New York audiences first made their acquaintance with three of this season’s Tony-nominated shows—Disgraced, Fun Home, and Hand to God—Off-Broadway in seasons past. Take a look at our round-up of notable new American plays that just might be next year’s Tony nominees.
It’s no secret that new American plays face a harder path to Broadway than classic revivals, mega-musicals, or imports from Britain. And that’s mostly due to economics. The dedication and long commitment required to nurture a new work, or a new playwright, is more likely found in a not-for-profit environment than on Broadway, where market forces don’t determine the fate of a production.
That’s why New York audiences first made their acquaintance with two of this season’s Tony-nominated new plays Off-Broadway: Disgraced, Ayad Akhtar’s incendiary drama about race and prejudice, received its New York premiere in October 2012 at LCT3, Lincoln Center Theater’s developmental space; and Hand to God, Robert Askins’s darkly funny tale about a demonic sock puppet, which began life Off-Off-Broadway in 2011 at the Ensemble Studio Theatre and transferred last year to the MCC Theater Off-Broadway before making it to the Booth Theatre.
Musicals don’t have it easy either. Best Musical nominee Fun Home, Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tesori’s tender musical adaptation of Alison Bechdel’s graphic novel about a young lesbian cartoonist’s coming of age, was first produced downtown at the Public Theater in 2013, prior to its current incarnation at the Circle in the Square. And the upcoming new season’s most eagerly anticipated event, Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s vibrant new musical about founding father Alexander Hamilton, arrives at the Richard Rodgers Theatre after a sold-out Off-Broadway run at the Public earlier this year.
In the next couple of months, theatergoers in New York have the opportunity to sample a feast of promising new plays — from both well-known and relatively new American dramatists — all of which are to be found on prominent New York resident theatre stages Off-Broadway. Here is a sample.
Permission by Robert Askins MCC Theater at the Lucille Lortel Theatre, through June 14
Having set his satanic puppet loose on Broadway, Hand to God playwright Askins now introduces us to the illicit thrills of CDD — Christian Domestic Discipline. In this subversive sex comedy, good Christian husbands spank their wives when they commit transgressions, all in accordance with strictures in the Bible. But is everyone enjoying this punishment just a little bit too much? Permission is directed by Alex Timbers, Tony nominee for Peter and the Starcatcher. Learn more and buy tickets. Photo: Justin Bartha and Elizabeth Reaser. Credit: Jenny Anderson.
The Way We Get by by Neil La Bute Second Stage Theater, through June 21
A new play from the playwright whose Broadway debut, Reasons to be Pretty, received a Tony nomination for Best Play in 2009, the romantic comedy about two people who wake up after an ecstatic night together, only to face some awkward questions and some spilling of secrets, features Amanda Seyfried (of Les Misérables and Mamma Mia! movie fame) making her stage debut and Thomas Sadoski (best actor Tony nominee for his performance in Reasons to be Pretty). The Way We Get By is directed by Leigh Silverman (Tony nominee last year for Violet). Learn more and buy tickets. Photo: Thomas Sadoski and Amanda Seyfried. Credit: Joan Marcus.
The Spoils by Jesse Eisenberg The New Group, through June 28
Playwright Eisenberg, who is best known for his 2011 Oscar-nominated performance as the founder of Facebook in The Social Network, made his playwriting debut with Asuncion, which premiered Off- Broadway in2011. His next play, The Revisionist, also produced Off-Broadway,provided the great Vanessa Redgrave with a memorable role in 2013. His latest is a dark comedy about a tortured grad school dropout who intimidates his Nepalese immigrant roommate, who is also his only friend. Eisenberg plays the obnoxious bully and The Big Bang Theory’s Kunal Nayyar, the roommate, a character based on a real-life friend of the playwright. The Spoils is directed by The New Group founder Scott Elliott. Learn more and buy tickets. Photo: Jesse Eisenberg, Kunal Nayyar, Annapurna Sriram, Erin Darke, and Michael Zegen. Credit: Monique Carboni.
Guards at the Taj by Rajiv Joseph Atlantic Theater, through June 28
The new play from the author of Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo (which starred Robin Williams on Broadway) is a black comedy about two hapless guards assigned to protect the Taj Mahal in 17th century India on the morning the magnificent edifice was unveiled. The two men, played by Omar Metwally (Tony nominee for Sixteen Wounded) and Arian Moayed (Tony nominee for Bengal Tiger) are swept up by the awe-inspiring beauty of the monument and the bloody price that was paid to build it. Guards at the Taj, which recently won the 2015 Laurents/Hatcher Award for new play, is directed by Amy Morton, who received Tony nominations for her performances in August: Osage County and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?Learn more and buy tickets. Photo: Rajiv Joseph.
Gloria by Branden Jacob-Jenkins Vineyard Theatre, through July 3
Last year, Jacob-Jenkins won the Obie Award for Best New American Play for two thought-provoking plays — Appropriate, which examines the legacy of American racism through the lens of a white family’s reunion in Arkansas, and The Octoroon, a wickedly funny adaptation of Dion Boucicault’s 1859 melodrama that turned conventional notions of slavery on its head. His new work is set in the editorial offices of a Manhattan magazine (not unlike The New Yorker, where the playwright himself spent a few years working), following a group of ambitious young assistants who want to score success in the publishing world before they hit 30. Gloria is directed by Evan Cabnet. Learn more and buy tickets.
10 out of 12 by Anne Washburn SoHo Rep, through June 21
Many plays have taken us backstage to give us an insider’s view from the wings, but never quite like this. Playwright Washburn — whose previous Off-Broadway success, Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play, a postapocalyptic comedy that finds redemption in a famous episode from the Simpsons — literally puts the spotlight on a tech rehearsal for a play, the fraught last days before the public attends, when the actors integrate their previous work with the mechanics of sets, lights, sound, and costumes for the first time. The play, which takes its title from the actors’ union stipulation that performers can only work for 10 hours out any 12-hour period, is a kind of backstage farce based on the playwright’s own experiences from sitting through a decade of production work on her own plays. 10 Out of 12 is directed by Les Waters, artistic director of the Actors Theatre of Louisville. Learn more and buy tickets.
The Qualms by Bruce Norris Playwrights Horizons, through July 12
Playwright Norris’s breakthrough work, Clybourne Park, a sharp and witty look at racism and real-estate aspirations, transferred from Playwrights Horizons to Broadway in 2012, wining the Tony and Pulitzer awards for Best Play that year. In his new play, a comedy about polyamorous couples at a swingers’ sex party, Norris continues his examination of the hypocrisies deep within contemporary liberal society. The Qualms,which received its world premiere last year at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre Company, is directed by Pam MacKinnon, who received a Tony Award for the recent Broadway revival of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?Learn more and buy tickets.
Significant Other by Joshua Harmon Roundabout Theatre Company, through August 16
Playwright Harmon’s first play, Bad Jews, a savage comedy about people behaving badly, became an instant hit when it debuted at the Roundabout Underground space in 2012. It moved into a larger space the following year and subsequently became the third most produced play around the country this season. His new work centers around a young gay man nearing 30, who is single and lonely in the city and whose life gets to be even more unbearable when his best girlfriends start getting married. Significant Other is directed by Trip Cullman. Learn more and buy tickets.
Shows for Days by Douglas Carter Beane Lincoln Center Theater, June 6- August 28
Two-time Tony winner Patti LuPone (Evita, Gypsy) and Ugly Betty’sMichael Urie headline an autobiographical drama from the author of The Little Dog Laughed (2007 Best Play Tony nominee) and the 2013 Broadway valentine to vaudeville The Nance. Urie plays Beane’s alter ego, a stage-struck kid who wanders into a community theatre in Reading, Pennsylvania, that is run by a commanding diva who directs, designs, and stars in her own productions. Shows for Days is directed by Broadway veteran Jerry Zaks (Tony winner for Six Degrees of Separation, Guys and Dolls,Lend Me a Tenor, and The House of Blue Leaves). Learn more and buy tickets. Photo: Douglas Carter Beane.
The Flick by Annie Baker Barrow Street Theatre, through August 30
During its premiere run at Playwrights Horizons in 2013, some audiences found The Flick too challenging: three hours stage time, characters who perform humdrum cleanup duties after screenings at a run-down movie theatre in Massachusetts, intermittent periods without any dialogue. But for others, this remarkably assured work that deftly transmutes slice-of-life moments and conversations about movies into a touching, theatrically stimulating work of art, fully deserves its 2013 Obie Award for writing and the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. A commercial transfer from Off-Broadway to Off-Broadway is a rarity these days and it’s a great opportunity for theatergoers to catch up with an outstanding play that probably couldn’t survive on Broadway. Learn more and buy tickets.
Information is scarce about Baker’s latest play, John,which is a part of the new Signature Theater season. What we do know is that the play is about a young couple who are struggling to stay together in a Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, bed-and-breakfast and that the cast features Georgia Engel and Lois Smith. But for anyone familiar with this playwright’s previous work — Body Awareness,Circle Mirror Transformation,The Aliens — it should simply suffice that it is a new work by Baker and is directed by her frequent collaborator Sam Gold (Tony nominee for Fun Home), who also directed The Flick. Photo: Aaron Clifton Moten, Louisa Krause, and Matthew Mayer. Credit: Joan Marcus.
Top photo: Jesse Eisenberg & Kunal Nayyar in The New Group production of The Spoils. Credit: Monique Carboni.
Last updated and effective as of January 14, 2019
Introduction and Your Acceptance of These Terms
Information We Collect
Information we collect directly from you: Your provision of your personal information to Us is completely voluntary; it is not a statutory or contractual requirement. Personally Identifiable Information (“PII”) is information that is uniquely identifiable to you, such as your name, address, email address, phone number, credit card number and other personal information that is not otherwise publicly available. Certain features of Our website may require that you provide Us with your personal information, including:
Mobile Alert Sign-Up (SMS)
Contact Us (email)
Public forums (e.g. message boards)
E-commerce (ticket purchases)
Your use of any of the features above;
New content on Our website;
News that We think may interest you about Us;
Responses to your questions/comments to us; and
Information relating to a ticket purchase.
We may use your demographic information for in house statistics, advertising and marketing target information. Our processing of your personal information is necessary for the performance and fulfillment of the contract between us and to provide you with Our services. We will also process, transfer, disclose and preserve personal information when We have a good faith belief that doing so is necessary, to resolve disputes, enforce our agreements and otherwise required by law. You can always opt-out of receiving future promotional communications from Us; see the Choice/Opt-out section below.Information We Collect Automatically: Even if you don’t use any of the features above, when you visit Our website, We may collect certain information about you.
From your Browser. For example, Our servers keep an activity log that tracks all visitors to the website. The information in the activity log does not identify you individually. The information collected may include among other data: your IP address, your registered domain or home server, time of access, date of access, web page(s) visited, number of clicks, software crash reports, type of browser used, session identification number, search terms, search results, access times and referring website’s address. We use your IP address to help diagnose problems with Our server and to administer Our website. Your IP address is also used to gather broad demographic information, such as country of origin and geographic location. We use such data in the aggregate to run internal analyses to improve upon your experience on Our website.
Tracking Tags (also known as “web beacons,” “action tags” or “single-pixel gifs”). Our website may also use tracking tags. Tracking tags are invisible graphics embedded in the pages of Our website that are programmed to collect non-personal information about your use of Our website. Like cookies, tracking tags provide overall usage patterns for Our website that We use for analysis and to provide personalized services and advertising content.
We comply with the Self-Regulatory Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising set forth by the Digital Advertising Alliance (DAA). You can opt-out of targeted advertising from certain providers at www.aboutads.info/consumers.
How We Use Your Personal Information
The personal information We collect allows Us to keep you posted on updates to Broadway Direct. It also helps Us to improve Our services, content, and advertising. If you don’t want to be on Our email list, you can opt out anytime by clicking the “unsubscribe” button or sending an unsubscribe email to [email protected]. From time to time, We may use your personal information to send transactional emails, such as communications about purchases and changes to Our terms, conditions, and policies. Because this information is important to your interaction with Broadway Direct, you may not opt out of receiving these communications. We may also use personal information for internal purposes such as auditing, data analysis, and research to improve Broadway Direct’s services, and customer communications. If you enter into a sweepstakes, contest, or similar promotion We may use the information you provide to administer those programs.
Information Collected By/Shared With Third Parties
Third Parties Doing Work for Us. Third parties have no rights to use any data We have collected on your behalf. However, We may employ other companies or individuals to perform functions on Our behalf, such as sending postal mail, email, and text messages, conducting sweepstakes/contests, prize fulfillment and promotional activities, analyzing data, providing marketing assistance, processing credit card payments and providing customer service. These outside suppliers, agents and vendors have access to your personal information only as needed to perform their functions.
Third Parties with Links from Our Website. From our website, you may be able to click on links to third party sites to buy tickets and merchandise and for other purposes. These third party sites may collect information, including personal information. We are not responsible for, nor do we have access to the information they collect. The collection of this information is governed by the privacy policies on the applicable third party sites.
Social Networking Services. Our website may integrate with social networking services. We do not control such services and are not liable for the manner in which they operate. While we may provide you with the ability to use such services in connection with our website, we are doing so merely as an accommodation and, like you, are relying upon those third party services to operate properly and fairly.
When necessary. We may also release personal information when we believe, in good faith, that such release is reasonably necessary to protect the rights, property or safety of Ourselves, Our clients, Our users, or others. We may disclose personal information about you to law enforcement, other government officials, or other third parties, as We, in our sole discretion, believe necessary or appropriate, in connection with an investigation of fraud, intellectual property infringement, or other activity that is illegal or may expose Us to legal liability.
Transactions With Third Party E-commerce Partners, Vendors and Advertisers
Delivery of Advertising and Other Content
In addition to ads and content that We may serve you directly, We use third-party advertising companies and marketing services companies to serve ads and other content when you visit Broadway Direct and elsewhere on the internet and in other media. Both We and these companies may use information about your visits to Broadway Direct and elsewhere to serve ads and other content to you. In the course of doing so, a unique third-party cookie may be placed or recognized on your browser by such companies. In addition, We and these companies may use Web beacons to help manage Our online advertising and content. These Web beacons enable Us and the third-party companies to recognize a browser’s cookie when a browser visits this Site and to learn which banner ads bring users to our website and to serve you ads that you may find of interest elsewhere on the internet and in other media. Both Broadway Direct and these companies may use information obtained from your visits to Broadway Direct or other websites, and information received from you offline in order to provide advertisements about goods and services and other content of interest to you across the internet and in other media. If you would like more information about this practice and to know your choices about not having this information used in this manner by Our third party advertising companies, please visit http://www.networkadvertising.org/optout_nonppii.asp and/or www.aboutads.info/choices. European users may opt out of receiving targeted advertising by visiting http://www.youronlinechoices.eu/. In addition, we may provide PII and Anonymous Information to marketing services companies. This may include information we received from you offline or online. These companies may combine information we provide (including PII and Anonymous Information) with personal and anonymous information they may have about you, using cookies they place or that We place on their behalf, as described in the section regarding “Cookies and Tracking Tags”. We require these companies to delete the PII we provide them. These companies may use the resulting non-personal information and such cookies for their own marketing purposes, and they may provide the same to their customers for their customer’s marketing purposes. Some of Our emails may contain tags that allow Us and Our advertisers and other partners to determine the types of content that may be of interest to you. Those tags may contain PII and may be shared with others to the same extent indicated in the section regarding “Cookies and Tracking Tags”. Those tags may not be deleted but you can opt out of receiving the emails.
Use of This Site by Children
The Site is not directed to individuals under the age of thirteen (13), and We request that such individuals do not provide personal information through the Site. If a parent or guardian becomes aware that his or her child has provided Us with PII without the parent or guardian’s consent by, for example, misrepresenting his or her age, that parent or guardian should contact us at [email protected]. If Broadway Direct determines that it has collected personal information of children under the age of 13, Broadway Direct will immediately delete such information and any accounts believed to be held by children under 13. In addition, we may not collect or process information from a citizen of an EU member state under the age of sixteen (16) without such person’s parental consent. If you are a citizen of an EU member state under the age of 16, please tell your parents that you are using the Site and have your parents email Us at [email protected] so that We may delete any information We may have collected about you.
California Civil Code § 1798.83 permits California residents to request information about whether we have disclosed personal information to any third parties for the third parties’ direct marketing purposes. California residents have the right to request in writing: (a) a list of the categories of Personal Information, such as name, email address and mailing address and the type of services provided to the customer that a business has disclosed to third parties (including affiliates that are separate legal entities) during the immediately preceding calendar year for the third parties’ direct marketing purposes and (b) the names and addresses of all such third parties. To make a request, please contact Us at the following email address: [email protected].
Rights of EU Data Subjects
If you are a resident of the European Union, under the GDPR, European Union residents, as data subjects, have the following rights:
Right to access – This right allows individuals to obtain confirmation as to whether or not personal information concerning him or her is being processed and provide access to such personal information. It also allows individuals to request details of the processing of his or her personal information, including, without limitation, categories of recipients to whom the personal information have been or will be disclosed and purposes of processing.
Right to rectify – This right allows individuals to rectify any inaccurate personal information about him or her.
Right to restrict processing – This right allows individuals to block or suppress processing of personal data under certain circumstances.
Right to be forgotten – This right is also known as the “right to erasure”. It is an individual’s right to have personal data erased or to prevent processing in specific circumstances.
Right of data portability – This right allows individuals to move, copy or transfer personal data from one place to another in a secure manner without interrupting the integrity and usability of the information.
Right to object to processing – This right allows individuals to object to certain types of processing, including direct marketing, profiling and providing for purposes of scientific or historical research and statistics.
An EU resident has the right to access his or her personal data that We hold and to ask that their personal data be corrected or erased and to port their data. An EU resident may also have the right to object to, or request that We restrict certain processing or to withdraw consent previously provided. If you would like to exercise your rights under the GDPR, please contact us at [email protected]. If you are an EU resident and have a concern about our processing of your personal data that we are not able to resolve, you have the right to lodge a complaint with the Data Protection Authority where you reside. For contact details of your relevant local Data Protection Authority, please see http://ec.europa.eu/newsroom/article29/item-detail.cfm?item_id=612080
Security of Your Personal Information
Broadway Direct employs reasonable security measures consistent with standard industry practice, for personal information collected through this Site, including physical, electronic and operational measures to maintain security and prevent unauthorized access. While Broadway Direct takes all appropriate steps to safeguard personal information under Our control, unfortunately, no data transmission over the Internet or method of storing data can be guaranteed to be 100% secure. As such, We cannot guarantee that personal information supplied by users will not be accessed on Our servers, or intercepted while being transmitted to Us over the Internet. We assume no liability for any damages you may suffer as a result of interception, alteration or misuse of information during such transfers.
We will retain your information for as long as your account or inquiry is active and for a reasonable time thereafter in accordance with Our standard procedures or as necessary to comply with Our legal obligations, to resolve disputes, and to enforce Our agreements. Even if We delete some or all of your Personal Information, We may continue to retain and use aggregate or anonymous data previously collected and/or anonymize or aggregate your Personal Information. Please note that We will not be liable for disclosures of your data due to errors or unauthorized acts of third parties.
This Site provides users the opportunity to opt-out of receiving communications from Us, at any time, by email at [email protected], or by clicking the unsubscribe link in any email communication. The Site gives users the following options for removing their information from our database, to not receive future communications or to no longer receive our service, at any time.
Users can send mail to the following postal address: Broadway Direct 1501 Broadway 14th floor New York, NY 10036
Users can call the following telephone number: (800) 223-6715.
Users can opt-out of receiving future newsletter emails from Us by selecting the “unsubscribe” link at the bottom of our email. However, We are not responsible for removing your information from the lists of any third party who has previously been provided with your information or is collecting your information through their cookies. You have the right to withdraw your consent for Our processing for your personal information by contacting us at [email protected].
This website gives users the following options for changing and modifying information previously provided, at any time.
Users can send mail to the following postal address: Broadway Direct 1501 Broadway 14th floor New York, NY 10036
Users can call the following telephone number: (800) 223-6715
In the event that We are, or any component of our operations is, merged with, or is acquired by, another entity, then any such successor or acquiring entity may become the successor to Our obligations with respect to the personal information that you have provided to Us, which would be necessary for the entity to effectively continue our business. By using this website, you consent to any transfer and use of such personal information by an entity assuming control of Our operations as a result of a merger, purchase of assets, or liquidation in bankruptcy or insolvency.