Theater News

What's Streaming? Jelani Alladin in a Reading of B.J. Tindal's Goodnight, Tyler

Plus, check out readings of the winning plays for our inaugural Young Playwrights Contest throughout the weekend.

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 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 Weekend

* A free live-streamed reading of Gooodnight, Tyler by B.J. Tindal (they/them) will take place on Thursday, August 27, at 7pm ET, and remain online through Monday, August 31, at 7pm ET. Goodnight, Tyler is the ghost-love story of Tyler Evans, a Black boy who wants to be remembered for who he was rather than how he died. The reading will feature Jelani Alladin, Johanna Braddy, Michele Shay, Danielle Deadwyler, Jack Quaid, and Alex Gibson. Donations to support the National Black Theatre are encouraged. To watch, click here.

Jelani Alladin
Jelani Alladin
(© David Gordon)

* TheaterMania's inaugural Young Playwrights Contest concludes this weekend with an online festival, following the success of the nationwide competition. The festival, which is scheduled to become an annual tradition, streams live via the TheaterMania Young Playwrights Festival website from Friday, August 28, through Sunday, August 30. The event is produced, directed, written, and performed entirely by students. To read about the winning plays, to learn when the readings will take place, and to watch, click here.

* The Acting Company will stream a reading of María Irene Fornés's Letters from Cuba August 26-30 as the next installment of its Alumni Spotlight Series, a free virtual program of readings and concerts celebrating the multiple talents of Acting Company alumni actors. To watch, click here.

* The Latino Theater Company will present an archival video showing of its 2009 production of Evelina Fernández's Solitude now through September 3. Inspired by The Labyrinth of Solitude, a collection of essays on Mexican thought and identity by Nobel Prize winner Octavio Paz, Solitude explores love, death, destiny and family through a contemporary lens, accompanied by live music from cellist Semyon Kobialka. To learn more, click here.

* PBS's Great Performances is now streaming an encore presentation of In the Heights: Chasing Broadway Dreams through September 4. The program showcases the 2008 musical that launched Lin-Manuel Miranda's rise to stardom. To watch the full episode, click here.

* Roundabout Youth Ensemble presents a virtual play written and produced by New York's youth. Hidden Truths, inspired by Shakespeare's Othello, brings to light injustices the black community faces. The show will be available on YouTube through August 28. Written by Jaden Tench, Nicaulis Mercedes, and Xavier Chavez and directed by Tyia Boteng, the play addresses issues faced in 2020 with a post-pandemic twist. For more information, click here.

* Rattlestick Playwrights Theater will present a benefit concert of Soldiergirls, a new two-person musical with book and lyrics by Em Weinstein and music by Emily Johnson-Erday. The show uses real letters and a collage of found and original text to look at love, liberation, and lesbianism in the Women's Army Corps in World War II. This free online benefit will raise money for SPART*A (Service Members, Partners, Allies for Respect and Tolerance for All) and will take place on Monday, August 31, at 7pm ET. To reserve your spot and donate, click here.


* Great Performances: Romeo and Juliet will premiere on Friday, September 11, at 9pm ET on PBS (check local listings),, and the PBS Video app. This film adaptation of Shakespeare's masterpiece takes legendary Royal Ballet choreographer Kenneth MacMillan's 1965 ballet out of the theater and into the streets of a cinematic Verona, offering a passionate reimagining of this timeless love story set to Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev's original score.

* Berkshire Theatre Group will present Hershey Felder in his solo show Hershey Felder as George Gershwin Alone — Live From Florence, Italy, to be streamed live on Sunday, September 13, at 8pm. George Gershwin Alone tells the story of America's great composer, who with the groundbreaking A Rhapsody in Blue, made a "Lady out of Jazz." The show incorporates the composer's best-known songs, from "The Man I Love" and "Someone to Watch Over Me", through the hits of An American in Paris and Porgy and Bess, to a complete performance of Rhapsody In Blue. It will be broadcast live from the Teatro Della Pergola in Florence, Italy. Fifty percent of proceeds will benefit the Berkshire Theatre Group. Patrons will be able to stream on a smart TV, computer, smartphone or tablet. To purchase tickets, click here.

Hershey Felder
Hershey Felder
(courtesy of Berkshire Theatre Group)

* MCC Theater has announced that its annual gala, Miscast20, will take place on MCC Theater's YouTube Channel on Sunday, September 13, at 8pm ET. Performers will include Beanie Feldstein'';, Tony winner Heather Headley, Tony nominee Joshua Henry, Tony nominee Rob McClure, Nicolette Robinson, Tony nominee Phillipa Soo, and Tony nominee Adrienne Warren. The evening will also include appearances from Lucille Lortel and Outer Critics Circle Award winner Jocelyn Bioh, Tony nominee Raúl Esparza, and two-time Emmy and two-time Tony winner Judith Light'''. Watch the gala here.

* On Monday, September 14, Red Bull Theater LIVE will have a free online reading the Jacobean masterpiece The Revenger's Tragedy, adapted and directed by Jess Berger. Part dark comedy, part social satire, this gleefully macabre thriller also contains a searing examination of humankind's social need for justice versus our animal desire for vengeance. To reserve your tickets, click here.

* That '70s Show stars Debra Jo Rupp and Kurtwood Smith will reunite for an online streaming preview of the new play Three Viewings. Presented by Barrington Stage Company, Jeffrey Hatcher's play will be broadcast September 23-26 for a minimum donation of $25. The streaming edition replaces an in-person staging, which was set to take place September 9-20. Directed by Barrington artistic leader Julianne Boyd, an in-person production is expected to happen at a later date.

Debra Jo Rupp and Kurtwood Smith
Debra Jo Rupp and Kurtwood Smith
(© David Gordon/Gage Skidmore)

* The musical Romantics Anonymous will stream on Saturday, September 26 at 4pm EST. Romantics Anonymous has a book and direction by Emma Rice and score by Christopher Dimond (lyrics) and Michael Kooman (music), and is based on the film Les Émotifs Anonymes. The show will be filmed live from the Bristol Old Vic, with the cast and creators each being tested for coronavirus before forming a bubble in Bristol. These rigorous measures mean that they will be able to perform the entire show without social distancing. For tickets and more information, click here.

* John Kevin Jones will bring his one-man stage production, Killing an Evening With Edgar Allan Poe, into viewers' homes this year. Jones will again bring four of Poe's best-known works to life from the Merchant's House Museum, New York City's only 19th-century family home preserved intact. This year, nine haunting performances will be streamed online, October 31-November 8. Tickets are priced at $45 and include the performance and post-show event. To find out dates and purchase tickets, click here. Ticket buyers will receive an event link by email on the day of the event.

Streaming Channels

* Amazon will release Julie Taymor's Gloria Steinem biopic The Glorias, written by Taymor and Sarah Ruhl, on its Prime Video platform beginning September 30. Spanning five decades, the film has multiple actors playing Steinem at various ages: Ryan Kira Armstrong as Young Gloria, Lulu Wilson as Teen Gloria, Alicia Vikander as Gloria ages 20-40, and Julianne Moore as Steinem through the present. The cast also includes Bette Midler as Bella Abzug, Janelle Monáe as Dorothy Pitman Hughes, Timothy Hutton as Leo Steinem, Lorraine Toussaint as Florynce Kennedy, Enid Graham as Ruth, Kimberly Guerrero as Wilma Mankiller, Monica Sanchez as Dolores Huerta, and Margo Moorer as Barbara Jordan.

Julianne Moore in The Glorias
Julianne Moore in The Glorias
(© Dan McFadden)

* The documentary We Are Freestyle Love Supreme is currently streaming on Hulu. To subscribe to Hulu and Disney Plus, click here.

* 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.

* In Dominique Morisseau's play Pipeline, a public school teacher (Karen Pittman) must face the trauma of her son (Namir Smallwood) as a young black man when an incident threatens to get him expelled from a prep school. Pipeline streams on BroadwayHD. Read our critic's review here.

Namir Smallwood and Karen Pittman in Pipeline.
Namir Smallwood and Karen Pittman in Pipeline.
(© Jeremy Daniel)

* Spike Lee directs a filmed version Antoinette Nwandu's provocative play Pass Over, which tells the story of two young black men (Jon Michael Hill and Julian Parker) dreaming of escape from a racist world. A startling and disturbing riff on Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot, Pass Over now streams on Prime Video. Read our critic's review here.

* Tony and Pulitzer Prize nominee Anna Deavere Smith wrote and stars in Notes From the Field, her solo play in which she probes the lives of students, parents, and teachers caught in the school-to-prison pipeline. The show streams on HBO.

Available for a Limited Time

* The final three episodes of the world premiere digital musical A Killer Party: A Murder Mystery Musical have been released and will be available for purchase through October 1.
The company includes Jessica Keenan Wynn as Detective Case, Michael James Scott as Varthur McArthur, Krystina Alabado as Lily Wright, Carolee Carmello as Justine Case, Drew Gehling as Cameron Mitchelljohn, Jackie Burns as Joan McArthur, Laura Osnes as Vivika Orsonwelles, Jarrod Spector as George Murderer, Alex Newell as Shea Crescendo, Miguel Cervantes as Clarke Staples, and Jeremy Jordan as…Jeremy Jordan. The nine-episode series can be purchased for $12.99 here. Also available: a 20-track original cast recording from Broadway Records.

* Deric Rosenblatt, renowned voice teacher whose clients include Grammy, Tony, and Emmy Award-winners, has launched Vocal Power Presents, a digital subscription-based program to share his vocal training techniques with singers across the world. The new program will offer unprecedented behind-the-scenes access to lessons with his current roster of clients, providing access in a real and raw way so that singers can learn from their own homes by watching how successful professional artists work. Subscriptions to Vocal Power Presents start at $25 per month (or $35 for one-off video purchase) and are currently available at here.

* PBS's Great Performances is streaming the Public Theater's 2019 Shakespeare in the Park production of William Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing. This bold interpretation of Shakespeare's comedic masterpiece features Danielle Brooks and Grantham Coleman as the sparring lovers Beatrice and Benedick. Tony Award winner Kenny Leon directs, with choreography by Tony Award nominee Camille A. Brown. Available through September 11. To watch, click here.

Grantham Coleman and Danielle Brooks star in the Shakespeare in the Park production of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing.
Grantham Coleman and Danielle Brooks star in Shakespeare in the Park's 2019 production of Much Ado About Nothing.
(© Joan Marcus)

* Bette Davis Ain't for Sissies streams through September 24. Written and performed by Jessica Sherr, this new 80-minute live streaming version is directed for the small screen by Karen Carpenter. Tickets are $19.50 each and are available here.

* Geffen Playhouse has extended The Present, its world-premiere live, virtual, and interactive theatrical experience written and performed by master illusionist, storyteller, and Geffen alum Helder Guimarães. The show will now run through October 10. A mystery package will be sent to you inside a USPS Priority Mail box before the show, so you must purchase tickets at least seven days in advance. To purchase tickets, click here.

* The world premiere of The Gifts You Gave to the Dark, written by Darren Murphy specifically for digital media in reaction to the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis, premiered on Wednesday, May 27 at 6pm ET and will remain online through October 2020. For more information, click here.

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