Tag Archives: broadway

Toni Tone Tony

So this one time, I won a Tony Award.

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(damn I look good in a tux)

Okay well technically my entire company won a Tony Award, but still, I fall under that category. Which means that I am now officially a Tony Award-winning playwright! I just, you know, didn’t win the Tony Award for playwriting; I won it for, uh, well, I guess, Web & New Media Management. WHATEVER YO I GOT A TONY.

Anyway, it was awesome. I’ve recapped the experience over on the Huntington’s blog, as well as on the Boston Herald website, so you can read about it in detail on one of those sites. But mostly I just wanted to brag for a moment. So excuse me while I go brush my shoulders off.

A Raisin In The Sun Preview

I spoke with a few of the cast members of A Raisin In The Sun about their experience working with director Liesl Tommy and what it’s like trying to find a fresh and relevant take on such a well-known classic. Fortunately for me, they had a lot of good things to say:

Previews start this Friday, March 8 at the Avenue of the Arts / BU Theatre (plus we’ve got a cool little pre-show party with cheap tickets that night if you’re interested)

(also? One of the actresses was totally in Batman Forever! Also The Abyss. But more importantly Batman Forever!)

Wow. Our Town. Wow. Okay.

I say this with no personal bias — not because my wonderful girlfriend, the producer of this fine production, has been busting her ass for 10 months to make this show as a reality, and not as an employee of the theatre company that is presenting the show.

David Cromer’s production of Our Town at the Huntington is one of the Desert Island All-Time Top 5 Most Moving Shared Communal Experiences I have ever had in my entire life.

Perhaps it’s especially poignant for me when I think of the friends that I’ve lost in recent years, but I watched the show on both Tuesday and Wednesday night, and I couldn’t stand to watch it for a third time last night for our opening because I was already so overwhelmed with emotion. Three days in a row, and I think I would be eternally reduced to a sobbing puddle of flesh lying in fetal position on the floor. Yes, this show is so good that I literally could not watch it a third time (although I will probably go back at the end of the run, and hopefully catch some things I missed the other 2 times, because there’s so much to see in the nothingness of this production, and as the play itself suggests, we can’t possibly appreciate all of it when it’s happening).

Anyway, there’s a video I made up there about the show. I cannot stress enough how powerful and poignant this production truly is. Our Town might be seen as hokey and sentimental and high school-y to many people (though oddly I grew up in Thornton Wilder’s hometown and never read or saw the show once, although I did play lots of shitty punk rock shows at Thornton Wilder Memorial Hall), but man, David Cromer just gets it, in a way that’ll just blow your mind.

(Also don’t read the review in The Boston Globe because [a] it’s douchey, [b] IT SPOILS THE END OF THE PLAY, and [c] it’s douchey. Yes, Our Town has been around a while, so there are certain spoilers that are now beyond the statute of limitations, but to spoil what makes this production so remarkable — and to spoil it in such a nonchalant manner — is awful. If this guy had reviewed The Sixth Sense when it first came out, he would have said “And then it turns out that Bruce Willis was dead the whole time which was totally brilliant and stunning — I mean, that is to say, if you’re one of those people who enjoys brilliant and stunning things or whatever. But otherwise, meh.”)

All Actors Are Robots (no but seriously)

In an effort to combine my seemingly disparate interests, I pitched an idea for a new column to my editor at Tor.com, focusing on the depiction of sci-fi and fantasy in the world of theatre. People don’t typically think of plays as being bastions for weaving elegant tales of aliens and dragons and cyborgs (oh my!), but in fact, you’d be surprised! (In theatre, we just cover up the “genre” gimmick by giving it some pretentious name like “magical realism” or “futurism” etc).

Anyway, here’s the first of such columns, exploring RUR (Rossum’s Universal Robots), a Czech play from the early 20th century that actually introduced the word “robot” to the world.

“SFF Onstage: Rossum’s Universal Robots” on Tor Dot Com

Betrayal Begins

We just started rehearsals today (well, rehearsals in Boston; there were a few preliminary days of tablework in NYC) for our upcoming production of Harold Pinter’s Betrayal, one of his most highly regarded plays. The show runs November 9 – December 9 at the Avenue of the Arts / BU Theatre, under the direction of Maria Aitken aka the mom of the director on SMASH aka the lady from A Fish Called Wanda aka fucking Maria Aitken.

Anyway, here’s a video I made of our Artistic Director Peter DuBois talking about the production:

Oh, Boston, What A Character

Here’s another video I made for the Huntington’s upcoming production of Good People by David Lindsay-Abaire (previews start this Friday!). 
Following its successful premiere on Broadway last year, Good People is one of the most produced plays in the country in the coming theatrical season — but we’re the only theatre producing this Boston-centric play in the city of Boston itself. I spoke with the director (an Acton native) and members of the cast (one of whom is from Southie, another from Watertown) about the pressures and rewards of doing this popular new play in the city in which its based.  The general consensus seems to be that the city of Boston is in fact the central character of the play, a little bit of universal anthropomorphizing that I can totally get behind (and also feels very noir to me, considering the role that LA plays in the work of Raymond Chandler, hrmmmm….)

(Also, the playwright himself gave his public approval of the piece on twitterAnd he’s got a Pulitzer. Eat that, Alyssa Milano!)

Thommy on the MBTA

The first show in our upcoming season at the Huntington is the Broadway hit Good People by South Boston native David Lindsay-Abaire. The show tells the story of a struggling middle-aged single mom in Southie who loses her job and looks up an old flame (who got out of the Southie projects and is now a doctor living in Chestnut Hill) to help her out. It’s a powerful, Boston-centric play that focuses on class issues in America in ways that are remarkably relevant to the country right now, and that frankly, aren’t actually addressed that much in American theatre.

But enough of that. Here’s a little teaser trailer I put together for the show, chronicling the physical journey from South Boston (Corner of F and Tudor, to be precise) to Chestnut Hill on the MBTA, mimicking Margie Walsh’s own journey in the second act of the play. Hear you me: it was a long ride.

(also, don’t ever call me Thommy)

Good People plays September 14 – October 14 at the Avenue of the Arts / BU Theatre. AND, if you’re under 35 (which I suspect most of you reading my website are…) tickets are only $25, and we’ve got a sweet party coming up on September 14, where your ticket also includes a live band and  free drinks after the show.

Meanwhile, at my day job…

So when I’m not in rehearsals for / plowing through re-writes on TRUE BELIEVERS, I still, of course, have my day job to deal with (which has been incredibly supportive and helpful through this entire process, so hooray for gainful employment!). While our 30th anniversary season at the Huntington is now over (and what a successful season it was!), we’re now busy gearing up for the fall and the start of our next season, which means lots of work (because it always does) but less immediate hard deadlines (which I guess is now…for now, until it’s not).

ANYWAY, here’s a video I made of our Artistic Director, Peter DuBois, discussing the first show in our 2012-2013 Season, David Lindsay-Abaire’s recent Broadway hit GOOD PEOPLE (conveniently set in good ol’ South Boston). Check it out:

Private Lives at the Huntington

Here’s my latest behind-the-scenes video for the Huntington, featuring interviews with Private Lives director Maria Aitken, and cast members James Waterston and Bianca Amato. Previews start this Friday, and the show runs through the end of June. It’s a hilarious Noël Coward comedy, kind of a posh and witty comedy of manners about marriage and divorce and other equally silly things.

God! Of! Carnage!

Here’s a new teaser trailer I put together for our upcoming production of GOD OF CARNAGE at the Huntington. The show won the Tony and Olivier Awards in New York last year for Best Comedy, and it’s definitely something worth something. It’s a quick, 70 minute romp of chaos about two couples in Brooklyn who come together after their children get in a fight on a playground. Hilarity ensues. (There’s also a film version, directed by Roman Polanski, simply called “Carnage” that’s playing at some small arthouse cinemas around the country right now) The show is directed by Danny Goldstein, who most recently directed the Godspell revival that’s currently playing on Broadway, so that’s cool, too. Previews start this Friday (when we also have our totally awesome 35 Below after party with booze and a live band and all sorts of fun stuff) and runs through February 5.

Anyway, here’s the video. Woof Woof.