Read about NYC's best theatre and dance productions and watch video interviews with innovative artists
With in-person theatre a rarity for the foreseeable future, many companies and performers from Broadway and beyond are showcasing their work online. Below are performances you can watch this weekend, Friday, April 30 to Sunday, May 2, for free or at low cost.
The Shows Must Go On!: After the Interval
On Friday at 2 p.m. ET, The Shows Must Go On! presents After the Interval, a dance-theatre piece conceived and directed by Luca Silvestrini that explores the lives of dancers both on stage and off. The production was recorded at London's Linbury Studio Theatre in 2012. Watch for free all weekend on YouTube.
The York Theatre Company: An Evening with Sheldon Harnick and Friends
On Friday at 7 p.m. ET, The York Theatre Company presents An Evening with Sheldon Harnick and Friends, a recording of a special March 2020 concert (filmed right before theatres closed!) celebrating the work of the Fiddler on the Roof lyricist. Harnick himself is joined on stage by Broadway favorites Liz Callaway, Karen Ziemba and the late, great Rebecca Luker, who croon songs from his hits (Fiorello!, She Loves Me, Fiddler) as well as his fascinating flops (Tenderloin, The Rothschilds, Rex, Dragons). Tickets are $25 and the recording is viewable until Friday, May 14.
Ma-Yi Theater Company: Vancouver
On Friday at 7 p.m. ET, the innovative Ma-Yi Theatre Company presents Vancouver, a timely new play written and directed by the troupe's producing artistic director, Ralph B. Peña. Centering on a mixed race family portrayed by breathtaking puppets, the one-act examines their move from Japan to the Pacific Northwest and their quest to find a place that truly feels like a welcoming home. Watch for free until Sunday, May 30 on Ma-Yi's website.
Waterwell: Red Rainbow
On Friday at 7 p.m. ET, every year, civic-minded NYC theatre company Waterwell commissions a new full-length play by an emerging dramatist written specifically for senior drama students at the Professional Performing Arts School. This year, Waterwell tapped Azure D. Osborne-Lee to craft a fantastical piece about NYC teens who go on an unexpected adventure during the pandemic. Who knows? You may be seeing an early performance by the next Claire Danes or Jesse Eisenberg, both alums of the school. Tickets start at $5.
The Metropolitan Opera: La Traviata
On Friday at 7:30 p.m. ET, the Metropolitan Opera shares a gem from its vaults: its 1981 mounting of La Traviata, Verdi's romantic tragedy about a courtesan whose chance at true love is thwarted by bourgeois mores. This production stars Ileana Cotrubas, Plácido Domingo and Cornell MacNeil. Watch for free for 23 hours after the start time on the Metropolitan Opera's website. You can still stream yesterday's opera, Manon, until 6:30 p.m. ET today.
Stars in the House: The Mystery of Edwin Drood Reunion
On Friday at 8 p.m. ET, it's a Mystery of Edwin Drood reunion on Stars in the House! Seth Rudetsky and James Wesley welcome cast members from the original 1985 Broadway production, including Donna Murphy, Judy Kuhn, Betty Buckley and Howard McGillin. The musical's creator, Rupert Holmes, who won Tony Awards for his book and score, will also drop by. Watch for free on YouTube though donations to The Actors Fund are encouraged.
59E59 Theaters: Missed Connections
On Saturday at 4 and 8 p.m. ET, 59E59 Theaters presents Missed Connections, an intimate and interactive play cowritten and performed by magician Jon Tai that connects the online audiences members together through an invisible but unmistakable thread. Cowriter Alex Gruhin directs this dazzling digital experience, which unfolds over Zoom. Only 20 tickets are sold per performance. Tickets are $29.
Waterwell: Red Rainbow
On Saturday at 7 p.m. ET, every year, civic-minded NYC theatre company Waterwell commissions a new full-length play by an emerging dramatist written specifically for senior drama students at the Professional Performing Arts School. This year, Waterwell tapped Azure D. Osborne-Lee to craft a fantastical piece about NYC teens who go on an unexpected adventure during the pandemic. Who knows? You may be seeing an early performance by the next Claire Danes or Jesse Eisenberg, both alums of the school. Tickets start at $5.
The Metropolitan Opera: Adriana Lecouvreur
On Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET, the Metropolitan Opera presents Adriana Lecouvreur, Cilea's romantic tragedy about a very dramatic love triangle between an actress, a princess and a count. Anna Netrebko stars as the ill-fated title diva in Sir David McVicar's 2019 staging. 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 on Demand: We Have to Hurry
On Saturday at 8 p.m. ET, Kathleen Chalfant and Elliott Gould headline We Have to Hurry, a bittersweet romance by Dorothy Lyman about two septuagenarian neighbors in a Florida retirement community who just might get chance at love... if only mandatory isolation weren't keeping them apart. Patricia Vanstone directs. Tickets are $15. For $10 more you can also attend a post-performance talkback with the artists.
Stars in the House: Cinderella Reunion
On Saturday at 8 p.m. ET, it's a Cinderella reunion on Stars in the House! Seth Rudetsky and James Wesley welcome the stars of the 2013 Broadway production of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical, including Laura Osnes, Santino Fontana, Victoria Clark, Harriet Harris, Peter Bartlett and Ann Harada. Oh, what a lovely night! Watch for free on YouTube though donations to The Actors Fund are encouraged.
Jazz at the Ballroom: Take Me Back to Manhattan
On Saturday at 8 p.m. ET, Jazz at the Ballroom presents Take Me Back to Manhattan, a concert celebrating New York City. Recorded at the Carlyle Hotel, the performance features Isaac Mizrahi, Alysha Umphress, Catherine Russell, Peter Cincotti, Samara Joy and others belting out American Songbook standards that honor the Big Apple. Tickets start at $15 (note that "opening night" costs $20) and the recording is viewable until Friday, May 7.
Metropolitan Playhouse: Careful What You Wish For
On Saturday at 8 p.m. ET, Metropolitan Playhouse, an Obie-winning company that revives forgotten works, presents storyteller Michèle LaRue, who regales audiences with two vintage stories: O. Henry's The Rathskeller and the Rose about an ambitious actor who tries to land a role in a very unusual way; and Kate Chopin's A Pair of Silk Stockings, centering on a poor young mother whose fortunes suddenly change. Watch for free on the company's YouTube channel though donations are encouraged.
John Lloyd Young By Request: Live from Las Vegas
On Saturday at 9 p.m. ET, John Lloyd Young performs a live concert from The Space in Las Vegas and he's taking requests! The entire evening will be songs chosen by ticket holders, who can make suggestions in advance via email and social media. The perpetually youthful actor-singer won a Tony Award for his star-making turn as Frankie Valli in Jersey Boys, so we're sure a few Four Seasons hits will be on fans' wish lists! Tickets cost $30.
The Seth Concert Series: Andrea McCardle
On Sunday 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 and today's headliner is Andrea McCardle. In 1977 at age 13, the beatific belter rocketed to fame as the title orphan in the original Broadway production of Annie, earning a Tony nomination for her plucky performance. Her other Main Stem credits include Les Misérables, Starlight Express and Beauty and the Beast, plus a fabulous turn as a young Judy Garland in the TV movie Rainbow. Tickets are $25. The 3 p.m. performance is live; 8 p.m. is the replay.
Broadway on Demand: We Have to Hurry
On Sunday at 3 p.m. ET, Kathleen Chalfant and Elliott Gould headline We Have to Hurry, a bittersweet romance by Dorothy Lyman about two septuagenarian neighbors in a Florida retirement community who just might get chance at love... if only mandatory isolation weren't keeping them apart. Patricia Vanstone directs. Tickets are $15. For $10 more you can also attend a post-performance talkback with the artists.
59E59 Theaters: Missed Connections
On Sunday at 4 and 8 p.m. ET, 59E59 Theaters presents Missed Connections, an intimate and interactive play cowritten and performed by magician Jon Tai that connects the online audiences members together through an invisible but unmistakable thread. Cowriter Alex Gruhin directs this dazzling digital experience, which unfolds over Zoom. Only 20 tickets are sold per performance. Tickets are $29.
Lucille Lortel Awards: A Special Celebration of the Off-Broadway Community
On Sunday at 7 p.m. ET, usually, the Lucille Lortel Awards honor the best of Off Broadway. But with no in-person productions last year, the Off-Broadway League and the Lucille Lortel Theatre have decided to transform this year's edition into a celebration of the writers, actors, directors, choreographers, designers, musicians, stagehands and other staffers who make the magic happen. The guest list includes Bebe Neuwirth, Bill Irwin, Francis Jue, Judy Kuhn, Annette O'Toole, Larry Owens, Tonya Pinkins, Kristen Schaal, Jeremy Shamos, Susan Stroman and Jason Tam paying tribute to the art form we miss so much. Watch for free on YouTube though donations to The Actors Fund are encouraged.
Titanique: The Maiden Voyage Concert
On Sunday at 7:30 p.m. ET, like many hilarious satires, Titanique started out as an alcohol-infused goof between a bunch of creative pals. What would a send-up of James Cameron's 1997 Oscar-winning epic Titanic look like as a stage musical as seen through the eyes, songs and vibrato of Céline Dion? But then cocreators Tye Blue, Constantine Rousouli and Marla Mindelle realized they were onto something special—that's how this buoyant comedy set sail. Catch its maiden voyage this weekend as Broadway vets Rousouli (Hairspray, Wicked), Mindelle (South Pacific, Sister Act), Frankie Grande (Rock of Ages) and Alex Ellis (Catch Me If You Can) perform a concert version live from NYC's Le Poisson Rouge. Tickets start at $29 but if you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase them at a discount.
The Metropolitan Opera: La Rondine
On Sunday at 7:30 p.m. ET, the Metropolitan Opera presents La Rondine about star-crossed lovers played by then real-life couple Angela Gheorghiu and Roberto Alagna. Nicholas Joël staged the production, which was recorded in 2009. Watch for free for 23 hours after the start time on the Metropolitan Opera's website. You can still stream yesterday's opera, Adriana Lecouvreur, until 6:30 p.m. today.
New York City Center: Sutton Foster: Bring Me to Light
Two-time Tony winner Sutton Foster (Anything Goes, Thoroughly Modern Millie) headlines this uplifting concert, which was recently recorded live on stage at New York City Center. During the hour-long benefit performance, she's joined by some of her talented pals, including Raúl Esparza (Company, The Homecoming), Joaquina Kalukango (Slave Play) and Kelli O'Hara (The King and I) to sing numbers from Anyone Can Whistle, Camelot, Oklahoma!, South Pacific, Violet, The Wild Party and other Broadway musicals. Foster's frequent collaborator, Leigh Silverman, directs this inspirational evening. Tickets are $35 and the recording is viewable until Monday, May 31.
Broadway's Best Shows Spotlight on Plays: The Baltimore Waltz
Since spring of 2020, Broadway's Best Shows has presented performances of important plays featuring big stars acting from their respective homes. The series continues with Paula Vogel's dramedy The Baltimore Waltz chronicling the amusing adventures of devoted siblings Anna and Carl, even as one of them faces a terminal illness. Tony winner Mary-Louise Parker (The Sound Inside, Proof, Weeds) and Eric McCormack (Will & Grace) star in this touching piece inspired by the playwright's real-life relationship with her brother. Obie winner Lileana Blain-Cruz directs. Tickets are $15 and the recording is viewable until Monday at 6 p.m. ET and proceeds benefit The Actors Fund.
Roundabout Theatre Company: The Refocus Project: Home
Roundabout Theatre Company partners with Black Theatre United to launch The Refocus Project, an initiative to expand the canon of classic plays. The program kicks off with a series of readings of undersung works by 20th-century Black dramatists. The inaugural offering is Samm-Art Williams' Home, which was originally produced Off Broadway by the Negro Ensemble Company in 1979 before transferring to Broadway where it was nominated for a Tony Award for best play. The story revolves around Cephus, a Black man from rural North Carolina who can't seem to catch a break, even once he ends up in the big city. Tony winner Kenny Leon directs Rob Demery, Joaquina Kalukango and Brittany Inge in this powerful piece. RSVP to receive the free viewing link but donations to Black Theatre United are encouraged. The recording is viewable until Monday.
Roundabout Theatre Company: The Importance of Being Earnest
Directed by and starring Tony Award nominee Brian Bedford in his final stage performance, Roundabout Theatre Company's 2011 mounting of Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest is an effervescent comedy of amours, filled with mistaken identity and social satire. Dana Ivey, Paxton Whitehead and Santino Fontana costar. This special presentation is hosted by David Hyde Pierce and includes an intermission talk about Wilde's life and legacy. Tickets are $15 and the recording is viewable until Monday, May 31.
Berkeley Rep: The Waves in Quarantine
California's Berkeley Rep presents The Waves in Quarantine, a theatrical experiment in six movements inspired by Virginia Woolf's The Waves. Conceived by Tony-nominated performer Raúl Esparza and adventurous director Lisa Peterson, this collection of cinematic shorts examines art in isolation, as Broadway favorites Carmen Cusack, Nikki Renée Daniels, Darius de Haas, Manu Narayan, Alice Ripley and Esparza perform David Bucknam's emotional songs. RSVP to receive the free viewing link. The recording is viewable until Friday, May 28. Open captions are available.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater: Members Don't Get Weary
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater shares a recording of Members Don't Get Weary about what it's like to have the blues, choreographed by longtime troupe dancer Jamar Roberts and set to music by legendary jazzman John Coltrane. Watch for free until Tuesday, May 11 at 5 p.m. ET on the troupe's YouTube channel.
The Joyce Theater: Trisha Brown Dance Company
Chelsea dance haven The Joyce continues its digital season with a program of innovative works from the Trisha Brown Dance Company. The evening includes an archival recording of the troupe's Geometry of Quiet danced at the Joyce in 2017, as well as brand-new performances of Locus Trio, Watermotor and The Decoy Project, a digital reimagining of the 1979 work Glacial Decoy. 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, May 12.
Irish Repertory Theatre: Little Gem
On Friday at 8 p.m.; Saturday at 3 and 8 p.m.; and Sunday at 2 p.m. ET, Irish Rep presents Elaine Murphy's Little Gem about three North Dublin women from different generations, each facing a major life change. Brenda Meaney, Lauren O'Leary and four-time Oscar nominee Marsha Mason reprise their critically acclaimed performances from the theatre's hit 2019 production, with each actor taping her part remotely. Marc Atkinson Borrull once again directs. Tickets are required to receive the free viewing link though a $25 donation is suggested. Closed captions are available.
New York Theatre Workshop: Brother, Brother
New York Theatre Workshop presents Brother, Brother, a new music-filled audio drama by award-winning playwright Aleshea Harris (Is God Is, What to Send Up When It Goes Down) about two songwriting siblings traveling Appalachia by bicycle on their way to make it big in Tennessee. But on their journey they're confronted by ghosts from the past. Shayok Misha Chowdhury directs Tony winner André De Shields, To Kill a Mockingbird's Gbenga Akinnagbe, Amari Cheatom and Owen Tabaka in this haunting production. Tickets are $10 and you can listen until Sunday, July 25.
American Conservatory Theatre: The Matchmaker
San Francisco's lauded American Conservatory Theater wraps up its A.C.T. Out Loud reading series spotlighting prescient plays with Thornton Wilder's 1954 comedy The Matchmaker, a reinvention of two earlier works that served as the basis for the beloved musical Hello, Dolly! Dawn Monique Williams directs a multicultural cast in this 19th farce about widow Dolly Levi looking to make her own perfect match. Tickets start at $5 and the recording is viewable until Sunday.
The Civilians: Black Feminist Video Game
On Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 8 p.m. ET, The Civilians presents a live online performance of Black Feminist Video Game, Darrell Alejandro Holnes' inventive and interactive show about Jonas, a biracial teen on the autism spectrum attempting to win a classic 2D game along with the girl of his dreams. His journey unfolds on Twitch with the audience helping (or hindering) Jonas' progress along the way. Christon Andell, Kyla Jeanne Butts and Starr Kirkland star and Victoria Collado directs. Log in ready to join the action! Tickets are $11.50.
Goodman Theater: Measure for Measure
Chicago's lauded Goodman Theatre gives audiences a peek at its archives with a recording of its 2013 production of Measure for Measure, helmed by artistic director Robert Falls. See how he tackled one of the Bard's notorious problem plays! Reservations are required to receive the free viewing link and the recording is viewable until Sunday, May 9. Closed captions are available.
The Public Theater: The Line
The Public Theater presents an encore stream of The Line, Jessica Blank and Erik Jensen's ripped-from-the-front-lines 2020 docudrama based on interviews with New York City healthcare workers about their experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. The married playwrights are masters of the form: their previous plays include The Exonerated, about wrongly convicted inmates on Death Row, and Coal Country, about the 2010 Upper Big Branch mine explosion in West Virginia. The latter had its run cut short at The Public Theater due to the pandemic, and Blank and Jensen almost immediately turned their attention to our city's first responders to craft this one-act for digital consumption. Under Blank's direction, an impressive cast, including Tony winner Santino Fontana, Tony nominee Alison Pill, Jamey Sheridan and Lorraine Toussaint, give voice to these harrowing real-life stories. Watch for free on The Public's YouTube channel.
PBS Great Performances: Romeo & Juliet
PBS Great Performances presents a new mounting of Romeo & Juliet from London's National Theatre. The production was initially planned as an in-person experience, but the pandemic forced the artists to film the show. In this contemporary reimagining of Shakespeare's romantic tragedy, a group of actors quarantined in the theatre bring the play to life. Josh O'Connor and Jessie Buckley portray the star-crossed lovers. Watch for free on PBS Thirteen's website.
New Normal Rep: Two Sisters and a Piano
New Normal Rep presents Two Sisters and a Piano by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Nilo Cruz, about two sisters under house arrest in Cuba in 1991. Maria Celia is a writer whose works led to the pair's imprisonment, and Sofia is a pianist. Passion and politics collide when the lieutenant assigned to the sisters' case visits their home. Daphne Rubin-Vega (Rent) and Gary Perez originally appeared in this drama at Off Broadway's Public Theater in 2000. For this digital production directed by the playwright, they're joined by Jimmy Smits (L.A. Law, NYPD Blue, God of Carnage) and Florencia Lozano. 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 Sunday, May 23.
Lincoln Center Theater: The Royale
Lincoln Center Theater shares a recording of The Royale, Marco Ramirez's powerful pugilist play inspired by the real-life experiences of Jack Johnson, the first African-American heavyweight world champion. Rachel Chavkin won a well-deserved Obie Award for her visionary direction of the show at Lincoln Center's Mitzi Newhouse Theater in 2016, and Khris Davis earned kudos for his breathtaking performance as a boxer who's always fighting—even outside the ring. Montego Glover, John Lavelle, McKinley Belcher III and Clarke Peters costar. Register on Broadway on Demand to receive the free viewing link. The recording is viewable until Sunday, May 16.
John Cullum: An Accidental Star
It's your last chance to watch two-time Tony winner John Cullum in An Accidental Star. As he reflects on his 65-year career, he croons tunes from the shows he's known for, such as Shenandoah, On the Twentieth Century, The Scottsboro Boys and Urinetown, and shares never-before-heard stories about working with stars like Julie Andrews, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. Coproduced by three theatres he has longstanding relationships with—The Vineyard Theatre, Goodspeed Opera House and Irish Rep where it was filmed—this intimate and inspiring solo show is a must-see for theatre history buffs. Tickets start at $28.75 but if you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase them at a discount. The recording is viewable until Thursday, May 6.
Raven Snook is the Editor of TDF Stages. Follow her at @RavenSnook. Follow TDF at @TDFNYC.
Top image: Tony winner Mary-Louise Parker, who stars in Paula Vogel's dramedy The Baltimore Waltz this weekend.