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Top 5 Stage Performances to Stream This Weekend September 1-4

By: Raven Snook
Date: Aug 31, 2023
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Even though in-person theatre and dance are back in full swing, in the name of accessibility we're continuing to round up performances to watch online from the comfort of home. Our carefully curated list spotlights the five best options to stream this Labor Day weekend, Friday, September 1 to Sunday, September 4, for free or at low cost.

Live from 54 Below: Brenda Braxton: Stars Tonight!

Live-streaming Sunday, September 3 at 7 p.m. ET for $25
Tony nominee Brenda Braxton (Smokey Joe's Cafe, Chicago) presides over this talk-show-meets-cabaret, as she welcomes a fellow performer for candid conversation and spirited crooning. This edition's special guest is Broadway vet Ken Ard, who appeared in Cats, Jelly's Last Jam and opposite Braxton herself in Smokey Joe's Cafe. Streaming live from 54 Below's swanky stage. If you prefer to attend in person, click here for info.

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Stars in the House Labor Day Telethon!

Live-streaming Monday, September 4 at 7 p.m. ET for FREEĀ 
Seth Rudetsky and James Wesley's celebrity-filled Stars in the House series was must-watch viewing during the pandemic shutdown. Now the musical mavens are back with a special four-hour Labor Day live-stream, a starry benefit for The Entertainment Community Fund. Annette Bening cohosts this incredible lineup of stage and screen favorites sharing stories and songs, including Jason Alexander, Kate Burton, Joely Fisher, Marilu Henner, Cheyenne Jackson, Kevin Pollak, Caroline Rhea, Sarah Silverman, Jean Smart, John Tartaglia, Nia Vardalos, Steven Weber, Henry Winkler and Noah Wyle.

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National Theatre at Home: The Wife of Willesden

Streaming for $10

In 2020, London's lauded National Theatre launched its own streaming service featuring professional stage captures of its productions. While you can buy a subscription, shows are also available to rent individually. New to the roster is The Wife of Willesden, the acclaimed playwriting debut of best-selling English novelist Zadie Smith (White Teeth, On Beauty). Claire Perkins stars in this vivid reimagining of The Wife of Bath section from Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, which centers on Alvita, a much-married, middle-aged, Jamaican-born British woman captivating strangers in a London pub. A 72-hour rental costs $10 and captions are available. It's just one of many fantastic National Theatre shows you can stream, so be sure to browse the entire list.

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Julie Taymor's A Midsummer Night's Dream

Streaming on All Arts for FREE all weekend

Bid adieu to the season with Julie Taymor's enchanting mounting of A Midsummer Night's Dream, which was recorded live on stage at Brooklyn's Theatre for a New Audience. Stage stalwarts Tina Benko, David Harewood and Max Casella lead the cast of Shakespeare's beloved romantic comedy about young lovers and magical sprites crossing paths in the woods. Taymor puts her creative stamp on the classic, which features projections, puppets and more than a dozen children as fairies.

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American Songbook at NJPAC: Marin Mazzie and Jason Danieley

Streaming on All Arts for FREE all weekend
A bittersweet gem from the vaults: a 2014 concert featuring Broadway favorites Jason Danieley and his late wife, the incomparable Marin Mazzie, who died of ovarian cancer in 2018. Relive their romance through intimate stories and classic songs by George and Ira Gershwin, Harold Arlen, Johnny Mercer and other American Songbook greats.

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Top image: Clare Perkins in The Wife of Willesden at the National Theatre. Photo courtesy of the theatre.

Raven Snook is the Editor of TDF Stages. Follow her on Facebook at @Raven.Snook. Follow TDF on Facebook at @TDFNYC.