Best Stage Performances to Watch Online August 27-September 6
By RAVEN SNOOK
Friday, August 27, 2021  •  
Fri Aug 27, 2021  •  
Off-Off Broadway  •   0 comments Share This

Come September, in-person theatre will be back in full force. But during these dog days of summer as venues prepare to reopen, you can still stream lots of fabulous shows at home. Below are performances you can watch online from Friday, August 27 through Labor Day from the comfort of your couch for free or at low cost.

Friday, August 27

Christopher Lloyd in King Lear
On Friday at 10 a.m. ET, Obie and Emmy Award-winning actor Christopher Lloyd (Taxi, Back to the Future) is currently headlining King Lear at Shakespeare & Company in the Berkshires, but you can also stream the show at home. Directed by Nicole Ricciardi, the production was filmed live on stage earlier in the run. Tickets are $25 and the recording is viewable for 72 hours from the start time.

The Old Vic: Bagdad Cafe
Friday at 2:30 p.m. ET, the Old Vic presents visionary director Emma Rice's stage adaptation of Bagdad Cafe, Percy and Eleonore Adlon's charming 1987 cult film about quirky characters connecting at a rundown roadside restaurant and motel on California's Route 66. A celebration of female friendship and unexpected romance, the music-filled show is performed in-person on stage in London and also streamed to at-home audiences. Tickets cost £20 to £40, approximately $28 to $55. Audio description and closed captions are available.

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater: Ni Mi Madre
On Friday at 7:30 p.m. ET, NYC's acclaimed Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is presenting a hybrid season, with its productions performed in person but also streamed to at-home audiences. First up is Arturo Luís Soria's autobiographically inspired solo show Ni Mi Madre, about the complex relationship between an over-the-top Brazilian woman and her queer son as they grapple with identity and what it means to be an immigrant family in America. Tickets are $40 for both streamed and in-person performances at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater.

Irish Repertory Theatre: George M. Cohan Tonight!
On Friday at 8 p.m. ET, NYC's venerable Irish Rep presents George M. Cohan Tonight!, theatre historian Chip Deffaa's celebration of the Irish-American entertainer, songwriter and so-called "father of American musical comedy." A hit for the theatre back in 2006, this abridged version of that one-man show features Jon Peterson reprising his award-winning turn as Cohan as he croons some of the icon's most beloved tunes, including "Over There," "Forty-Five Minutes From Broadway," "You're a Grand Old Flag" and "All Aboard for Broadway." Tickets are required to receive the free viewing link; a $25 donation is suggested.

Saturday, August 28

The Old Vic: Bagdad Cafe
Saturday at 9:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. ET, the Old Vic presents visionary director Emma Rice's stage adaptation of Bagdad Cafe, Percy and Eleonore Adlon's charming 1987 cult film about quirky characters connecting at a rundown roadside restaurant and motel on California's Route 66. A celebration of female friendship and unexpected romance, the music-filled show is performed in-person on stage in London and also streamed to at-home audiences. Tickets cost £20 to £40, approximately $28 to $55. Audio description and closed captions are available.

Christopher Lloyd in King Lear
On Saturday at 10 a.m. ET, it's your last chance to watch Obie and Emmy Award-winning actor Christopher Lloyd (Taxi, Back to the Future) in Shakespeare & Company's mounting of King Lear. Directed by Nicole Ricciardi, the production was filmed live on stage earlier this summer. Tickets are $25 and the recording is viewable for 72 hours from the start time.

Simon Callow: Being an Actor - 50 Years On
On Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET, the Shedinburgh Fringe Festival presents celebrated actor-writer-director Simon Callow in Being an Actor - 50 Years On, a theatrical examination of his longtime trade. Well-known for his roles in Four Weddings and a Funeral, The Witcher and his one-man shows of Dickens and Shakespeare, Callow has been performing on stage and screen for almost a quarter century. In 1982, he authored Being An Actor; now, 40 years on he adds new insights as he tries to communicate the essence of his chosen profession in this intimate solo show. Tickets start at £7.50, approximately $10.50.

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater: Ni Mi Madre
On Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET, NYC's acclaimed Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is presenting a hybrid season, with its productions performed in person but also streamed to at-home audiences. First up is Arturo Luís Soria's autobiographically inspired solo show Ni Mi Madre, about the complex relationship between an over-the-top Brazilian woman and her queer son as they grapple with identity and what it means to be an immigrant family in America. Tickets are $40 for both streamed and in-person performances at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater.

Irish Repertory Theatre: George M. Cohan Tonight!
On Saturday at 3 and 8 p.m. ET, NYC's venerable Irish Rep presents George M. Cohan Tonight!, theatre historian Chip Deffaa's celebration of the Irish-American entertainer, songwriter and so-called "father of American musical comedy." A hit for the theatre back in 2006, this abridged version of that one-man show features Jon Peterson reprising his award-winning turn as Cohan as he croons some of the icon's most beloved tunes, including "Over There," "Forty-Five Minutes From Broadway," "You're a Grand Old Flag" and "All Aboard for Broadway." Tickets are required to receive the free viewing link; a $25 donation is suggested.

Sunday, August 29

Irish Repertory Theatre: George M. Cohan Tonight!
On Sunday at 2 p.m. ET, it's your last chance to watch Irish Rep's George M. Cohan Tonight!, theatre historian Chip Deffaa's celebration of the Irish-American entertainer, songwriter and so-called "father of American musical comedy." A hit for the theatre back in 2006, this abridged version of that one-man show features Jon Peterson reprising his award-winning turn as Cohan as he croons some of the icon's most beloved tunes, including "Over There," "Forty-Five Minutes From Broadway," "You're a Grand Old Flag" and "All Aboard for Broadway." Tickets are required to receive the free viewing link; a $25 donation is suggested.

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater: Ni Mi Madre
On Sunday at 4 p.m. ET, NYC's acclaimed Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is presenting a hybrid season, with its productions performed in person but also streamed to at-home audiences. First up is Arturo Luís Soria's autobiographically inspired solo show Ni Mi Madre, about the complex relationship between an over-the-top Brazilian woman and her queer son as they grapple with identity and what it means to be an immigrant family in America. Tickets are $40 for both streamed and in-person performances at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater.

Fabulous Fanny: The Songs and Stories of Fanny Brice
On Sunday at 7 p.m. ET, if you only know Fanny Brice as Barbra Streisand's character in Funny Girl, time to get schooled. Kimberly Faye Greenberg portrays the legendary Jewish singer, comedian and Ziegfeld Follies star in this solo show, which delves into her incredible career and dramatic life. Expect torch songs, old-school shtick and Baby Snooks! (No relation to yours truly.) Tickets are $11.

PBS: Wicked in Concert
On Sunday at 9 p.m. ET, PBS airs Wicked in Concert, a celebration of Stephen Schwartz's beloved Broadway blockbuster. Wicked's original frenemies Kristin Chenoweth and Idina Menzel host the evening, which features new arrangements of the musical's popular songs, performed by Broadway powerhouses Cynthia Erivo, Ali Stroker, Rita Moreno, Gavin Creel, Isaac Powell and Stephanie Hsu, alongside TV stars Alex Newell (Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist), Ariana DeBose (Schmigadoon!), Amber Riley (Glee) and Gabrielle Ruiz (Crazy Ex Girlfriend), country crooner Jennifer Nettles and comedian Mario Cantone. None of these singers have been in Wicked, which is the point. They bring fresh and exciting takes on these familiar tunes, which is, as the Wizard says, wonderful. Watch on TV on PBS Thirteen or stream the special anytime until Sunday, September 12 on PBS' website.

Monday, August 30

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater: Ni Mi Madre
On Monday at 7:30 p.m. ET, NYC's acclaimed Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is presenting a hybrid season, with its productions performed in person but also streamed to at-home audiences. First up is Arturo Luís Soria's autobiographically inspired solo show Ni Mi Madre, about the complex relationship between an over-the-top Brazilian woman and her queer son as they grapple with identity and what it means to be an immigrant family in America. Tickets are $40 for both streamed and in-person performances at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater.

Crossovers Live! with Marc Shaiman and Megan Hilty
On Monday at 8 p.m. ET, Tony-winning performer and Actors Fund chairman Brian Stokes Mitchell hosts this new online talk show featuring stage stars who've made it big in other mediums. In this second episode, he chats with Tony-winning Hairspray composer Marc Shaiman, who'll chronicle his incredible career, from his teenage years working as Bette Midler's musical director, to penning comedic numbers for the Oscars, to Broadway to Hollywood to the cult TV show Smash. The leading lady of that musical series, Megan Hilty, joins him for this intimate chat. Tickets start at $15. A portion of the proceeds benefits The Actors Fund.

Tuesday, August 31

Chichester Festival Theatre: South Pacific
On Tuesday at 2:30 p.m. ET, the UK's Chichester Festival Theatre presents Rodgers and Hammerstein's beloved musical South Pacific. Filmed live on stage last month, this new production of the Tony-winning classic about romance and racism during World War II features British stage stars Gina Beck and Julian Ovenden as Navy nurse Nellie Forbush and Emile de Becque, the dashing Frenchman with a secret; Joanna Ampil as Bloody Mary; Keir Charles as Luther Billis and Rob Houchen as Lt. Joseph Cable. Tickets start at £20, approximately $28, and the recording is viewable for 24 hours from the start time. Closed captions and audio description are available.

Stars in the House: Fosse Reunion
On Tuesday at 8 p.m. ET, get your jazz hands ready—it's a Fosse reunion on Stars in the House! Seth Rudetsky and James Wesley welcome cast members from the Tony-winning musical revue celebrating late dance pioneer Bob Fosse, including performers-turned-Tony-winning choreographers Andy Blankenbuehler and Sergio Trujillo. Watch for free on YouTube though donations to The Actors Fund are encouraged.

Wednesday, September 1

TDF: Conversation About Staging Sex Scenes
On Wednesday at 3 p.m. ET, TDF and NYC-based theatre Company of Fools present a conversation about intimacy direction, a relatively new profession that ensures performers in intimate scenes are safe and comfortable. Company of Fools' managing director Collin Blackard moderates this discussion between intimacy directors Cristina "Cha" Ramos and Brooke M. Haney. Watch for free on TDF's YouTube channel.

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater: Ni Mi Madre
On Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. ET, NYC's acclaimed Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is presenting a hybrid season, with its productions performed in person but also streamed to at-home audiences. First up is Arturo Luís Soria's autobiographically inspired solo show Ni Mi Madre, about the complex relationship between an over-the-top Brazilian woman and her queer son as they grapple with identity and what it means to be an immigrant family in America. Tickets are usually $40 for both streamed and in-person performances at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, but this evening they are pay-what-you-wish.

Stars in the House: Dogfight Reunion
On Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET, it's a Dogfight reunion on Stars in the House! The early Pasek and Paul Off-Broadway musical starred Derek Klena, Lindsay Mendez, Nick Blaemire and Josh Segarra, and all of them are dropping by to share stories and tunes from this undersung gem. Watch for free on YouTube though donations to The Actors Fund are encouraged.

Live from Feinstein's/54 Below: Jay Armstrong Johnson
On Wednesday at 9:45 p.m. ET, even though Feinstein's/54 Below has reopened for in-person performances, the swanky cabaret club is continuing to stream select shows live from its stage. Tonight, catch Broadway favorite Jay Armstrong Johnson (The Phantom of the Opera, On the Town) in a birthday concert showcasing the country songs that inspired him as a young Texan. He'll croon tunes by Reba McEntire, The Chicks and Garth Brooks as he connects their music to his scene-stealing career on Broadway and beyond. Tickets are $15. If you prefer to attend in person, click here for info.

Thursday, September 2

Jacob's Pillow: STREB Extreme Action
On Thursday at 7:30 p.m. ET, the Berkshires' lauded Jacob's Pillow dance festival resumed in-person performances this summer, but select events are also being streamed to at-home audiences. Starting tonight, you can watch a retrospective of high-energy pieces choreographed by Elizabeth Streb, who fuses acrobatics, aerial arts and contemporary dance. This program chronicles STREB's evolution from experimental solos in the '70s and '80s to breathtaking 21st-century action epics featuring wild circus-style contraptions. RSVP to receive the free viewing link though donations are encouraged. The recording is viewable until Thursday, September 16 at 6 p.m. ET.

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater: Ni Mi Madre
On Thursday at 7:30 p.m. ET, NYC's acclaimed Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is presenting a hybrid season, with its productions performed in person but also streamed to at-home audiences. First up is Arturo Luís Soria's autobiographically inspired solo show Ni Mi Madre, about the complex relationship between an over-the-top Brazilian woman and her queer son as they grapple with identity and what it means to be an immigrant family in America. Tickets are $40 for both streamed and in-person performances at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater.

Stars in the House: Jennas in the House
On Thursday at 8 p.m. ET, get your orders ready as Seth Rudetsky and James Wesley welcome multiple Jennas from Waitress on Broadway, including original star Jessie Mueller and her successors Betsy Wolfe, Shoshana Bean and Nicolette Robinson. Is songwriter-star Sara Bareilles also on the menu? You'll have to pull up a chair to find out! Watch for free on YouTube though donations to The Actors Fund are encouraged.

PBS: Wicked in Concert
On Thursday at 8 p.m. ET, PBS airs Wicked in Concert, a celebration of Stephen Schwartz's beloved Broadway blockbuster. Wicked's original frenemies Kristin Chenoweth and Idina Menzel host the evening, which features new arrangements of the musical's popular songs, performed by Broadway powerhouses Cynthia Erivo, Ali Stroker, Rita Moreno, Gavin Creel, Isaac Powell and Stephanie Hsu, alongside TV stars Alex Newell (Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist), Ariana DeBose (Schmigadoon!), Amber Riley (Glee) and Gabrielle Ruiz (Crazy Ex Girlfriend), country crooner Jennifer Nettles and comedian Mario Cantone. None of these singers have been in Wicked, which is the point. They bring fresh and exciting takes on these familiar tunes, which is, as the Wizard says, wonderful. Watch on TV on PBS Thirteen or stream the special anytime until Sunday, September 12 on PBS' website.

Friday, September 3

Chichester Festival Theatre: South Pacific
On Friday at 2:30 p.m. ET, it's your last chance to watch Chichester Festival Theatre's mounting of Rodgers and Hammerstein's beloved musical South Pacific. Filmed live on stage at the UK theatre in July, this new production of the Tony-winning classic about romance and racism during World War II features British stage stars Gina Beck and Julian Ovenden as Navy nurse Nellie Forbush and Emile de Becque, the dashing Frenchman with a secret; Joanna Ampil as Bloody Mary; Keir Charles as Luther Billis and Rob Houchen as Lt. Joseph Cable. Tickets start at £20, approximately $28, and the recording is viewable for 24 hours from the start time. Closed captions and audio description are available.

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater: Ni Mi Madre
On Friday at 7:30 p.m. ET, NYC's acclaimed Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is presenting a hybrid season, with its productions performed in person but also streamed to at-home audiences. First up is Arturo Luís Soria's autobiographically inspired solo show Ni Mi Madre, about the complex relationship between an over-the-top Brazilian woman and her queer son as they grapple with identity and what it means to be an immigrant family in America. Tickets are $40 for both streamed and in-person performances at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater.

Saturday, September 4

PBS: Wicked in Concert
On Saturday at 4 p.m. ET, PBS airs Wicked in Concert, a celebration of Stephen Schwartz's beloved Broadway blockbuster. Wicked's original frenemies Kristin Chenoweth and Idina Menzel host the evening, which features new arrangements of the musical's popular songs, performed by Broadway powerhouses Cynthia Erivo, Ali Stroker, Rita Moreno, Gavin Creel, Isaac Powell and Stephanie Hsu, alongside TV stars Alex Newell (Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist), Ariana DeBose (Schmigadoon!), Amber Riley (Glee) and Gabrielle Ruiz (Crazy Ex Girlfriend), country crooner Jennifer Nettles and comedian Mario Cantone. None of these singers have been in Wicked, which is the point. They bring fresh and exciting takes on these familiar tunes, which is, as the Wizard says, wonderful. Watch on TV on PBS Thirteen or stream the special anytime until Sunday, September 12 on PBS' website.

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater: Ni Mi Madre
On Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET, NYC's acclaimed Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is presenting a hybrid season, with its productions performed in person but also streamed to at-home audiences. First up is Arturo Luís Soria's autobiographically inspired solo show Ni Mi Madre, about the complex relationship between an over-the-top Brazilian woman and her queer son as they grapple with identity and what it means to be an immigrant family in America. Tickets are $40 for both streamed and in-person performances at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater.

Sunday, September 5

PBS: Wicked in Concert
On Sunday at 1 p.m. ET, PBS airs Wicked in Concert, a celebration of Stephen Schwartz's beloved Broadway blockbuster. Wicked's original frenemies Kristin Chenoweth and Idina Menzel host the evening, which features new arrangements of the musical's popular songs, performed by Broadway powerhouses Cynthia Erivo, Ali Stroker, Rita Moreno, Gavin Creel, Isaac Powell and Stephanie Hsu, alongside TV stars Alex Newell (Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist), Ariana DeBose (Schmigadoon!), Amber Riley (Glee) and Gabrielle Ruiz (Crazy Ex Girlfriend), country crooner Jennifer Nettles and comedian Mario Cantone. None of these singers have been in Wicked, which is the point. They bring fresh and exciting takes on these familiar tunes, which is, as the Wizard says, wonderful. Watch on TV on PBS Thirteen or stream the special anytime until Sunday, September 12 on PBS' website.

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater: Ni Mi Madre
On Sunday at 4 p.m. ET, NYC's acclaimed Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is presenting a hybrid season, with its productions performed in person but also streamed to at-home audiences. First up is Arturo Luís Soria's autobiographically inspired solo show Ni Mi Madre, about the complex relationship between an over-the-top Brazilian woman and her queer son as they grapple with identity and what it means to be an immigrant family in America. Tickets are $40 for both streamed and in-person performances at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater.

Monday, September 6

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater: Ni Mi Madre
On Monday at 7:30 p.m. ET, NYC's acclaimed Rattlestick Playwrights Theater is presenting a hybrid season, with its productions performed in person but also streamed to at-home audiences. First up is Arturo Luís Soria's autobiographically inspired solo show Ni Mi Madre, about the complex relationship between an over-the-top Brazilian woman and her queer son as they grapple with identity and what it means to be an immigrant family in America. Tickets are $40 for both streamed and in-person performances at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater.

Available to Watch Anytime August 27-September 6

Alvin Ailey: Robert Battle's 10th Anniversary Program: Ella and Mass
The incomparable Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater celebrates the 10th anniversary of its artistic director Robert Battle by streaming two of his most beloved works: Ella, an offbeat duet set to songs performed by legendary jazz vocalist Ella Fitzgerald, and Mass, a percussive work inspired by choir choreography. Watch for free until Tuesday at 7 p.m. ET on Ailey's YouTube channel though donations are encouraged.

PBS Great Performances: Broadway: Beyond the Golden Age
PBS Great Performances presents Broadway: Beyond the Golden Age, the long-awaited sequel to the award-winning 2003 documentary Broadway: The Golden Age, By the Legends Who Were There, written, directed and produced by the late Rick McKay. Hosted by two-time Tony nominee Jonathan Groff, this new movie focuses on Broadway between 1959 and 1980, and features a starry lineup of artists sharing remembrances about the original productions of Once Upon a Mattress, Bye Bye Birdie, Pippin, A Chorus Line, Ain't Misbehavin' and other beloved shows. Enjoy interviews with Alec Baldwin, Carol Burnett, Glenn Close, André De Shields, Jane Fonda, Robert Goulet, Liza Minnelli, Chita Rivera, Dick Van Dyke and Ben Vereen alongside rare vintage clips. Watch for free until Saturday, September 11 on PBS Thirteen's website.

New York Theatre Workshop: Semblance
Earlier this month, Off Broadway's invaluable New York Theatre Workshop reopened with Semblance, a filmed theatrical experience by Obie-winning writer-director Whitney White examining how Black women are perceived. Now a streaming version of the show is available, challenging viewers to consider how they see and interact with Black women. Nikiya Mathis (Skeleton Crew) embodies all the characters. Tickets are $10 and the recording is viewable until Sunday, October 24.

Signature Theatre: Detroit '67
Virginia's lauded Signature Theatre presents Detroit '67, the first installment in Tony-nominated playwright Dominique Morisseau's Detroit Project exploring different periods in her beloved hometown's history. This powerful family drama about two Black siblings squabbling over how to move forward takes place against the backdrop of the Detroit Rebellion, as tensions rise indoors and outside. Directed by Candis C. Jones, this production was filmed live on stage. 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 Thursday, September 16.

Burning Man: The Musical
A campy celebration of the annual art-and-drug-filled gathering in the Nevada dessert, Burning Man: The Musical uses a soundtrack of festival favorites to tell the story of a young tech grad who discovers her new employer is out to destroy the iconic event. Starring a cast of Broadway regulars, including Morgan Siobhan Green (Be More Chill), Tally Sessions (Company, Anastasia) and Max Crumm (Grease, Disaster!), this tuner is sure to put you in the mood to party. Tickets are $8 and the recording is viewable indefinitely. 

Jacob's Pillow: LaTasha Barnes Presents
The Berkshires' lauded Jacob's Pillow dance festival resumed in-person performances this summer, but select events are also being streamed to at-home audiences. Catch a new installment of LaTasha Barnes's The Jazz Continuum series, spotlighting the vibrancy of jazz dance and the Lindy Hop. RSVP to receive the free viewing link though donations are encouraged. The recording is viewable until Thursday, September 9 at 6 p.m. ET.

Untitled Theater Company #61: Alma Baya
Untitled Theater Company #61 presents Alma Baya, which was filmed live on stage for at-home audiences. In this absurdist sci-fi drama, Alma and Baya are struggling to survive on a hostile planet. But when a refugee arrives begging for shelter, they face a moral dilemma. Two different casts perform this thought-provoking play, written and directed by Edward Einhorn. Tickets are $25 for the on-demand recording but if you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase them at a discount. The recording is viewable until Sunday, September 19.

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

Top image: Kristin Chenoweth, who cohosts Wicked in Concert, which airs on PBS. Photo courtesy of Edvin Cobaj/Nouveau Productions




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