Monday, November 29, 2010

New Book!

Get the book the must have theatre book of the season!
Finishing the Hat

Finishing The Hat Stephen Sondheim has won seven Tonys, an Academy Award, seven Grammys, a Pulitzer Prize and the Kennedy Center Honors. His career has spanned more than half a century, his lyrics have become synonymous with musical theater and popular culture, and in Finishing the Hat-titled after perhaps his most autobiographical song, from Sunday in the Park with George-Sondheim has not only collected his lyrics for the first time, he is giving readers a rare personal look into his life as well as his remarkable productions. As seen in the New York Times Sunday Book Review

To read more about Finishing the Hat and to purchase, please visit our website:

Finishing the Hat
by Stephen Sondheim
Knopf, 2010

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Fri, Dec 3rd @ 5 P.M: Women’s Project Lab Alumni Playwrights: Reading and Book Signing (FREE) at The Drama Book Shop

Excerpts performed from Out of Time and Place, new plays hot off the press from Women’s Project lab alumni featuring work by award-winning playwrights Bekah Brunstetter, Carla Ching, Alexis Clements, Christine Evans, Charity Henson-Ballard, Lynn Rosen, Crystal Skillman, and Andrea Thome.

Julie Crosby, Producing Artistic Director of the Women’s Project, introduces the playwrights who share excerpts performed from their new, published plays. Q & A with Julie and book signing to follow.

About the Authors:

Out of Time and Place is a two-volume anthology which features plays by: Bekah Brunstetter, Carla Ching, Alexis Clements, Nadia Davids, Laura Eason, Christine Evans, Charity Henson-Ballard, Kara Manning, Lynn Rosen, Crystal Skillman, and Andrea Thome. The playwrights included in the book are as diverse in style, background and experience as they are talented. Collectively, they’ve been produced, published and received awards on four continents. Their work’s been seen on NY and regional main stages, as well as edgy downtown black boxes—if you don’t know these writers’ work yet, you soon will.

About the Book:

Out of Time & Place: An Anthology of Plays by the Women’s Project Playwrights Lab Members features a hilarious and biting introduction by Theresa Rebeck that challenges the American theatre to celebrate and produce its women playwrights, and the anthology showcases the extraordinary work of eleven of them.

In Vol 1, Lynn Rosen’s Back From The Front and Christine Evans’ Weightless both take comic approaches to shattering subjects—respectively, war and the future of a crumbling 21st century Manhattan. Crystal Skillman’s provocative The Vigil or The Guided Cradle interrogates torture across six centuries. Charity Henson-Ballard’s lyrical and sweeping The Quiver of Children and Laura Eason’s tautly focused Rewind each chart the attempt to outwit fate through artful means.

In Vol 2, Bekah Brunsetter’s Le Fou teases out the destructive dance between love and vanity. Kara Manning’s Sleeping Rough forms a blues ballad for souls displaced between lives. Alexis Clements’ Conversation cleverly interrogates the science of speech, while Nadia Davids’ At Her Feet plays out another kind of linguistic music, that of six very different Muslim women from Cape Town. Carla Ching’s TBA plays with the power of naming, and Andrea Thome’s Undone offers a polyphonic love poem to a city crowded with the living and dead.

“The plays in Out of Time & Place forcefully demonstrate the power, range, and substance of women playwrights. These are writers to know, and I trust that their work will be seen on stages and read in classrooms around the globe.”--Julie Crosby, Producing Artistic Director, Women’s Project

“It’s time to hear both sides, to hear all voices, to build a culture where stories are told by both men and women.”-- Theresa Rebeck, Award-Winning Writer (Omnium Gatherum, The Understudy, Spike Heels)

Edited by Alexis Clements with Christine Evans, the anthology also includes a preface by Megan Carter.

About the Women's Project

Women’s Project (WP) delivers compelling theater, innovative programs and electric events as the nation’s oldest and largest company dedicated to producing and promoting theater created by women. Since 1978, WP has staged over 600 mainstage productions and developmental projects, and published ten anthologies of plays by women.

Out of Time & Place: An Anthology of Plays by Members of the Women's Project Playwrights Lab, Volume 1
by Alexis Clements, Christine Evans
Paper. $25.00

Out of Time & Place: An Anthology of Plays by Members of the Women's Project Playwrights Lab, Volume 2
by Alexis Clements, Christine Evans
Paper. $25.00

Friday, November 26, 2010


In conjunction with his new book, Broadway Musicals: The Biggest Hit of the Season / The Biggest Flop of the Season-1959 to 2009

It happens every season. Broadway has one, two, or a few hit musicals, but many, many more flops. Here’s a look at the extreme cases from each season of the past half-century. The musicals that everyone knew would be hits – The Sound of Music, The Phantom of the Opera, The Producers -- and were. The tuners that sounded terrible from the moment they were announced – Via Galactica, The Civil War, Lestat -- and turned out to be even worse than anyone expected. The shows that were destined to succeed – Breakfast at Tiffany’s, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Merrily We Roll Along -- but didn’t. The ones that didn’t have a chance – Man of La Mancha, 1776, Grease -- but went on to household-name status

Yes, Broadway is the oldest established permanent non-floating crap game in New York, and Peter Filichia takes a look at 100 shows that met either the most glorious or the most ignominious fates.

PETER FILICHIA is a theater critic in print for the Star-Ledger in Newark, and on television for News 12 New Jersey.

Three times a week, he also writes Peter Filichia's Diary for, and every Tuesday writes a column for He wrote the weekly column entitled Stagestruck for Theater Week magazine for its entire nine-year run, and for three years on Playbill-on-Line. Then he wrote a daily column for for two years.

He is the author of Let's Put on a Musical, now in its third printing. His most recent book is Broadway Musicals: The Biggest Hit of the Season / The Biggest Flop of the Season: The Last 50 Years, and his next book, Broadway Musicals: The Most Valuable Players will be published in 2011.

He served four terms as president of the Drama Desk, and wrote and hosted its annual awards ceremony. For the past 13 years, he’s done the same for the Theatre World Awards.

In addition, he has written liner notes for many Broadway cast albums; is the critic-in-residence for the University of Cincinnati-Conservatory of Music; annually serves on the ASCAP Awards program; and is a Theatre Hall of Fame voter.

He can be reached at the Star-Ledger at

Broadway Musicals: The Biggest Hit and the Biggest Flop of the Season, 1959 to 2009
by Peter Filichia
Paper. $19.99

Let's Put on a Musical: How to Choose the Right Show for your Theater, Revised & Expanded Edition
by Peter Filichia
Paper. $16.95

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Closed on Thanksgiving

To all our loyal customers

The Drama Book Shop


will be closing at 3.00 P.M. on

Wed, November 24th


will be closed on

Thurs, November 25th

In observance of



We wish you a wonderful holiday



Friday, November 19, 2010

Intermission Talk: November 19, 2010

Pitmen Painters,
After the Revolution,
The Pee-wee Herman Show
...and some new Afterpieces

by Tony Vellela

Back when I was a kid [phones were always connected to a wall with a length of cord], parents either sent their pre-teen offspring to the movies, or they brought them, depending on the percentage of adult material the older folks might enjoy. Same is true with two current Broadway offerings, Elf and The Pee-wee Herman Show. But if you don’t fall into that parent category, we’ll come back to those shows in a minute.

Let’s look instead at three decidedly grown-up, even dare I say mature dramas New York has to choose from [feel free to attend all three]. Pitmen Papers by Lee Hall, Middletown and After the Revolution can help you believe that American culture is not, in fact, going to Hell in a foreign-made hand-basket.

'Pitmen' is by Lee Hall [inspired by William Feaver's book]. Hall’s creds include Billy Elliot x 2 [screenplay, as well as book and lyrics for the musical], and this drama arrived by way of London’s West End [the easiest way to make it to Broadway, it seems]. This remarkably inspirational tale follows the journey taken in the mid nineteen-thirties, by several coal miners in Newcastle [as in "coals to ..."] and a dental technician friend, who take advantage of a government-sponsored program to bring adult ed classes to the underclass. Thinking they were going to learn about economics, and therefore the reasons behind their meager subsistence wages, they enroll, only to find out that the last-minute substitute course will be in art appreciation [!]. Their original intent, they tell the multi-syllablicly inclined professor, was “to know the secret behind what’s going on.” They begrudgingly stay on, get lulled into expressing themselves through their own art, and reveal a stunning talent, one and all, for doing just that. Known as the Ashington Group, their work was exhibited, showcased, sold and studied.

As their understanding of and appreciation for art grows, criticism follows from some, who lament the lack of political commentary in most art of the day, when the world is in such a perilous state. One miner/artist brings in a print of Picasso’s ‘Guernica’ to demonstrate how a work of art can visualize the horrors of war. Others feel that art should provide a respite from the real world. Whatever their subjects, they become beneficiaries of patronage from a wealthy art collector, and soon discover the tightrope of having financial support impinge on free expression. Whatever you think of that balancing act, the messages provide plenty to reflect on, class divisions between poor artists and rich patrons being just one of them.

Class inequality is front and center in Amy Herzog’s gripping new play After the Revolution, at Playwrights Horizons. It’s 1999, and in true progressive-liberal fashion, lefties are bemoaning the shortcomings of the Clinton era, unaware of what’s ahead. This family, however, has much much higher standards for what a political regime should accomplish – they want a workers’ revolt. The life of their recently-deceased patriarch, a hero from the McCarthy Blacklist years, has inspired his granddaughter Emma [named for Goldman?], a star law student, to create a foundation in his name, to advance the causes he championed. Her father, uncle and grandmother applaud this choice. When the dead hero turns out to have a very live skeleton in his closet, all bets are off.

In a novel twist on a classic coming-of-age tale, the granddaughter finds herself at odds with her conscience, with her family and with the young man whom she employs at her foundation, and whom she has planned to partner with in life. The storyline shreds many liberal-nurtured myths about themselves, such as their belief that they oppose all forms of racism, and applies a scalpel to the analysis of the folks who questioned the body politic of the post WWII era. Like that ringing slogan from the Sixties, ‘politics is personal.’

Complementing the communal themes mouthed by the family, this ensemble cast hangs together nearly perfectly, a great opportunity to see sterling performances in service of a thoughtful, well-crafted piece. Peter Friedman’s shattered dad bristles with the pangs of thwarted expectations. Mark Blum’s peacemaker uncle strains to find hard-won common ground. And above all, Lois Smith, as the patriarch’s indignant widow clinging to the principles that bonded them to each other and to their Marxist fellow travelers, generously gives us another memorable characterization that again demonstrates why she has come to hold a place of honor among theatre-lovers.

Like any revolution, there are aspects that don’t bear out as one would hope. A secondary story line, about the other sister’s drug problems, rehab time and then her coming out, feels oh-so gratuitous. And as Emma, Katharine Powell relies on too much ‘actor-y’ behavior that tends to make her character needlessly unsympathetic and not smart enough to believe as being at the top of her law school class, a real weak point that occasionally throws off the balance between plot and performances.

Political commentary of the symbolic variety gets a pretty good showing in Middletown, by Will Eno, at the Vineyard Theater. [an aside: back in 1949, Robert Wise directed a film noir picture called 'The Set-Up,' with Robert Ryan as a washed-up boxer limping from second-rate town to second-rate town, and one of those burgs is called Middletown.] The like-named town in this Enos saga shelters inhabitants whose life stories and daily routines slowly unfold in a dispassionate style uncharacteristic for any piece trying to break new ground in the realm of the dysfunctional. They’re usually so frenetic.

Everyday folks make outrageous, hilarious pronouncements with the deadpan delivery of Stephen Wright. When newcomer John, played with engaging ordinariness by Linus Roache, encounters a couple in a park near a war memorial, their explanation for their interest is that “there’s a long history of death in both our families.” Town librarian Georgia Engel, playing the truth-teller – in – chief, sincerity personified, nods approvingly when John applies for a library card, and comments “Good for you, dear. Most people figure, why bother? I’m just going to die anyway.”

But this is not simply a clever humor-piece trading on life’s misfortunes and missed cues. Enos has a rare sense of craft, as he reshapes familiar ‘types’: the zealous small town cop, whose urge to maintain order who choke-holds a young nonconformist mechanic for failure to “be a good human”, or ‘Mary,’ a despairing, timid young wife whose neglectful husband is not helping her become pregnant. They all float through the ‘town,’ aided by David Zinn’s well-conceived set design, that includes two side-view frame houses with picture windows affording views of John and Mary as they aren’t living their fulfilling lives.

Others trying to pigeon-hole the play have used the facile tag of post-modern Our Town. This misses the point. Thornton Wilder wrote about a time and place that grew out of his half-century’s removal of time, colored by a nostalgia that described what might have been. Enos’ “Middletown” may have started in Grover’s Corners, but it arrived there by way of James Thurber. Enos allows us to discover these lives in a tale that revolves around the role of names, nouns, places and the stories they reify. Yes, these inhabitants break the fourth wall and the stage line. “Middletown” deserves a good long run somewhere, to give it a chance to become one of those little gem pieces that people return to from time to time, and recommend to friends, neighbors, co-workers and visiting relatives from out-of-town.

And if those out-of-towners have humans in tow who only learned to speak during the 21st century, they may seek your advice on where to spend their holiday bankroll, since most people are not rolling in it these days. So – back to the opening paragraph.

In short, you can take the kids to see Pee-wee. You can cut the cards to see which adult shepherds all the kids to see the Elf.

Fortunately for me, my friend John Eng, who works with pre-schoolers [he is a very patient person], accompanied me to the Pee-wee party. I knew why I liked the show. It’s funny. But John gave me the insight into why kids do, and it’s not just because it has bright colors, goofy clothes and furniture that talks. Kids like the comfort that comes from the familiar and the structured, and this show has them in the same way that a kindergarten class does – it’s PuppetLAND, there’s snack TIME, and in fact, calling anything XXXX – TIME makes it sound like a treat to kids. There’s even a word of the DAY, which happens to be ‘fun,’ and everyone is encouraged to yell and clap whenever it’s mentioned [remember Groucho's 'secret word?'].

No need to chronicle here all the bits that Paul Reubens quick-steps through. At nearly sixty, he has entered the same universe as Dick Clark, Robert Cummings, Ann-Margret and others who basically still look like they did when they were twenty-somethings. Let’s just say that many of the short sequences are built like vaudeville routines, with solid pay-offs. Comedy writing has basic rules that don’t change, as evidenced by a bit about teaching English pronunciation – it echoes the hilarious routine early Second City’s Andrea Martin perfected as an immigrant trying to speak English, with riotous results. And there are plenty of double entendres to cause a smile or a chuckle, at least. Pee-wee tells the postman, there with a delivery, that he has a cute … package. The Handyman, Pee-wee notices, is wearing new, big boots. And he notes that a guy with big boots must have … big feet. Adults who grew up with Reubens’ popular children’s show in decades past give him a tumultuous entrance applause, and do the same every time any character from that era appears. They seem like theatre queens [and kings] who would attend any performance of Carol Channing’s “Hello, Dolly!” and applaud for every single event in the show. So, in a word – it’s fun! [Yeah! Clap, clap!]

“Elf,” brought to cartoon-y life by tall, lithe, sunshine-y Sebastian Arcelus, is fun for anyone who comes up to his belly button. It starts off in the North Pole, where elf Buddy, surrounded by fellow elf helpers, done by actors who take to their knees a la “Shrek – the Musical,” learns that he is not a real elf at all. Seems he was a human baby who happened to crawl into Santa’s bag almost twenty years ago, and was brought home and raised by Mr. and Mrs. Claus. Buddy decides to head South to the place where his careless Dad lives, big bad New York City. He has adventures. He falls in love. He converts his Dad, a Scrooge-y type with a neglected wife and neglected son, into a caring guy with a liberated family. And it all happens set to a pleasant score, punctuated by TV variety show choreography. Most memorable moment – the reveal that shows Santa town. It looks like the center piece in a giant pop-up book.

This new column feature, for those non-theatre geeks, is named for the short pieces that were performed after the main play of the evening in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries on English stages.

Like the other “La [Cage]” on the Big Apple Boards, “La Bete” stars a very talented actor whose box office creds skyrocketed when “Frasier” hit the NBC airwaves. David Hyde Pierce has returned to the city that gave him his valuable stage experience at the start of his impressive career, taking on one of contempo theatre’s most daunting works. Written by David Hirson in verse, and co-starring the versatile Mark Rylance, it’s getting the best production it likely ever will. Performed without an intermission, possibly for fear of losing half the audience during a break, huge laughs alternate with labored sections often enough to make it important that you choose to attend as much for the theatrical experience as it would be for the amusement of it. Rylance’s by-now heralded stunning thirty-minute monologue is matched by Hyde Pierce’s remarkable ability, through fluid, sensitive delivery, to make the verse disappear. And if your Rylance ‘Jones’ needs more juice, he’ll be back in the spring, starring in Jez Butterworth’s play “Jerusalem,” being imported from Blighty. Natch.

What does not disappear in “Lombardi,” the play about legendary football coach Vince Lombardi, at Circle in the Square, is the disappointment in its lax story-telling. A volatile, success-obsessed man with a volcanic temper and a really loving wife, the title character is impersonated well enough by Dan Lauria. The play occurs during the events that surround the career-changing 1965 game when his beloved Green Bay Packers vied for the NFL championship. If you love, really love football and its cast of characters, know their stats, speak their language, and can interpret their actions based on your own knowledge, this is one you can cheer for. Anyone can cheer Judith Light’s empathetic portrayal of Lombardi’s emotionally short-changed wife. Anyone else? Well, have you seen “Time Stands Still” yet?

Since David Mamet’s “A Life in the Theatre” is shuttering early, no need to ponder over its highs and lows. This one is a kinda curious string of more than 25 short and shorter scenes that are best thought of as sources for acting class scene study exercises.

Speaking of Kelsey Grammer, when he leaves the Cage in early February, co-star Douglas Hodge also leaves, and book writer for the show Harvey Fierstein will don the drag as Albin. And speaking of Christmas shows, a new work by Duane Poole [book], Larry Grossman [music] and Carol Hall [lyrics] celebrates Truman Capote’s heart-warming tale “A Christmas Memory,” which was once adapted for television, with a shatteringly-real performance from Geraldine Page. The musical stars Penny Fuller, and runs December 1 – 16 at TheatreWorks at the Lucie Stern Theatre, in Palo Alto.

And finally, if it’s good news closer to home you’d like to hear, Donna Murphy will get one of those rare chances Broadway A-listers have these days to create a new role, rather than step into a revival, competing with a ghost or a memory. Roundabout Theatre Company will mount “The People in the Picture,” by Iris Rainer Dart, about a one-time Yiddish theatre actress in Poland before WWII, in the spring.

On Book
The era hashed over in “After the Revolution,” when Senator Joe McCarthy unleashed his political reign of terror, followed the social upheavals of the 1930s. The theatre’s response at that time came from actors, directors and writers who chose to address what was going on in the street, and Harold Clurman’s vivid chronicle “The Fervent Years: The Group Theatre & the 30s” brings it all to life.

And the side-splitting life of the early days of Second City, where Andrea Martin honed that foreigner speech flubber and so many other laugh gems, is captured in “The Second City Unscripted,” by Mike Thomas. From Gilda to Tina, so many comedy giants of the last four decades all started there.

TONY VELLELA wrote and produced the PBS documentary series about theatre “Character Studies.” His award-winning play “Admissions” is published by Playscripts. He has written several other plays, musicals and the Cable ACE award-winning documentary “The Test of Time.” He has taught theatre-related classes at Columbia University, HB Studio and arts centers across the country, and continues to teach small intensives and acting coach sessions privately.

The Pitmen Painters (Play)
by Lee Hall
April 2008, Faber & Faber UK
Paper, 144 pages, $19.95

Pitmen Painters: The Ashington Group
by William Feaver
Northumbria University, 2010
Paper, 176 pages, $25.00

by Will Eno
TCG, (as of 11//10: due Dec. 1, 2010, Available for Pre-order)
Paper, $13.95

Billy Elliot: Vocal Selections
Elton John and Lee Hall
Hal Leonard, 2009.
Paper, 87 pages, 16.99

Our Town
by Thornton Wilder
(Various Editions)

The Fervent Years: The Group Theatre & the 30s
by Harold Clurman
Da Capo, 1983
Paper, 352 pages, $18.00

The Second City Unscripted
by Mike Thomas
Villard, 2009
Hard Cover, 288 pages, $26.00

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Mon, Nov 22 @ 6:00 P.M: Reading, Discussion, Q&A and Book Signing with Playwright David Hirson:La Bête and Guest TBA @ The Drama Book Shop

David Hirson, author of Broadway's newest smash comedy, La Bête, will talk about his play and take questions from the audience. A member of the cast (TBA) will read. Book signing to follow. The event is FREE and open.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Mon, November 15 from 7:00pm-9:00pm: Free Master Class with Daniel Goldstein and Collaborators on the Upcoming Revival of GODSPELL

Presented by Primary Stages Einhorn School of Performing Arts (ESPA)

DANIEL GOLDSTEIN is the director of the upcoming Broadway revival of Godspell (2010/2011). Daniel and his fellow collaborators on the production will discuss the challenging and thrilling process of creating a show from the ground up.

Daniel’s recent projects include The Ride, Golden Boy (The Juilliard School) Clear (O’Neill National Musical Theater Conference), True West (Williamstown Theater Festival), Miss Margarida’s Way (Bay Street Theater, with Julie Halston), Annie (St. Louis MUNY), A New Brain at the Toho Theater in Tokyo, The Unauthorized Autobiography of Samantha Brown (Broadway Across America developmental production), Mary’s Wedding at the Two Rivers Theater, a highly praised revival of Godspell at the Papermill Playhouse, Sinan Unel’s The Cry of the Red at Huntington Theatre Company, Beau Willimon’s Lower Ninth at the Flea and SPF, the Off-Broadway commercial production of the hit Fringe Festival musical Walmartopia, Kenny Finkle’s Indoor/Outdoor at the DR2 and SPF, Falsettos and Les Liaisons Dangerouses at the Huntington, But I’m a Cheerleader at the New York Musical Theater Festival and Bathsheba Doran’s Living Room in Africa at Gloucester Stage. He has served as the Associate Director for All Shook Up! and Fully Committed, and the Resident Director for the First National Tour of Mamma Mia! As a writer, he was the recipient of an inaugural Calderwood Commission from the Huntington Theater Company, for which he is wrote an original musical with Michael Friedman called Unknown Soldier. He is a graduate of Northwestern University with a degree in Performance Studies.

Godspell is a 1970 musical by Stephen Schwartz and John-Michael Tebelak. It opened off Broadway on May 17, 1971. The structure of the musical is that of a series of parables, based on the Gospel of Matthew and interspersed with a variety of modern music set primarily to lyrics from traditional hymns, with the passion of Christ treated briefly near the end of the performance. Daniel Goldstein’s production of Godspell is set to open on Broadway in Spring of 2011.

RSVP: or (212) 840-9705

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Fri, Nov 12th 2.00 P.M: Reading, Q&A and Book Signing at The Drama Book Shop

Playwright/Screen Writer Charles Evered will read from, and discuss, his new play CLASS, which recently premiered at Cape May Stage.

Class tells the story of Elliot, a veteran acting teacher in New York City who is visited in his studio by Sarah, a mysterious young actress. In the course of their work together, they learn more about themselves than acting---and in doing so change each others lives forever.

Charles Evered's film Adopt A Sailor has won awards at film festivals around the country. He is a Navy veteran, a New Jersey resident, and a graduate of the Yale School of Drama.

"...plenty of taste and fizz...a fresh concept and dramatically intriguing." -- Peter Filichia, Star Ledger

"Replete with humor, intimacy, tragedy and hope...the characters and dialogue are compelling, refreshing and once viewed, are hard to instant classic." -- Ken Robidoux, Connotation Press

by Charles Evered
Broadway Play Publishing, 2010

Friday, November 05, 2010

POW! (Play Of The Week)

by Lila Rose Kaplan

An ex-drag queen dying of cancer. A womanizing park ranger. A girl trying to be too mature for her own good, and a mother and son on the run. With a careful hand, Lila Rose Kaplan has nurtured a story of budding and dying relationships that both warms and chills and, ultimately, grows into a bloom worthy of the title. As surprising as the swatches of orange, purple and red that swathe a countryside, Wildflower is sure to stay with you long after your initial encounter.

It is rare that a play fools you. It is rarer still when a play fools you again. And shame on me for being fooled twice. Kaplan, however, deserves no shame for her deft handling of a beautifully unexpected story. Nor does she deserve shame for the simple way in which she paints these 5 wonderfully complex characters and relationships. The sparse language and honest actions hide a subtext that goes far deeper than one originally imagines, and touches a place where warmth, humor and danger mix dangerously close.

Seemingly as straightforward as a fresh-sprouted stalk, Wildflower begins as Erica and her son Randolph seek a new life as they run from ‘a very difficult man.’ Their haven is Crested Butte, Colorado, home of the annual Wildflower Festival. It is summer, a time of youth and magic, and Erica hopes to lose her past, while Randolph, an amateur botanist, gets lost in the flora. But as always, the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.

New places mean new people mean new problems. And new problems mean either new solutions or old results. Has this all happened before? Have we seen this ending? Maybe. Maybe not. Kaplan leaves us wondering if we’re seeing a fresh bouquet or a tiresome old wreath that gets trotted out for every occasion. And the not knowing is what makes this a play that sticks with you.

Kaplan has created an immense tragedy in a small town. The characters rich. The story full. A refreshing and heartbreaking journey. A trip worth taking.

Scenes: Teens (M/F); thirty-somethings (M/F); Teen (M) and 50’s African-American ex-drag queen

Reviewed by Ben G.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Sun, Nov 7th @ 2.00 P.M: How to Build and Maintain an Acting Career in NYC with Actress and Career Coach Annie Chadwick at The Drama Book Shop

Whether you are a seasoned professional, a wide-eyed beginner or lost in the actor maze, Annie Chadwick's motivational career building workshop will give you: the vision to create your own unique theatrical career; no nonsense business strategies; innovative self-promotional techniques and the most current industry trends.

  • Have you just finished an acting training program and are ready to begin seeking work
  • Have you recently moved to NYC and need a plan to introduce your talent to the Big Apple?
  • Are you returning to acting or just starting after working in the business world?
  • Has your career stalled and you need fresh innovative tools to move to the next level?

In this 2 hour workshop, Annie will meet with you briefly before the workshop to review your picture/resume and help you target an area of concentration for the next 6 months.  In the actual workshop you will get handouts with current marketing tools and a clear, step-by-step path to evolve your acting career in NYC.

The Workshop will cover:

Marketing Tools and Strategies
Are your marketing tools a current representation of your talent?
This is one of the most important parts of building a career and introducing your talent to the industry. Learn the most current trends in effective Pictures, Resumes, Cover Letters and Postcard content, Website, Reels, Email Submissions, Industry Mailings and Personal Appearance. Get specific letter writing skills and tips to make your cover letters, postcards, follow-ups and submissions more targeted. Are emails, faxing, website promotion the way of the future?

Learn the most effective ways to introduce yourself to the industry agents, personal managers, casting directors, showcases, seminars.
Film/TV and theatre opportunities are greater than ever in NYC. Learn how a talented actor can get auditions without representation and start developing a legit career. Get information on how to self-submit and get your own Film/TV auditions from Online Casting Opportunities and Trade publications. Learn what TV/Film projects are shooting in NYC and who is doing the casting. For theatre projects you will get specific tips on how to find out six months in advance what's being produced before casting notices go out; the best ways to get auditions, target and identify the roles you are most right for; and how to see the latest NYC Off-Broadway theatre for free.

Classes, Coaches, and Resources
Training for artists never ends. Get recommendation of on-going classes and coaches that will help you get noticed in the very competitive NYC market. We'll also go on a tour of the Drama Book Shop with a list of resources that are essential to keeping-up with the latest projects and acting techniques.

For more information on Up-to-Date Theatricals and Annie Chadwick, visit:

The cost of this workshop is $50, payable on the day of the workshop. For reservations call 212-265-0260, or the Drama Book Shop at (212) 944-0595 (option 3) during regular business hours.

Annie just worked with director P.J. Hogan on the new Jerry Bruckheimer film, CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC, playing John Lithgow's wife, Mrs. Edgar West.

Workshop Reviews
"I came to Annie's workshop hoping to at least get some decent info for $50. What I came away with was not only worth the price, but much more than I had hoped for. Annie is genuine, goes out of her way to not only make you feel special, but to really give you that extra individualized attention, which is completely unexpected but absolutely appreciated. Her workshop was not only chalked full of relevant and useful information, but she added something that I did not expect to find there...hope and inspiration. What a truly fabulous workshop! I highly recommend it to anyone who is beginning their career or feeling like they are at a stalemate here in New York!"--Krista, NYC actress/singer/musician

"I took your career-building workshop yesterday. I wanted to drop you a line to say how thankful I was for your advice, attention, and for all the wonderful information you gave us. It was so awesome! I was so energized and excited after the meeting that I felt hopeful I could indeed pursue this career on a professional level. I feel like I have a clear-cut focus for how to approach the next six months and I feel awash in relief! Where to put your time, money and energy in your acting career feels so overwhelming, so it was nice to get some solid, practical advice. Thank you again."--Jennifer, NYC actress

Monday, November 01, 2010

Thurs, Nov 4 @ 6.00 P.M:The Brilliance of the American Theatre: Four Distinguished Authors at The Drama Book Shop

The American Theatre and Drama Society presents an evening with four authors—Mark Cosdon (Allegheny College), Barbara W. Grossman (Tufts University), Marc Robinson (Yale University), and David Savran (Graduate Center, City University of New York)—each of whom has written a compelling and utterly fascinating new contribution to American theatre scholarship.

The four authors examine critical players, genres and developments in the American theatre. The four books are fascinating works, eminently readable, and sure to engage any theatre lover! Mark Cosdon's new book The Hanlon Brothers: From Daredevil Acrobatics to Spectacle Pantomime, 1833 - 1931 details one of the nineteenth century's premiere troupes, acclaimed for aerial performance, slapstick comedy, and scenic spectacle. Nearly forgotten, the Hanlon Brothers' influence can be traced through the work of Keaton and Chaplin, the Marx Brothers and Three Stooges, and into the American circus. Once called "America's greatest actress," renowned for the passion and power of her performances, Clara Morris (1847-1925) has been largely forgotten. In her book A Spectacle of Suffering: Clara Morris on the American Stage, Barbara Grossman offers the first full-length study of the actress's importance as a feminist in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Marc Robinson's The American Play, 1787 - 2000 explores more than two hundred years of plays, styles, and stagings of American theater. Mapping the changing cultural landscape from the late eighteenth century to the start of the twenty-first, Robinson's book is ambitiously interdisciplinary, linking advances in theater to developments in American literature, dance, and visual art. In Highbrow/Lowdown: Theater, Jazz, and the Making of the New Middle Class, David Savran explores the twentieth century's first culture war and the forces that permanently transformed American theater into the art form we know today. Jazz affected every stratum of U.S. society and culture, including theater, confusing and challenging long-entrenched hierarchies based on class, race, and ethnicity.

The Hanlon Brothers: From Daredevil Acrobatics to Spectacle Pantomime, 1833-1931
by Mark Cosdon
Paper. $28.50

A Spectacle of Suffering: Clara Morris on the American Stage
by Barbara Wallace Grossman
Paper. $37.50

The American Play: 1787-2000
by Marc Robinson
Paper. $28.00