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Jonathan Groff in Little Shop of Horrors
Photograph: Courtesy Emilio Madrid-KuserLittle Shop of Horrors

Off Broadway shows, reviews, tickets and listings

Here is where to find reviews, details, schedules, prices and ticket information about Off Broadway shows in New York

Adam Feldman
Written by
Adam Feldman
&
David Cote
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New York theater ranges far beyond the 41 large midtown houses that we call Broadway. Many of the city's most innovative and engaging new plays and musicals can be found Off Broadway, in venues that seat between 100 and 499 people. (Those that seat fewer than 100 people usually fall into the Off-Off Broadway category.) These more intimate spaces present work in a wide range of styles, from new pieces by major artists at the Public Theater or Playwrights Horizons to revivals at the Signature Theatre and crowd-pleasing commercial fare at New World Stages. And even the best Off Broadway shows usually cost less than their cousins on the Great White Way—even if you score cheap Broadway tickets. Use our listings to find reviews, prices, ticket links, curtain times and more for current and upcoming Off Broadway shows.

RECOMMENDED: Full list of Broadway and Off Broadway musicals in New York

NEW OFF BROADWAY SHOWS NOW PLAYING

  • Theater
  • Drama
  • Noho

In Itamar Moses's tense and timely drama, Josh Radnor (How I Met Your Mother) plays a progressive Jewish college professor who gets caught in a sticky wicket of social-justice issues when a student petitions him to sign a manifesto. The busy Lila Neugebauer (Appropriate) directs the world premiere at the Public Theater; Cherise Boothe, Elijah Jones, Michael Khalid Karadsheh, Joy Osmanski, Ben Rosenfield and Madeline Weinstein are also in the cast. 

  • Theater
  • Shakespeare
  • Upper West Side

Eric Tucker and his company, Bedlam, have a knack for modern-minded stagings of historical dramas, as their hit revival of Arcadia last year demonstrated anew. This time around, Tucker combines Shakespeare's Julius Caesar and Shaw's Caesar and Cleopatra into a multishaded portrait of the Roman military hero and would-be emperor. 

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  • Theater
  • Drama
  • Midtown West

Fans of playwright John Patrick Shanley (and who isn't?) have had a rare opportunity this season to track his career at 20-year intervals, thanks to prominent revivals of 1983's Danny and the Deep Blue Sea and 2004's Doubt and, now, the world premiere of his newest work: a story of three sisters and the owner of their local laundromat. Shanley himself directs for his NYC home base, Manhattan Theatre Club; the cast is made up of David Zayas, Florencia Lozano, Andrea Syglowski and the supertalented Saturday Night Live alum Cecily Strong.

  • Theater
  • Drama
  • Upper West Side

In previous Lincoln Center Theater productions, J.T. Rogers has dramatized world events from the 1980s (Blood and Gifts, about Afghanistan) and the 1990s (Oslo, about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict). In this latest outing, he skips ahead to the 2011 phone-hacking scandal that rocked the U.K.'s media and political landscapes, exposing ethical and criminal misconduct in Rupert Murdoch's tabloid empire. The Off Broadway premiere reunites Rogers with LCT resident director Bartlett Sher, who helmed both previous plays. Toby Stephens (Die Another Day) plays British MP Tom Watson—whose book with Martin Hickman, Dial M for Murdoch, is the basis of the play—and Saffron Burrows is Murdoch exec Rebekah Brooks; the stacked supporting cast includes Dylan Baker, John Behlmann, K. Todd Freeman, Seth Numrich and Michael Siberry.

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  • Theater
  • Musicals
  • Greenwich Village

Audible Theater's first commissioned musical reunites the team behind the lovely, Tony-winning musical The Band's Visit—book writer Itamar Moses, composer David Yazbek and director David Cromer, now joined by songwriter Erik Della Penna—to tell the very weird story of Elmer McCurdy: a Wild West outlaw whose corpse toured the country for decades as a side-show mummy. The ensemble comprises Jeb Brown, Eddie Cooper, Andrew Durand, Dashiell Eaves, Julia Knitel, Ken Marks, Trent Saunders and Thom Sesma.

  • Theater
  • Drama
  • Midtown West

Lucy Prebble's unsettling issue drama, first seen in NYC in 2013, depicts a pair of volunteers who fall for each other during a clinical trial for an antidepressant—without knowing if they're experiencing love or a chemical reaction, if indeed there's a difference between the two. This revival, directed by Jamie Lloyd (A Doll's House) and starring Michele Austin and Kobna Holdbrook-Smith, debuted at the U.K.'s National Theatre last year, and is now being imported by the Shed. 

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  • Theater
  • Musicals
  • Hell's Kitchen

Five women trapped in the orbit of Donald Trump—wife Melania, ex-wives Ivana and Marla, daughter Ivanka and alleged paid companion and hush-money recipient Stormy Daniels—compete for your support in this original spoof of the Broadway musical Six, with book and lyrics Shimmy Braun and Moshiel Newman Daphna and music and lyrics by Billy Recce (A Musical About Star Wars). Jen Wineman directs the cast of six, which in addition to the main quintet features drag star Jasmine Rice LaBeija as Hillary Clinton.

  • Theater
  • Drama
  • DUMBO

Tobias Menzies (The Crown) plays a rural schoolteacher who is falsely accused of sexually abusing a child in David Farr's stage adaptation of the 2012 Dutch film Jagten (not to be confused with the 2020 American film The Hunt). The play's U.S. premiere at St. Ann's Warehouse is a remount of Rupert Goold's 2019 production at London's Almeida Theatre, including the striking set by Es Devlin (The Lehman Trilogy). 

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  • Theater
  • Upper East Side

Ever since 1984's Vampire Lesbians of Sodom, Charles Busch has been working toward the title of First Lady of the American Stage, delivering hilariously nuanced portraits of defiant yet vulnerable women, in the style of the great film stars of the 1940s; he cut his teeth on cinematic tough cookies with melty centers, and he has their style in his bones. In his latest outing, directed by longtime collaborator Carl Andress for Primary Stages, Busch portrays a widow driven to great lengths to protect the reputation of her late husband: the pioneering social-realist playwright Henrik Ibsen. 

  • Theater
  • Experimental
  • Lenox Hill

Director-choreographer Justin Peck, the New York City Ballet's resident choreographer, turns Sufjan Stevens's 2005 concept album, Illinois, into a dance-theater piece with a narrative throughline he has devised with playwright Jackie Sibblies Drury. Three vocalists and an 11-piece band perform the music while a cast of 16 dancers—including Gaby Diaz, Robbie Fairchild, Ben Cook, Ahmad Simmons and Ricky Ubeda—brings new blasts of movement to Park Avenue Armory's massive Drill Hall.

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  • Theater
  • Musicals
  • East Village

Mona Pirnot, one of New York Theatre Workshop's Usual Suspects, explores private questions in a public sphere in this unconventional concert play, in which she performs her own songs but a computer delivers the monologues. Playwright Lucas Hnathno stranger to high concepts himself, as he recently proved in Dana H.—directs for NYTW.

  • Theater
  • Drama
  • Midtown West

Gabby Beans (The Skin of Our Teeth) plays a scholarship student who falls for a seemingly perfect classmate at her boarding school in a twisty coming-of-age story by Rachel Bonds. Danya Taymor—who is directing another troubled-teen taleThe Outsiders, on Broadway this season—helms the world premiere at the Roundabout, with a cast that also includes Hagan Oliveras, Samuel Henry Levine and John Zdrojeski.

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  • Theater
  • Interactive
  • Hell's Kitchen

Veteran TV host Marc Summers, of Nickelodeon's green-slimy Double Dare and the Food Network's Unwrappedtells his own story in a show with a script by comic actor Alex Brightman (Beetlejuice) and music by Drew Gasparini. Chad Rabinovitz directs the Off Broadway premiere, which includes (potential messy!) interactive game-show elements as well as true stories from Summers's career, from on-camera antics to behind-the-scenes struggles with obsessive-compulsive disorder.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Theater
  • Comedy
  • West Village

Cole Escola's dizzyingly historical burlesque imagines a boozy, vicious and miserable Mary Todd Lincoln in the weeks leading up to her husband’s assassination. Escola plays Mary with magnetic zaniness, poise and total moment-to-moment comic commitment; director Sam Pinkleton never lets the comic energy flag, and the supporting cast is delicious. (Conrad Ricamora and James Scully as the men in Mary's life.) Everything comes together to create an instant downtown classic, and the funniest stage comedy in years.—Adam Feldman

 

 

, Bianca Leigh and Tony Macht. Conrad Ricamora plays the not-so-honest Abe, consumed with lust for a young male underling (Tony Macht); James Scully is a handsome drama coach with whom Mary strikes up a forbidden romance, and Bianca Leigh is Mary’s prim chaperone. It would be unsporting to spoil any of the comic twists—some of them cheerily raunchy—that the play springs on the audience, but everything comes together to create an instant downtown classic. Entering the Lucille Lortel Theatre, you walk over the names of Charles Ludlam and Charles Busch, two camp-comedy legends honored on the Playwrights' Sidewalk outside the venue. With Oh, Mary!, Escola stakes a strong claim to being the next step. 

Escola has earned a cult reputation as a sly comedic genius in their dazzling solo performances (Help! I’m Stuck!) and on TV shows like At Home with Amy Sedaris, Difficult People and Search Party. But Oh, Mary!, their first full-length play, may surprise even longtime fans. In this hilariously anachronistic historical burlesque, Escola plays—who else?—Mary Todd Lincoln, in the weeks leading up to her husband’s assassination. Boozy, vicious and miserable, the unstable and outrageously contrary Mary is oblivious to the Civil War and hell-bent on achieving stardom as—what else?—a cabaret singer. 

Oh, Mary! | Photograph: Courtesy Emilio Madrid

Described by the long-suffering President Lincoln as “my foul and hateful wife,” this virago makes her entrance snarling and hunched with fury, desperate to find a bottle she has hidden in a White House office; storming the stage in a black hoop skirt, with dark curls framing her pale round face, she suggests a porcelain doll come to wicked life and determined to bedevil everyone she crosses. Mary’s intensely mercurial nature—her mood can swing in an instant from savage to sentimental—is an ideal match for Escola’s magnetic combination of zaniness and poise, of knowing distance and total moment-to-moment commitment. Their sensibility is steeped in the camp culture of yesteryear, but it doesn’t stay immersed; a mischievous modern streak continually pokes through the surface. The effect is bewitching: Escola lights up the stage like a full moon. 

But other than that Mrs. Lincoln, how is the play? Happily, it’s a transhistorical delight: a very 21st-century comedy about a 19th-century tragedy as filtered through a lens of 20th-century movie dramas. Director Sam Pinkleton never lets the comic energy flag, and the supporting cast is delicious. Conrad Ricamora plays the not-so-honest Abe, consumed with lust for a young male underling (Tony Macht); James Scully is a handsome drama coach with whom Mary strikes up a forbidden romance, and Bianca Leigh is Mary’s prim chaperone. It would be unsporting to spoil any of the comic twists—some of them cheerily raunchy—that the play springs on the audience, but everything comes together to create an instant downtown classic. Entering the Lucille Lortel Theatre, you walk over the names of Charles Ludlam and Charles Busch, two camp-comedy legends honored on the Playwrights' Sidewalk outside the venue. With Oh, Mary!, Escola stakes a strong claim to being the next step. 

Oh, Mary! Lucille Lortel Theatre (Off Broadway). By Cole Escola. Directed by Sam Pinkleton. With Escola, Conrad Ricamora, James Scully, Bianca Leigh, Tony Macht. Running time: 1hr 20mins. No intermission. 

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Oh, Mary! | Photograph: Courtesy Emilio Madrid

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  • Theater
  • Shakespeare
  • East Village

The ever inventive Fiasco Theater mounts an intimate version of one of Shakespeare's strangest plays: a kind of Ancient Mediterranean Flash Gordon adventure—often co-attributed to Elizabethan ne'er-do-well George Wilkins—that includes shipwrecks, contests to win a princess’s hand, a pirate abduction, a virgin in a brothel and a guest shot by the goddess Diana. Eight members of the company fill out the entire dramatis personae: Jessie Austrian, Noah Brody, Paul L. Coffey, Andy Grotelueschen, Devin E. Haqq, Paco Tolson Emily Young and director Ben Steinfeld.

  • Theater
  • Drama
  • Hell's Kitchen

Former gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon plays a celebrated performance artist who vanishes for seven years—then reappears just as mysteriously with a big request for her son, played by Taylor Trensch (Dear Evan Hansen)—in an exploration of mamas and boys by Jordan Seavey (Homos, or Everyone in America). Scott Elliott directs the world permiere for his company, the New Group.

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  • Theater
  • Musicals
  • Hell's Kitchen

A photographer in New York City navigates the cultural sea change of the 1960s in this new jukebox musical by Lindsey Hope Pearlman, which incorporates period pop hits by the likes of Petula Clark, Dusty Springfield and Lesley Gore. Gabriel Barre directs the New York premiere for the York Theatre Company; JoAnn M. Hunter choreographs, and Joseph Church (The Lion King) oversees and arranges the musicChilina Kennedy, Ryan Silverman, Justin Matthew Sargent, Crystal Lucas-Perry and Akron Lanier Watson lead the cast.

  • Theater
  • Drama
  • Hell's Kitchen

A Brooklyn woman is reunited with her father, a former black radical, in Dominique Morisseau's 2012 drama about modern identity politics. Steve H. Broadnax III directs the revival for Signature Theatre, where Morisseau (Skeleton Crew) is a Premiere Writer-in-Residence; the cast comprises Russell HornsbyMoses Ingram and J. Alphonse Nicholson.

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  • Theater
  • Musicals
  • Hell's Kitchen

Vagina dentata! What a wonderful phrase! Vagina dentata ain't no passing craze for the Christian teen played by Alyse Alan Louis (Soft Power) in this musical dark comedy by Michael R. Jackson (A Strange Loop) and Anna K. Jacobs (Pop!), adapted from Mitchell Lichtenstein's 2007 cult horror flick about a girl whose nether regions spell doom for would-be assailants. Sarah Benson directs and Raja Feather Kelly choreographs the show's world premiere at Playwrights Horizons; the supporting cast includes Will Connolly and Jason Gotay.

  • Theater
  • Comedy
  • Hell's Kitchen

While Broadway's Days of Wine and Roses uses music to explore alcoholism and recovery in the 1950s, Sean Daniels's play takes the road of contemporary drama. Joe Tapper plays the central character, who is based on the playwright himself: a successful theatrical artistic director whose life and career are nearly destroyed by his wild spins with the bottle. Sheryl Kaller (Next Fall) directs the production, which costars Crystal Dickinson and Jason Tam.

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  • Theater
  • Musicals
  • Hell's Kitchen

Jo Ellen Pellman and Mike Cefalo play Sophie and Hans Scholl, the brave German siblings who led an underground student resistance to Hitler in the early 1940s, in an original musical by librettist Brian Belding and composer Natalie Brice. The cast, directed by Will Nunziata, also includes Kennedy Kanagawa (Into the Woods's Milky White) as the Scholls' confederate Christoph Probst.

LONG-RUNNING OFF BROADWAY SHOWS

Blue Man Group
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Theater
  • Comedy
  • Noho

Three deadpan blue-skinned men with extraterrestrial imaginations carry this tourist fave, a show as smart as it is ridiculous. They drum on open tubs of paint, creating splashes of color; they consume Twinkies and Cap'n Crunch; they engulf the audience in a roiling sea of toilet paper. For sheer weird, exuberant fun, it's hard to top this long-running treat. (Note: The playing schedule varies from week to week, with as many as four performances on some days and none on others.)—Adam Feldman

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Theater
  • Circuses & magic
  • Midtown EastOpen run

Steve Cohen, billed as the Millionaires’ Magician, conjures his high-class parlor magic in the marble-columned Madison Room at the swank Lotte New York Palace. Sporting a tuxedo and bright rust hair, the magician delivers routines that he has buffed to a patent-leather gleam.—Adam Feldman

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  • Theater
  • Shakespeare
  • Midtown WestOpen run

Five classically trained actors gather to perform a Shakespeare play, but this dramatic cocktail is served with a twist: One of them gets boozed up before the show—in the vein of Comedy Central's Drunk History—and hilarity ensues as the four sober cast members try to keep the script on track. 

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  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Theater
  • Hell's KitchenOpen run

Self-described “bubble scientist” Fan Yang's blissfully disarming act (now performed in New York by his son Deni, daughter Melody and wife Ana) consists mainly of generating a dazzling succession of bubbles in mind-blowing configurations, filling them with smoke or linking them into long chains. Lasers and flashing colored lights add to the trippy visuals.—David Cote

  • Theater
  • Comedy
  • Hell's KitchenOpen run

The Canadian performer Katsura Sunshine, billed as the only Western master of the traditional and rigorously trained Japanese comic stortellying art of Rakugo, performs a monthly show at New World Stages. In keeping with the genre's minimalist practice, Sunshine performs in a kimono using only a fan and a hand towel for props. 

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  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Theater
  • Musicals
  • Hell's KitchenOpen run

Corbin Bleu, Constance Wu and Bryce Pinkham currently star in the latest revival of this dark, tuneful and utterly winsome 1982 horror-camp musical about a flesh-eating plant who makes dreams come true for a lowly flower-shop worker. Composer Alan Menken and librettist Howard Ashman wrap a sordid tale of capitalist temptation and moral decay in layers of sweetness, humor, wit and camp. Michael Mayer directs the feeding frenzy in this deeply satisfying revival.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Theater
  • Circuses & magic
  • Greenwich VillageOpen run

This proudly old-school series offers a different lineup of professional magicians every week: a host, opening acts and a headliner, plus two or three close-up magicians to wow the audience at intermission. In contrast to some fancier magic shows, this one feels like comfort food: an all-you-can-eat buffet to which you’re encouraged to return until you’re as stuffed as a hat full of rabbits.—Adam Feldman

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  • Theater
  • Musicals
  • Hell's KitchenOpen run

The boys are back in town! Five nice-looking men take it all off and vocalize in this collage of musical vignettes on gay themes, revamped since its 1999 debut with new jokes and more up-to-date references. Although sex is central to most of the numbers, the goofy nudism has no erotic charge (and when the show tries to be serious, it's sometimes hard to watch). After a hiatus of several years, NBS has returned to NYC at a new venue in 2023.

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  • Theater
  • Drama
  • Midtown WestOpen run

A wily cop tries to psych out a possibly homicidal shrink in Warren Manzi’s moldy, convoluted mystery. The creaky welter of dime-store Freudianism, noirish attitude and whodunit gimmickry is showing its age. (Catherine Russell has starred since 1987.)—David Cote

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Theater
  • Comedy
  • Hell's KitchenOpen run

Ah, the joy of watching theater fail. The possibility of malfunction is part of what makes live performance exciting, and Mischief Theatre’s farce takes that notion to extremes as amateur British actors perform a hackneyed whodunnit amid escalating calamities. Depending on your tolerance for ceaseless slapstick, the show will either have you rolling in the aisles or rolling your eyes. Directed by Mark Bell, the mayhem goes like cuckoo clockwork on Nigel Hook’s ingeniously tumbledown set.—Adam Feldman 

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  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Theater
  • Circuses & magic
  • Open run

Hosted by Todd Robbins, who specializes in mild carnival-sideshow shocks, Speakeasy Magick is a moveable feast of legerdemain; audience members, seated at seven tables, are visited by a series of performers in turn. Robbins describes this as “magic speed dating.” One might also think of it as tricking: an illusion of intimacy, a satisfying climax, and off they go into the night.—Adam Feldman

UPCOMING OFF BROADWAY SHOWS

  • Theater
  • Drama
  • Financial District

Laurence Fishburne's extraordinary career has included many top-flight performances onstage (Two Trains Running, Thurgood) as well as movies (<What's Love Got to Do With It, Othello, the Matrix films) and on television (Pee-Wee's Playhouse, Blackish). In the world premiere of his autobiographical solo show—directed by Leonard Foglia at the new Perelman Performing Arts Center—he explores what he describes as "the stories and lies people have told me, and that I have told myself."

  • Theater
  • Drama
  • Noho

Public Theater playwright-in-residence Suzan-Lori Parks (Topdog/Underdog) is highly adept at picking at the scabs of unhealed racial wounds. Her new dramedy seems sure to do just that: It's about a small, well-meaning NYC theater troupe that mounts a play about the relationship between Sally Hemings and Thomas Jefferson, with the playwright and director in the lead roles. Steve H. Broadnax III directs the NYC premiere, presented at the Public in association with Minneapolis’s Guthrie Theater (where the play debuted in 2022). Public Theater playwright-in-residence Suzan-Lori Parks (Topdog/Underdog) is highly adept at picking at the scabs of unhealed racial wounds. Her new dramedy seems sure to do just that: It's about a small, well-meaning NYC theater troupe that mounts a play about the relationship between Sally Hemings and Thomas Jefferson, with the playwright and director in the lead roles. Steve H. Broadnax III directs the NYC premiere, presented at the Public in association with Minneapolis’s Guthrie Theater (where the play debuted in 2022). Gabriel Ebert and Sheria Irving play the title figures.

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  • Theater
  • Drama
  • DUMBO

St. Ann’s Warehouse presents the 2023 National Theatre production of this documentary-theater piece about the Grenfell Tower fire that killed 72 people in 2017. The text of the play has been assembled by playwright Gillian Slovo from verbatim transcripts of conversations with survivors of the tragedy and other members of the West London community where it took place. Phyllida Lloyd and Anthony-Simpson Pike direct.

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