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11 Weekend Watches: West End Kinky Boots, Chadwick Boseman and Viola Davis, and More

Hershey Felder plays Tchaikovsky, and Andrea McArdle, Broadway's original Annie, performs her holiday concert. And don't miss Josh Groban's, either.

With theaters closed around the country, some companies are making their productions available online. Below, you'll find our weekly update of productions, videos, and other theater-related streaming, TV, and other content from across the US and elsewhere. Some streams are free, while others may charge a fee or request a donation. Either way, you're sure to find something to scratch your theater itch. Theaters may be dark, but the shows go on.


This Week

1. The filmed West End production of Kinky Boots will stream for free this weekend via the Shows Must Go On YouTube channel. It will air worldwide, excluding Australia and Japan, beginning at 2pm ET on Friday, December 18, and will be available for 48 hours.

Matt Henry in the West End production of Kinky Boots
(© Matt Crockett)

2. Kean Stage will present a streaming holiday concert starring Andrea McArdle for five performances, December 17-20. This event will mark McArdle's first concert since the pandemic hit in March. She'll be joined by musical director Steve Marzullo. Audiences can expect to hear seasonal favorites like "White Christmas" and "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year," as well as songs from McArdle's Broadway career, including "N.Y.C." and "Tomorrow" from Annie, in which she originated the title role. McArdle earned a Tony nomination for playing Annie. She has also been seen in Starlight Express, State Fair, Beauty and the Beast, and Les Misérables. Tickets are $30 for the general public. For tickets and more information, click here.


(© Grace Rainer Long)

3. George C. Wolfe's film adaptation of Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, the third installment in August Wilson's Century Cycle, will premiere on Netflix on December 18. It depicts the racism and exploitation in the music industry through a 1920s recording session with the legendary blues singer Ma Rainey. The film, produced by Denzel Washington and Todd Black, is led by Oscar and Tony winner Viola Davis as Ma Rainey and Chadwick Boseman, in his final screen role, as Levee. Watch the trailer below:


4. On December 19, join Josh Groban for the third of his virtual concerts — and his first-ever holiday concert! It will air at 4pm ET. Individual tickets start at $30. To purchase, click here.


5. Hershey Felder stars in the title role of Tchaikovsky — Live From Florence on December 20. Based on the original Our Great Tchaikovsky, and featuring an extended focus on The Nutcracker Ballet (in honor of Christmas) as well as Tchaikovsky's life in Florence, Italy, where he spent a good deal of time — Live From Florence will be filmed live on location where Tchaikovsky actually lived and worked in Florence. An interesting, surprising, and engaging holiday treat. Purchase includes the live stream and a week of on demand viewing access to the recording of the live stream (through 12/27). For tickets, click here.


6. New York City Center will stream An Evening With Audra McDonald through January 3. Six-time Tony winner Audra McDonald will be joined by musical director Andy Einhorn. The intimate evening will feature golden age classics and standards from the Great American Songbook. The concert will be filmed at the venue and serve as City Center's 2020 gala presentation. Pre-show festivities will begin at 6:30pm ET for donors of $2,500 or more. For tickets, click here.

Audra McDonald
(© David Gordon)

7. A stellar lineup of theater favorites will show there's no place like Broadway for the holidays as they welcome you into their homes and hearts during Home for the Holidays through December 19. Alan Cumming, André De Shields, Carolee Carmello, Lena Hall, Heather Headley, Ramin Karimloo, Karen Olivo, Jelani Remy, Conrad Ricomora, Jennifer Sanchez and the Grammy Award-winning Broadway Inspirational Voices, and more will take part. The concert is produced by and benefits Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. Watch the free stream here beginning at 8pm ET.


8. TheatreWorks Silicon Valley will stream Simple Gifts December 10-27. Simple Gifts is a joyful, multicultural celebration of beloved holiday songs and traditions from many diverse backgrounds. Each $10 donation to TheatreWorks unlocks access for one household to stream the show, making this festive treat the perfect gift to share with family and friends. For tickets, click here.


(photo courtesy of TheatreWorks Silicon Valley)

9. Andrew Lincoln (The Walking Dead) will play Scrooge in the Old Vic Theatre's live-streamed A Christmas Carol this holiday season. The production, which first ran at the Old Vic four years ago and opened on Broadway last winter, will play 16 performances, December 12-24, with 80,000 tickets available for home viewing around the world. For more information, click here.

Andrew Lincoln as Scrooge
(© Helen Maybanks)

10. American Repertory Theater is streaming the world premiere of Amir Nizar Zuabi's play This Is Who I Am through January 3. Separated by continents, an estranged father and son reunite over Zoom. From their respective kitchens in Ramallah and New York City, they re-create a cherished family recipe and struggle to bridge the gap between them, one ingredient at a time. For tickets, click here.


11. The 92nd Street Y will stream Preludes: Lyrics & Lyricists through December 31. With five all-new programs celebrating the music and stories that capture the human spirit, artistic director Paul Masse and a captivating ensemble of artists bring you into our theater and onto our stage to experience the joy of the songs you love and the thrill of hearing them as if for the first time. For more information on individual programs and the performers taking part, including Nikki Renée Daniels, Brandon Victor Dixon, and Telly Leung, click here.


Upcoming

* In this unique holiday season, Kris Kringle The Musical offers up a free holiday gift for theater lovers everywhere. On Christmas Day, a virtual, streaming production of the perennial holiday musical, featuring a cast of Broadway veterans, will be available to online audiences at . As an added bonus, starting December 1, Kris Kringle The Musical will release a series of special online musical videos leading up to the Christmas Day stream. All content is available to online audiences, free of charge when you register online. Kris Kringle The Musical supports The Actors Fund of America. For more information, click here.


* New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players (NYGASP) has announced the grand finale of their 2020 Virtual Season, a premiere cinematic experience of Sir Arthur Sullivan and F.C. Burnands comic operetta, Cox and Box. This all-new original film, available for stream December 27 – January 2 was shot and fully staged at South Orange Performing Arts Center with an Actors Equity Association-approved COVID-19 safety plan. The 50-minute film, produced in 1080p HD resolution with multiple cameras, transports the audience into the action of this hilarious one-act farce. Join Mr. Cox and Mr. Box as they dig in their heels when they discover the mischievous scheme of their landlord, Sgt. Bouncer. Victorian formality is thrown to the wind in this entertaining and beautifully shot musical film!


More Streaming

The Geffen Playhouse has announced its winter 2020 lineup of digital theater, part of its Geffen Stayhouse initiative. The three world premieres are Chelsea Marcantel's Citizen Detective, The Future by Helder Guimarães, and Sri Rao's Bollywood Kitchen. For tickets and more information about Citizen Detective, which runs November 10-December 20, click here. For tickets and more information about The Future, click here. For tickets and more information about Bollywood Kitchen, click here.

Sri Rao in the Geffen Stayhouse production of Bollywood Kitchen.
(© Hartman Benzon Media)

Tony winner Jefferson Mays will bring his one-man A Christmas Carol to the screen in a new streaming edition that premiers on Saturday, November 28. The video will be available for replay through January 3. For tickets and more information, click here.


Manchester, England's Hope Mill Theatre will stream its new production of Jonathan Larson's Rent during weekends this holiday season. Filmed live on stage and fully edited, the rock opera will run online Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, November 27-December 20. To purchase tickets, click here.

The cast of Rent
(© Dujonna Gift-Simms/edited by WhatsOnStage)

Dolly Parton's Christmas on the Square, which Netflix will release on November 22, stars Christine Baranski as Regina, with Parton playing her angel. The cast also includes Jenifer Lewis as Margeline, Treat Williams as Carl, Josh Segarra as Pastor Christian Hathaway, Jeanine Mason as Felicity, Mary Lane Haskell as Jenna Hathaway, and Matthew Johnson as Mack. Take a look at our interview with some of the cast here, and watch the show's trailer below:


Lin-Manuel Miranda's blockbuster musical Hamilton streams on Disney Plus, featuring the original cast, led by Miranda as Hamilton, Leslie Odom Jr. as Aaron Burr, Daveed Diggs as Marquis de Lafayette/Thomas Jefferson, Renée Elise Goldsberry as Angelica Schuyler, Christopher Jackson as George Washington, Jonathan Groff as King George, Phillipa Soo as Eliza Hamilton, Jasmine Cephas Jones as Peggy Schuyler/Maria Reynolds, Okieriete Onaodowan as Hercules Mulligan/James Madison, and Anthony Ramos as John Laurens/Philip Hamilton. To find out how to watch, click here


Book your Holi-date now to see Estella Scrooge: A New Broadway Musical With a Twist. Combining the excitement of live theater with the magic of movies, this new musical fare is sure to become a holiday favorite for the whole family. Starring Broadway favorites including Betsy Wolfe in the title role, Lauren Patten, Patrick Page, Clifton Duncan, and Danny Burstein. For tickets and more information, click here. Watch the trailer below:


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