Read about NYC's best theatre and dance productions and watch video interviews with innovative artists
With in-person theatre still a rarity, many companies and performers from Broadway and beyond are showcasing their work online. Below are performances you can watch this Wednesday, June 16 and Thursday, June 17, from the comfort of your couch for free or at low cost.
The Metropolitan Opera: Samson et Dalila
On Wednesday at 5 p.m. ET, ever since the shutdown began, the Metropolitan Opera has been sharing productions from its Live in HD series nightly at 7:30 p.m. ET. But it also presents weekly student streams that debut on Wednesdays. These productions have been specially selected for families and are complemented by online educational materials. This week's offering is Tony-winning director Darko Tresnjak's 2018 mounting of Saint-Saëns' Samson et Dalila, starring Elina Garanca and Roberto Alagna in the title roles of this hairy Biblical tale. Watch for free until Friday at 5 p.m. ET on the Metropolitan Opera's website.
The Drama League's 2021 DirectorFest: A Girl's Bedroom
On Wednesday at 7 p.m. ET, The Drama League wraps up the virtual edition of its annual DirectorFest, showcasing the talents of four New York Directing Fellows. The final offering is Enda Walsh's playlet A Girl's Bedroom, directed by Taylor Haven Holt, about a 6-year-old girl who left her home and walked and walked and walked... until she stopped and talked. RSVP to receive the free viewing link though a $15 donation is encouraged. The recording is available until Wednesday, June 23.
The Metropolitan Opera: La Traviata
On Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. ET, the Metropolitan Opera presents La Traviata, Verdi's romantic tragedy about a courtesan whose chance at true love is thwarted by bourgeois mores. Willy Decker helmed this 2012 mounting, which stars Natalie Dessay and Matthew Polenzani as the ill-fated lovers, and Dmitri Hvorostovsky as his disapproving father. Watch for free for 23 hours after the start time on the Metropolitan Opera's website. You can still stream yesterday's opera, Die Walküre, until 6:30 p.m. ET today.
Stars in the House: Guys and Dolls Reunion
On Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET, luck be a lady tonight—it's a Guys and Dolls reunion on Stars in the House! Seth Rudetsky and James Wesley welcome the stars of the Tony-winning 1992 Broadway revival, Nathan Lane, Peter Gallagher, Josie de Guzman, Walter Bobbie, Ruth Williamson and Faith Prince, who won a Tony for her hilarious turn as Miss Adelaide, along with Jerry Zaks, who won a Tony for his direction. Watch for free on YouTube though donations to The Actors Fund are encouraged.
Ute Lemper in Concert: All That Jazz
On Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET, catch internationally renowned German chanteuse Ute Lemper in a concert recorded on a NYC rooftop that is now being streamed to at-home audiences. She croons songs by Kurt Weill and Jacques Brel, tunes made famous by Marlene Dietrich and Edith Piaf, and "All That Jazz" from Chicago, which she headlined on Broadway. Tickets are $20.
TDF's Young Playwrights Group Showcase
On Thursday at 5:30 p.m. ET, see what the talented NYC students in TDF's Young Playwrights education program have been working on at their year-end showcase. Usually, the participants present a one-night, invite-only, in-person performance but, like 2020, this year the show must go online. Scenes, short films and poems are on the lineup! Watch for free on TDF's YouTube channel.
Ping Chong: Undesirable Elements - Generation Rise
On Thursday at 6:30 p.m. ET, the invaluable Ping Chong and Company presents Generation Rise featuring NYC teens of color telling their real-life pandemic tales. The latest installment in the troupe's decades-long Undesirable Elements documentary-theatre series spotlighting different "outsider" groups, this powerful hour-long piece explores what they went through in 2020, including the challenges of remote learning and the movement for racial justice. Register to receive the free Zoom link and stick around for a post-performance talkback.
Flushing Town Hall: Pride Trilogy: Part II - Marieann Meringolo: Here's to the Ladies! A Salute to Great Ladies of Song
On Thursday at 7 p.m. ET, Queens' Flushing Town Hall celebrates Pride Month with a trio of out and proud performances. The second offering is acclaimed NYC cabaret singer Marieann Meringolo in Here's to the Ladies! A Salute to Great Ladies of Song, a tribute to diverse divas such as Peggy Lee, Barbra Streisand, Joni Mitchell and Dionne Warwick. Streamed live from the venue's stage. Tickets are $6.
The Queerly Festival: Awkward Teenage Years
On Thursday at 7 p.m. ET, The Queerly Festival, an annual showcase of cutting-edge LGBTQ artists, is being held in person at the Kraine Theater in the East Village, but all performances are also being streamed to at-home audiences. The event kicks off tonight with Awkward Teenage Years, true stories about the trials and titillations of adolescence. Tickets are $15.
Live with Carnegie Hall: Michael Feinstein: A Summer Songbook
On Thursday at 7:30 p.m. ET, Carnegie Hall welcomes the master of the American Songbook, pianist and singer Michael Feinstein, as he celebrates the season with a concert of heartwarming standards by Cole Porter, George and Ira Gershwin, Irving Berlin and others. Live-streamed from Feinstein's 1940s-style club Vitello's in Studio City, CA. Watch for free on Carnegie Hall's YouTube channel.
The Metropolitan Opera: Idomeneo
On Thursday at 7:30 p.m. ET, the Metropolitan Opera presents Idomeneo, an early Mozart work featuring Matthew Polenzani as the King of Crete, who's faced with an impossible dilemma. Elza van den Heever, Nadine Sierra, Alice Coote and Alan Opie costar in Jean Pierre-Ponnelle's 2017 production. Watch for free for 23 hours after the start time on the Metropolitan Opera's website. You can still stream yesterday's opera, La Traviata, until 6:30 p.m. ET today.
Broadway's Best Shows Spotlight on Plays: Dear Elizabeth
On Thursday at 8 p.m. ET, since spring of 2020, Broadway's Best Shows has presented performances of important plays featuring big stars acting from their respective homes. The series wraps up with acting legends and frequent costars Meryl Streep and Kevin Kline (Sophie's Choice on screen, The Seagull on stage) in a digital performance of Sarah Ruhl's Dear Elizabeth, based on the correspondence between poets Robert Lowell and Elizabeth Bishop. Directed by Kate Whoriskey, the play maps the relationship of the two writers, from first meeting to a brief affair, as well as the turmoil of their lives in between.Tickets are $19 but if you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase them at a discount. The recording is viewable until Monday at 6 p.m. ET.
La MaMA: Experiments 21: Lottie Platchett Took a Hatchett
On Thursday at 8 p.m. ET, La MaMa presents Lottie Platchett Took a Hatchett, Justin Elizabeth Sayre's send-up of Lizzie Borden about another young woman who used violence to work through her issues. Sayre directs and appear in this farce alongside fellow camp masters Drew Droege, Tom Lenk, Tom Detrinis and Ryan Garcia. RSVP to receive the free viewing link.
Goodman Theatre: Ohio State Murders
On Thursday at 8:30 p.m. ET, Chicago's acclaimed Goodman Theatre presents Ohio State Murders, Adrienne Kennedy's semi-autobiographical 1992 play about a Black writer who's invited to talk about the violence in her work at her alma mater. But as she revisit the not-so-safe haven of her academic youth, she unravels heartbreaking truths about racism. Performed live on stage and streamed to an at-home audience, the production is directed by Tiffany Nichole Greene, and stars Eunice Woods and Jacqueline Williams as the writer at different points in her life. Tickets are $25 but if you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase them at a discount.
George Street Playhouse: It's Only a Play
New Jersey's George Street Playhouse presents It's Only a Play, Terrence McNally's popular comedy set at a dramatic party where a Broadway producer, playwright, director and cast anxiously await their opening night reviews. Funnyman Kevin Cahoon directed this mounting, which was filmed live on stage at the theatre. Tootsie Tony nominee Andy Grotelueschen, Greg Cuellar, Julie Halston, Doug Harris, Christine Toy Johnson, Triney Sandoval and Zach Shaffer star. Tickets are $33 but if you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase them at a discount. The recording is viewable until Sunday, July 4. Closed captions and audio description are available.
American Theatre Wing Centennial Concert
Back in 2017, the American Theatre Wing celebrated its 100th anniversary with a starry concert. In honor of what should have been Tony Awards time, the nonprofit is streaming the special for free. Watch Brian Stokes Mitchell croon "Being Alive" from Company, Heather Headley belt out "What I Did for Love" from A Chorus Line, Norm Lewis sing "The Music of the Night" from The Phantom of the Opera and Beth Malone performing from Fun Home, plus Santino Fontana, the late Rebecca Luker, Laura Osnes and others. Watch for free until Saturday on BroadwayHD.
The Old Vic: Home?
London's lauded Old Vic presents Home?, a trio of monologues created by refugee artists, curated by Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Tony nominee Noma Dumezweni, who arrived in England as a refugee herself. Then and Now, written by Women for Refugee Women founder Natasha Walter, is performed by British stage legend Harriet Walter; Dina Nayeri's Now I'm Gonna Get Paid is done by Betsabeh Emran; and Viet Thanh Nguyen's The Displaced is essayed by four actors: Elizabeth Chan, Taheen Modak, John Pfumojena and Michael Phong Le. Watch for free until Sunday on The Old Vic's website.
Signature Theatre: After Midnight
Virginia's lauded Signature Theatre presents After Midnight, an enthralling celebration of the legendary Cotton Club that was nominated for seven 2014 Tony Awards. Recorded on stage during quarantine, this new production is headlined by Hamilton Tony nominee Christopher Jackson and Nova Y. Payton, and is directed and choreographed by Jared Grimes, who appeared in the show on Broadway. Evocative renditions of Langston Hughes poems provide the framework for eye-popping tap-dance numbers set to the swinging songs of Duke Ellington, Jimmy McHugh, Dorothy Fields, Harold Arlen and other big band-era greats. Tickets are $35 but if you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase them at a discount. The recording is viewable until Wednesday, August 4.
Show of Titles
Dozens of Broadway stars hit the virtual stage to sing the title tunes from more than 20 beloved musicals. Enjoy performances by Annaleigh Ashford, Glenn Close, Len Cariou, Gavin Creel, Darren Criss, Santino Fontana, Jake Gyllenhaal, Norm Lewis, Patti LuPone, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Jessie Mueller, Kelli O'Hara, Laura Osnes, Steven Pasquale, Lea Salonga, Phillipa Soo, Will Swenson, Aaron Tveit, Leslie Uggams, Vanessa Williams, Patrick Wilson and more, along with special appearances by Danny Burstein, Bryan Cranston, Sheldon Harnick, John Kander, Angela Lansbury, John Leguizamo, John Lithgow, Phylicia Rashad and BD Wong. Tickets are $29 and the recording is viewable until Thursday at 4 p.m. ET. Proceeds benefit The Actors Fund.
Lincoln Center Theater: Marys Seacole
Lincoln Center Theater presents Marys Seacole, Pulitzer Prize winner Jackie Sibblies Drury's critically acclaimed play about an ambitious Jamaican woman whose adventures span many countries and eras, from the Crimean War to a modern-day nursing home. A profound exploration of women who are paid to look after others, this fantasia is inspired by the real-life 19th-century nurse and healer Mary Seacole as well as all the caregivers who came after her. This Lincoln Center Theater/LCT3 production was recorded on stage in 2019, with Lileana Blain-Cruz directing Quincy Tyler Bernstine, Gabby Beans, Marceline Hugot, Karen Kandel, Ismenia Mendes and Lucy Taylor. Register on Broadway on Demand to receive the free viewing link. The recording is viewable until Sunday, July 4.
North Coast Repertory Theatre: Becoming Dr. Ruth
California's North Coast Repertory Theatre presents four-time Tony nominee Tovah Feldshuh in Becoming Dr. Ruth, Mark St. Germain's inspiring one-woman bio play about the cheery sex therapist and her compelling past, including losing her family in the Holocaust, working as a sniper for the Haganah and finally finding Mr. Right after two divorces. David Ellenstein directs the production, which was filmed live on stage at Bay Street Theater, a co-producer of the show. Tickets start at $35 and the recording is viewable until Sunday, July 11.
Love, Linda: The Life of Mrs. Cole Porter
Singer and actor Stevie Holland conjures the glamorous life and marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Cole Porter in Love, Linda. Cowritten by Holland and her real-life husband, Gary William Friedman, this one-woman musical chronicles the unconventional couple's 35-year union, as Southern belle Linda Lee Thomas stands by and inspires her talented man, songwriter Cole Porter, even though he was gay. Richard Maltby, Jr. directed this unorthodox love story. Tickets are $15 and the recording is viewable until Wednesday, June 23.
The Joyce Theater: Ballez: Giselle of Loneliness
Chelsea dance haven The Joyce wraps up its digital season with a world premiere from Ballez, a company dedicated to radically reinventing classic ballets. The troupe will perform Giselle of Loneliness, a queer reimagining of the 19th-century romantic tragedy that examines what dancers give up for their art. Tickets are $25 but if you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase them at a discount. The recording is viewable until Wednesday, June 23.
New York City Ballet: George Balanchine's Vienna Waltzes
New York City Ballet wraps up its digital spring season with George Balanchine's 1977 epic Vienna Waltzes, set to music by Johann Strauss II, Franz Lehár and Richard Strauss and featuring more than 50 dancers. This performance was filmed in 2013 and stars Rebecca Krohn, Tyler Angle, Megan Fairchild, Anthony Huxley, Erica Pereira, Sean Suozzi, Teresa Reichlen, Ask la Cour, Maria Kowroski and Jared Angle weaving through Rouben Ter-Arutunian's evolving scenery. Watch for free until Thursday on NYCB's YouTube channel.
Feinstein's/54 Below: Marilyn Maye: Broadway, the Maye Way
Feinstein's/54 Below presents cabaret great Marilyn Maye in her brand-new concert Broadway, the Maye Way. Recorded at the club in April around Maye's 93rd birthday, the show features the legend singing numbers from the Golden Age of Broadway backed by her world-class jazz trio. Tickets are $35 but if you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase them at a discount. The recording is viewable until Saturday.
Red Bull Theater: Volpone, or the Fox
On Monday, NYC's Red Bull Theater presented a live reading of Volpone, or the Fox and you can watch a recording until Friday at 7 p.m. ET. Ben Jonson's Jacobean-era comedy centers on the wily title character, who dupes his wealthy pals out of their riches. Jesse Berger directs an all-star cast led by Tony winner André De Shields as Volpone, alongside Broadway vets Peter Francis James, Hamish Linklater, Roberta Maxwell, Kristine Nielsen and Mary Testa. Watch for free on Red Bull's YouTube channel.
Top image: Kevin Kline and Meryl Streep, who star in a digital performance of Dear Elizabeth on Thursday evening.