May 05

Streamed Content to Prevent COVID-19 Brain: Justin, It’s May

Dear Readers,

It’s May 5. Boston was originally expected to open yesterday. According to Mass.gov.com, that date was changed to May 18. It is important that we stay at home, use a mask that covers our noses and mouths when we’re outside, keep at least three to six feet from others, and to stay at home. For the love of Patti LuPone, please stay at home!

If you are a person who is consuming content and you can afford to, DONATE. If you can’t donate now, buy a ticket/tickets when the theatres reopen.

If you can do both, DONATE now and BUY A TICKET later.* Consuming streaming content without making a donation means that our theatres might not exist when the economy reopens.

Pay artists. DONATE.

All our love from six feet away,
Kitty, Queen of the New England Theatre Geeks

*P.S. It should go without saying that if you don’t have the cash/are unemployed/are an essential worker, don’t donate.

Let us know if we missed something! Email us at blognetheatregeek@gmail.com or find us on our social media pages.
Twitter: https://twitter.com/netheatregeek
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NewEnglandTheatreGeek/

Boston Baroque — This 2015 production of Handel’s Agrippina is sexy and hits a little too close to home. The vocals are gorgeous! 

Entropy Theatre — Entropy Theatre offers Domestic Explorations, “a semiweekly series of recipes for creating meaningful experiences for yourself to have inside your home.” They just released Domestic Exploration #8. It is a delight! 

Flat Earth Theatre – Flat Earth continues A. Lehrmitt’s sci-fi radio play Fine-Tuned Universe. New chapters will stream for FREE on Saturday nights at 7pm through May 30th. Each week brings a new 20-minute chapter. Check Flat Earth’s YouTube channel if you missed the streamed reading. 

ImprovBoston — Live (Virtual) Shows this Weekend from ImprovBoston via Twitch. Some are family-friendly. Check the details for more info.

Liars & Believers — LAB has a new Zoom version of Greg Lam’s play, Interventions.

Luminarium Dance –  This week’s online performance features Luminarium’s 2012 production MYTHOS:PATHOS, originally presented at the Center for the Arts at the Armory (Somerville MA) and Arsenal Center for the Arts (Watertown MA), with a culminating sold-out performance at A.R.T.’s OBERON Theater (Cambridge MA).
Also! Luminarium Dance Company & Monkeyhouse are producing the seventh 24-Hour ChoreoFest!
Malden Choreofest
Saturday, May 9
12-6pm: Live-streamed creation period
8pm: Live-streamed performance
Links become available at https://www.luminariumdance.org/choreofest at 12pm & 8pm on May 9th.

MassOpera  – MassOpera is offering Mother’s Day Songs and Shout-outs through a  virtual event on Sunday, May 10th at 4:00 PM. Check this SITE for details. 

New Rep Theatre — New Repertory Theatre announces a call for the general public to describe their quarantine experiences for the Quarantine Creatives project. In an initiative to provide unique, engaging digital content while their doors are temporarily closed, New Rep aims to put real-life stories on the virtual stage. Submission form is HERE.

The Umbrella Arts — This week’s offering comes from Charlotte Anne Dore and Rosalita’s Puppets. “The Sea Story” is an undersea adventure tale based on Dore’s puppet characters.

Elsewhere on the Internets:
The Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center posted an “Alumni to Watch” list for Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and other platforms. The list doesn’t include links but it does include the names of the Theatre Center’s alumni and their attending years.
Playbill: Patti LuPone, John Malkovich, Dylan Baker, More to Kick Off New Online Play Reading Series
Broadway World: “Performing Arts Centers in South Korea Plan to Reopen This Week With New Guidelines,” by BWW News Desk.
May the Fourth be with You… And also with Babu.

This is freakin’ cool.

Share with Your Audience
Apr 20

Streamed Content to Prevent COVID-19 Brain Drain: Electric List-a-loo

Dearest Readers;

There is more to do here, in this list, than there is time in the day. We sincerely hope your business keeps you happy, sane, and stable.

New offerings from MassMouth, New Rep, Sparkhaven Theatre, ArtsEmerson join the ranks of consistent givers Flat Earth Theatre, The Umbrella Arts, HowlRound & Liars & Believers.

You are loved, you are necessary, you contain multitudes. We look forward to seeing you again at the theatre!

All our love from six feet away,
Kitty, Queen of the New England Theatre Geeks

Let us know if we missed something! Email us at blognetheatregeek@gmail.com or find us on our social media pages.
Twitter: https://twitter.com/netheatregeek
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NewEnglandTheatreGeek/

[Image of an embroidary hoop with stitching that reads, “wash your hands and don’t be a racist.”]

Action! by Design – Action! By Design launched Live Stream Local to connect audiences to the voices they love, virtually and to help support local artists. 6 – 7:30 P.M. on Thursdays, a local artist will enter their studio to stream music. Click the links for the lineup.
Now there’s a Sunday Open Mic Night from Rascals!

ArtsEmerson – The Together Apart series presents Sequence 8. Sequence 8 from The 7 Fingers will be available to view from April 13-27, 2020. From the ArtsEmerson website: 
“Contemporary circus arts require the utmost faith in your fellow performers. When it comes down to it, your life is quite literally in their hands. The lessons we, as the audience, learn from circus take on a new importance in light of our current circumstances; while we cannot physically hold each other, we prop each other up through zoom calls with family and friends, encouraging text messages, and sharing a common knowledge that by acting together, we help each other. We care for each other deeply, standing together by standing apart.”

Catalyze Playwriting Group – Catalyze presents Genie in the Machine: Virtual Plays on Artificial Intelligence Come and join your friendly neighborhood science and science fiction play group for some readings that have to do with artificial intelligence!
Where, you ask? *https://mit.zoom.us/j/801660241*
April 18th
THE CANTEEN by Carl Danielson
THE ORPHIDY SMORLACK VARIETY HOUR by Nathan Comstock
April 25th
DEATHS OF DESPAIR by Anna Waldman-Brown
HADALYGIRL by Zach Barryte and Drache Bowens-Ruben

Flat Earth Theatre – Coming to Facebook Live, their new radio play Fine-Tuned Universe by A. Lehrmitt will stream weekly on Saturday nights at 7 P.M. from April 25th – May 30th. Each week brings a new 20-minute chapter. 
Fine-Tuned Universe: a radio play by A. Lehrmitt. Directed by Jake Scaltreto
Saturdays, April 25th – May 30th, 7pm EST, Streaming on Facebook Live
Featuring: Juliet Bowler, Kristen Heider, James Hayward, Chris Chiampa, Melissa de Jesus and Liz Salazar. With sound design by James Rossi

Try This At Home, Episode 4:  Half a Dance Party from Bonnie Duncan on Vimeo.

Homesick Play Project and Sparkhaven Theatre present a performance of Nosferatu, The Vampyr by M Sloth Levine with original music by Alissa Voth.  HowlRound TV network at howlround.tv on Thursday 30 April 2020 at 3:30 p.m. PDT (San Francisco, UTC-7) / 5:30 p.m. CDT (Chicago, UTC-5) / 6:30 p.m. EDT (New York, UTC-4).

HOWL Shakespeare – HOWL Shakespeare presents their first livestreamed event! Over a dozen of the Boston area’s boldest young Shakespeare performers performing a Socially Distanced reading of A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM.
This reading is to raise money for Massachusetts General Hospital’s efforts to fight COVID-19. Don’t want to wait to donate? Donate to MGH here: https://tinyurl.com/HowlMSND Send us a screenshot of your donation receipt and we’ll give you a shout-out in the livestream

From Our Homes to Yours – Everything Possible – Boston Gay Men’s Chorus

(Our eyes are leaking.)

Huntington at Home  – Huntington @ Home is a series of new programs to connect with our audiences right now and includes:

Liars & Believers — More pandemic plays are on the LAB website!

MassCreative – Every Friday at 9:45AM, MassCreative will host a 15-minute COVID-19 Virtual Policy & Action Update to help you make sense of what Congress and the MA Legislature are doing to strengthen the social and economic safety net during this public health emergency. Their goal “is to keep these webinars short, sweet, and to the point.”  REGISTER

MassMouth  – “Live shows may be postponed, but this is still a good time to continue improving your storytelling skills. Join our online events, including coaching sessions, webinars and virtual classes. Learn more below HERE.” 

  • Pitch Perfect! Tuesday, April 21st. 7:30 ET.  – Each year, Stories from the Stage seeks more than 100 storytellers for our live tapings at WGBH. In this session, learn how to pitch with Cheryl Hamilton, Massmouth director and curator for Stories from the Stage. Register for free online
  • Craft your story. Tuesday, April 28th. 7:30 ET.Each story featured on Stories from the Stage is unique, but the principles behind a good piece are universal. Explore key story elements and hear about the experience of a former teller, Cecilla Viveiros. Free. Massmouth will share the World Channel registration link with the community shortly.
  • Story workshop. Sunday, May 3rd. 4:30pm ET.  – One of the best ways to improve a story is to share it with others and get their feedback. In this workshop, exchange a story with five other participants and one of Massmouth’s coaches. Hear what they love about your piece, as well as their ideas for improvement. Free. Register online.
  • Story workshop. Sunday, May 17th. 4:30pm ET.  – One of the best ways to improve a story is to share it with others and get their feedback. In this workshop, exchange a story with five other participants and one of Massmouth’s coaches. Hear what they love about your piece, as well as their ideas for improvement. Free. Register online.

Museum of Science – ArtsBoston has a super convenient list of sites to access the Museum of Science online. 

New Repertory TheatreNEW! In the Wings Artist Salon Series Presented by Artistic Director, Michael J. Bobbitt. Head over to New Rep’s Facebook page on Sundays at 2:00 for a live panel. Host Michael J. Bobbitt will be joined each week by local artists, to discuss the state of theatre post-COVID-19. This week: Boston area Playwrights  

Puppet Showplace Theater Puppetry is alive and well, and we’re here to give you as many doses of hand-crafted creativity as you need to survive this disaster. Sign up for their first Virtual Hatchery, watch an Online Performance, or Take Action to help them support puppeteers during closure. 

  • The Hatchery: Virtual Project Night/ Tuesday, April 21 | 6:30 – 8:30 pm. FREE Virtual “Drop-in” Event – Donations Welcome – Join Resident Artist Sarah Nolen for Puppet Showplace Theater’s first-ever digital Hatchery! Now, from the comfort of your home or studio, connect with fellow puppeteers and puppet-curious artists in a low-stress Zoom Room setting. Participants can share and discuss project ideas, works-in-progress, and strategies for creative resilience during a pandemic. Join for all or part of the time!
  • Isolating Together: A Virtual Toy Theater Festival/ Produced by Great Small Works
  • April 30 – Next Live Performance! – Celebrate the power of DIY theater in miniature! In early April, the amazing artists of Great Small Works gathered Toy theater practitioners from all over the world the world to share original short shows, many of which were created in response to the present circumstances. All performances are still available to watch, and a new festival is coming April 30th. Don’t have time to watch two full nights? Check out Resident Artist Sarah Nolen’s performance “Don’t Stop the Pot!” on Day 2 at 1:41:35.
  • Faye Dupras’ new children’s series, Cozy Corner (It has a catchy theme song and puppets!)

TCG/Theatre Communication GroupCARES Act NEA Funding — A final reminder: eligible organizations planning to apply for an NEA CARES Act grant should note the upcoming April 22 deadline. Be sure to review the applications guidelines as well as Frequently Asked Questions, and after reviewing all posted information if you have questions please contact Greg Reiner, Ouida Maedel or Ian-Julian Williams

The Umbrella Stage Company is now accepting video audition submissions for its 2020-2021 Season. For more information and instruction, click on the links below.

NH Theatre Project – NH Theatre Project now offers online classes and programs!

More:

Passim Keep Your Distance Fest https://www.passim.org/pearfund/

List Art Museum https://listart.mit.edu/museum-at-home-march-public-art-highlights

MIT’s Full STEAM Ahead https://fullsteam.mit.edu/

Celebrity Series of Boston https://www.celebrityseries.org/athome/ – Check the site for special messages! 

Share with Your Audience
Mar 23

Streamed Content to Prevent COVID-19 Brain Drain: A March 2020 List

Dearest Readers; 

Like you, we at the New England Theatre Geek are starting to go stir-crazy during these times of social distancing #COVFEFE19. Below is a small collection of links to streaming content, classes, and performances to occupy your days.

We wish you all the best! Please wash your damn hands, get enough exercize, Zoom your friends, and stay home as much as you can.  

Let us know if we missed something! Email us at blognetheatregeek@gmail.com or find us on our social media pages.
Twitter: https://twitter.com/netheatregeek
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NewEnglandTheatreGeek/

All our love from six feet away,
Kitty, Queen of the New England Theatre Geeks

The List

Apollinaire Theatre – Last week Apollinaire graciously hosted readings via Zoom. The scripts are still up on their main page. 

Boston Center for the Arts (BCA) – The FeministFuturist exhibit is now online. Performances have been suspended. They have a page FULL ofOVID-19 relief opportunities for all artists. Please check it out… But first, FeministFuture! 

The Brattle Theater – The Brattle is streaming their Boston Women’s Film Festival on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Broadway World – BWW has multiple pages devoted to online content to download or stream. Happy hunting: Classical; Broken Records; Musicals Online; What’s Streaming Today?; So much more.

CompanyOne – C1 is running an online auction. Alas, the JAM in cancelled. 

Company Theatre – online classes – https://www.companytheatre.com/online-classes/

Cloud Cafe – Tune into Cloud Cafe tonight at 6 p.m.! Each night of this performance series will be curated by a different Boston based artist–all of whom have been forced to cancel gigs and tours to protect the community from COVID-19. Each curator will hand-pick members of their community who have been directly impacted by the pandemic to build creative performances that bring people together to heal and find joy.

Flat Earth Theatre Company – The radio play Lovecraft’s Unnamable Tales is free to listen to on YouTube and SoundCloud. We know the unknown is terrifying, but you can at least experience the indescribable virtually, from the comfort of your own attic laboratory full of unheard-of monsters.

HowlRound Events – HowlRound is streaming their events. Please check their site for more info. 

John J King is hosting Johnny Cakes a weekday dance break at 12:45PM ETD. 

Penobscot Theatre Company – PTC will livestream its production of Safety Net through March 29. It runs 90 minutes with no intermission. The playbill is available online. Tickets may be purchased HERE.

Playbill – Playbill has a Daily Distraction page.

Metropolitan Opera – Daily streaming of opera for all – If you can beat the rush and the site doesn’t crash from the opera fervor! 

MIT Arts – MIT is posting home concerts to its Facebook and Twitter account:s starting on March 20. Please check these links: Facebook ad Twitter. Free to watch and listen!

This New York Times article has oodles of opportunities in it: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/17/theater/theater-streaming.html

Wilbury Theatre Group –  Thanks to a new collaboration with GoLocalProv, the Wilbury Theatre Group is streaming classes, performances and events on their Facebook and YouTube pages. Their calendar is HERE

Young Jean Lee – Playwright Young Jean Lee has posted her 2011 performance of We’re Gonna Die and playwright class on Twitter. 

The New England Theatre Geek will post events, performances and classes as they appear on its Facebook and Twitter pages. Please let me know if we’re missing out by emailing us at blognetheatregeek@gmail.com.  
Twitter: https://twitter.com/netheatregeek
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NewEnglandTheatreGeek/

Share with Your Audience
Jun 18

Darkness Eats Unwanted Souls, or The Homeless are Human: “King of Shadows”

Trinidad Ramkissoon and Laura Chowenhill in “King of Shadows.” Photo via Flat Earth’s Facebook page.

Presented by Flat Earth Theatre
By Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa
Directed by Michael Hisamoto
Puppetry by Amy Lehrmitt
Intimacy direction by Betsy S. Goldman

June 7 – 22, 2019
Mosesian Center for the Arts
Watertown, MA
Flat Earth on Facebook

Critique by Kitty Drexel

Disclaimer: I auditioned for this production, and was not cast. It is my opinion that only a jackass would allow rejection, a natural process of auditioning, to taint their review.

Trigger warnings: mentioned sexual abuse, mentioned sex work (which is real work)

(Watertown, MA) There is a lot of ambiguity in Aguirre-Sacasa’s King of Shadows. He doesn’t communicate a clear message to his audience.  Specifically, he doesn’t clarify what it is he’s trying to say. At no fault of Flat Earth, Hisamoto or the cast, Aguirre-Sacasa implies in only uncertain terms that teen homelessness is bad, rich grad students with savior complexes are ineffective, and fairytales are fun. The details are a mishmash of complications. Flat Earth does a good job with the script, but Aguirre-Sacasa isn’t doing them any favors. Continue reading

Share with Your Audience
Mar 26

“Not Medea”: Scorned Woman Gets Her Say

Photo by Jake Scaltreto. Who is their right mind double-crosses a half goddess, dark sorceress capable of patricide on a whim? That idiot, Jason.

Presented by Flat Earth Theatre
Written by Allison Gregory
Directed by Elizabeth Yvette Ramirez

March 15 – 30, 2019
The Mosesian Center for the Arts
321 Arsenal Street
Watertown, MA
Flat Earth Theatre on Facebook

Critique by Gillian Daniels

(Watertown, MA)  The myth of Medea is a story of betrayal and fury, where Jason of the Argonauts takes a sorceress wife for material gain and is deeply surprised when she takes her vengeance out on him and their children. Here, the myth of a child-killing witch fits roughly over a more contemporary story of an overworked nurse in pediatric oncology as she takes a night for herself to recount a bitter divorce with humor and then with searing rage. In mainstream culture, the Classical myth of Medea has become known as the story of a mother so cartoonishly evil, it’s difficult to feel the full impact of the horror her narrative contains without exploring each bloody layer. Luckily, the audience of Not Medea has been blessed with both the intimacy of a stripped-down theater experience and the raw passion of actress Juliet Bowler as the titular-woman-who-is-not-Medea-though-she-also-plays-Medea.

Not Medea appears to be a combination of genres, a one-woman show fused with a Classical play, complete with Chorus (Cassandra Meyer). There’s a late reveal that further opens the story into discomfort and parental Hell, but the melodrama keeps the bones of a Greek tragedy by centering a character’s terrible trauma and the wisdom she gains from it. Bowler as the Woman and director Elizabeth Yvette Ramirez make remarkable choices in humanizing a character who’s not a clear-cut heroine.

Bowler, as always, brings grit to her role, and, here, sympathy. She plays Medea and the Woman with the same tumult of anger, lust, and hurt, even if their actions aren’t quite identical. We get the sense of this stressed, tough as nails nurse seeing this play and hating how much she sees herself in it. Certainly, as an audience, we are asked to judge each character presented in the show, like Gene Dante as the heroic Jason with a selfish surfer dude’s dimwitted edge, but we are never made to regard them with the inhumanity and scorn that so many versions of Medea heap on these characters.

I like how brave the play is in addressing the fallibility of mothers. It’s something I’ve been delighted to see in few other shows where women who have children are not portrayed as goddesses or people always able to see the best in their kids, but fallible individuals with their own sources of pain. Yes, facing the imperfection of mothers can be a tough sit, but the way this show explores all the troubles and regrets of motherhood is deeply refreshing.

Even the Chorus seems to have some internal struggles regarding her relationship to the story. Meyer repeatedly nears the end of the stage with fear, unable to leave. She also, memorably, seems furious with the Woman for addressing the audience directly–obviously the Chorus’s job, and a delicious meta moment in the narrative.

Not everything works for me. Playwright Allison Gregory’s makes some distracting choices. The sections of the play that more strictly adhere to the source material often become repetitive, jarring with the contemporary ebb and flow of Not Medea’s other, less Classical scenes. I think there are story elements in the show that would have packed a firmer punch with some careful editing. Also, I found Gregory’s choice in names for the Woman’s offspring just a little too on-the-nose.

Ultimately, the play succeeds in what it seems to set out to do: exploring the layers of a Classical myth with understanding and thought. Like the queen goddess Hera angry at her husband for his many dalliances or the punishment Aphrodite earns for not being loyal to a husband she was made to marry in the first place, popular Greco-Roman mythology has been filtered through a lens that dismisses female anger. Not Medea leans into that fury and, like many Greek tragedies, comes out the other side wiser for it.


Share with Your Audience
Oct 09

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Uranium: “Delicate Particle Logic”

Photos by Jake Scaltreto; Christine Power as Lise Meitner, Barbara Douglass as Edith Hahn. Blanket babies are the easiest babies.

Presented by Flat Earth Theatre Company
By Jennifer Blackmer
Directed by Betsy S. Goldman
Dramaturgy by Regine Vital  
Violence choreography by Cassie Chapados  
Dance choreography by Meghan Hornblower  
Language consultation by Allison Olivia Choat  
Artistic ASL direction by Elbert Joseph

September 28th – October 13th, 2018
ASL-Interpreted Performance: October 13th at 8pm
The Mosesian Center for the Arts
321 Arsenal Street
Watertown, MA
Flat Earth on Facebook

Trigger warning: One character is willingly committed to an asylum, misandry

Critique by Kitty Drexel

“Science and art both relentlessly pursue truth and meaning. In the past, scientific and medical procedures were performed in front of witnesses, audiences, if you will, who were able to verify the truth of what took place. For me, science and art were never at odds, and part of my overall goal as an artist is to get audiences to understand that. We still think of science and art as two separate cultures, but they’re more alike than most people realize.”

  • Flat Earth Theatre interview with Jennifer Blackmer

(Watertown, MA) Jennifer Blackmer crams a lot into two hours of theatre. Delicate Particle Logic (DPL) tells the story of how Otto Hahn stole nuclear fission from Lise Meitner. He committed war crimes for the Nazis in the name of “chemistry,” and claimed the Nobel Prize in 1944… Wait, I’m getting ahead of myself. DPL is about Otto Hahn’s work-wife, Meitner, his home-wife, Edith Junghans Hahn, and their imaginary friendship. Edith and Meitner’s performance of emotional and physical labor on behalf of a man holding more respect for his work than for his partners. Between the science and the toxic masculinity, there is art: glorious, painful, epiphanic art. Continue reading

Share with Your Audience
Mar 26

ANTIGONE: Death at the Parthenon


Presented by Flat Earth Theatre
Original Tragedy by Sophocles
Adapted by Lewis Galantiere from the play by Jean Anouilh
Directed by Lindsay Eagle

ONE WEEK LEFT: March 26th @ 7:30pm; March 29th @ 8pm; March 30th @ 8pm; March 31st @ 8pm
The Black Box at the Mosesian Center for the Arts, 321 Arsenal St., Watertown, Massachusetts 02472
From the MBTA — take the Red Line to Central Square in Cambridge; then take the 70 or the 70A bus.
Flat Earth on Facebook

Review by Bishop C. Knight

(Watertown, MA) I could provide an enthusiastic review for every aspect of this play.  I will start with a nod to costuming. Continue reading

Share with Your Audience
Oct 10

“A Bright Room Called Day”: an ambitious call for resistance

Photo by Jake Scaltreto; Prologue: Evening Meal in a Windstorm — with Lindsay Eagle, Juliet Bowler, Noah Simes and Isaiah Max Plovnick.

Produced by Flat Earth Theatre
Written by Tony Kushner
Directed by Dori. A Robinson

September 30-October 14, 2017
The Black Box at the Mosesian Center for the Arts
Watertown, MA
Flat Earth on Facebook

Review by Polly Goss

(Watertown, MA) A Bright Room Called Day transports us back to a sitting room in 1930s Germany, inhabited my minor actors, eccentric filmmakers and artists. This bohemian gaggle of comrades band together in the early 1930s through their love of Communism, Art and Revolution. As 1933 marches on, the world around them darkens and the sitting room becomes their last refuge from Hitler’s rule. Continue reading

Share with Your Audience