The No. 1 Reason To See: Once
Broadway turns it down a notch (or two or three) for the low-key stage musical adaptation of the 2006 indie film hit Once. A pair of fresh faces (Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti) play Guy and Girl, the roles made famous by Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova (also the composers) in the movie. He, a hangdog musician low on inspiration and drive, meets her, a muse brimming with pep talks and wisdom, and the two form a musical kinship that enriches much more than their art.
The No. 1 Reason To See Once: Cristin Milioti’s stoic humor Read more
The No. 1 Reason To See: Death of a Salesman
Do you remember when your parents told you that life is full of disappointment? Well apparently, that was a lesson never taught in the Loman household. Philip Seymour Hoffman stars as Willy Loman in this A-list revival of Arthur Miller’s classic play about a salesman dissatisfied with what the fruits of his life-long labor have bore for his family. Linda Emond and Andrew Garfield (of The Social Network and this summer’s The Amazing Spider-Man) co-star as Willy’s wife and oldest son. Together, they form a most unhappy family; yet they do so magnificently.
The No. 1 Reason To See Death of a Salesman: Linda Emond’s heartbreaking devotion Read more
The No. 1 Reason To See: Porgy and Bess
Intense struggle is on display in Diane Paulus’ revival (and retooling) of the classic opera Porgy and Bess. Adapted for a more standard evening of Broadway (ahem, running under four hours) by Suzan-Lori Parks and Diedre L. Murray, the production stars Broadway heavyweight Audra McDonald as Bess, a prostitute trying to turn her life around, and Norm Lewis as Porgy, the crippled beggar who gives her the love she needs to do it. The characters of South Carolina’s Catfish Row are destitute and scraping to get by. Bess has to battle the ties to the past she desperately wants to leave behind. And to top it off, there’s a wicked hurricane a-comin’.
The No. 1 Reason To See Porgy and Bess: Audra McDonald and Phillip Boykin’s brawl during “What You Want With Bess?” Read more
The No. 1 Reason To See: Wit
The medical horror story of dealing with cancer is starkly depicted on stage in the Broadway debut of Wit. Cynthia Nixon stars as Vivian Bearing, a brilliant college professor, specializing in 17th century British poetry, who is being treated for stage-four metastatic ovarian cancer. The Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Margaret Edson follows Vivian through her aggressive chemotherapy, as well as her clashes with hospital bedside manner and her own pride.
The No. 1 Reason To See Wit: Cynthia Nixon’s startling portrayal of pain Read more
The No. 1 Reason To See: On A Clear Day You Can See Forever
In director Michael Mayer’s revival (read: overhaul) of the Burton Lane/Alan Jay Lerner musical On A Clear Day You Can See Forever, Harry Connick Jr. plays Dr. Mark Bruckner who hypnotizes a male patient (David Turner) to help him quit smoking. While under hypnosis, Bruckner taps into David’s previous life as a beautiful jazz singer named Melinda Wells (played by Jessie Mueller). Here are some free hypnosis scripts that the ones interested in hypnosis can have a look at. Grieving his late wife, Bruckner’s finds escape and comfort in his interactions with Melinda and falls in love with her. Nevermind that the straight Bruckner has fallen in love with the gay David’s previous incarnation, which technically is manifested within David. Thus commences one awesome head-scratcher of a love triangle. (Stage Rush TV: On A Clear Day workshop at Vassar College)
The No. 1 Reason To See On A Clear Day You Can See Forever: The three-way dance between Harry Connick Jr., Jessie Mueller, and David Turner Read more
The No. 1 Reason To See: Stick Fly
Just in time for the holidays comes Stick Fly, a new play about family members coming together with their new significant others for an oh-so-comfortable visit. Lydia R. Diamond’s dramady centers on a wealthy black family visiting in Martha’s Vineyard when the two sons bring their girlfriends home to meet the parents. One is black, one is white. Let the fireworks of heated racial arguments, class discussions, and revelations of family secrets begin!
The No. 1 Reason To See Stick Fly: Condola Rashad’s breakout performance Read more
The No. 1 Reason To See: Bonnie & Clyde
Just as history saw two youths rise to infamy with their acts of crime, Broadway ushers in two fresh talents to stardom in the new musical Bonnie & Clyde. Laura Osnes and Jeremy Jordan sizzle as the two misguided lovers whose robberies and killings led to their early deaths. A score by Broadway vet Frank Wildhorn and Don Black sets Bonnie and Clyde’s story of fast fame and swift extinguishment to the background of a pop country set.
The No. 1 Reason To See Bonnie & Clyde: Laura Osnes and Melissa Van Der Schyff singing “You Love Who You Love” Read more
The No. 1 Reason To See: An Evening with Patti LuPone and Mandy Patinkin
She overthrew Ethel Merman as the top Mamma Rose and he avenged the death of his father while rescuing a princess. But before Patti LuPone was lauded in Gypsy and Mandy Patinkin won hearts in The Princess Bride, they both vaulted to fame and won Tony Awards for their performances in Evita in 1979. These two powerhouses, who are close friends and frequent collaborators, join forces for the Broadway concert event An Evening with Patti LuPone and Mandy Patinkin that covers music from some of their best shows and some that just sound damn good coming out of their mouths.
The No. 1 Reason To See An Evening with Patti LuPone and Mandy Patinkin: The Evita set Read more
The No. 1 Reason To See: Seminar
It’s not fun to watch people’s dreams be stomped on in real life; but for some reason, it’s a heck of a lot of fun to see it done on stage. This is entirely true of Theresa Rebeck’s new play, Seminar, starring Alan Rickman as the resident dream stomper. He plays Leonard, a novelist and renowned book editor, hired by four aspiring writers (Lily Rabe, Hamish Linklater, Jerry O’Connell, Hettienne Park) to workshop their drafts. What the quartet gets, however, is hammered by Leonard’s caustic, dry wit, to the point where some reconsider their aspirations.
The No. 1 Reason To See Seminar: Lily Rabe’s strength, even in its absence Read more
The No. 1 Reason To See: Private Lives
Wedded bliss doesn’t last long for two married couples in the revival of Noel Coward’s Private Lives. Kim Cattrall and Paul Gross play a divorced couple, both on honeymoon with their new spouses in adjacent rooms at a French resort. We soon learn that this couple’s downfall is also what keeps them together—they can’t keep their hands off each other.
The No. 1 Reason To See Private Lives: Kim Cattrall and Paul Gross’ peacekeeping strategies Read more