Worldwide icon-chevron-right North America icon-chevron-right United States icon-chevron-right New York State icon-chevron-right New York icon-chevron-right The best live theater to stream online on August 3, August 4 and August 5
Jekyll & Hyde (Old Vic)
Photograph: Manuel Harlan Jekyll & Hyde (Old Vic)

The best live theater to stream online on August 3, August 4 and August 5

Theaters are closed for now, but you can find great stage stars and events live online today

By Adam Feldman
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The current crisis has had a devastating effect on the performing arts. Broadway has shut down for at least the rest of 2020, and the ban on gatherings in New York extends to all other performance spaces as well. So the show must go online—and streaming video makes that possible. Here are some of the best theater, opera, dance and cabaret events you can watch today without leaving home, many of which will help you support artists and charities. Performances that go live today are at the top of the list; scroll past the daily listings to find events that can still be seen for a limited time and, below that, a bonus section of videos with no expiration dates. We update this page every day, so bookmark it for the latest information.   

Play-PerView: RoosevElvis
Now (through August 6)
The charitable virtual-theater initiative Play-PerView presents a live Zoom reunion reading of the wonderful two-hander RoosevElvis, one of the standout productions of 2013. A shy, Presley-loving Midwestern lesbian takes a road trip to Graceland, with an imaginary drag-king Teddy Roosevelt by her side, in the TEAM’s offbeat and on-target exploration of American daring and loneliness. Under the direction of Rachel Chavkin (Hadestown), performers and co-creators Libby King and Kristen Sieh take off on flights of wildly original comedy, set in marked counterpoint with melancholy. “This glorious show is strong precisely because it focuses on individuals,” wrote Helen Shaw in her Time Out review. “Some astonishing scenes, several the best I've seen this year, are the result.” Tickets cost $15, and proceeds benefit the TEAM and the Emergency Release Fund. Unlike most PPV shows, a recording of the reading will remain available for several days afterward.

RoosevElvis | Photograph: Sue Kessler

Manual Cinema: The End of TV
Monday 1pm EDT / 6pm BST (available for one week)
The  Chicago collective Manual Cinema (Ada/Ava) combines shadow puppetry and filmic techniques to create virtuosic immersive theater experiences. To celebrate its 10th anniversary, the company is sharing four full shows from its archives in a month-long series it is calling Retrospectacular! Each show remains viewable for free for one week. The second is 2017’s The End of TV, an exploration of existence and advertising that is set in a 1990s Rust Belt town and accompanied by a five-piece band.

The End of TV | Photograph: Judy Rosenthal 

Metropolitan Opera: The Magic Flute
Monday 7:30pm EDT / 12:30am BST (available for 23 hours)
The Met continues its immensely popular rollout of past performances, recorded in HD and viewable for free. A different archival production goes live at 7:30pm each night and remains online for the next 23 hours. Tonight the series begins its 21th week with the Met’s very first Live in HD broadcast: a 2006 account of Mozart’s fairy tale Die Zauberflöte, performed in English and staged with her characteristic imaginative exuberance by The Lion King auteur Julie Taymor. James Levine conducts the performance, whose cast includes Nathan Gunn, Ying Huang, Matthew Polenzani, René Pape and Erika Miklósa as the Queen of the Night. 

The Magic Flute | Photograph: Cory Weaver

Theater Breaking Through Barriers: Voices from the Great Experiment
Monday 7:30pm EDT / 12:30am BST
Theater Breaking Through Barriers, whose productions prominently feature artists with disabilities, presents the second edition of its Virtual Playmakers’ Intensive. The company shares a new short play every evening from tonight through August 10. The first offering is Fareeda Ahmed’s The Olympians, directed by Kristin Heckler and featuring Shravan Amin, Samantha Debicki and Paul Pryce.

Jim Caruso's Pajama Cast Party
Monday 8pm EDT / 1am BST
Part cabaret, part piano bar and part social set, Birdland's long-running Monday-night open mic Cast Party offers a chance to hear rising and established talents step up to the spotlight. The waggish Jim Caruso presides as host, and now he brings the show online via YouTube. This week’s guest list includes Broadway bombshell Megan Hilty and her husband, singer-songwriter Brian Gallagher, as well as musical-theater vets Karen Mason, James Delisco Beeks and Julie Garnyé, jazz chanteuse Rose Colella and singer-nurse Danielle Threet. The show is free, but tips are welcome (Venmo: @Jim-Caruso-1).  

Megan Hilty | Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

CyberTank Variety Show
Tuesday 4pm EDT / 9pm BST 
The Tank, one of NYC’s premiere incubators of emerging talent, rolls forward with a weekly multidisciplinary variety show and discussion group, in which artists are welcome to participate remotely. 

Marie’s Crisis Virtual Piano Bar
Tuesday 4pm–9:30pm EDT / 9pm–2:30am BST
The beloved West Village institution keeps the show tunes rolling merrily along every night of the week. Read all about it here. Join the Maries Group page on Facebook to watch from home, and don’t forget to tip the pianist and staff through Venmo. Tonight’s scheduled pianists are James Merillat (@James-Merillat-2) and Franca Vercelloni (@Franca-Vercelloni).  

The 24 Hour Plays: Viral Monologues by the Nationals
Tuesday 6pm EDT / 11pm BST (available for four days)
Since 1995, the 24 Hour Plays series has set itself a challenge: to write, cast and perform new playlets in the span of a single night and day. In this weekly variation on that theme, writers create monologues or two-handers for actors who record them and send them in for online broadcast. On Tuesdays starting at 6pm, a new piece goes live every 15 minutes on the 24 Hours Plays’ Instagram feed, where they remain viewable for four days. This edition of the series is created entirely by the Nationals: theater artists under 25 who have spent the past week in an intensive workshop and training program that culminates in this showcase event.

Times Square Alliance: Broadway Buskers
Tuesday 7pm EDT / midnight BST
Broadway booster Ben Cameron curates and hosts this platform for talented musical-theater singer-songwriters, usually held live outdoors in Times Square but now streaming every Tuesday in crowdless and Elmo-free virtual space. This week, the spotlight shines on Lauren Elder (Hair), James Harkness (Ain’t Too Proud) and Nathan Salstone (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child). 

Lauren Elder | Photograph: Summer LaLande

The Tank: Fast & Furious
Tuesday 7pm EDT / midnight BST
Participants in the Tank’s monthly performance showcase have only a week to create their pieces in response to the latest news cycles. 

Metropolitan Opera: Les Contes d’Hoffmann
Tuesday 7:30pm EDT / 12:30am BST (available for 23 hours)
See Monday 7:30pm. Tonight’s Met selection is a 2015 broadcast of Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Jacques Offenbach’s 1880 triptych of weird romances based on stories by E.T.A. Hoffmann. Vittorio Grigolo plays the central role, and Hibla Gerzmava, Christine Rice and Erin Morley are his main squeezes: a sickly singer, a courtesan and a wind-up doll, respectively. (The last of these has one of the most entertaining coloratura showpieces in the repertoire.) The Met’s vibrant production, conducted here by Yves Abel, is directed by Lincoln Center Theater mainstay Bartlett Sher.   

Les Contes d’Hoffmann | Photograph: Marty Sohl

The Sol Project: SolFest 2020 
Tuesday 7:30pm EDT / 12:30am BST (live only)
The third edition of SolFest, the Sol Project’s annual minifestival of work by Latinx writers, began last night with the final episode of Pregones/Puerto Rican Traveling Theater’s Remojo series. Tonight’s program is a mixed bill that includes: works by and discussions with Miranda Gonzalez, Alexis Elisa Macedo and Jesus Mario Contreras; a tribute to the late Diane Rodriguez; a political mockumentary short called 20 After 20: A Mock Into The Future (Part One); and a preview of the immersive virtual-theater show Carla’s Quince. Registration is required.

Theater Breaking Through Barriers: Voices from the Great Experiment
Tuesday 7:30pm EDT / 12:30am BST
See Monday 7:30pm. Tonight’s offering is Khalil LeSaldo’s Sing, directed by Ward Nixon and featuring Martin Lewis and AhDream Smith. 

Amber Martin: Ambyoke
Tuesday 8pm EDT / 1am BST
The multitalented Amber Martin, a chameleonic performer with a killer voice, is a significant player in the downtown alt-cabaret scene, and she’s not going to let a little quarantine slow her down. In her weekly hang session on Facebook, she sings favorites and requests to karaoke tracks and chats with guests. This week finds in in New Orleans and joined remotely by the talented rrto vocalist and former lady Rizo. (You can tip Martin through Venmo at @Amber-Martin-101.)

Amber Martin | Photograph: Bobby Miller

Stars in the House: L.A. Law TV cast reunion
Tuesday 8pm EDT / 1am BST
Showtune savant and SiriusXM host Seth Rudetsky (Disaster!) and his husband, producer James Wesley, are the animating forces behind this ambitious and very entertaining series, in which they play host to theater stars in live, chatty interviews interspersed with clips and songs. Dr. Jon LaPook, the chief medical correspondent for CBS News, provides periodic updates on public health; surprise virtual visitors are common as well. Donations benefit the Actors Fund. Tonight’s episode strays from the series’s usual theatrical focus to reunite stars of the Emmy-winning 1980s legal drama L.A. Law, including Harry Hamlin, Susan Dey, Corbin Bernsen, Jill Eikenberry, Michael Tucker, Jimmy Smits, Alan Rachins, Blair Underwood and Michele Greene.  

Jill Eikenberry | Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Ice Factory: The Transit Ensemble: Who’s There? 
Tuesday 10pm EDT / 3am BST (live only)
Need a break from the summer heat? The cool curatorial heads of the New Ohio Theatre’s Ice Factory festival always provide a welcome breeze. In its month-long 27th edition, the fest is offering four new productions, performed virtually for runs of three or four days each. The third is the Transit Ensemble’s Who’s There, a devised work about the intersections of race, class, gender and otherness in the age of internet activism. The piece is performed live by artists in the United States, Singapore and Malaysia; Sim Yan Ying “YY” and Alvin Tan direct a diverse cast of six that includes YY herself along with Ghafir Akbar, Sean Devare, Rebekah Sangeetha Dorai, Neil Redfield and Camille Thomas. Reservations are required; the tickets are pay-what-you-will with a suggested price of $10.

Sim Yan Ying "YY" | Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

A Killer Party: A Murder Mystery Musical
Wednesday 10am EDT / 3pm BST 
Jeremy Jordan and Laura Osnes played famous murderers in the short-lived 2011 Broadway musical Bonnie and Clyde. Now they are among the suspects in A Killer Part, a nine-part serialized comedic musical mystery by Kait Kerrigan, Jason Howland and Nathan Tysen. Three short episodes debut at once on each of three consecutive Wednesdays, starting today. The starry cast, performing remotely and directed by Marc Bruni, also includes Carolee Carmello, Alex Newell, Jarrod Spector, Drew Gehling, Michael James Scott, Krystina Alabado, Jackie Burns, Miguel Cervantes, and Jessica Keenan-Wynn as the inexperienced detective on their trail. Tickets cost $13 for the whole series (or $10 if you order before August 5).  

Jeremy Jordan | Photograph: Nathan Johnson

Old Vic: Jekyll & Hyde|
2pm EDT / 7pm BST (available for one week)
London’s stately Old Vic has been around for more than 200 years, most recently under the stewardship of director Matthew Warchus. While the 1,000-seat venue is closed to in-the-flesh audiences, it has been sharing various kinds of virtual programming, including live broadcasts as well as free archival recordings on its YouTube channel. This week, the company shares choreographer Drew McOnie’s 2016 dance thriller Jekyll & Hyde, which crossbreeds Robert Louis Stevenson’s gothic Victorian novella with Little Shop of Horrors and sets it to new music by Grant Olding. The cast is led by Daniel Collins, Tim Hodges and Rachel Muldoon.

Jekyll & Hyde | Photograph: Manuel Harlan

Marie’s Crisis Virtual Piano Bar
Wednesday 4pm–9:30pm EDT / 9pm–2:30am BST
See Monday 4pm. Tonight’s scheduled pianists are Drew Wutke (@DrewWutke) and Kenney Green (@KenneyGreenMusic).

Metropolitan Opera: Così fan tutte
Wednesday 5pm EDT / 10pm BST (available for 48 hours)
In addition to its nightly full productions (see 7:30pm), the Met offers an additional free opera from its Live in HD series every Wednesday through its Free Student Streams program. The videos stay live for 48 hours, and supplemental materials help newcomers unpack each offering. This week's study subject is Mozart’s saucy Così fan tutte, set by director Phelim McDermott in 1950s Coney Island. David Robertson conducts this 2018 performance, which stars Amanda Majeski, Serena Malfi, Ben Bliss, Adam Plachetka, Christopher Maltman and Broadway’s Kelli O’Hara. 

Così fan tutte | Photograph: Ken Howard

The Homebound Project
Wednesday 7pm EDT / midnight BST (available for four days)
An extremely impressive roster of 50 actors and writers lend their talents to this online initiative to raise money for No Kid Hungry, which helps feed children affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Founded by playwright Catya McMullen and director Jenna Worsham, each of the Homebound Project’s editions features new short dramatic works, directed by professionals; you can watch them in return for a donation of $10 or more. The actors in tonight’s fifth and final installment, on the theme of “homemade,” include Laurie Metcalf, Janelle Monáe, Brian Cox, Amanda Seyfried, Kelli O’Hara, Austin Pendleton and Ryan J. Haddad; among the writers of the 12 pieces are Craig Lucas, Stephen Karam, Lena Dunham, Lloyd Suh, Sylvia Khoury, Donnetta Lavinia Grays.

Laurie Metcalf | Photograph: Corey Nickols

Bristol Riverside Theatre Summer Music Fest: A Night at the Movies
Wednesday 7pm EDT / midnight BST (live only)
Pennsylvania’s Bristol Riverside Theatre offers a virtual edition of its annual concert series, Summer Music Fest. Each of the three shows is recorded and broadcast three times. This month’s selection is A Night at the Movies, in which singers Demetria Joyce Bailey, Rebecca Robbins and Sean Thompson add their vocal polish to silver-screen tunes from “Stormy Weather” to “Moon River” and beyond. Keith Baker serves as host and music director; tickets cost $35, which will help the Bucks County company collect some much-needed bucks.  

New Works: Between the Lines and My Little Barbizon
Wednesday 7pm EDT / midnight BST
In this weekly 45-minute show, New York Theatre Barn's development series Zooms in on musicals-in-progress. Kate Anderson, Elyssa Samsel and Timothy Allen McDonald’s Between the Lines, adapted from the best-selling YA novel by Jodi Picoult and Samantha van Leer, tells of a teenage girl who escapes the alienation of attending a new school with help from her favorite book; in Angela Sclafani’s My Little Barbizon, a young woman at New York’s Barbizon Hotel imagines conversing with fellow aspiring writers who have stayed there, including Joan Didion, Sylvia Plath, Eudora Welty and Gael Greene. As a lagniappe, today’s episode also includes a new song by Debra Barsha and Sheilah Rae, about the political empowerment of women. Half of the donations received this week will go to the antiviolence organization A Long Walk Home.

Angela Sclafani | Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Ballet Hispánico: Cada Noche...Tango
Wednesday 7pm EDT / midnight BST (available for one week)
The venerable Ballet Hispánico, which was to celebrate its 50th birthday with a two-week run at the Joyce in April, continues its virtual program, B Unidos. Most of its offerings are on Instagram Live, but its weekly watch parties of archival favorites are the exception. The latest offering is Graciela Daniele’s Cada Noche...Tango, a 1988 portrait of Buenos Aires nightlife in the 1920s and 1930s set to music by the modern Argentine tango king Astor Piazzolla. A live Q&A follows the premiere.

Cada Noche...Tango | Photograph: Rachel Neville

Metropolitan Opera: Simon Boccanegra
Wednesday 7:30pm EDT / 12:30am BST (available for 23 hours)
See Monday 7:30pm. The Met’s 21th week of free operas continues with a pre-HD 1995 performance of the Verdi rarity Simon Boccanegra, with a cast led by Kiri Te Kanawa, Plácido Domingo, Vladimir Chernov and Robert Lloyd. Giancarlo Del Monaco’s lavish production transports the audience to 14th-century Genoa. James Levine conducts. 

Simon Boccanegra | Photograph: Metropolitan Opera Archives

The Sol Project: SolFest 2020
Wednesday 7:30pm EDT / 12:30am BST
See Tuesday 7:30pm. SolFest’s third and final night features three short plays commissioned through the Play at Home program—Virginia Grise’s Soñar es luchar, juliany taveras’s the human is sad; let’s start a band and Cándido Tirado’s Magic Garden—followed by a discussion with the playwrights and past SolFest writers. Registration is required.

Theater Breaking Through Barriers: Voices from the Great Experiment
Wednesday 7:30pm EDT / 12:30am BST
See Monday 7:30pm. TBTB’s virtual festival continues this evening with Enrique Huili’s 3 Stops from Loop Tape Station, directed by Ashley Scott and featuring Juan Carlos Diaz and Melissa Jennifer Gonzalez.

The Moth: Virtual StorySlam New York 
Wednesday 7:30pm EDT / 12:30am BST (live only)
The most trusted name in storytelling, the Moth, is drawn now to the flame of Zoom—which might actually be a good medium for the group’s intimate genre. In this live event, raconteurs spin five-minute yarns around the theme "Enthusiasm” and the audience picks votes for its favorite. Tickets cost $10.   

The Moth | Photograph: Laura Partain

All Arts: In This Life
Wednesday 8pm EDT / 1am BST
The terrific dancer Robbie Fairchild has been on an odyssey of self-discovery in the past few years that has taken him, among other things, from New York City Ballet principal to Broadway leading man (An American in Paris) and cinematic Muskustrap (Cats). Now he ventures into the realm of digital short films with In This Life, an exploration of grief that he has co-created with director Bat-Sheva Guez. The piece is divided, à la Kübler-Ross, into five sections, with a different choreographer for each: James Alsop, Warren Craft, Andrea Miller, Christopher Wheeldon and Fairchild himself. 

 

In This Life | Photograph: Daniel D’Ottavio

Stars in the House: Freestyle Love Supreme cast reunion
Wednesday 8pm EDT / 1am BST
See Monday 8pm. Tonight's episode reunites cast members from Freestyle Love Supreme, the highly enjoyable improvised-rap show (cofounded by Lin-Manuel Miranda) that landed on Broadway last year.  

Freestyle Love Supreme | Photograph: Matthew Murphy

The Groundlings: The Crazy Uncle Joe Show
Wednesday 10pm EDT / 3am BST  (live only)
The eminent Los Angeles improv group the Groundlings has been a training ground for Lisa Kudrow, Will Ferrell, Kristen Wiig, Jon Lovitz, Jan Hooks, Will Forte, Paul Rebuens, Kathy Griffin and countless other major comedy names. Now the troupe offers a weekly online version of its long-form improv showcase The Crazy Uncle Joe Show. Regular cast members are joined each week by a special guest. Tickets cost $8. 

NOTE: If you would like to be considered for this page, please write to Adam Feldman at theaterfromhome@gmail.com. Listings continue below.  

LIMITED RUNS

Jelani Alladin
Photograph: Karen Santos

Stick Fly (Plays in the House)

Through August 5 at 2pm EDT / 7pm BST
The invaluable Stars in the House series, which usually features interviews and musical interludes (see 8pm below), occasionally also presents live performances of plays in their entirety. Most of those efforts, including The Heidi Chronicles, The Tale of the Allergist’s Wife and The Little Dog Laughed, have come off smashingly. This edition of Plays in the House is devoted to Lydia R. Diamond's dramedy Stick Fly, which was seen on Broadway in 2012 and which deals with the race, class and gender anxieties of a wealthy Black family in Martha’s Vineyard. Dell Howlett directs a cast that comprises Keith Randolph Smith, Jelani Alladin, Daniel J. Watts, Renika Williams, Tiffany Rachelle Stewart and Caroline Innerbichler; singer-songwriter Crystal Monee Hall performs original music. Proceeds benefit the Actors Fund. 

The Trojan Women: LA/Darfur Dreamscape
Photograph: Paul Rubenstein

The Trojan Women: LA/Darfur Dreamscape (City Garage)

Though August 5
The experimental-theater company City Garage has been blowing minds in Santa Monica, California, since the 1980s. After sharing archival recordings of three of Charles L. Mee’s modernized versions of ancient Greek dramas, the company now offers a show in a related spirit: Charles Duncombe The Trojan Women: LA/Darfur Dreamscape, which hyperlinks Euripides’ refugee tragedy to modern world events and pop-cultural concerns. Frédérique Michel directs this well-received 2009 production.

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Deborah Hay as Katherina and Ben Carlson as Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew
Photograph: David Hou

The Taming of the Shrew (Stratford Festival)

Through August 6
Chris Abraham directs the Stratford Festival's 2015 production of Shakespeare's raucous comedy The Taming of the Shrew, a battle of the sexes in which the Geneva Conventions don't apply. Ben Carlson plays the swaggering gold digger who breaks the spirit of his headstrong bride, played by Deborah Hay, via starvation, brainwashing and sleep deprivation.

The Sleeping Beauty
Photograph: Courtesy Royal Ballet

The Sleeping Beauty (Royal Ballet)

Through August 6
The Royal Opera House at Covent Garden has been streaming operas and ballets every week to help culture-hungry Brits and others get through the coronavirus pandemic. This latest offering is the Royal Ballet’s exceptional The Sleeping Beauty, closely modeled on the company’s beloved 1946 production. Peter Farmer’s designs hew to Oliver Messel’s original sets and costumes; Marius Petipa’s 19th-century steps, set to Tchaikovsky’s sweeping score, are augmented by the more recent contributions of Frederick Ashton, Anthony Dowell and Christopher Wheeldon. In this performance, which was broadcast live to cinemas in January, Fumi Kaneko—a dramatic last-minute sub for the injured Lauren Cuthbertson—plays the somnolent Aurora and Federico Bonelli is her prince; Kristen McNally is the villainous Carabosse and Gina Storm-Jensen is the kindly Lilac Fairy.  

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The Wooster Group in rehearsal for Harold Pinter's The Room (2015)
Photograph: Paula Court

The Room (Wooster Group)

Through August 10
The Wooster Group has been in the front lines of postmodern, tech-forward, intensely detailed avant-garde performance in America for 45 years now, so in some ways the company's work lends itself well to sharing on the internet. As a gift to experimental-theater fans at home, the Woosters have streamed multiple videos from their archives. This one is a 2015 rehearsal recording of their take on Harold Pinter's 1957 debut play, The Room, the first of three Pinter pieces that the company is developing. Company leader Elizabeth LeCompte directs; the cast includes Ari Fliakos, Philip Moore, Scott Renderer, Suzzy Roche and the peerless Kate Valk.

Renée Fleming
Photograph: Andrew Eccles

Renée Fleming (Met Stars Live in Concert)

Through  August 12
Even as it continues its nighty streams of full productions, the Metropolitan Opera broadens its scope with a new series of live recitals every other Saturday by top classical vocalists from around the world. Met queen Renée Fleming continues the series with a concert that she performs at the Dumbarton Oaks Museum in Washington, D.C. Christine Goerke hosts the broadcast, which is shot with multiple cameras and directed remotely by Gary Halvorston, who has overseen the Met’s Live in HD transmissions. The program, accompanied by Robert Ainsley on piano, includes arias by Puccini, Massnet and Handel. Tickets cost $20, and each edition in the series remains viewable on demand for a week and a half after the live performance.   

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Nathan Lee Graham
Photograph: Andrew Werner

Night of a Thousand Judys

Through August 14
Queer leader Justin Sayre is the writer and host of this eighth celebration of ultradiva Judy Garland. The terrific lineup of guests includes Alice Ripley, Ann Harada, Lena Hall, Nathan Lee Graham, Adam Pascal, Jessica Vosk, Natalie Douglas, Ann Hampton Callaway, Eva Noblezada, Beth Malone, George Salazar, L Morgan Lee, T. Oliver Reid, Spencer Day, Billy Stritch and Bright Light Bright Light. Music-directed by Tracy Stark, the show is a benefit for the Ali Forney Center, which helps homeless LGBTQ+ youth. Friends of Dorothy should not miss it.

Same Time, Next Year
Photograph: Courtesy Guild Hall

Same Time, Next Year (Guild Hall)

Through August 16
In this benefit for the East Hampton arts center Guild Hall, A-list actors Julianne Moore and Alec Baldwin perform Bernard Slade’s hit 1975 two-hander Same Time, Next Year, which follows an adulterous affair through a quarter-century of changes. Bob Balaban directs this one-night-only virtual performance. The live performance cost $100, but a recording of it is now available on demand for $10.

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Danyel Fulton in Broadbend, Arkansas
Photograph: Carol Rosegg

Broadbend, Arkansas (Transport Group)

Through August 16
The Transport Group, whose consistently fine work has earned it special honors from the New York Drama Critics’ Circle and the Drama Desks, streams a recording of its original 2019 musical Broadbend, Arkansas, which follows three generations of an African-American family in the South as it grapples with questions of civil rights, economic inequality and police brutality. The music is by Ted Shen, and the libretto is by Ellen Fitzhugh and Harrison David Rivers. Jack Cummings III directs a cast led by Justin Cunningham and Danyel Fulton. Contributions to the Black Theatre Network are encouraged. 

Kevin Augustine in The God Projekt
Photograph: Richard Termine

The God Projekt (Untitled Theater Company #61)

Through August 16
Edward Einhorn’s Untitled Theater Company #61 shares a treasure from its archives: The God Projekt, Kevin Augustine’s extraordinary mash-up of gruesome puppets, Borscht Belt humor and theological fantasy. Co-written and co-directed with Einhorn, this 2013 work imagines the Supreme Being as a ghoulish Beckettian wraith trying to maintain order in his celestial office. “Augustine takes his sweet time unfolding his indictment, and God's bumbling routine can make you impatient,” wrote Helen Shaw in her Time Out review. “Looking back, though, it's one of the most startlingly intense shows I've seen.” 

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And So We Come Forth: The Apple Family: A Dinner on Zoom
Photograph: Jason Ardizzone-West

And So We Come Forth: The Apple Family: A Dinner on Zoom

Through August 26
In this original microdrama, created during the current pandemic crisis, writer-director Richard Nelson continues his exhaustive chronicle of middle-class, middle-aged family life in Rhinebeck, New York, as previously explored in five plays about the Apple family,
three about the Gabriels and one about the Michaels. Here he returns to the Apple tree, last seen in late-April quarantine in the Zoom play What Do We Need to Talk About?, to see how they are holding up. The wonderful original cast returns yet again to spin their ensemble magic: Jay O. Sanders, Maryann Plunkett, Laila Robins, Sally Murphy and Stephen Kunken. Donations to the Actors Fund are encouraged.

Shantala Shivalingappa: Bhairava
Photograph: Kes Tagney

Shantala Shivalingappa: Bhairava

Through August 27
The Joyce Theater hosts a continuous rotation of top dance companies from across the country and around the world. Now the Chelsea venue is sharing archival recordings by artists who have appeared there. This offering is Shantala Shivalingappa’s 13-minute Bhairava, an evocation of the Hindu deity set to music by Ramesh Jetty and performed site-specifically in the ancient Indian village of Hampi. 

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Present Laughter
Photograph: Joan Marcus

Present Laughter (Great Performances)

Through August 29 (U.S. only)
The PBS channel WNET, one of New York City's most cherished cultural resources, is reopening its vault to offer free access to several Great Performances recordings of major theatrical productions. Kevin Kline pops bon mots like bonbons as an egotistical actor in this splendid 2017 Broadway revival of Noël Coward's witty 1939 comedy, directed by Moritz Von Stuelpnagel. Kline deservedly won his third Tony Award for this performance; the marvelous party of a supporting cast includes Cobie Smulders, Kate Burton, Kristine Nielsen and Reg Rogers. 

Alice: A Virtual Theme Park
Photograph: Courtesy of the artists

Alice: A Virtual Theme Park (Creation Theatre)

Through August 30 at 2pm EDT / 7pm BST
After a successful virtual run of The Tempest earlier in the pandemic season, Creation Theatre and Big Telly Theatre Company reteam for a Zoomed-up adaptation of another milestone of English lit: Lewis Carroll’s Alice books. Adapter-director Zoe Seaton has devised the piece with a company of seven actors (led by Leda Douglas as Alice), with an assist from playwright Charlotte Keatley in the tea-party scene. The show is performed live ten times a week through August 30. Tickets are limited and cost £20 (about $25) per device. 

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Alison Pill
Photograph: Catie Laffoon

The Line (Public Theater)

Through September 1
The ever civic-minded Public Theater commissioned this moving and illuminating original work by documentary-theater creators Jessica Blank and Erik Jensen (The Exonerated), based on interviews with medical first responders during the COVID-19 crisis. Blank directs the play, which stars Santino Fontana, Arjun Gupta, John Ortiz, Alison Pill, Nicholas Pinnock, Jamey Sheridan and Lorraine Toussaint. The great Aimee Mann contributes an original song.

Nathan Funn and Kelli O'Hara in Carousel (2013)
Photograph: Chris Lee

Carousel (Live from Lincoln Center)

Through September 8 at 8pm EDT / 1am BST
Like many Rodgers and Hammerstein shows, 1945's Carousel is darker than many people remember. In 19th-century Maine, the moony Julie Jordan is drawn, moth to flame, to the charismatic carnival barker Billy Bigelow; their unhappy marriage is set against a seemingly idyllic seaside world of busting-out-all-over Junes and real nice clambakes. Although Billy's domestic violence is treated as a deep moral failure, the show's treatment of the question understandably raises hackles. But this 2013 New York Philharmonic concert staging, recorded for Live From Lincoln Center, offers a stately and stirring account of the material, flawed though it may be. Top Broadway stars (Kelli O’Hara as Julie, Jessie Mueller and Jason Danieley as the secondary couple, John Cullum as the Starkeeper) share the stage with opera headliners (Nathan Gunn as Billy, Stephanie Blythe as Julie's close cousin Nettie).

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Bernadette Peters in Into the Woods
Photograph: Courtesy BroadwayHD

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The 35 best Tony Awards performances of all time

Theater

The Tony Awards provide a national showcase and public record of performances that are otherwise local and fleeting, and the most memorable numbers from Broadway musicals on the Tonys can echo in theater history for decades to come. But which are the best of the best? We've surveyed every televised number from a nominated musical or musical revival since the very first Tony telecast in 1967 to create this list of the all-time classics.

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Beau
Photograph: Mari Uchida

Adirondack Theatre Festival

The annual Adirondack Theatre Festival in Glens Falls, New York, has been called off this year, but the not-for-profit group is inventively filling what would have been its entire summer season, through August 7, with on-demand offerings. A donation of $50 or more gets you access to all the shows on the menu. The offerings include full concert performances of Nikko Benson and Benjamin Halstead’s electropop musical Nikola Tesla Drops the Beat, Douglas Lyons and Ethan Pakchar’s funk-folk musical Beau, Emily Goodson and Jeremy Schonfeld’s musical comedy Calling All Kates, and Creighton Irons and Douglas Lyons’s sad-romance tuner The Moon & the Sea. Also featured are the nonmusical comedies The Banana Tree and Kalamazoo, magic shows by Simon Coronel, Max Major and Jonathan Burns, and cabaret concerts by Brian Charles Rooney and others. (Cheeyang Ng and Khiyon Hursey bilingual musical Eastbound is available only from July 16 through July 23.)

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Broadway Bares 2019
Photograph: Billy Bustamente

Broadway Bares: Zoom In

Broadway players get extra playful at the beloved annual burlesque extravaganza Broadway Bares, where the Great White Way's hottest chorus guys and gals bump and grind to raise money for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. The benefit can't be held in the flesh this year, so Broadway's sexy feast of titillations and assistance is offering a virtual edition that includes new routines recorded remotely as well as video highlights from past editions of Broadway Bares. (Click here to see photos of recent Broadway Bares events.) You can watch it on the Broadway Bares website or through one of the event's many media partners, including Time Out.

Lin-Manuel Miranda is Alexander Hamilton and Leslie Odom, Jr. is Aaron Burr in HAMILTON, the filmed version of the original Broadway production.
Photograph: Courtesy Disney+

Hamilton (Disney+)

Perhaps you have heard of a Broadway musical called Hamilton? Perhaps you have been wishing to see it? Or see it again? Or see it over and over and over, again and again and again, until you know every note, every gesture, every rotation of the turntable as well as you know the proverbial back of your hand? Well, friend, today is your day. The film of the original Broadway production of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hurricane of a musical is streaming on Disney+, some 15 months ahead of schedule. Have at it! Full details are here.

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Assumed Positions (The Fire This Time Festival)
Photograph: Garlia Jones

Fire This Time Festival (All Arts: House Seats)

WNET’s All Arts platform presents a collection of short plays by seven writers: Cyrus Aaron, Niccolo Aeed, Natyna Bean, Tyler English-Beckwith, Jay Mazyck, Deneen Reynolds-Knott and Mario (Mars) Wolfe. Filmed earlier this year, this event was the centerpiece of the 11th annual edition of the Fire This Time Festival, which showcases early-career African-American playwrights. The full collection is only viewable in the United States, but All Arts is also rolling out one playlet at 10am every day (starting August 2) on the All Arts YouTube channel.

Judy Collins at piano
Photograph: Miller Mobley

Judy Collins (Live with Carnegie Hall)

Carnegie Hall continues its online series with a live concert-and-interview set by Judy Collins, who sings with a radiant decency that verges on holiness and uses her voice like a fine crystal vessel: to elevate and beautify but also to expose. A folk-pop icon since the 1960s, she has appeared at Carnegie Hall more than 50 times. Joining her for this virtual engagement are Shawn Colvin, Alan Cumming, Steve Earle and Jimmy Webb; expect Collins originals as well as songs by Stephen Sondheim, whose "Send in the Clowns" she made into an unlikely popular hit in 1975. 

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Kerry O'Malley
Photograph: Peter Konerko

Scott Siegel's Great American Songbook Concert: Volume 7

Cabaret producer Scott Siegel, well known for his multiple concert series at the Town Hall and Feinstein’s/54 Below, has developed a promising model for his virtual programming: He crowdsources funding in advance so he can actually pay the performers who are singing remotely. In this seventh episode, recorded and edited in advance, Siegel serves as host for a lineup that includes Karen Ziemba, Emily Skinner, Kerry O’Malley, Tony DeSare, Mark Nadler, Michael Winther, Ben Jones, Dongwoo Kang, Q-Lim, Anais Reno and Luana Psaros.

Hi Bi
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Hi Bi (Hot! Festival)

Margot Mejia’s Hi Bi is a full-length bisexual love story that has been recorded remotely and painstakingly edited. Originally presented as part of the 2020 edition of Dixon Place's LGBTQ-themed Hot! Festival, the play can now be watched on its own website.

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Patina Miller
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

#WhileWeBreathe: A Night of Creative Protest

Performers, writers and directors join forces virtually to share original short works created in response to the current antiracist movement. The cast comprises Birgundi Baker, Vanessa Bell Calloway, Bryan Terrell Clark, Neil Brown Jr, Keith Eric Chappelle, Kevin R. Free, Alfie Fuller, Marcus Henderson, Chris Herbie Holland, Ty Jones, Patina Miller, Lori Elizabeth Parquet, Esau Pritchett, Michele Shay, Hailey Stone, Will Swenson, TL Thompson and Lynn Whitfield.  Proceeds benefit the  NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, the Bail Project and other charitable organizations. 

837 Venice Boulevard (2008)
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

837 Venice Boulevard (HERE)

The downtown arts complex HERE shares 837 Venice Boulevard, Faye Driscoll’s humorous and direct 2008 dance-theater piece about the construction of personal identity.

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Audra McDonald
Photograph: Allison Michael Orenstein

Audra McDonald (Live with Carnegie Hall)

Carnegie Hall continues its online series with a live concert-and-interview set by the great Broadway leading lady and Tony hoarder Audra McDonald, a dazzling interpreter whose virtuosic technique doesn’t get in the way of her natural warmth. Expect some recent additions to her repertoire. Joining her is CBS Sunday Morning wag Mo Rocca and musical director Andy Einhorn. 

Christina Bianco
Photograph: Darren Bell

Christina Bianco: Lockdown Live! Concerts for a Cause

Christina Bianco is a comic firecracker with a pyrotechnic voice and a great gift for mimicry, which broke her out when a video of her performing "Total Eclipse of the Heart"—as sung by 19 different divas—went megaviral. Last year, she earned rave reviews as Fanny Brice in a revival of Funny Girl in Paris. In this YouTube benefit concert, she delves into her deep reserves of vocal impersonations to raise money for TDF's Lifeline Campaign, with guest help from her erstwhile Forbidden Broadway costar Michael West.

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Hailey Kilgore
Photograph: Jeffrey Mosier

Project Sing Out!: A Benefit for Arts Education

Hailey Kilgore, who made a memorable Broadway debut in the 2017 Broadway revival of Once on This Island when she was just 18, corrals a terrific lineup of fellow musical-theater lights to raise funds for the Educational Theatrical Foundation, which supports arts education in low-income communities and communities of color. Hosted by Playbill, the event includes performances and appearances by Lea Salonga, LaChanze, Brandon Victor Dixon, Javier Muñoz, Ruthie Ann Miles, Ali Stroker, Saycon Sengbloh, Colman Domingo, Chita Rivera, Don Cheadle, Vanessa Williams, Audra McDonald and Will Swenson, Jordan Fisher, Jenna Ushkowitz, Peppermint, Jamie Brewer, Celia Rose Gooding, Adam Jacobs, Ana Villafañe, Rodney Hicks, Jon Rua, Telly Leung, Quentin Earl Darrington, Jelani Alladin, Robin Roberts, Whoopi Goldberg, Eden Espinosa, Nikki Renée Daniels, George Salazar and many more.  

André De Shields
Photograph: Lia Chang

André De Shields (Classic Conversations)

Artistic director John Doyle interviews artists associated with Classic Stage Company in this Thursday series, which usually includes at least one musical performance by the subject of the week. Today’s guest is the sly André De Shields, Broadway's original Wiz, whose master showmanship in Hadestown earned him a Tony Award last year, and whose 50-plus years in the business have given him some valuable perspective on what may lie ahead. 

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Freestyle Love Supreme
Photograph: Matthew Murphy

We Are Freestyle Love Supreme (Hulu)

The streaming service Hulu debuts its documentary about Freestyle Love Supreme, the improv hip-hop group whose notable alums include Lin-Manuel Miranda, James Monroe Iglehart, Christopher Jackson, Daveed Diggs and Thomas Kail (who directed FLS’s very enjoyable Broadway run last year). Filmmaker Andrew Fried started documenting FLS performances back in 2004 so there should be a wealth of nostalgic material to draw on. Hulu costs as little as $6 a month; if you don’t subscribe already, the first month is free.  

Isolating Together: Online International Toy Theater Festival #5
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Isolating Together: Online International Toy Theater Festival #6

Miniaturist maestros convene virtually on the Facebook page of Great Small Works for a delightful celebration of micropuppetry curated by Trudi Cohen. Individual artists and groups from across the country have filmed and submitted their teensy creations. This sixth edition follows closely on the heels of the fifth. Any money raised will go to the Black Puppeteer Empowerment Grant and Creative Research Residency.

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André Holland
Photograph: Dylan Coulter

Richard II (Shakespeare on the Radio)

The Public Theater's free annual Shakespeare in the Park, held at the beautiful open-air Delacorte Theater in Central Park, is one of New York City's most cherished cultural traditions. While this year’s edition had to be canceled, the Public is teaming up with WNYC to keep the experience alive in a new way: with a radio-play production of what was to have been the 2020 festival’s first offering, Richard II. Rarely seen in full productions, Shakespeare’s history play depicts the overthrow and eventual regicide of the last of the direct-line Plantagenet kings, a prickly man with a knack for making powerful enemies. While the plot is heavy on medieval politics, the writing contains some of the most beautiful verse that the Bard ever crafted. André Holland plays the title role in this audio production, directed by Saheem Ali; the large and excellent supporting cast includes Phylicia Rashad, Estelle Parsons, Stephen McKinley Henderson, John Douglas Thompson and Miriam A. Hymna; Lupita Nyong’o provides narration and historical context.  The play was spread out over four successive nights, and the entire four-part series is now available as podcast. (The script is here if you want to follow along.)

Cole Escola
Photograph: Allison Michael Orenstein

The 2020 Obie Awards

The hilarious Cole Escola hosts the 65th annual edition of the Obies in this celebration of Off Broadway and Off-Off Broadway achievements in the 2019–2020 theater season. Along with this year’s awards, the pre-recorded virtual ceremony includes performances by songwriters Michael R. Jackson and Shaina Taub, Fela!’s Saycon Sengbloh and Sahr Ngaujah, and members of three casts—the original and two revivals—of the Sondheim musical Merrily We Roll Along

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Nrityagram: Samhāra Revisited
Photograph: Stephanie Berger

Nrityagram Dance Company: Samhāra Revisited (MetLiveArts)

The Indian classical dance company Nrityagram presents Samhāra Revisited, a collaboration with Sri Lanka’s Chitrasena Dance Company. Choreographed by Surupa Sen and set to original music by Pandit Raghunath Panigrahi, the show was staged site-specifically at the Temple of Dendur in 2018; now the Metropolitan Museum is streaming a recording of that performance for free.

Lisa Joyce in Billy and Billie
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Billy and Billie

St. Louis Actors’ Studio shares Billy and Billie, a ten-part serial by Neil LaBute (reasons to be pretty) that the misanthropic playwright expanded out of his own play The Way We Get By—which, oddly enough, wound up premiering after the series. Adam Brody and Lisa Joyce star as step-siblings in a taboo-breaking relationship; the supporting cast includes Jake Lacy, Frederick Weller, Victor Slezak, Eric Bogosian, Li Jun Li, Gia Crovatin, Phil Burke, Katie Paxton and the late Jan Maxwell. 

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Jewbadours at Highline Ballroom
Photograph: Courtesy Creative Commons/Flickr/slgckgc

The Jewbadours: The Last Schmaltz (Joe’s Pub)

Joe’s Pub continues its rollout of hits from its archives. This offering is a Hanukkah-themed 2019 set by Ari Hest and Julian Velard, in which the Jewish duo—Jewo?—refracts the story of the Maccabees through a prism of pop tunes from the ’70s and ’80s.  

Norm Lewis
Photograph: Kevin Yatarola

Kritzerland Influencers

The actor, writer and producer Bruce Kimmel has been an essential font of show tunes for decades, notably as the force behind the labels Bay Cities, Varese Sarabande, Fynsworth Alley and now Kritzerland. Since 2010, he has also assembled and hosted monthly cabaret shows with high-level casts, most recently at Feinstein’s Upstairs at Vitello’s. The cast of this virtual version includes Norm Lewis, Emily Skinner, Jason Graae, Kerry O’Malley, Daniel Bellusci, Hartley Powers, Sami Staitman, Adrienne Stiefel and Robert Yacko. Proceeds benefit NoHo theaters in financial jeopardy.

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Natalie Weiss
Photograph: Michael Carlo

Natalie Weiss (Joe’s Pub)

This 2019 Joe's Pub concert features riff analyst, YouTube video star, Wicked understudy witch and American Idol semifinalist Natalie Weiss. The stream is free but donations are welcome via Venmo (@thenatalieweiss).

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Cole Escola
Photograph: Allison Michael Orenstein

Cole Escola: Help, I'm Stuck!

The saucer-eyed costar of Difficult People and At Home with Amy Sedaris, the brilliantly funny Cole Escola, has dropped an hour-long online version his perpetually sold-out solo sketch comedy act, which continues to reveal new facets of a talent that gleams with scrappy razzle-dazzle. Blending boyish mischief with dark neurosis and the ruthless coyness of a starlet bent on fame, Escola’s comic persona suggests a street urchin raised by The Match Game. It's an hour of silly wigs, genre parodies, absurdist humor and refreshing pseudo-honesty that you won't soon forget.

Gloria Steinem (Christine Lahti) with marchers in Gloria: A Life
Photograph: Joan Marcus

Gloria: A Life (Great Performances)

Screen and stage ace Christine Lahti (Chicago Hope) plays feminist trailblazer and Ms. founder Gloria Steinem in this 2018 bioplay by Emily Mann (Having Our Say). The American Repertory Theatre's Diane Paulus (Pippin) directs a production that opens up, in its second half, into a talking circle with the audience. Filmed for Great Performances during its six-month Off Broadway run at the Daryl Roth Theatre, the play makes its PBS debut tonight.

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Kevin Augustine: Body Concert
Photograph: Vane Teran

La MaMa Moves!

La MaMa's annual festival La MaMa Moves! runs riot with dance every summer, and for the time being it is moving online. La MaMa den mother Nicky Paraiso curates and hosts this collection of works-in-progress, longer versions of which are planned for later in the summer. Four shows are on the lineup: Body Concert, a stripped-limb solo work by the extraordinary avant-puppeteer Kevin Augustine (The God Projekt); Norwegian choreographer Kari Hoass’s Be Like Water—the distant episodes, described as “a series of digital dance haikus”; Anabella Lenzu’s solo dance-theater piece The night that you stopped acting/ La noche que dejaste de actuar; and Tamar Rogoff’s A Plague on All Our Houses, a look at four dancers in their homes that was created in response to the quarantine. 

Caleen Sinnette Jennings
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Homebound (Round House Theatre)

For ten weeks starting at the end of April, Washington, D.C.’s Round House Theatre challenged a different local playwright to write an episode of the company’s web serial, Homebound, whose plot continues from each installment to the next. Ryan Rilette and Nicole A. Watson are the directors; the playwrights run from Alexandra Petri to Caleen Sinnette Jennings. You can catch the entire series, which stars Maboud Ebrahimzadeh and Craig Wallace, on YouTube now.

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Michael Feinstein
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Michael Feinstein: It’s Delovely—The Music of Cole Porter (Live with Carnegie Hall)

Carnegie Hall continues its online series with a live concert-and-interview set by venue habitué Michael Feinstein, the popular and polished standard-bearer of American song. This episode salutes Cole Porter, the worldly wit and musical magpie behind such shows as Anything Goes and Kiss Me, Kate and such songs as "Night and Day," "Begin the Beguine" and "Just One of Those Things." Along for the ride this time are vocalists Storm Large and Catherine Russell. 

Ariel Sinclair
Photograph: Jeff Eason

Stonewall Sensation Reunion Live!

 

For a decade or so, surprisingly talented wanna-be stars competed in Stonewall Sensation, an American Idol–style weekly contest at the West Village’s legendary Stonewall Inn. Now the gang gets back together for a marathon reunion concert that doubles as a fundraiser for Stonewall staff members. Participants include the show’s hosts—the irrepressible Brandon Cutrell and drag star Ariel Sinclair—pianists Brandon James Gwinn, Stonewall stalwart Melissa Driscol, multiple former contestants, and regular judges including singer Erik Sisco, nightlife veteran Susan Campanero and Time Out's own Adam Feldman.

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Justin Sayre
Photograph: Ricardo Nelson

Justin Sayre Makes the Case for America (Joe’s Pub)

An avatar of retroqueer cultivation, the sharp-tongued Justin Sayre delighted New Yorkers for years as host of the Meeting*, a variety series that combined hilarious rants with musical numbers and sometimes passionate advocacy. In this 2018 Joe's Pub show, the writer-performer sees red, white and blue in a show that tries to save America from itself.

Isaac Oliver
Photograph: Zack DeZon

Isaac Oliver (Joe’s Pub)

The essential downtown music hub Joe’s Pub continues its rollout of favorites from its archives. Tonight’s selection celebrates Pride Month with a 2018 “sit-down comedy” show by Isaac Oliver, the author of the compulsively readable Intimacy Idiot. If David Sedaris and Fran Lebowitz had a baby who wrote about subways, theater patrons and blow jobs, he might be a lot like Oliver; the hilarious and poignant comic essayist is also a deft deliverer of his own work. 

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The Ninth Hour: The Beowulf Story
Photograph: Ross Collab

The Ninth Hour: The Beowulf Story

Kate Douglas and Shayfer James star in their The Ninth Hour: The Beowulf Story, their dark rock-opera reimagining of the Old English epic poem. Directed by Kevin Newbury and choreographed by Troy Ogilvie, the show was staged site-specifically at the Fuentidueña Chapel at the Cloisters last year; now the Metropolitan Museum is streaming a recording of that performance for free.

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Max Vernon
Photograph: Roberto Araujo

Max Vernon: Existential Life Crisis (Joe's Pub)

Max Vernon is a rising musical-theater composer who has proved equally adept at capturing the sounds of 1970s glam rock (The View Upstairs) and modern Korean bubblegum (KPOP). This 2019 Joe's Pub concert, directed by Ellie Heyman, features an impressive roster of guests, including Michael Longoria, Jo Lampert, Andy Mientus, Gianna Masi, Fancy Feast, Sophia Ramos, Helen Park and Leah Lane.

Cats in Quarantine
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Cats in Quarantine

Harry Francis, who has appeared in multiple productions of Cats, has assembled 333 (!) alums of Andrew Lloyd Webber's feline spectacular for the most epic Jellicle Ball of the quarantine era, if not ever. Performing remotely, Cats veterans from the U.K., the U.S. and all around the world—France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Australia, South Korea, South Africa, the Netherlands, Canada, Russia, even the Royal Caribbean cruise line—re-create six minutes of Gillian Lynne's dynamically slinky original choreography in a gigantic video celebration. (Participants include three performers from the original London production and six from the original Broadway.) Some are alone, some are in small groups; some are in costumes, some in human-dancer togs; all are in the joyful moment. If you love the spirit of theater, this right here is catnip.

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Kim David Smith
Photograph: Travis Chantar

Kim David Smith Sings Kylie Minogue (Joe’s Pub)

As part of its Pride Month programming, Joe's Pub shares this 2018 show, in which the flirty, sly, dark-elfin Australian baritone Kim David Smith departs from his Weimar-inflected signature set, Morphium Kabarett, for a special salute to Aussie dance-pop icon Kylie Minogue. Tracy Stark is the musical director.

Rob Roth in Soundstage
Photograph: Paula Court

Soundstage (HERE)

The multimedia innovator Rob Roth’s shares a newly re-edited version of his 2018 HERE piece Soundstage (cowritten with Jason Napoli Brooks), which explores queer notions of the artistic muse with an eye toward the projections of previous generations of gay men onto female icons. The wonderful British actor Rebecca Hall (Vicky Cristina Barcelona) costars in an onscreen capacity; Roth and Hall will comment during the viewing party. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Emergency Release Fund and Black and Pink.

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Justin Sayre
Photograph: Matthew Dean Stewart

5, 6, 7, 8—DIE!

With his wicked witticisms, ardent social activism and cultivated mid-Atlantic accent—he sounds like Lauren Bacall in a saucy mood—Justin Sayre is an avatar of retroqueer cultivation. During quarantine, he has kept the camp fires burning with a monthly series of hilarious original fright-flick spoofs, performed on Zoom by top-drawer comic actors making the most of lo-tech costumes and effects. The latest, 5, 6, 7, 8—DIE!, borrows from sources that range from Dario Argento’s Suspiria to—horror of horrors—Dance Moms. The cast, directed by Tom DeTrinis, includes Lauren Weedman, Jeff Hiller, Sam Pancake, Ryan Garcia, Isaac Oliver, Drew Droege, Jenn Harris, Rob Maitner, Michael Cyril Creighton, Leslie-Ann Huff and Daniele Gaither. A donation of $20 is suggested, which viewers can send via Venmo (@SweetNellProd); a portion of the proceeds go to bail funds for Black Lives Matter protesters.

Tina—The Tina Turner Musical
Photograph: Manuel Harlan

The Antonyo Awards (Broadway Black)

The Tony Awards are still in indefinite limbo, but Broadway Black steps up to fill some of the void with its own Juneteenth awards show, dedicated to celebrating the achievements of Black theater artists. The Antonyo Awards nominees are drawn from both Broadway and Off Broadway productions, and the acting categories are not separated by gender. Along with the competitive prizes, the evening features musical numbers and a Lifetime Achievement Award for the formidable actor Chuck Cooper. Among those scheduled to appear are Audra McDonald, Tituss Burgess, Alex Newell, LaChanze, Jordan E. Cooper, Teyonah Parris, James Monroe Iglehart, Jelani Alladin, Ephraim Sykes, Derrick Baskin, Nicolette Robinson, Christiani Pitts, Amber Iman, Shereen Pimentel, Kirsten Childs, Aisha Jackson, Griffin Matthews, Michael McElroy, Jocelyn Bioh and L Morgan Lee. 

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Jomama Jones in Black Light
Photograph: Joan Marcus

Jomama Jones: Black Light (Joe's Pub)

In this Joe's Pub show, recorded in 2018, Daniel Alexander Jones (Duat) inhabits his longtime alter ego, Jomama Jones—or does she inhabit him?—in a high-concept musical evening that reflects on a shattered mirror of black history. Jomama is a paradigm of R&B-diva grandeur circa 1982, with impeccable posture and elocution that bespeak an old-school black-star dignity. It’s a pleasure to bask in Jones’s sequined, oracular presence, especially when Jones allows us to see the pain and labor behind the all-but-impervious diva’s self-fashioning.

The Golden Girls: The Lost Episodes
Photograph: Rick Aguilar

The Golden Girls: The Lost Episodes, Vol. 4—Lockdown!

 

The Chicago camp outfit Hell in a Handbag Productions presents the fourth episode in its series of Golden Girls homages. In this first online edition, written by and starring Handbag honcho David Cerda, the Florida foursome is forced to spend 30 days in quarantine together after Blanche is exposed to Legionnaires’ disease. Spenser Davis directs an all-male cast of eight. Tickets cost $20, which lets you watch the video anytime before August 15.

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Katrina Lenk and the cast of Company
Photograph: Brinkhoff-Moegenburg

Offstage: Opening Night (New York Times)

The New York Times presents the first edition of its new digital series, which offers performances and discussions about how the theater world is adjusting to the great pause. Cast members from Broadway’s Company, including Katrina Lenk and Patti LuPone, sing the show’s opening number; Elizabeth Stanley (Jagged Little Pill) and Mare Winningham (Girl from the North Country) perform songs from their suspended shows, and Mary-Louise Parker shares a monologue from The Sound Inside, which played earlier in the season. Times writers set up the prerecorded segments and talk with subjects including Slave Play author Jeremy O. Harris, Moulin Rouge! choreographer Sonya Tayeh and Six creators Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss. Newly added to the program is an introductory panel discussion with Adrienne Warren, Daniel J. Watts, Celia Rose Gooding and director Kenny Leon about the impact of the global protest movement.

Lea DeLaria
Photograph: Kharen Hill

Lea Delaria: Fuck Love (Joe's Pub)

Few singers have the sheer macho swagger of DeLaria, who rose to fame as a butcher-than-thou stand-up comic and Broadway star (On the Town), and has more recently earned a host of new acolytes as Big Boo on Orange Is the New Black. As a jazz vocalist, she has tough-guy sell and a penchant for scat. In this 2019 set she serves up anti-Valentine fare, joined by guest artists Adina Verson, Emily Tarver and Vicci Martinez and the Village Voices.

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Martha Graham Cracker
Photograph: Kevin Monko

Martha Graham Cracker (Joe’s Pub)

In this Pride Month offering, filmed at Joe's Pub in 2019, the hirsute drag queen Martha Graham Cracker—the creation of Dito van Reigersberg, who cofounded Philadelphia’s excellent Pig Iron Theatre Company—and her four-piece band offer rollicking alt-cabaret shenanigans through songs by artists including Prince, Lady Gaga, Black Sabbath and Nina Simone. The virtual tip jar is Venmo (@DitoVanR).

Terrence McNally in the 1970s
Photograph: Courtesy Terrence McNally

Terrence McNally: Every Act of Life (American Masters)

Terrence McNally, who died on March 24 from complications related to the coronavirus, was a leading figure in American theater for decades: His plays included Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune, The Lisbon Traviata, Love! Valour! Compassion!, Master Class, The Ritz and A Perfect Ganesh; his musicals include Ragtime, Kiss of the Spider Woman, The Full Monty, The Rink and Anastasia. In his honor, and to celebrate Pride Month—McNally was openly gay, and wrote about gay characters throughout his career—PBS is making its 2019 American Masters documentary about him available for streaming through August 31. The doc includes interviews with the four-time Tony Award winner (and 2019 Lifetime Achievement Tony winner) himself as well as with F. Murray Abraham, Christine Baranski, Tyne Daly, Edie Falco, Nathan Lane, Angela Lansbury, Audra McDonald, Rita Moreno, Billy Porter, Chita Rivera and more.

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Hannah L. Drake
Photograph: Jessie Kriech-Higdon

Fix it, Black Girl (Actors Theatre of Louisville)

The Louisville-based poet, author and activist Hannah L. Drake curates this free night of spoken word poetry, essays and songs that celebrate resistance and resilience. The cast includes Drake as well as local artists Erica Denise, Janelle Renee Dunn, Robin G, Sujotta Pace and Kala Ross.

Michael Feinstein
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Micheal Feinstein: The Music of Irving Berlin (Live with Carnegie Hall)

Carnegie Hall continues its online series with a live concert-and-interview set by venue habitué Michael Feinstein, the popular and polished standard-bearer of American song. This episode salutes the master tunesmith Irving Berlin, the man behind such all-time earworms as "Alexander’s Ragtime Band,” “Puttin' on the Ritz,""White Christmas" and "There's No Business Like Show Business." Along for the ride are big-time Broadway guest stars Kelli O'Hara, Cheyenne Jackson and Tony Yazbeck.

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LAPA
Photograph: Jose Miranda

LAPA (The Brick)

The Brick Theater continues its Archival Streaming Series with a genre-bending abstract work by the early–20th century Russian experimentalist Daniil Kharms, directed by Timothy Scott and Nicolás Noreña for Brooklyn’s The Million Underscores. The show, which engages with questions of dreaming and industrialization, premiered at the Brick on March 11 before the pandemic curtailed its run.

Send for the Million Men
Photograph: Courtesy HERE

Send for the Million Men (HERE)

 In this 2014 piece, Joseph Silovsky revisits the nation-dividing Sacco and Vanzetti murder trial of the 1920s in an inegenious production that employs found materials, robotics, puppetry and projections. “Don’t seek clarity in the shambolic, outstanding Send for the Million Men,” wrote Helen Shaw in her Time Out review. “Silovsky is mainly interested in the elusive quality of multiplying details, and even the work’s obvious synergy with current events remains diffident and sly. The scrappy-magical, shaggy-dog chaos builds to an ending in which Silovsky cedes the stage to Vanzetti’s lyrical prison letters, some of the greatest, angriest works written on American justice.”

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Charles Busch
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Mommie Dearest (Scripts Gone Wild)

Camp guardians Charles Busch (The Confession of Lily Dare), Del Shores (Sordid Lives) and Josh Grannell (a.k.a. San Francisco drag queen Peaches Christ) star in a live reading of the 1981 classic Mommie Dearest, about Hollywood royalty whose daughter treats the beautiful dresses she buys her like dishrags. Proceeds benefit the Trevor Project.

The cast of Scraps
Photograph: I.C. Rapoport

Scraps (Matrix Theatre Company)

Joseph Stern’s Matrix Theatre Company has been a staple of Los Angeles’s small-theater scene since the 1970s, and in the past decade it has focused on theater that actively engages with questions of race. To rise to the current moment, the company is now streaming its 2019 West Coast premiere production of Geraldine Inoa’s Scraps. The first hour looks at four young adults in Bed-Stuy, a few months after an unarmed friend was killed by the police; the last third takes a sharp tonal swerve into the surreal, superheated nightmare of an eight-year-old boy battered by pain about the future that awaits him. At its best, this bold play has the urgent appeal of a passionate voice screaming to be heard. Stevie Walker-Webb directs a cast that includes Stan Mayer, Tyrin Niles, Ashlee Olivia, Damon Rutledge, Ahkei Togun and Denise Yolén. 

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Disposable Men
Photograph: Mike O’Reilly

Disposable Men (HERE)

In Disposable Men, James Scruggs explores the monstrous depiction of black men in American film and culture. Astutely employing dark humor and a panoptic array of video projections, Scruggs offers a pointed account of denigration in the media and on the streets. The high quality of the design is matched by Scrugg’s performance, and the show’s finale, in which the audience participates in a re-creation of the infamous death of Amadou Diallo, is hard to forget. 

Destructo Snack, USA
Photograph: Chrissy Reilly Downey

Destructo Snack, USA (The Brick)

The Brick Theater continues its Archival Streaming Series with Sarah Graalman and Brick leader Theresa Buchheister’s wacky exploration of gender performance, filmed in 2012 at the East Village’s late, lamented Incubator Arts Project. The stream is free, but donations benefit the Marsha P Johnson Institute.

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Kerry O'Malley
Photograph: Peter Konerko

June Is Bustin’ In All Over (Kritzerland)

The actor, writer and producer Bruce Kimmel has been an essential font of show tunes for decades, notably as the force behind the labels Bay Cities, Varese Sarabande, Fynsworth Alley and now Kritzerland. Since 2010, he has also assembled monthly cabaret shows with high-level casts, most recently at Feinstein’s Upstairs at Vitello’s. The cast of this virtual version includes Brent Barrett, Kerry O’Malley, Christiane Noll, Daniel Bellusci, Hartley Powers,  Sami Staitman, Adrienne Stiefel and Robert Yacko; Kimmel is the host, and Richard Allen serves as musical director.

Chita Rivera
Photograph: Laura Marie Duncan

Chita: A Legendary Celebration

One of the great Broadway leading ladies of all time, Chita Rivera came to New York in the early 1950s, and the rest is razzle-dazzle history: starring roles in the original casts of West Side Story, Bye Bye Birdie and Chicago; 10 Tony nominations (and two wins); the 2002 Kennedy Center Honors. She’s often called a legend, but she’s determinedly real. In tonight’s live-only fundraiser, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is streaming a recording of the 2013 concert evening Chita: A Legendary Celebration, recorded at the August Wilson Theatre when Rivera was a mere 80 years old. Written by the late Terrence McNally and directed by Graciele Daniele, the event features performances by Rivera, Tommy Tune and Ben Vereen, as well as a video appearance by the great Broadway tunesmith John Kander. The BC/EFA broadcast also includes new interviews with Rivera, conducted remotely by Richard Ridge. 

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Celisse Henderson
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Let’s Stay (in) Together: A Benefit to Support the Apollo Theater

This concert benefit for Harlem’s historic Apollo Theater centers on performances of songs by such past Apollo stars as Patti Labelle and Steve Wonder. It includes appearances by Celisse Henderson, Dionne Warwick, Kool & the Gang, Michael McDonald, Vernon Reid, Gary Clark Jr., Ziggy Marley, Keb’ Mo’, Lil Buck and Jon Boogz, Marc Bamuthi Joseph, Doug E. Fresh, Teddy Riley, “Captain” Kirk Douglas (of the Roots), Robert Randolph, Infinity’s Song, Ray Chew, Warren Haynes, Roy Wood Jr. and DJ Reborn.

Silas Farley's Songs from the Spirit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
Photograph: Rosalie O'Connor

Silas Farley: Songs from the Spirit (Metropolitan Museum of Art)

The Metropolitan Museum of Art streams a recording of Silas Farley’s site-specific dance piece Songs from the Spirit, which was performed in the museum’s galleries in March, 2019. The piece, which explores questions of bondage and grace, is set to traditional spirituals as well as new songs written by inmates at San Quentin State Prison. Dancers Cassia Farley, Rachel Hutsell, James Shee, Taylor Stanley, Claire Kretzschmar, and Alizah Wilson are joined by soprano Kelly Griffin and tenor Robert May.

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Lady Bunny
Photograph: Santiago Felipe

Lady Bunny: Cuntagious

The shameless drag legend, nightlife pioneer and Wigstock founder Lady Bunny responds to the pandemic as only she can: with a potty-mouthed comedy special. Beneath her trademark towering wigs, Bunny knows her mind and isn't afraid to say what's on it. Expect irreverent humor and multiple changes of costume. Tickets cost $10.

Cirque du Soleil: Luzia
Photograph: Matt Beard

Cirque du Soleil: Best of Contortion

As part of its ongoing CirqueConnect series, the Québécois neocircus behemoth Cirque du Soleil offers an hour-long special that focuses on body-bending, eye-popping acts of contortion from past shows including Luzia, Alegría and O.

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Breaking the Waves (Opera Philadelphia)
Photograph: Nicholas Korkos

Breaking the Waves (Opera Philadelphia)

Opera Philadelphia presents the broadcast premiere, in full, of its acclaimed 2016 adaptation of Lars von Trier’s brutally bleak 1996 film about a pious woman who degrades herself sexually at the request of her paralyzed husband. The composer is Brooklyn’s Missy Mazzoli—a rare woman composer in the world of opera—and the librettist Royce Vavrek. Soprano Kiera Duffy and baritone John Moore play the lead roles in a performance conducted by Steven Osgood.

Alexandra Silber
Photograph: Rebecca Michaelson

I Wish: The Roles That Could Have Been (54 Below At Home)

Feinstein’s/54 Below has been streaming shows from its archives, but this one is different: a live-from-home edition of a series conceived and hosted by Alexandra Silber (Fiddler on the Roof), in which Broadway performers get a chance to dreamcast themselves in parts they will probably never get to play. Performers include Elizabeth Stanley, Julia Murney, Drew Gehling, Nicholas Barasch, Robyn Hurder, Samantha Massell, Isabelle McCalla, Jelani Remy,  Kirsten Scott, Matthew Scott and Nik Walker. Ben Caplan serves as musical director. 

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Julia Stiles in Sexting
Photograph: Courtesy Detestable Films

Detestable Films

Contemptible Entertainment shares six short films by the provocative misanthropist playwright Neil LaBute (reasons to be pretty). The casts include Julia Stiles, Marin Ireland, Adam Brody, Keith David and Thomas Sadoski.

ZviDance: On The Road
Photograph: Yi-Chun Wu

ZviDance: On the Road

In this show, presented at Joe's Pub by Dance Now in 2019, Israeli-American contemporary choreographer Zvi Gotheiner reprises a work inspired by Jack Kerouac's novel and his company's retracing of its narrator's cross-country journey. His multimedia piece, performed by four dancers, is set to music by Jukka Rintamki and features Americana-themed video by Joshua Higgason.

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Ballet Hispánico: Carmen.maquia
Photograph: Paula Lobo

Ballet Hispánico: CARMEN.maquia and Club Havana

Lincoln Center shares two works by the venerable Ballet Hispánico, which turns 50 this year. Pedro Ruiz’s Club Havana, is a celebration of Cuban dance including the conga, rumba, mambo and cha cha; Gustavo Ramírez Sansano's Carmen.maquia, which was the company’s first evening-length narrative ballet, is based on the classic Bizet opera and incorporates Spanish paso doble and flamenco.

Marie Mullen
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

The Gifts You Gave to the Dark (Irish Repertory Theatre)

After its success earlier this month with a virtual revival of Brian Friel’s Molly Sweeney, the Irish Rep now launches an entire summer season of online offerings. Starting things off is the world premiere of The Gifts You Gave to the Dark, a short play written by Darren Murphy in response to the current crisis and directed by the Abbey Theatre’s Caitríona McLaughlin. Marty Rea plays a man who, while confined to his sickbed in Belfast by COVID-19, telephones his dying mother in Dublin to share a memory of a day they once spent together. Marie Mullen, who won a 1998 Tony for The Beauty Queen of Leenane, plays the older woman; Seán McGinley completes the cast. The play will remain viewable for free on YouTube through October.

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PLAYBILL BUNNY Jenn Harris takes audiences down comedic rabbit holes.
Photograph: Allison Michael Orenstein

Pussy Fright!

With his wicked witticisms, ardent social activism and cultivated mid-Atlantic accent—he sounds like Lauren Bacall in a saucy mood—Justin Sayre is an avatar of retroqueer cultivation. The Zoom reading of his zany Hitchcock spoof The Ducks last month was an absolute hoot, Now he is keeping the camp fires burning with another black comedy: Pussy Fright!, in which Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s Tom Lenk plays a sad heiress whose plan to leave her fortune to her cat gets her entangled in multiple webs of nefarious intrigue. The cast, directed by Tom DeTrinis, includes some of America’s funniest actors: Larry Owens (A Strange Loop), Drew Droege, Jeff Hiller, Rob Maitner, Sam Pancake, Ryan Garcia, Leslie-Ann Huff and Jenn Harris as the cat. Viewers can donate via Venmo (@PussyFright) to benefit the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center and New York’s Ali Forney Center.

Mark Morris
Photograph: Courtesy of the artist

Mark Morris Dance Group: Dance On!

Mark Morris and his joyous ensemble spread a little light in the darkness of isolation with a special Zoom program that includes the premieres of four short works choreographed by the inventive modern dance master. Rehearsed and filmed remotely, the pieces are Lonely Waltz (set to Maurice Ravel’s La Valse), Lonely Tango (set to piano music by Erik Satie), Anger Dance (set to music by Henry Cowell) and Sunshine (set to Gene Autrey’s recording of “You Are My Sunshine”).

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Ralph Fiennes as Prospero in The Tempest at Theatre Royal Haymarket
Photograph: Catherine Ashmore

Shakespeare Sonnet Marathon (Irondale Ensemble)

Brooklyn’s Irondale Ensemble assembled more than 100 participants on April 23 for an eight-hour Zoom session in honor of Shakespeare’s 456th birthday. Performers range from famous actors and Irondale performers to amateur volunteers, each of whoms deliver their choice of 14-liners from among the Bard’s 154 sonnets. Well-known participants include Ralph Fiennes (Sonnet 129 at 2:09), Lea DeLaria (Sonnet 8 at 7:07), Daphne Rubin-Vega (Sonner 23 at 1:34), Cady Huffman (Sonnet 60 at 2:40), Michael Musto (Sonnet 30 at 0:50), American Ballet Theatre's James Whiteside (Sonnet 20 at 1:05) and Sopranos actor John Ventimiglia (Sonnet 116 at 6:05–6:09), who amusingly doesn't realize that he's live for the first few minutes he's on. Musical settings are provided by Rufus Wainwright (Sonnet 20 at 4:12) and Kenyon Phillips (sonnet 66 at 0:47). Irondale cofounder Jim Niesen presides, with supassing gentleness, over most of the event.

The Season 1 cast of NBC's Smash (2012)
Photograph: Mark Seliger/NBC

Bombshell in Concert

Whether you loved it, hated it, loved to hate it, hated to love it or maintained a studious feigned indifference to it, the behind-the-Broadway-scenes NBC series Smash was the talk of the theater world for its two stormy seasons in 2012 and 2013. What everyone agrees about is that the musical numbers that Hairspray’s Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman wrote for its show-within-a-show, the Marilyn Monroe biomusical-in-progress Bombshell, were consistently pretty great. In 2015, Smash’s cast gathered at the Minskoff Theatre to perform those songs in a sold-out concert co-directed by Wittman and choreographer Joshua Bergasse; everything clicked, the audience went wild and the Actors Fund raised $800,000. Now People adds to the tally by streaming a recording of that electric night as an Actors Fund benefit. Renée Zellweger introduces the program, and at intermission the acerbic Julie Klausner hosts a live virtual reunion with cast members Megan Hilty, Katharine McPhee, Debra Messing, Christian Borle, Leslie Odom Jr., Jeremy Jordan, Andy Mientus, Jack Davenport, Jaime Cepero, Will Chase, Brian d’Arcy James, Ann Harada, Krysta Rodriguez and Wesley Taylor. Tune in and get Smashed. 

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Frank DiLella
Photograph: Courtesy Dirty Sugar Photography

The Drama Desk Awards

The Tonys may be in a state of indefinite suspension, but their cousins the Drama Desks—like the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Awards and the Lucille Lortel Awards before them—are moving forward after a two-week postponement. NY1’s Frank DiLella hosts an hourlong special in support of the Actors Fund; the virtual presenters include Patti LuPone, Audra McDonald, Kristin Chenoweth, Alan Cumming, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Tituss Burgess, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Andrew Rannells, Jane Krakowski, Cynthia Nixon,