Tag: Plays

Celebrate National Theater Day With 7 Amazing Plays

As you may have seen all over your Instagram feed, today is National Theater Day! To celebrate all things theatrical, we’ve got seven great plays that definitely deserve a spot on your TBR (cast)list.

1. A street Car named desire 

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This play is the instant classic written by Tennessee Williams. It’s the story of how Blanche DuBois, the once beautiful, southern belle, is pushed over the edge by her brother-in law Stanley Kowalski. It’s not a story for the faint of heart, but it is very important in the canon of American theater.

2. Who’s Afraid of VIRGINIA Woolf? 

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Another play important in the American canon is Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? The play takes you into the dysfunctional lives of George and Martha. They are hosting a party for a new history professor and his wife. George and Martha use their new “play things” to stir up drama and expose the horrors of not only their own lives, but of the couple who just wanted to have a nice evening.

 

3. A raisin in the sun 

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Lorraine Hansberry’s classic A Raisin in the Sun is another book that all who love both great writing and great theater should read. The story is a bit of a tragic one, following an African-American working class family hoping to get out of the South-Side of Chicago. It gives a look into the aspirations and hopes, but also what can hold back a black family in the mid-20th century.

4. Medea 

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Medea is a Greek myth by Euripides, who’s english translations are done by Gilbert Murray. The myth is about a proud Amazonian women who’s left by her husband Jason. Jason leaves her to marry the kings daughter, so he himself can one day hold the throne. The short play is about Medea’s revenge, and execution of said revenge on her ex-husband.

5. Angels in America 

angels in america

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Tony Kushner’s Angels in America shows an insight into the horrors of the AIDS crisis in the 1980s. It follows the stories of three groups; a proud gay man with AIDS and the impact it has on him and his lover, the closeted Roy Cohen who has “liver cancer” (or so he says), based on the real-life figure, and a man in an unhappy marriage who’s slowly coming to terms with his sexuality.

6. The curious incident of the Dog in the night-Time 

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time book cover

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This modern play by Mark Haddon is on its way to becoming a classic for theater lovers. It tells the story of 15-year old Christopher Boone has Asperger’s Syndrome. Although living a very sheltered life, the boy is a whiz with numbers and mysteries. He observes his neighbor’s dog being killed one night, and that starts his journey to not only finding who killed the dog, but finding himself along the way.

 

7. Our town 

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Thornton Wilder’s Our Town is a glimpse into what living in a small town in America was like during the early 20th-century. The play, set in Grover’s Conner, New Hampshire, is split into three acts with the first act focusing on the daily happenings of the town, the second on love and marriage, and the third is the most grim, discussing death.

feature image via commentary magazine

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Five Chaotic “Midsummer Night’s Dream” Memes

Is anyone else going a little stircrazy? Sure, it might be tempting to flee to the woods with your forbidden fiance, but we probably shouldn’t. Live through these memes instead.

 

She’s Not Wrong

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I slept on Hermia for a long time, and I couldn’t regret that more. Listen. She and Lysander are in love, and she thinks he’s a perfectly appropriate suitor. So what does she do? Tells her father if he wants her to marry Demetrius that much he might just have to have her executed. Says the same to the king. Oh, I’ve gotta do what my dad says or die? I guess I’ll die. This woman is not daunted by anything. How many of us have wanted to flee into the woods and leave society behind? Hermia lives her truth.

 

Loyalty is a Virtue?

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I mean yeah, obviously I want Helena to have a lot more self worth. She tells Demetrius about his last chance to marry someone else. Even if you want to get on someone’s good side, that is an apocalyptically self sabotaging decision. And like, yeah, he treats her really badly. He should definitely break his ankle in the forest and never be found. Words can’t convey my disdain. But I kinda respect Helena, in a weird way. She may not be as lucky as Hermia, but she’s just as determinedly loyal.

 

Sometimes the Forest is Just Like That

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So you’re Hermia. You’ve been told, on pain of death, to marry this obsessed jerk. You and bae are running off to elope. You kind of can’t get dudes to leave you alone. Suddenly you wake up in the middle of nowhere, and everyone, including your fiance, is in love with your best friend. Kinda sounds like highschool? They’re in the forest, though, and Helena’s not exactly happy either. Everyone’s lost their minds, and somehow this is your fault? Not the best long weekend ever, that’s all I’m saying.

 

Great Plan

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I can’t help feeling that Oberon kind of should have seen this coming. Think about it, even if you think there’s only one couple in the forest. This poor girl’s love doesn’t care about her. Let’s fix it. Do something nice. Who am I going to get to do this for me? The most chaotic creature in existence? Of course! What could go wrong! This is honestly equivalent to you wanting your friends to get together and deputizing your cat.

 

Sounds Fake But Okay

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So you’re Helena. Your best friend is bailing to be with her true love. But the man you love loves her. So you betray her like, a little bit (okay, a lot). The man you love, who’s treated you like human garbage up until now, suddenly professes his undying love. You’re understandably suspicious. Then, boom! Here’s your friend’s fiance. You can count on him for some sense. Nope, he claims to love you too. She knows you betrayed her. Why wouldn’t she want vengeance?

 

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Endgame for Daniel Radcliffe Play

The Old Vic theater in London, England, have cancelled all remaining performances of Samuel Beckett’s play Endgame, starring Daniel Radcliffe, amidst the coronavirus pandemic.

The play, which began its run in January, was due to continue until March 28th, meaning that this move from the theater scraps the final two weeks. This is the first major production to cease performances in London, which comes as a surprise considering the total shutdown of New York City’s Broadway last week.

 

This decision has been made by the Old Vic, given current advisories to practice social distancing, and limit crowds. In their official statement, the theater said they are “aware of our employees’ financial dependence on work being presented and tickets being purchased”. As such, they are asking customers to consider their ticket price as a donation, rather than requesting a full refund, an act that would be “financially devastating.” The company have incentivized this move, offering benefits to those who waive the refund.

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image via london theater direct

For those who donate, we are able to offer a link to an exclusive video recording of the entire production of Endgame, captured earlier in the run, a private video message of appreciation from the cast, and a free Friends membership entitling you to Priority Booking valid for one year.

 

The UK government has elected not to impose any restrictions on movements or gatherings and much of London’s theater scene remains unaltered by the current pandemic. As the situation evolves, so too does the global response, and updates for the London performances can be found here.

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Off Broadway Production of ‘Three Sisters’ Cast

Anton Chekhov’s play, Three Sisters, is coming to Broadway. The play was originally written in 1900, and it centers on a conflict between illusions and reality, as well as three sisters who aren’t capable of changing their lives, but instead are squandering them in a provincial town. The very first performance of the play took place at the Moscow Art Theater and it is considered one of Chekhov’s best plays. Now, it is being adapted into an off Broadway production by Sam Gold, who will be the director. Clare Barron will be writing the screenplay.

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The actresses who will be portraying the sisters are Quincy Tyler Bernstine, who will be playing Olga, Irina will be played by Lola Kirke, and Greta Gerwig will be portraying Masha. Bernstine is an Obie Award winner, Kirke was in the hit movie based on the novel of the same name, Gone Girl, and Gerwig was just nominated for an Oscar for directing the (Oscar nominated) movie, Little Women. Gerwig isn’t only the award winner on the cast. Oscar Issac, of Star Wars fame, won a Golden Globe, and Steve Buscemi is a Golden Globe and Emmy award winner. Issac will be playing Vershinin, and Buscemi will be portraying Chebutykin.

 

Tony award winner Tony Ramos will be doing the costume design, and Andrew Liberman will be doing the set design, along with Brett J. Banakis. They, with others, will help bring this play to life once again. This will be the third reimagining of this play, and previews for it will begin on May 13, which is ahead of original date of June 1. It will run until July 12. Be sure to get tickets before then!

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Featured Image via The Economist

Eight Spicy Hamlet Memes

Alright, so you know we’re obsessed with SparkNotes’ twitter. Or, I am at least.  The memes are so dank. And now there’s a master list of everything they’ve posted about Hamlet, or at least a lot of it, and it’s all iconic. Here we go.

 

When Your Dad Tells You to Do Something

 

Clean my room? Murder your killer? Totally, I’ll do that right now. Just let me finish this chapter. Level. Book. I’ll TOTALLY remember the stabbing stuff after that. I’ll even clean up the blood. When I get to it. No one’s perfect, you know?

 

 

When You’re Totally Not Jealous

 

Hamlet might have been the first emo. Maybe. Certainly he was pretty early. Like, I get it man, intellectual and philosophical despair or whatever, your stepdad SUCKS, but maybe go outside. Get some sun. Maybe some soft serve. Commit a murder. Whatever works?

 

 

The Roulette Wheel of Murder Excuses

 

No, I totally didn’t kill my brother, it was, um… *turns around and furiously spins visible wheel* … a snake! Yeah. It was a snake. You know how it is. So many venomous snakes here in Denmark, it was bound to happen sometime. Totally innocent.

 

 

Ignoring the Obvious

 

Look. Your father died in a mysterious snake accident. Your uncle MARRIED YOUR MOM. That’s a yikes in any context, but it’s a super yikes here. Go and get all philosophical about it if you must, but Claudius is barely even trying to hide his misdeeds. Get to the decision, man.

 

 

Did You Ever Feel Like a Vine Could See You?

 

Look, Claudius, if you’re going to pull off a murderous coup, you’ve gotta have just like, a little tiny bit of chill. I’m not asking for a lot. This is like a vampire freaking out and running from the room every time you mention the sun. If you’re going to murder your brother, at least own it.

 

 

When the Paper is Due Tomorrow

 

Maybe just do to him whatever you did to Ophelia. Too soon? #opheliadeservedbetter Seriously though, you live with the guy. Literally just stand there and kill him when he STOPS praying. Kill him in his sleep. Do something. Honestly, Lettie, kill or do not kill, there is no try.

 

 

Absolutely No One

 

Formally. Informally. Hamlet had the emotions of a Romantic, about a hundred years too early. I feel like the romantics would have really Gotten him. (Or like, four hundred years before his time. Imagine Hamlet with a floppy fringe. I digress). Either way, he’s an emotional mess, but mostly valid. #opheliadeseRVEDBETTER

 

 

All images via Spark Notes