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Sunday, August 9, 2020

Sunday Scoop Week of 8/9/20 Current and Upcoming Alternatives to Live In Person Events and More

1) American Indian Artists Inc.Premiere Free Radio Play Double-Feature
2) Battery Dance Presents 39th Annual Battery Dance Festival in Virtual Form 8/14 - 8/22
3) Bold Presents BOLD2020 A Festival of New Short Works From Black Womxn
4) Broadway Advocacy Coalition Announces Inaugural BAC Artivisim Fellowship
5) Fairmont Park Digital Guide, Scavenger Hunt, Hikes and More
6) Food for Thought Presents Second Production of Monthly Series in Social Distancing Era
7) Precursor A New Short Film About Prejudice, Power & Patriotism in America
8) Williamstown Theatre Festival on Audible Begins Rehearsals and Recording Session
9) The Savings Passes Giving Away 1,000,000 Passes in New End of Summer Program

1) American Indian Artists Inc. (AMERINDA) Premiere 
Radio Play Double-Feature
IT CAME FROM ACROSS THE BIG POND 
and FILES OF THE INDIN POLICE

Now Streaming Online 

American Indian Artists Inc. (AMERINDA) present the World Premiere of IT CAME FROM ACROSS THE BIG POND and FILES OF THE INDIN POLICE, two plays by William S. Yellow Robe Jr., directed by John Scott-Richardson. The two short comedies were originally scheduled to be performed live on a “summer fun” double-bill this June over a run at Manhattan’s Theater for the New City. Instead, they have been adapted into radio dramas performed and recorded by the actors in isolation on their cellphones. The plays are now available to stream for free at www.amerinda.org.

Taking its inspiration from the 1950’s sci-fi B-movie genreIT CAME FROM ACROSS THE BIG POND is an over-the-top comedic look at the colonization of Native America. 
 
FILES OF THE INDIN POLICE, is a darkly satirical look at appropriation and the fear of an organization of Native people patrolling communities searching for violators. 

For more information, visit www.amerinda.org 
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2) Battery Dance 
presents 
The 39th Annual 
Battery Dance Festival
In Virtual Form
August 14-22, 2020

Battery Dance announces the 39th Annual Battery Dance Festival with free virtual performances from August 14-22, 2020, available online nightly 7pm - 8pm via YouTube. For more information, visit http://batterydance.org/battery-dance-festival/. Films will remain online for ten days after their premiere.

The Battery Dance Festival brings together 52 filmed performances including 28 premieres from 19 countries. Themed evenings include World and U.S. film Premieres from the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Japan and North America.  The centennial of the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which recognized the woman's right to vote, serves as a focus for a program by women choreographers.  Works that focus on Black voices in dance, the resiliency of New York City and the Festival itself and a special program celebrating India's Independence Day round out the Festival.

This year's featured artists include a curated selection of local dance companies as well as video dance makers from Belgium, Canada, Curaçao, France, Greece, Hungary, India, Iran, Japan, Lebanon, Mexico, Netherlands, Palestinian Territories, Romania, South Africa, Switzerland, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States and Zimbabwe. 

Black Voices in Dance - Friday, August 14, 2020
D (NYC), Will Ervin (Illinois), Jamal Jackson Dance Company (NYC), Kofago Dance Theater (NYC)

Ervs Works Dance kicks off the Festival with I-will I-Will I-WILLLLL, investigating the complications of one's relationship to the self by choreographer Will Ervin. Festival favorite Jamal Jackson Dance Company presents grEeneR grASsEs exploring the impact of migration. Kafago Dance Ensemble, steeped in traditions from West Africa and the Caribbean, presents CROSSROADS, with the deity Eshu as its guardian.  D, founded by director Dorchell Haqq, presents the Company's work tenderheaded..., examining the process of rediscovering ourselves. 

From India, Saturday - August 15, 2020
Rajika Puri (Narrator), Aakash Odedra Company (India/UK), Aditi Mangaldas Dance (India), Bijayini Satpathy (India), Kapila Venu (India), Pradeesh Thiruthiya (India), Sadhya Dance (India), Sooraj Subramaniam (Australia/Belgium), Sophia Salingaros (U.S.), Sreelakshmy Govardhanan (India), Zoya Akhtar (India)

Acclaimed Indian dance artists perform ancient rituals, classical dances and contemporary works, moderated by dancer/scholar/curator Rajika Puri on India Independence Day.  New York-based Bharatanatyam dancer Sophia Salingaros opens the program with a dedication to the God Shiva.  Kathak/contemporary artist Aditi Mangaldas takes us into an interior monologue while Aakash Odedra and Hu Shenyuan share moments from Samsara whose European and U.S. engagements were halted by the pandemic.  A haunting melody suffuses a garden in Bijayini Satpathy's version of a classic Odissi work by Kelucharan Mohapatra, performed by her two disciples.  Kuchipudi dancer Sreelakshmy displays the storytelling aspect of the Kuchipudi form in a forest setting.  A Festival commissioned film reveals the painstaking makeup of Theyyam artist Pradeesh Thiruthiya in timelapse as he transforms into the goddess Bhagawati; and Koodiyattam prima donna Kapila Venu personifies the tortoise avatar of the Hindu God Vishnu by lamplight.  Sadhya Dance's
Grapple explores darkness and light with three contemporary male dancers; while Sooraj Subramaniam presents a danced miniature against the Ghent skyline. Director Zoya Akhtar's uproarious Gallan Goodiyaan from the film "Dil Dhadake Do" provides a rousing Bollywood finale.

From the Middle East including Ayman Safiah Memorial Tribute, Sunday, August 16, 2020
Ayman Safiah (Palestinian Territories
in memoriam), Hoedy Saad (Lebanon), Project TAG (Iraqi Kurdistan / U.S.), Tanin Torabi (Iran), Yaa Samar! (Palestinian Territories)

Diverse dance-makers from Iraqi Kurdistan, Palestinian Territories, Iran and Lebanon challenge stereotypes and encourage the deepening of trust and mutual understanding through art. In the U.S. premiere of The Dérive, Tanin Torabi moves among the people in an old bazaar in Tehran where dance is prohibited.  The world premiere of Project TAG's A Call for Prayer encourages the making of peace with our own conflicted selves. Hoedy Saad, a choreographer and voguer from Lebanon performs TBD, a world premiere. Battery Dance remembers the life of Ayman Safiah, a 29-year-old Palestinian dance artist born in Galilee, who tragically died in May. A selection of films prepared by choreographer Samar Haddad King reveals the impact Ayman had on a generation of Palestinian and Israeli dancers as a choreographer, director, mentor, and role model. 

From Europe & Japan - Monday, August 17, 2020
Ana Maria Lucaciu & Razvan Stoian (Romania/U.S.), Emiko Agatsuma (Japan), Emma Evelein, (Netherlands), Ludivine Large-Bessette (France), Odos Productions (Greece), TranzDanz/cie. Gerzson Péter Kovács (Hungary) 

Future Temple by Japanese choreographer Emiko Agatsuma imagines the changing perception of the soul from past to future. Commissioned by the Romanian Cultural Institute, Ana Maria Lucaciu and Razvan Stoian present Almost, a story of two echoing universes that aim to align; the air between two bodies resonate with what could have been. Sisters, an award-winning dance film choreographed by Emma Evelein, portrays three sisters growing up in a broken family, revealing their inner world and unbreakable relationship. In the U.S. premiere Trans-tánc Budapest by TranzDanz / cie. Gerzson Péter Kovács, young dancers repeat a sequence inspired by Hungarian folk dances as they traverse the emblematic sites of Budapest. Strikingly filmed on sand dunes in Greece, the U.S. premiere of Anasa is contributed by Odos Productions, the work of Swiss choreographer Maja Zimmerlin and French filmmaker Thomas Delord. Ludivine Large-Bessette's Drop Out Bodies questions the fatality of the human body and our individual and collective responsibilities in this complex time.

Celebrating the Centennial of U.S. Women's Right to Vote - Tuesday, August 18, 2020
Annalee Traylor (Alabama/NYC), Ashley Menestrina (NYC), Doris Humphrey danced by Meggi Sweeney Smith (NYC), Futorian Dance Theatre (NYC), Jean Erdman
(in memoriam) through Nancy Allison (NYC), Kathryn Posin Dance Company (NYC), Lori Belilove dancing Isadora Duncan (NYC), RGWW (Los Angeles, California)

Battery Dance Festival honors female choreographers in a program co-curated by Catherine Tharin. Combative Echoes by Ashley Menestrina investigates the role of memory and transient energy in the human experience. Annalee Traylor's
the nearness of you metaphorically depicts four vignettes universally connected through aspects of relationships. Inspired by the Persian tale of Shahrzad, Rosanna Gamson's Layla Means Night reveals our insatiable desire to be entertained. Set to Steve Reich's Pulitzer-winning Double Sextet, Kathryn Posin adds a third sextet of dancers to the polyrhythmic interlocking musical network. Futorian Dance Theatre presents a world premiere suite with the theme of compassion, nurturance, and dedication. In Hamadryad with choreography by Jean Erdman, a dancer rehearses alone in a studio enchanting herself back into the forest as a wood nymph, while Isadora Duncan's Revolutionary, as danced by Lori Belilove, and Doris Humphrey's
Quasi Waltz as danced by Meggi Sweeney Smith round out Tharin's legacy suite. 

From Africa - Wednesday, August 19, 2020
Abdul Kinyenya (Uganda), Dunia Dance (Zimbabwe/Belgium), Luthando Dance Academy (South Africa), Moving into Dance (South Africa)

African artists draw from their traditional dance, culture and communities in creating original contemporary works. Moving Into Dance Company performs
Road and Everlast, fusing African and Western contemporary movement, ritual and music. Thina, created by Phumlani Nyanga and performed by the dancers of Luthando Dance Academy, portrays a young South African family as they struggle to maintain harmony. Abdul Kinyenya's Twete attracted worldwide attention when shown on Battery Dance TV in May, earning a reprise in the Festival.

From North America - Thursday, August 20, 2020
Cornfield Dance (NYC), Dancing Earth Indigenous Contemporary Dance Creations (Indigenous territory, occupied New Mexico and California), Dancing Wheels (Ohio), Delfos Danza (Mexico), 
Kaeja d'Dance (Canada), National Ballet of Canada 

Toronto-based Kaeja d'Dance presents XDTO with 22 dancers improvising one-minute solos in an urban glade at the edge of Lake Ontario with the skyscrapers and harbor of Toronto in the background. National Ballet of Canada's offers Gratitude, choreographed by the dancers of the company who perform on balconies and in homes, yards, woods, gardens and parks.  Cornfield Dance's Portal denotes the passageway from one state to another-agitation into peace and quotidian into sacred. Choreographed by David Dorfman, Imagine, If You Will...  is performed by Dancing Wheels, the first professional physically integrated dance company in America, uniting dancers with and without disabilities.  Mexico's Delfos Danza presents Telempathies, a U.S. Broadcast premiere of an experimental work using dance on Zoom.  

From Battery Dance and its Resilient Festival - Friday, August 21, 2020
Art-a-Hack (NYC), Battery Dance Company (NYC), Reuel Rogers (Curaçao)

As our festival takes the virtual stage for the first time, we explore the past, present, and future of Battery Dance and the Festival. Based on Greek mythology, Battery Dance Company's world premiere Icarus, choreographed by company member Razvan Stoian, reflects on hubris as our society's demise. Partnering with artist/technologist Ellen Pearlman and Thoughtworks Arts, Art-a-Hack joins Battery Dance's Stoian and Hussein Smko in collaboration with 25 international art hackers exploring the intersection between dance and cutting edge technologies. Curaçao-based dancer/choreographer Reuel Rogers, mentored by Battery dancer Sean Scantlebury and a highlighted performer in last year's festival, presents his new work
Hero, a motivational piece about how to become your own personal hero. 

From NYC with Love and Hope - Saturday, August 22, 2020
Accent Dance (NYC), Dolly Sfeir (NYC), Fractal Collective (Netherlands), Pony Box Dance Theatre (NYC/Los Angeles, California), Tom Gold Dance (NYC) 

Battery Dance Festival dedicates its final day to New York City. #NYTOUGH #ILOVENYC. The world premiere of Tom Gold Dance's Plan & Elevation, set to Caroline Shaw's string quartet, imagines an encounter among four individuals on a summer day in a garden. hi are you like me choreographed by Dolly Sfeir is an ironic presentation of the finance world and its inhabitants. Pony Box Dance Theatre's
No Man is an Island explores the feeling of isolation arising from the virus lockdown of 2020 as four dance artists of color reach out to one another in the cleared streets of NYC. Fractal Collective presents From the Streets to the Seats, with breakdance hitters around the globe from Amsterdam to the NYC subways in a documentary and performance story about hustle, hope & hierarchy. Accent Dance's Naranjo en Flor crafts an abstraction of the tango form, blending ballet and contemporary vocabularies set against a live performance of the most traditional song in the tango canon.
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3) BOLD Presents 

SIX NEW WORKS WRITTEN AND 

DIRECTED BY BLACK WOMXN

AUGUST 14, 21, & 28 AT 6 PM


BOLD, an organization that works to build up Black womxn in the performing arts for the restoration of culture, has announced BOLD 2020, the return of their short play festival featuring works written and directed by Black Womxn premiering August 14, 21, and 28, 2020 at 6:00pm.  Free tickets are available at bit.ly/BOLDFEST.

 

BOLD 2020 is in response to the systemic silencing of Black womxn’s voices. The returning short play festival features new work written by ​Agyeiwaa Asante​,​Brittani SamuelChanel CarrollJazmine StewartKristen Adele Calhoun, and Lakhiyia Hicks. Directed by Kristolyn LloydTavia Jefferson, and Bianca LaVerne JonesEach night, made possible by over 40 black womxn, will consist of two ten minute plays and be followed by a talkback with the director and playwrights.

 

For additional social media materials click here.  For more information on BOLD, visit BOLDNYC.org.

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4) THE BROADWAY ADVOCACY COALITION

ANNOUNCES INAUGURAL

BAC ARTIVISM FELLOWSHIP


The Broadway Advocacy Coalition (BAC) announces the creation of the BAC Artivism Fellowship to support artist activists using their tools to have an impact on the world around them. The Fellowship will provide financial support, mentorship, networking opportunities and education workshops. The inaugural class of fellows will specifically support Black, female-identifying artist activists focused on issues related to systemic racism and criminal justice reform and using narrative or stories in their work.

BAC is an arts-based advocacy nonprofit dedicated to building the capacity of individuals and organizations to use storytelling to dismantle racism and the systems that perpetuate it.

Applications will be open to any female-identifying artists based in the United States and will be open to all artists that center their work in stories and narrative. The fellowship will support 10 women over the course of six months and will culminate in a digital presentation of their work. The nominating committee for the fellowship includes Amber Iman, Liza Jessie Peterson, Zakiyah Ansari and Imani Mflame. Additional members of the nomination committee will be announced at a later date.


Additional details and applications will be announced later in August. 

 

For more information, visit https://www.bwayadvocacycoalition.org/artivismfellowship.

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5) New Fairmount Park Digital Guide, scavenger hunt, hikes, 
and more

With Philadelphia parks experiencing record usage in recent months, Fairmount Park Conservancy is encouraging park-goers to safely explore the lesser-known gems of East and West Fairmount Park this summer and fall. The non-profit champion for Philadelphia parks is offering a variety of ways to discover all that the 2,050-acre park offers, from a new free scavenger hunt to guided yoga and hikes to solo park cleanups.

 

In addition, the Conservancy has created a new digital guide, highlighting trails, historic landmarks, and natural areas in Fairmount Park. The Fairmount Park Digital Guide, launching today, will allow users to find less traveled gems all on their own. Find the guide at myphillypark.org.


Beginning late July, Fairmount Park Conservancy has developed additional ways to encourage park-goers to explore East and West Fairmount Park on their own or with members of their household:

 

Virtual Fairmount Park Summer Scavenger Hunt: Discover the fascinating facts and stories behind the historic houses, natural areas, and public art of Fairmount Park by participating in a free virtual Fairmount Park Scavenger Hunt, launched late July and run until September 7. Scavenger hunters can participate by downloading the free GooseChase app to their smartphone and completing each mission at their own pace (search for “Fairmount Park Summer Scavenger Hunt”). New missions will be released each week. The top participants will receive prizes, including gift cards to local, minority-owned businesses and Fairmount Park Conservancy merchandise.


Park Hubs in Fairmount Park: To enhance the visitor experience this summer, the Conservancy has set up “Park Hubs” in Fairmount Park: six spots throughout the park with wayfinding signage that serve as helpful jumping off points for exploring the park.

 

From these locations, park-goers can start or end their exploration of various trails, natural areas, and historic structures throughout the park.


      Lemon Hill Mansion: 1 Lemon Hill Drive

      Mount Pleasant Mansion: 3800 Mount Pleasant Drive

      Woodford Mansion: 2300 North 33rd Street

      Concourse Lake: South Concourse Drive and Belmont Avenue

      Centennial District: Lansdowne Drive and Black Road

      Chamounix Drive: Chamounix Drive and South Chamounix Drive

 

Guided hikes, meditation, and yoga: In-person Conservancy member events will return later this summer at a reduced capacity and in accordance with all COVID-19 guidelines. Events include guided hikes, meditation, and yoga. Member events are free for Conservancy members and $15 for non-members. View upcoming events and locations here: https://myphillypark.org/events-calendar/

 

These events will be capped at 25 attendees or less. All participants will be required to wear a face mask, stay six feet apart from others, and stay home if they or members of their household are showing any symptoms of COVID-19.


Fairmount Park Conservancy’s membership program helps ensure that Philadelphia’s parks are enhanced for generations to come and offers free year round events like guided hikes, trail runs, yoga classes, and bike rides as well as great discounts throughout the park. Learn more about the Conservancy’s membership program here: https://myphillypark.org/support/become-a-member/

 

Love Your Park Solo Cleanups: Love Your Park Solo Cleanups encourage all park users to safely clean up trash and litter individually or with members of their household as they enjoy Philly parks this summer. Volunteers can go the extra mile by pledging to track their work online. Love Your Park Solo cleanups aim to help keep Philly parks clean this summer, and offer Philadelphians a rewarding way to give back to these important public spaces. Visit loveyourpark.org for more volunteer opportunities in Philly parks this summer.

 

Volunteers who have their own cleanup supplies can opt to make a donation to the Love Your Park program to cover the cost of a free cleanup kit for others. A $35 donation covers the cost of a cleanup kit, which includes trash bags, a Fairmount Park Conservancy bandana, and gloves (while supplies last). A $75 donation will cover the cost of a cleanup kit plus a $50-level membership to the Conservancy. Donate here: https://secure.qgiv.com/for/2lysolcle.

 

Love Your Park is a collaborative program managed by Fairmount Park Conservancy and Philadelphia Parks & Recreation.

 

Event updates and schedules will be shared via the Conservancy’s weekly e-newsletter at  https://myphillypark.org/newsletter and via social media at facebook.com/fairmountparkconservancy and @myphillypark on Instagram and Twitter.

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6) Live Performances In A Safe Environment

 

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Celebrating Its 20th Anniversary

Presents

 

The Second Production of its Monthly Series in the Social Distancing Era

 

Delphi Harrington and Nathan Darrow

To Appear In

“Mrs. Sorken” by Christopher Durang

&

“I Can’t Imagine Tomorrow” by Tennessee Williams

 

August 17th at 2:00pm at Theatre 80 St. Marks

And Via Live Streaming


Following its initial successful production in this era of isolation and social distancing – Marilyn Sokol & Bob Dishy in plays by Robert Anderson and Arthur Miller on July 13th – Food For Thought Productions will continue presenting monthly programs of staged readings at its new home of Theatre 80 St. Marks. On August 17th at 2:00pm the award-winning theatre company will present Delphi Harrington and Nathan Darrow (“House of Cards”) in “Mrs. Sorken” by Christopher Durang and “I Can’t Imagine Tomorrow” by Tennessee Williams, directed by Antony Marsellis. The production will be followed by a Q&A with cast and director.

 

FFTP has become synonymous with “intimate theatre.”  The point has always been to have audience members up close and personal to the actors.  In the new configuration, the audience will consist of up to 25 patrons, as well as live streamed to theatre lovers everywhere (streaming details to follow).  All social distancing precautions will be respected. There will be a medical professional onsite to check temperatures and audience members must wear masks and have recently tested negative for Covid-19.

 

The next Food For Thought presentation at Theatre 80 is on Sept. 14th at 2pm, starring Tony Nominee Kathleen Chalfant in “Something Unspoken” by Tennessee Williams, directed by Antony Marsellis. (The second play and performer tba). Additional dates for the rest of the season which will include plays by Tennessee Williams, Harold Pinter, Mel Brooks, Dorothy Parker, to name a few are Oct. 19th, Nov. 16th and December 14th. All shows are from 2—4pm which includes a Q & A with the cast. All shows will be live streamed, and all cast & plays subject to change. Tickets for the ‘live’ performance are free to first-come patrons who agree to be tested. There will be a nominal charge for the streaming.

 

Theatre 80 St. Marks will be the FFTP home for the rest of the season. Theatre 80 is an historic venue, which began life as "Scheib's Place," a popular speakeasy in 1922. It has weathered difficult times from Prohibition, the crash of 1929, and the Off-Broadway Theater strike of 1969. The tradition of excellence continues at Theatre 80 where the careers of many famous performers were launched, including Gary Burghoff, Bob Balaban and even one of its ushers, Billy Crystal. In these days when independent commercial mid-sized theaters are so endangered, it represents the tenacity which keeps theater alive in New York.  


For additional information and tickets please contact FFTP at: 646-366-9340 or email:  info@foodforthoughtproductions.com

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7) FILMSTORMS PRODUCTIONS RELEASES

PRECURSOR
 

THE NEW SHORT FILM CONFRONTS THE RAW & UNCOMFORTABLE 

CONVERSATIONS ABOUT PREJUDICE, POWER, AND PATRIOTISM IN AMERICA 

 

Six months deep into America’s year of racial reckoning, the New York-based video production company Filmstorms Productions today released Precursor, a new short film about civil discourse co-written by and featuring Cory McCants and Alan Trinca, directed by Manolo Campos. Precursor is free, now available at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7d1PaL_b4K4 and will also be released on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter later today. 

What if we talked? What if we listened? Precursor confronts highly uncomfortable conversations in relation to prejudice, power, and patriotism. It offers a vision of what could be if two individuals with opposing viewpoints decided to listen. McCants and Trinca engaged in countless hours of conversation paired with extensive research to give this topic the respect it deserves. 
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8) One Million Reasons to Explore & Discover Your Own City - The Sightseeing Pass Giving Away 1,000,000 Savings Passes in New End of Summer Program

 Running now through Labor Day, The Sightseeing Pass encourages locals to rediscover and support their city in their own ‘backyards’ including NYC and Philadelphia


Channeling local wanderlust- see, eat and shop the sights without the crowds


 As the ongoing public health crisis continues to impact the travel industry and cities around the globe, The Sightseeing Pass announces a new giveaway program for local residents, where up to one million of its savings passes will be distributed across its 12 partner cities around the United States and Europe, including here in New York City and Philadelphia through its website.  The program is designed to support each city and encourage locals to enjoy a staycation right at or close to home without the crowds and the usual summer traffic jams.


The program comes with the mindset of encouraging local wanderlust in and around these cities.  Additional cities included in the new Sightseeing Pass program include Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Miami, Orlando, Fort Lauderdale, New Orleans, Smoky Mountains, London, England and Malaga, Costa Del Sol.  Program activities vary by city, but a general sampling across all partner cities includes rental cars for weekend getaways between cities, various retail and dining offers, sunset sails for a relaxing escape, walking tours, bike rentals and more.


This discount program provides special offers and savings on outdoor dining, retail and a variety of outdoor activities typically reserved for Sightseeing Pass holders including:

 

  • In New York City: Enjoy the savings and sounds of the water on an iconic clipper vessel with Manhattan by Sail or shop till you drop at New York City’s first outlet destination at Empire Outlets on Staten Island’s North Shore, where a trip on the free Staten Island Ferry provides panoramic views of the Statue of Liberty and NY Harbor. The program also includes a day trip out to wine country in Long Island and the Hudson Valley, along with deals on meals at flavorful restaurants such as Woodpecker Pizza Bar & Grill. 

 

  • In Philadelphia: Take a swing at mini golfing in Franklin Square, climb up the steps of the Philadelphia Art Museum on the Rocky Walking Tour, explore the city’s culinary cuisine and history with a meal at City Tavern Restaurant, a place where the country’s founding fathers once dined.


For more information on The Sightseeing Pass, savings program partners and to receive a Savings Pass, visit https://www.sightseeingpass.com.  

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9) TONY AWARD®-WINNING

WILLIAMSTOWN THEATRE FESTIVAL


AND


AUDIBLE


COMMENCE REHEARSALS & REMOTE RECORDING



SESSIONS


FOR THREE PRODUCTIONS AS THEY ANNOUNCE 


COMPLETE CASTING


AS PART OF THE UNPRECEDENTED COLLABORATION


TO PRODUCE THE WTF SEASON ON AUDIBLE

 

“PHOTOGRAPH 51”


ACCLAIMED PLAY BY ANNA ZIEGLER


DIRECTED BY SUSAN STROMAN

 


ANNA CHLUMSKY JOINED BY


DAVID CORENSWET, STEPHEN KUNKEN,


AASIF MANDVI, OMAR METWALLY, AND 


BEN ROSENFIELD


 

“ANIMALS”


WORLD PREMIERE COMEDY BY STACY OSEI-KUFFOUR


DIRECTED BY WHITNEY WHITE

 

FEATURING


MADELINE BREWER, JASON BUTLER HARNER,


WILLIAM JACKSON HARPER, AND AJA NAOMI KING

 

“A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE”


BY TENNESSEE WILLIAMS


DIRECTED BY ROBERT O’HARA

 


AUDRA McDONALD AND CARLA GUGINO


TO BE JOINED BY


JOEL REUBEN GANZ, JOE GOLDAMMER, 


CARMEN HERLIHY,


SULLIVAN JONES, BRIAN LUCAS, STACEY RAYMOND,


CESAR J. ROSADO, AND ARIEL SHARIF


Today, Williamstown Theatre Festival (Mandy Greenfield, Artistic Director) and Audible (Kate Navin, Artistic Producer, Audible Theater) announced casting for three productions: Photograph 51 by Anna Ziegler, directed by Susan StromanAnimals by Stacy Osei-Kuffour, directed by Whitney Whiteand A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams, directed by Robert O’Hara. These three plays will all rehearse and have remote recording sessions this month as part of the upcoming Williamstown Theatre Festival season produced by Audible, the world’s largest producer and provider of original spoken-word entertainment and audiobooks.


In the critically acclaimed new play Photograph 51, previously announced Emmy Award® nominee Anna Chlumsky is joined by David Corenswet, Tony Award® nominee Stephen KunkenAasif Mandvi, Tony Award nominee Omar Metwally, and Ben Rosenfield.

 

The world premiere comedy Animals will feature SAG Award® nominee Madeline BrewerJason Butler Harner, 2020 Emmy Award nominee William Jackson Harper, and Aja Naomi King.

 

A Streetcar Named Desire with previously announced cast members Emmy, Grammy®, and six-time Tony Award winner Audra McDonald and Carla Gugino, will also feature Joel Reuben GanzJoe GoldammerCarmen HerlihySullivan JonesBrian LucasStacey Raymond, and Cesar J. Rosado.

 

For the Audible recording, the role of Stanley will be played by Ariel Sharif. Sharif replaces the previously announced Bobby Cannavale who is unable to participate due to a scheduling conflict.

 

These three productions join the previously announced world premiere of Shakina Nayfack’s new play Chonburi International Hotel & Butterfly Club directed by Laura Savia which recently completed its remote recording sessions. The complete cast features the playwright alongside Ivory AquinoKate BornsteinLiz Lark Brown, SAG Award winner Annie GoldenBianca LeighTelly LeungDana LevinsonPooya MohseniAngelica RossIta Segev, Grammy Award nominee Jason Tam, and Samy Nour Younes.

 

Exact release dates on Audible and additional information about the complete season of seven shows will be announced shortly.

As previously announced, this unprecedented collaboration between two industry leaders, forged during and in response to a fraught moment in history, preserves the Festival season in a different format, provides continued work for the artists involved in the Festival season, and produces a body of work that will be made available for global Audible listeners to enjoy and experience. It also marks the first time that an external theatrical season of work will be produced on Audible. In addition to being available for Audible listeners, the Williamstown Theatre Festival season on Audible will be made available to Williamstown Theatre Festival subscribers and donors. For more information, please visit www.wtfestival.org. For more information about Audible Theater, which makes outstanding performances and powerful storytelling available to millions of people all over the world, please visit www.audible.com/theater.


ABOUT THESE WTF PRODUCTIONS ON AUDIBLE

 

WORLD PREMIERE

Chonburi International Hotel & Butterfly Club

By Shakina Nayfack

Directed by Laura Savia

With Ivory AquinoKate BornsteinLiz Lark BrownAnnie GoldenBianca LeighTelly LeungDana LevinsonPooya MohseniShakina NayfackAngelica RossIta SegevJason Tam, and Samy Nour Younes.

 

In Shakina Nayfack’s world premiere play, a vibrant, international group of transgender women band together at a hotel in Thailand to confront the challenges and joys of gender confirmation surgery. Despite the group’s warm welcome, Kina (Nayfack) prepares for her life-altering operation all alone. But a caring nurse (Ivory Aquino), a wise couple (Kate Bornstein and Annie Golden), and a karaoke-loving bellhop (Telly Leung) may be exactly who she needs to ignite her truest sense of self. WTF Associate Artistic Director Laura Savia directs this spirited comedy about one woman who tests the bonds of an unlikely sisterhood.

 

Photograph 51

By Anna Ziegler

Directed by Susan Stroman

With Anna Chlumsky, David Corenswet, Stephen Kunken, Aasif MandviOmar Metwally, and Ben Rosenfield.

 

In 1951, chemist Rosalind Franklin (Anna Chlumsky) works relentlessly in her King’s College London lab, closing in on a major discovery that could unlock the mysteries of the DNA molecule. Undermined by her colleague Maurice Wilkins (Omar Metwally), she struggles to compete with rival team Watson and Crick (David Corenswet and Aasif Mandvi) as pressure intensifies to produce results. Following a critically acclaimed run in London, Anna Ziegler’s play is brought to life in a new production directed by five-time Tony Award winner Susan Stroman, honoring the monumental contribution of one scientist with two X chromosomes whom history nearly left behind.

 

WORLD PREMIERE

Animals

By Stacy Osei-Kuffour

Directed by Whitney White

With Madeline Brewer, Jason Butler HarnerWilliam Jackson Harper, and Aja Naomi King.

 

Lydia (Aja Naomi King) and Henry (Jason Butler Harner)’s dinner guests (Madeline Brewer and William Jackson Harper) are about to arrive when Henry’s spontaneous marriage proposal threatens to burn the evening to a crisp. Wine bottles and years of unspoken tensions are uncorked, and, before the evening is through, Lydia must confront her long-held fears and feelings if she’s going to commit to a future with Henry. Directed by Whitney White, Stacy Osei-Kuffour’s world premiere comedy marches into the muddy intersection of romantic entanglement, identity, pride, and survival.

 

A Streetcar Named Desire

By Tennessee Williams

Directed by Robert O’Hara

With Joel Reuben GanzJoe GoldammerCarla Gugino, Carmen HerlihySullivan JonesBrian LucasAudra McDonaldStacey RaymondCesar J. Rosadoand Ariel Sharif.

 

Following his 2019 production of A Raisin in the Sun, celebrated as “an absorbing, watershed revival,” by The New York Times, Robert O’Hara returns to Williamstown Theatre Festival to direct this Tennessee Williams masterpiece. With Emmy, Grammy, and six-time Tony Award winner Audra McDonald as Blanche DuBois alongside Carla Gugino as Stella, O’Hara takes a fresh and visceral look at the emotionally charged relationship between these two iconic sisters. Haunted by her past, Blanche seeks refuge with Stella and Stanley (Ariel Sharif) in New Orleans, where she wrestles with the nature of her sister’s husband, her sister’s denial, and her own unraveling mind.

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And that's the scoop. Tune in tomorrow for another Talking Topic.