Read about NYC's best theatre and dance productions and watch video interviews with innovative artists
With in-person theatre out of commission for the foreseeable future, many companies and performers from Broadway and beyond are showcasing their work online. Below are performances you can watch this Monday and Tuesday, November 2 and 3, from the comfort of your couch for free or at low cost.
The Seth Concert Series: Beth Malone
On Monday at 3 p.m. ET, apparently, hosting a daily online talk show and a Sirius XM Satellite Radio series isn't enough for the multitalented Seth Rudetsky. Well-known for his skills as a pianist, musical director and interviewer, he's hosted a series of intimate live concerts with Broadway stars for the past decade. This year he brings the show online. Last night's headliner was Beth Malone and you can watch a recording today. A Tony nominee for her star-making turn as grown-up Alison in Fun Home, Malone also played the title character in a revisal of The Unsinkable Molly Brown earlier this year. Enjoy numbers from her career and songs from dream roles. Tickets are $25.
Karen, I Said
On Monday at 6 p.m. ET, writer, performer and TDF Stages contributor Eliza Bent explores the phenomenon of white wokeness with wit and bite in her solo show Karen, I Said, directed by Tara Ahmedinejad. Tickets start at $5 and a portion of the proceeds go to the Black LGBTQ org Brave Space Alliance.
Sing Out for Freedom: An Election Eve Concert
On Monday at 6:30 p.m. ET, boisterous belter Lea DeLaria hosts Sing Out for Freedom, an annual ACLU benefit featuring a slew of Broadway stars raising their voices for a worthy cause. Tony nominee Liesl Tommy directs a lineup that includes Laura Benanti, André De Shields, Adrienne Warren, Katrina Lenk, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Phillipa Soo, Brandon Victor Dixon, Ephraim Sykes, Rebecca Naomi Jones and Jelani Alladin. Watch for free online though a $20 donation is suggested.
New York Theatre Workshop: What the Hell Is a Republic, Anyway? Episode 4
On Monday at 7 p.m. ET, New York Theatre Workshop wraps up What the Hell Is a Republic, Anyway?, a four-part interactive online experience from Tony winner Denis O'Hare and director-writer Lisa Peterson. The duo previously mounted the Obie-winning An Iliad at NYTW. Now they're inviting audiences into their creative process as they deconstruct democracy by parsing the rise and fall of the Roman Republic and the challenges of successfully collaborating on anything, be it a play or politics. This final episode is titled "The Election," which is, of course, the only thing anyone can think or talk about right now. Jeffrey Robinson, the deputy legal director of the ALCU and the director of the Trone Center for Justice and Equality, is their special guest. Log on ready to participate! Tickets are $10.
Theater in Quarantine: Closet Works
On Monday at 7 and 9 p.m. ET, downtown multihyphenate Joshua William Gelb, known for deconstructing complicated classics like The Jazz Singer, performs a series of brief dance pieces in his closet created by Hadestown associate choreographer Katie Rose McLaughlin in collaboration with Sunny Hitt and Veronica Jiao. There's a Q&A with the artists in between the two live performances. Watch for free on Gelb's YouTube channel.
The Metropolitan Opera: Rodelinda
On Monday at 7:30 p.m. ET, the Metropolitan Opera presents Stephen Wadsworth's 2004 mounting of Rodelinda, Handel's drama about a queen faced with an impossible decision. Renée Fleming stars as the title royal alongside Stephanie Blythe, Andreas Scholl, Iestyn Davies and Joseph Kaiser. Watch for free for 23 hours after the start time on the Metropolitan Opera's website. You can still stream yesterday's opera, Satyagraha, until 6:30 p.m. today.
The Public Theater: Public Forum: We the People
On Monday at 8 p.m. ET, the perpetually politically minded Public Theater hosts a virtual Election Eve gathering featuring Adrienne Warren, Brandon Victor Dixon, Jomama Jones and other performer-activists. Will Davis directs this celebration of community, culture and the thrill of casting your ballot! Watch for free on The Public's YouTube channel.
Bindlestiff Open Stage: Quarantine Edition
On Monday at 8 p.m. ET, the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus leaps into fall with a new season of its weekly live-streamed variety show. Hosted by adorkable ringmaster Keith Nelson, this evening's cavalcade includes a clown with a hilarious name, Top Shelf Bum, acrobat Simon Peter, mentalist Michael Rosman, juggler Matan Presberg and aerial hoop artist Elliana Hentoff-Killian. Watch for free on Bindlestiff's YouTube channel though donations are encouraged.
Club Cumming: Judy Gold: VOTE DAMMIT! with special guest Mary Trump and Randy Rainbow
On Monday at 9 p.m. ET, Alan Cumming, who hosted downtown divas at his eponymous East Village club pre-COVID, is now sharing their fabulousness online. Tonight, outspoken standup Judy Gold rants to the converted with VOTE DAMMIT, a highly partisan variety show guest starring the president's least favorite relative, Mary Trump, and premier parodist Randy Rainbow. Tickets start at $20.
British stage and screen star Juliet Stevenson headlines Little Wars, a play by Steven Carl McCasland about a sextet of real-life sheroes—Lillian Hellman, Agatha Christie, Dorothy Parker, Gertrude Stein, Alice B. Toklas and antifascist agent Muriel Gardiner—hobnobbing at a pre-WWII soiree. Stevenson plays Hellman and Sophie Thompson, Linda Bassett, Debbie Chazen, Natasha Karp, Catherine Russell and Sarah Solemani round out the cast. Tickets are £12, approximately $16.
Stars in the House: Election Day Vote-a-Thon
On Tuesday at 9 a.m. ET, Stars in the House hosts Seth Rudetsky and James Wesley offer some Election Day comfort culture with this starry 10-hour vote-a-thon. The jaw-dropping lineup of Broadway bigwigs who'll pop by include Laura Benanti, Annette Bening, Stephanie J. Block, Betty Buckley, Michael Cerveris, Gavin Creel, Melissa Errico, Victor Garber, Josh Groban, Sean Hayes, Megan Hilty, Jeremy Jordan, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Judy Kuhn, Terrence Mann, Andrea Martin, Lindsay Mendez, Laurie Metcalf, Jessie Mueller, Patti Murin, Julia Murney, Kelli O'Hara, Karen Olivo, Adam Pascal, Lauren Patten, Christine Pedi, Rosie Perez, Anthony Rapp, Chita Rivera, Lea Salonga, Marc Shaiman, Martin Short, Elizabeth Stanley, Ben Stiller and Vanessa Williams plus lots of surprise guests. Cast your vote (if you haven't already) and then watch for free on YouTube.
The Metropolitan Opera: Orfeo ed Euridice
On Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. ET, the Metropolitan Opera presents Mark Morris' acclaimed 2009 staging of Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice, which updates the ancient legend to the present, with Stephanie Blythe and Danielle de Niese as the heartbreaking title couple. Watch for free for 23 hours after the start time on the Metropolitan Opera's website. You can still stream yesterday's opera, Rodelinda, until 6:30 p.m. today.
The American Dance Guild Performance Festival: 10 Years Over 10 Weeks
Each year, the American Dance Guild produces a festival that includes salutes to iconic dance-makers. Since the event is virtual this year, the organizers are transforming it into a retrospective of the last decade of honorees, with archival recordings released every Monday. The fourth features tributes to 2013's masters Lar Lubovitch, Marilyn Wood and Remy Charlip. Watch for free until Sunday on Vimeo though donations are encouraged.
The Shed: November
Claudia Rankine's buzzy play Help had just started previews at The Shed when the shutdown hit. Now the playwright and performance venue have transformed the piece into a short film titled November, which was shot during quarantine. Real-life exchanges Rankine had with white men in public spaces are reenacted by five Black women, Zora Howard, Tiffany Rachelle Stewart, Crystal Dickinson, April Matthis and Melanie Nicholls-King, examining how privilege impacts the way one navigates the world. A fusion of stage and cinema, November was filmed at The Shed, with Taibi Magar directing the actors on stage and Phillip Youmans behind the camera. Register to receive the free viewing link; the recording is viewable until Saturday.
Incidental Moments of the Day: The Apple Family: Life on Zoom
It's your last chance to catch Richard Nelson's Incidental Moments of the Day, the final installment of his of-the-moment Zoom trilogy centered on his fictional Apple family. From 2010 to 2013, Nelson mounted one hyper-realistic play a year about this Rhinebeck, New York clan as they grappled with national milestones such as the 10th anniversary of September 11, the 2012 reelection of Barack Obama and the 50th anniversary of JFK's assassination. This past April, as the COVID-19 pandemic peaked in New York, the Apples reunited for What Do We Need to Talk About?, a Zoom call in quarantine, followed by And So We Come Forth in July. Once again, the four siblings and one boyfriend, played by the cast of the original tetralogy—Tony winner Maryann Plunkett, Sally Murphy, Laila Robins, Jay O. Sanders and Stephen Kunken—assuage their isolation via technology as they discuss how they're faring. Watch for free until Thursday on YouTube though donations to The Actors Fund are encouraged.
Top image: Laura Benanti, who's participating in the ACLU's Sing Out for Freedom: An Election Eve Concert and Stars in the House's Election Day Vote-a-Thon. Photo by Jeremy Daniel.