Read about NYC's best theatre and dance productions and watch video interviews with innovative artists
Catch James McAvoy as Cyrano, Sarah Silverman's new musical and more
Fifteen shows are opening on Broadway this month but even more are bowing Off Broadway. Our curated list features 16 of the most promising productions, including three new musicals, two dramas exploring the refugee experience, James McAvoy as Cyrano de Bergerac and the reclamation of a long-lost play by Alice Childress. For a comprehensive overview of everything playing beyond Broadway, browse the listings in TDF's Show Finder. And remember, many of our Off-Broadway picks for March are still running.
In terms of COVID-19 safety protocols, all of these productions require theatregoers to provide proof of being fully vaccinated with an FDA or WHO authorized vaccine. Masks are also mandatory. Note that some shows are adding additional rules such as proof of a booster shot. While we are doing our best to keep this article up to date, before buying tickets to any event, double-check the COVID-19 rules to avoid disappointment.
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New World Stages, 340 West 50th Street between Eighth and Ninth Avenues in Midtown West
Previews begin March 31. Opens May 1. Closes June 19. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.
After an acclaimed run at Arizona's Phoenix Theater Company, ¡Americano! comes to New World Stages. Featuring songs by Ameri-Chicana singer-songwriter Carrie Rodriguez, the musical is based on the real-life story of Tony Valdovinos, a DREAMer who discovered his immigration status at age 18 when he tried to enlist in the US Marines Corps after September 11. But this proud Latinx immigrant finds other inspiring ways to serve his country. A poignant tale of what makes an American, the show is directed by Michael Barnard, who also cowrote the book with Jonathan Rosenberg and Fernanda Santos.
Théâtre XIV, 383 Troutman Street between Wyckoff and Irving Avenues in Bushwick, Brooklyn
Begins April 1. Closes August 28. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.
Since 2006, Company XIV has been seducing audiences with NC-17-rated spectacles featuring an intoxicating blend of circus, live music, magic, burlesque and specialty cocktails. The troupe's latest extravaganza, Seven Sins, was in the middle of its premiere when the shutdown hit. It's being resurrected at the company's ornate, red-light-and-velvet-filled theatre, so expect sexy takes on pride, greed, wrath, envy, lust, gluttony and sloth. An ideal date night show!
BAM Harvey Theater, 651 Fulton Street between Ashland and Rockwell Places in Fort Greene, Brooklyn
Previews begin April 5. Opens April 14. Closes May 22.
After a pandemic delay, director Jamie Lloyd's Olivier Award-winning reinvention of Cyrano de Bergerac arrives at BAM. Star James McAvoy (X-Men, His Dark Materials) makes his New York stage debut as the title character, a soldier and poet too insecure to reveal himself as a lover. Just as Lloyd did with Betrayal on Broadway, he completely reinvents this classic, using an adaptation by Martin Crimp that transforms Edmond Rostand's lyrical text into contemporary raps and rhymes as the tortured Cyrano helps another man woo his lifelong crush. One of the hottest (in multiple senses of the word) shows of the spring season. If you want to try to snag cheap seats, try snagging $10 rush tickets.
The Public Theater, 425 Lafayette Street near Astor Place in the East Village
Previews begin April 8. Opens May 8. Closes May 15.
Note: Proof of booster shot required.
Another buzzy production delayed due to the pandemic, Mona Mansour's timeline-hopping triptych about the Palestinian struggle for home and identity finally opens at The Public Theater. In 1967, a Palestinian scholar travels to London with his new wife to deliver a lecture. When war breaks out at home, they must choose: Claim asylum in London or return to fight for their beloved country. The play's next two sections explore each of those realities, painting a complex portrait of Palestinian displacement and the struggles of being a refugee. Six actors portray 19 roles in this epic drama, which spans four decades and three generations of a family uprooted by war and politics. Mark Wing-Davey directs.
A.R.T./New York Theatres, 502 West 53rd Street between Tenth and Eleventh Avenues in Midtown West
Previews begin April 12. Opens April 17. Closes May 1. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.
One of NYC's most celebrated Asian-American theatre companies, Pan Asian Rep, presents the world premiere of Citizen Wong, inspired by the work of Wong Chin Foo, the 19th-century Chinese-American activist and journalist who fought the Chinese Exclusion Act. For this dramatization, playwright Richard Chang adds a fictional romance with the liberal minded daughter of a railroad tycoon-politician, and incorporates other figures of the era, including Irish-born labor leader Denis Kearney, socialite Alva Vanderbilt and Wong Kim Ark, the defendant in a landmark US Supreme Court case about US citizenship.
The Pershing Square Signature Center, 480 West 42nd Street between Dyer and Tenth Avenues in Midtown West
Previews begin April 12. Opens May 2. Closes June 5. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.
Samuel D. Hunter is known for his epic plays set in his home state of Idaho. So, it's no surprise his world premiere for Signature Theatre Company takes place in the Gem State. But A Case for the Existence of God is a departure for the Obie winner: an intimate but tense two-hander about a pair of Idahoans (Kyle Beltran and Will Brill) struggling to meet the bewildering terms of a loan. Tony Award winner David Cromer directs this thought-provoking examination of human resilience.
Playwrights Horizons, 416 West 42nd Street between Ninth and Dyer Avenues in Midtown West
Previews begin April 13. Opens May 2. Closes June 5. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.
Earlier this season, Sanaz Toossi's English about language, identity and opportunity earned rave reviews at Atlantic Theater Company. Now the prolific Iranian-American dramatist has a world premiere at Playwrights Horizons, Wish You Were Here, which chronicles a decade of life during war in Iran. It begins in 1978 as protests break out across the country, even encroaching on a suburb where a close group of girlfriends grasps at a sense of normalcy, planning weddings and sharing gossip. But as the revolution escalates, each woman is forced to either flee or face a precarious future at home. Once again, Toossi makes the political personal and poignant.
The Robert W. Wilson MCC Theater Space, 511 West 52nd Street between Tenth and Eleventh Avenues in Midtown West
Previews begin April 14. Opens May 10. Closes May 28. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.
Ana Nogueira is best known as a performer—her credits include stints in Broadway's In the Heights and on the TV series The Vampire Diaries and The Blacklist. But she's also an up-and-coming playwright with a brand-new comedy at MCC Theater. It's 2015 and two longtime BFFs, Judy (Sas Goldberg) and Jeff (Max Jenkins), are standing by the stage door of the Broadway musical If/Then, hoping to meet the show's star, Idina Menzel. But the conversation they have while waiting changes their relationship forever. A love letter to the theatre community, Which Way to the Stage explores creative competition, gender expression and the grueling musical theatre audition process. Mike Donahue directs.
Playhouse 46 at St. Luke's, 308 West 46th Street between Eighth and Ninth Avenues in Midtown West
Previews begin April 14. Opens April 21. Closes June 13. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.
A hit at the 2019 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, this tuneful tale centers on a lonely girl living on a remote Scottish isle, whose discovery of a whale carcass and a mysterious stranger change the trajectory of her life. The performers use looped vocals and clapping to create an ethereal score that helps conjure this Scottish folklore. This will be the first production in the completely redesigned Playhouse 46 at St. Luke's.
Cherry Lane Theatre, 38 Commerce Street between Bedford and Hudson Streets in the West Village
Previews begin April 25. Opens May 9. Closes June 30. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.
The cozy Cherry Lane Theatre has become the go-to venue for gleefully uncomfortable solo comedy shows. Hot on the heels of Jacqueline Novak's meditation on oral sex and Alex Edelman's romp about a Jew walking into a white nationalist meeting comes Alison Leiby's Oh God, A Show About Abortion, a hilariously open account of her unwanted pregnancy. In comedy it's all in the timing; considering women's reproductive rights are currently under siege, this show comes at the perfect moment.
59E59 Theaters, 59 East 59th Street between Madison and Park Avenues in Midtown East
Previews begin April 26. Opens May 5. Closes June 12.
The Directors Company presents Karen Hartman's stage adaptation of Richard S. Hollander's book Every Day Lasts a Year: A Jewish Family's Correspondence from Poland, inspired by family letters he found in his attic after his parents were killed in a car crash. Suddenly, he was introduced to ancestors he never even knew about who had perished in the Holocaust. Alternating between the past and present, The Lucky Star is a portrait of a family torn apart by war and survivors reclaiming the past. Noah Himmelstein directs a cast that includes Alexandra Silber (Fiddler on the Roof on Broadway), Steven Skybell (Tevye in Yiddish Fiddler) and Dale Soules (Orange Is the New Black, Hands on a Hardbody).
MTC Stage I at City Center, 131 West 55th Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues in Midtown West
Previews begin April 26. Opens May 17. Closes June 12. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.
Anchuli Felicia King's new dramedy examines communication and cultural divides, even within one family. When American attorney Julie Chen files a class-action lawsuit involving a global tech company and the Chinese government, she hires her strong-willed sister Eva as her translator. How much will they compromise in order to win, what will they lose in the process and will they ever figure out how to speak the same language? May Adrales (Vietgone) directs.
Polonsky Shakespeare Center, 262 Ashland Place between Lafayette Avenue and Fulton Street in Fort Greene, Brooklyn
POSTPONED FROM APRIL 23 DUE TO COVID Previews begin April 28. Opens May 8. Closes May 22. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.
Three decades after her death, Alice Childress is having her belated season in the spotlight. Her 1955 play Trouble in Mind, a prescient examination of racism in the theatre industry, had its long-delayed Broadway debut last fall. Now Theatre for a New Audience is presenting Wedding Band, written in 1966 and not seen in New York since it was mounted at The Public Theater 50 years ago. Subtitled A Love/Hate Story in Black and White, the play explores the relationship between a Black seamstress and a white baker in 1918 South Carolina. As their attraction grows and a pandemic looms, they're forced to confront racism, community disapproval and the anti-miscegenation laws that prohibit their romance. Awoye Timpo directs an ensemble cast led by Brittany Bradford and Tony nominee Thomas Sadoski as the central couple.
59E59 Theaters, 59 East 59th Street between Madison and Park Avenues in Midtown East
Previews begin April 28. Opens May 11. Closes June 9.
After a pandemic-induced hiatus, the venerable Primary Stages returns to in-person performances with New Golden Age, a sci-fi-infused drama by Karen Hartman (yup, her again!) about two sisters fighting for human connection while battling a big tech dystopia in different ways, one from the outside, the other from within. Jade King Carroll directs this critique of our screen-obsessed society.
Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theatre, 111 West 46th Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues in Midtown West
Previews begin April 28. Opens May 18. Closes June 26.
Dave Harris' surreal satire about racism, Tambo & Bones, created quite the stir at Playwrights Horizons earlier this year. Now Roundabout Theatre Company presents his new play Exception to the Rule, about six Black students at a struggling urban high school stuck in detention. At first they flirt and fight, but soon they start discussing the larger picture. Why, exactly, are they stuck there? For breaking the school rules or are there societal forces at work? Miranda Haymon directs a cast of six that includes MaYaa Boateng, who captivated in Fairview.
Atlantic Theater Company, Linda Gross Theater, 336 West 20th Street between Eighth and Ninth Avenues in Chelsea
Previews begin April 30. Opens June 7. Closes July 10.
Originally scheduled to premiere in spring 2020, this outrageous musical comedy took a tragic turn when songwriter Adam Schlesinger died of COVID-19 in the early days of the pandemic. Two years later, the show is finally going on. Inspired by Sarah Silverman's memoir of the same name, The Bedwetter is a raunchy tuner about a funny girl growing up with a soggy secret. The comedian collaborated on the book with Joshua Harmon (Bad Jews) and on the songs with Schlesinger, a rock musician (Fountains of Wayne) whose theatre credits include Cry-Baby on Broadway and an iconic Tony Awards opener. Zoe Glick stars as Sarah alongside Broadway divas Bebe Neuwirth and Caissie Levy. Anne Kauffman directs.
Top image: James McAvoy in Cyrano de Bergerac, which plays a limited run at BAM this spring. Photo by Marc Brenner.
Raven Snook is the Editor of TDF Stages. Follow her at @RavenSnook. Follow TDF at @TDFNYC.
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