Lingers With Themes of Familiarity, Longing and Obsession

Obsession, fixation, unrequited love, chasing the muse and being haunted by a longing that can never fully be realized or consummated, but nevertheless continues to ignite flames of desire and creative sparks, are pervasive themes in Diary of One Who Disappeared. Muziektheater Transparant — a Flemish company devoted to sharing old-meets-new opera and musical theatre expressions for a wide audience — returns to their exploration of the autobiographical tormented love story of Czech composer Leoš Janáček’s enchantment with Kamila Stösslová, a married woman nearly 40 years his junior and from a very different background to whom he wrote over 700

Colin Quinn Red State Blue State at Minetta Lane Theatre Unites a Nation Divided with Humor and Wisdom

Comedian Colin Quinn has been referred to as a “satirical sage from Brooklyn.” It’s an apt title for the performer who took the stage of the Minetta Lane Theatre to a packed house for his new solo show, Red State Blue State. With his scruffy facial hair -- not quite a beard but well past the hour of a 5 o’clock shadow, now with more salt than pepper -- the alumni of MTV, Comedy Central and SNL both looks and acts the part of a wise, witty and wistful observer reflecting on our drastically divided nation without malice, blame or

4:48 PSYCHOSIS Explores the Sounds of Despair, Rage and Hopelessness at Prototype Festival

Great art is meant to bring the viewer into another universe, perhaps allowing them to -- if only fleetingly -- experience previously unimagined scenarios, feelings and worldviews. It has the power and potency to connect us to the broader spectrum of emotions that make up the human condition. But what happens when this art is a semi-autobiographical piece of essentially heightened, poeticized and dramatized non-fiction that could be and has been regarded as “a 75-minute suicide note” (Michael Billington, The Guardian), such as 4:48 Psychosis -- the stark, often brutal, occasionally darkly comedic and deeply unsettling post-mortem work of English

THE PROM on Broadway at the Longacre Theatre

The Prom, now playing at the Longacre Theatre, might just be the show that single-handedly puts the Broadway back into Broadway musicals. With rare yet notable exceptions, most of them Tony winners -- Fun Home, Hamilton, Come From Away, The Band’s Visit and Dear Evan Hansen (the latter of which The Prom is a close cousin of but the cheerier, more bubbly sort) -- most musicals being produced today are based on branded properties: film or book adaptations, jukebox creations where the songs are guaranteed to be memorable hits (they already are) or pop culture icons (Spiderman: Turn Off The

Wild Goose Dreams at The Public Theater

In Hansol Jung’s tender, poignant and humorously human Wild Goose Dreams, The Public Theater’s entire third floor space is transformed into a the city of Seoul, South Korea (the inventive and imaginative design is credited to Public and Broadway veteran, Clint Ramos) through a vibrant visual plethora of candy-colored campaigns and neon notifications with a small sampling of blown-up family photos scattered between. This manic mosaic sets the chaotic tone of a modern world where various sights and sound bites compete for attention -- though that only creates a feeling of deeper isolation amidst all the noise. But the eye-bruising visual

The Mobile Unit’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream at The PUBLIC Theater

Though some of the fantastical fairies and magically made-up men and women may have hung up their glittery wings and cast off their gilded lids and long lashes on November 1st, the true enchantment continues through November 17th at the Public Theater with The Mobile Unit’s playful production of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night’s Dream. This costumed comedy of trickery is the perfect treat for the post-Halloween season. And, thanks to the mission of The Mobile Unit (a reinvention of the “Mobile Theater” originally founded in 1957 by Joe Papp) that art should be free and accessible to everyone -- the

BROADWAY: GETTIN’ THE BAND BACK TOGETHER AT THE BELASCO THEATRE

(WARNING! Contains spoilers) New York City -- the most dazzling and difficult place to live out your wildest dreams and fantasies. They say: “If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere,” but truth be told, many don’t make it. Such was the case for Mitch Papadopoulos (played by Mitchell Jarvis) -- the protagonist of Gettin’ the Band Back Together -- a Jersey boy turned stockbroker who had to revert to living with his mother in his childhood hometown across the Hudson River in Sayreville, NJ, after his career took a nosedive when he turned forty. The show can be

NINAGAWA Macbeth at Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival

Feudal Japan might seem an unlikely setting for the Shakespearean masterpiece known as the “Scottish play,” but in actuality it could not be more interesting or appropriate, as was made clear through the vision of the late director, Yukio Ninagawa’s emotionally compelling, visually electrifying ode to the Bard’s  killer couple -- NINAGAWA Macbeth -- playing at the David H. Koch Theater as part of Lincoln Center’s annual acclaimed Mostly Mozart Festival. This exceptional revival of Ninagawa’s landmark 1980 production was the last production overseen by the legendary director before his death in 2016 and these performances mark the work’s final

Desperate Measures at New World Stages

It’s a rare thing when all of the elements come together perfectly to create true theatrical magic. One of the most recent examples of that kind of kismet is a delightfully riotous romp called Desperate Measures, now playing Off-Broadway at New World Stages after its multi-award winning (Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and Off Broadway Alliance) and numerously extended run at the York Theater last year. The plot, which examines how justice is served and manipulated, is loosely based on Shakespeare’s Measure For Measure. The setting is the Wild West where Johnny Blood (Conor Ryan) waits in jail with a drunken,

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