Here we are: July, 2020.
Three-and-a-half months after everything changed. More severely than the previous time that everything changed.
For a while in late May and early June, as our state started reopening, it felt like performances at non-Equity indoor theaters might be coming back (although for Equity theaters, we've known it will still be awhile) — and indeed, some were. But because too many Texans wanted to go get their nails done and eat onion blossoms inside reduced-capacity restaurants, without wearing face masks covering their mouths and nostrils, we're back at a near-shutdown. And Texas isn't the only state.
For theater, dance, classical music, opera and comedy organizations and venues, this is devastating. In the city of Dallas alone, more than $30 million has been lost so far.
Especially vulnerable are performances in which singing or wind instruments are involved, because droplets travel farther in both cases. Productions of musicals and opera, and wind bands and orchestras will have to take extra precautions. And there's no telling when it'll be safe for large choirs and chorales to perform safely.
Among the arts organizations we won't get to see live in a theater or music hall until December, at the earliest, are Texas Ballet Theater, Turtle Creek Chorale, and the Women's Chorus of Dallas. Some organizations won't have full productions again until 2021, including The Dallas Opera, The Cliburn, Hip Pocket Theatre, and Artisan Center Theater. Expect that list to grow as more organizations weigh the options and replan their 2020-21 seasons.
However, artists will always find a way to make art.
In DFW, July brings plenty of nontraditional performances to look forward to: online and streaming shows, Zoom events, and socially distanced outdoor and drive-in productions. In scouring for options, we found more than 30 happenings just from local groups. At the end of this round-up, there are some suggestions for streamable performances and other innovations — a personal telephone opera, anyone? — from groups around the country and world.
Local options include Amphibian Stage returning to a past title, this time presented as an online "immersive listening experience" (see trailer above), Cry Havoc Theater Company turning an original production into a radio play, Dallas Black Dance Theatre showcasing works from its repertoire via Zoom, WaterTower creating a filmed production of Doug Wright's I Am My Own Wife, socially distanced outdoors productions from the Fort Worth Community Arts Center and The Classics Theatre Project, and online chamber music festivals from Mimir Chamber Music Festival and Fine Arts Chamber Players.
The local options are listed chronologically, beginning with shows that have already started. This list doesn't include online classes, camps, training or lectures/conversations (look for another story about those offerings).
Note that the types of performance presentations are color-coated, and they all come with Covid-19 for audiences and/or the performers:
- RED for live/indoors
- BLUE for online
- GREEN for live/outdoors
- ORANGE for drive-in arts experiences
If we missed your group/performance, email Mark Lowry at email@example.com and he'll add it. There might also be some changes to the existing list, and we'll note those as needed.
PLACES! JULY 2020
Smile, Smile Again
Ochre House Theater | Dallas | Streaming Indefinitely
The Ochre House, which only produces original work written by their in-house playwrights, is streaming several of its productions on its YouTube channel. The most recently added is the 2017 production of Smile, Smile Again. You can also catch the 2019 collaboration with the Dallas Flamenco Festival, La Muerte de Don Quioxte, and the 2015 production of The Egg Salesman.
How I Got Over
Jubilee Theatre | Fort Worth | Through July 19
This musical about gospel legend Mahalia Jackson has been performed in the theater for three weekends, with COVID-19 protocols in place; but due to the spike in cases in Texas, the production is now only available for online streaming.
Everything Will Be Fine
OUTDOORS DRIVE-IN PERFORMANCE
Prism Movement Theater | Latino Cultural Center & Pleasant Oak Park | Dallas | Through July 25
A drive-in movement-theater experience, the 45-minute play opened the last weekend in June in the parking lot of the Latino Cultural Center, where it repeats July 10-11 (there are no performances July 3-4). It then moves to Pleasant Oak Park in Pleasant Grove for Friday and Saturday nights, July 17-25.
Read our interview with director/choreographer Kwame David Lilly.
Summer Chamber Music
Dallas Symphony Orchestra | Through Aug. 15
The Dallas Symphony has been doing chamber concerts with the musicians socially distanced (they also rehearsed that way) at the Meyerson Symphony Center, with no audiences permitted. You can watch the performances for free on the DSO website. The current one features Mozart's Serenade in C minor, K. 388 for wind octet; Walker's Lyric for Strings; Ravel's Introduction & Allegro for harp, flute, clarinet and string quartet; and Brahms' Quintet in G Major, op. 111 for two violins, two violas and cello.
Cliburn at Home
The Cliburn | Fort Worth | Through Aug. 13
The Cliburn has several free online events that will continue throughout 2020. In July, look for Cliburn Kids happenings on Tuesdays (July 7, 14, 21 & 28); and Cliburn Watch Parties on Thursdays featuring pianists who have performed for the organization, or competed in its various piano competitions. Below is a list of upcoming shows, streamable on the Cliburn website.
- 1 p.m. July 9: 2015 Junior Competition Winners Recital Showcase with Alim Beisembayev (1st), Arsenii Mun (2nd), Youlan Ji (3rd)
- 1 p.m. July 16: Claire Huangci
- 8 p.m. July 23: 2019 Junior Competition Winners Recital Showcase with Shuan Hern Lee (1st), Eva Gevorgyan (2nd), JiWon Yang (3rd)
- 8 p.m. July 30: Tony Yike Yang (2017 Cliburn Competition)
Improvisation and Sketch Comedy
While stand-up comedy is happening in some clubs, improvisation is, like theater, problematic because of the proximity of the performers to each other. One of DFW's longest running troupes, Four Day Weekend, has closed its Fort Worth and Dallas locations until further notice. Meanwhile, Dallas Comedy House and Stomping Ground Comedy Theater are offering online classes as well as performances. You can learn about them at the links below:
LIVE INDOORS PERFORMANCE
The four major stand-up clubs in DFW are open with COVID-19 protocols in place and reduced seating. Some of the acts coming to these venues this month include Bryan Callen, Adam Carolla, DeRay Davis, Majah Hype, Nick Guerra and more. View the calendars at the links below:
TELEVISED AND ONLINE PERFORMANCE
Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra | Dickie's Arena | 9 p.m. Saturday, July 4
The Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra is hosting a special July 4th concert at the new Dickies Arena in Fort Worth. This performance will include guest artists from the Fort Worth Opera, The Cliburn, and Texas Ballet Theater, with a special appearance by Broadway star baritone and Fort Worth favorite Major Attaway. The concert was broadcast by WFAA on Channel 8 at 9 p.m. on July 4, and will be available to watch on the FWSO’s website for two weeks following the event.
OUTDOORS DRIVE-IN FILM & PERFORMANCE
Brizo Bar | Richardson | 7:30 p.m. Saturday nights
Reid and Julie Robinson's Brizo Bar is temporarily closed, but their CarBaret Drive-In continues in the parking lot behind the bar. They show retro films each weekend, often with a live parking-lot performance before the film. Best part is you stay in your car with your radio tuned to an FM station for the broadcast, and the waiters come to your window for service (they're masked, and you should too for that interaction). Past performances have included Very Good Dance Theatre and burlesque queen Vivienne Vermouth. The July 11 event is a David Bowie tribute with the music acts Thin White Dukes and Confetti Eddie opening, and then the 1986 film Labyrinth.
TBAAL Shelter-In-Place Concert Series
The Black Academy of Arts and Letters | Dallas | 5 p.m. Sundays, July 5, 12 & 19
The Black Academy streams concerts from its archives on its Facebook page, at 5 p.m. Sundays. On July 5, the concert features Fantasia Burrino, the Andrew Brothers, Judy Tucker, and the TBAAL 150-voice choir.
Mimir Chamber Music Festival
Mimir Chamber Music Festival | Fort Worth | July 5-11
Mimir Chamber Music Festival presents its 23rd anniversary festival online, with performances from Los Angeles, New York City, Leipzig, Germany, and Melbourne, Australia.
Mimir's 2020 season features our renowned Festival artists along with special performances by Mimir "alumni," who are now enjoying marvelous careers as professional musicians. Continuing Mimir's tradition as a teaching festival for up-and-coming musicians, three pre-formed chamber ensembles will receive online coaching leading up to the festival, and then perform an online concert.
Mimir kicks off with a special Pre-Concert Chat on July 5 at 5:30 p.m., followed by concerts at 7:30 p.m. on July 7, 9 and 11. The Emerging Artists concert will be July 10 at 7:30 p.m. Please check the Mimir website for updates and online concert links at the end of June.
It's all free!
The Dallas Opera Sunday Recitals & TDO Network
The Dallas Opera | Dallas | Sundays
All of the Dallas Opera's YouTube Sunday Recitals are available via its website and on the organization's YouTube page.
Amy Stevenson | Irving | Monday nights
Stevenson, known as "Mama," has taken her weekly cabaret online, via Facebook Live on her page. On July 6, the guests are Austinites Leslie McDonel and Shannon Pinkston, and Dallas singers Carwell Carlwell Redmon, Isaiah Christopher-Lord Harris, and Walter Lee.
Open Classical at Home
Open Classical DFW | Dallas | 7 p.m. Tuesdays
North Texas classical music open mike series is still going, albeit online for now. You can sign up to play an instrument or sing a song from the classical music, opera, or musical theater canons.
A Little Princess + Macbeth
Outcry Youth Theatre | Addison | July 1-26
Outcry Youth Theatre streams its productions of A Little Princess (July 1-19) and Macbeth (July 7-26).
Texas Radio Trio & Caftan
Undermain Theatre | Dallas | July 8-Aug. 19
Undermain offers several streaming concerts this summer. First is Texas Radio Trio, July 8-28, featuring Bruce DuBose, Rob Menzel, and Paul Semrad. July 29-Aug. 19 is Caftan, featuring Cory Kosel, Jake Nice, and Braden Socia. In August the concerts feature the musicians of Open Classical DFW.
She Kills Monsters
Ohlook Performing Arts Center | Grapevine | July 10-12
Ohlook lost its space in Grapevine after the shutdowns, and moved its operations online, with classes and more. Their first online production, of Qui Nguyen's She Kills Monsters, runs July 10-12. The play tells the story of Agnes Evans as she leaves her childhood home in Ohio following the death of her teenage sister, Tilly. When Agnes finds Tilly’s Dungeons & Dragons notebook, however, she stumbles into a journey of discovery and action-packed adventure in the imaginary world that was Tilly’s refuge.
The Zoo Story
LIVE OUTDOORS PERFORMANCE
Fort Worth Community Arts Center | Fort Worth | July 10-25 (7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays)
The Arts Center presents Edward Albee’s first play, an absurdist, one-act play that examines themes of isolation and the never-ending struggle to communicate and connect. Audiences will enjoy pre-show live music and shaded seating on the covered veranda of the Arts Center. This novel venue choice not only suits Edward Albee’s play, but it also allows the Arts Council to provide a safe environment for enjoying live theater while providing space for physical distancing. Tickets are limited for each performance.
Virtual Dance Party
B. Moore Dance | Dallas | 9 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Saturday, July 11
This one-day event will feature master classes, interactive activities, tutorials, raffles, live streaming and a live auction for all to enjoy! Please feel free to join the company and special guest artists, via Zoom, Instagram and Facebook Live. From the comfort of your home and personal space, come and be immersed in this Diverse Communal Art Forum!
LIVE OUTDOORS PERFORMANCE
The Classics Theatre Project | Margo Jones Theatre | Dallas | July 11-19
The Classics Theatre Project presents SMU alum James McLure's play set in the backyard of a small-town Texas bar. The works' companion play, Laundry & Bourbon, will not be performed. Seating keeps social distancing in mind.
Big & Bright
Lone Star Circus | Dallas | July 11-12
Lone Star Cirus presents an online, 45-minute performance via Facebook Live, IGTV (Instagram Live), and YouTube. It is free but donations are encouraged. Liz Mikel is the host, and performers include fire dancers, a dog whisperer, juggler, clowns, contortionists, hula hoops, and aerial silks, plus diva Ryan Matthieu Smith.
Basically Beethoven Festival-in-Place
Fine Arts Chamber Players | Dallas | 2:30 p.m. Sundays, July 12-26
Fine Arts Chamber Players moves its annual summer festival online. Every program includes a Rising Star Recital and a Feature Performance at 3 p.m. The concerts are streamed on the group's YouTube channel.
- July 12: Bach to Beethoven: Rising Star Regina Lin, piano, performs works by Joseph Haydn, Beethoven’s teacher; and Franz Liszt, a composer who felt Beethoven paved the way for future musicians. For the Feature Performance, cellists Andrés Díaz (SMU Professor of Cello) and Joseph Kuipers with Karen Abrahamson-Thomas (Waco Symphony Principal Harp) move from the Baroque to Beethoven’s era through the works of Bach, Boccherini, Maria Theresia von Paradis, and Paganini.
- July 19: Beethoven, Basically: For the Rising Star Recital, violinist Nikki Nagavi will be joined by pianist Kyle Orth for Beethoven’s sublime “Spring” sonata, op. 24. Then, featured artists Lucas Aleman (Dallas Symphony violin), Theodore Harvey (DSO Associate Principal Cello), and Festival Director Alex McDonald, piano, will present the “Archduke” trio, op. 97. The concert concludes with Aleman and Harvey joining Grace Kang Wollett (Dallas Opera violin) and Rachel Li McDonald, viola, to perform the sublime middle movement of quartet op. 132, Heiliger Dankgesang (“Holy Song of Thanksgiving for recovery from a recent illness”).
- July 26: Beethoven and Beyond!: Rising Stars Bryan Han, cello, and Ashley Tauhert, piano, present the final two movements of Rachmaninoff’s cello sonata; then, Shields-Collins Bray (Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra Principal Keyboard), Swang Lin (FWSO Associate Concertmaster), and mezzo-soprano Virginia Dupuy (SMU Professor of Voice) present works by Beethoven, Brahms, Mahler, and Ives.
Teatro Dallas | Dallas | 10:30 a.m. Monday, July 13
Activate your senses, emotions and imagination with music, clowning techniques, marionettes, magical characters and even some history. This program will be online via the Dallas Public Library. It's free but registration is required for interaction.
Dallas Black Dance Theatre | Dallas | 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 10
Dallas Black Dance Theatre does online performances of works from its repertoire: Jamal Story's What To Say? Notes on Echo and Narcissus; Asadata Dafora's Awassa Astridge/Ostrich; and Christopher L. Huggins' Essence.
Hershey Felder: Beethoven, From Florence
Dallas Summer Musicals | 7 p.m. July 12
Following the success of Hershey Felder as Irving Berlin: Live from Florence, a live streaming event in May from Felder’s residence in Florence, Italy, which raised significant funds for 13 U.S. theaters and arts organizations, actor, playwright and pianist Hershey Felder has created a new arts broadcasting company, Hershey Felder Presents – Live from Florence. The collaboration unites Felder with Florentine cinema group Montagni Audiovisivi, the internationally recognized English language magazine The Florentine, and American broadcaster Rich Flier, to produce high quality streaming arts programming for international audiences, both for the period while theaters remain closed during the Covid-19 pandemic, and beyond.
This new arts broadcasting company will next present Hershey Felder: Beethoven. The live streaming event features the music of Ludwig van Beethoven, text by Felder, and is based on the original play directed by Joel Zwick. It will stream at 7 p.m. on Sunday, July 12, 2020. As with Hershey Felder as Irving Berlin, this production will benefit national U.S. theaters and arts organizations. Felder will also donate a portion of the proceeds to the Penumbra Theater Company in St. Paul, MN, to support the work of Black theater artists.
Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground
Cry Havoc Theater Company | Dallas | July 13-19
The teens of Cry Havoc, in collaboration with writer/director Ruben Carrazana, have created this work as an audio play that will stream online. The concept: Two golden phonograph records containing images and audio from Earth were launched into space in 1977 in the hopes that they may one day reach extraterrestrial life. It was a message in a bottle sent off into the cosmos. In the year 4040, one of the Voyager Golden Records reaches a dying planet, and its inhabitants head out to find where it came from: Earth. What will our planet look like in 2000 years? And if all that survived of our modern civilization were a handful of songs and photos stored on a golden record, what would someone make of how we lived, and of what we considered to be most important? What will be our legacy?
Miss Nelson Has a Field Day
Dallas Children's Theater | July 15-Aug. 1
DCT filmed its 2019-2020 touring show, and you can view currently view it. It's another entry in the Miss Nelson series. In this one, the Horace B. Smedley Tornadoes try for a win because they've never even scored a single point! With an unfocused team that won't change their attitudes, Coach Armstrong goes crazy. So, Miss Nelson, the school's favorite teacher, calls in a trusted, but highly feared reinforcement in this zany musical spectacular. The bold and intimidating Coach Viola Swamp whips the Tornadoes into shape just in time for the big rivalry game. Ready. Set. Hut!
I Am My Own Wife
WaterTower Theatre | Addison | July 16-Aug. 2
Dallas native Doug Wright's one-actor play, directed by Ashley Puckett Gonzales and starring Bob Hess, was rehearsed, performed and filmed using social distancing protocols. The play is based on the true story of Charlotte von Mahlsdorf, an elegant and eccentric 65-year old German transgender woman who, against all odds, managed to survive both the Nazi onslaught of WWII and the repressive East German Communist regime occupations of her home. Inspired by in-person interviews with Charlotte von Mahlsdorf conducted by the playwright over several years, the actor plays more than 30 characters in von Mahlsdor's life. The Broadway production won the Tony Awards for Best Play and Best Actor in a Play for Jefferson Mays.
The True History of the Tragic Life & Triumphant Death of Julia Pastrana, the Ugliest Woman in the World
Amphibian Stage | Fort Worth | July 16-30
Amphibian Stage has produced this Shaun Prendergast play twice, in 2003 and in 2012 as the first play to open its current home. The latter move was genius because — why not show of your new black box theater space with a play performed in complete darkness? That also makes it perfect for an online audio experience, which is what they're doing as the theater has had to cancel productions in its 2020 season. Ticket buyers will have 48 hours to view/hear the show after ticket purchase. The play concerns the title character, a real-life Mexican woman born with hair covering her entire body who was exhibited as a circus sideshow act across Europe in the 19th century. ASP artistic director Kathleen Anderson's sister, New York-based artist Laura Anderson Barbata, fought to have Pastrana's remains repatriated from Oslo, Norway, to her home in Sinaloa, Mexico, which happened in 2013. Barbata later performed a one-woman show about that process, and you can read our review here. This online experience, which in 2012 TheaterJones called "must-feel theater," is one of our most anticipated arts experiences since the pandemic began. The cast, which recorded the play using socially distant booths in the theater, features Hannah Martinez, JR Bradford, Jovane Caamaño, Felicia Bertch and Mitchell Stephens. Phibs co-founder Jonathan Fielding, now based in Cape Cod and with several Broadway credits (The Play That Goes Wrong), directs.
An Act of God
Mainstage Irving-Las Colinas | Irving Arts Center | Irving | July 23-Aug. 1
On July 16, it was announced that this production would be streamed for online viewing (it was originally going to be a live event at the theater). This David Javerbaum comedy has its Dallas County debut, with the cast and crew having staged it, with social distancing in mind, to be filmed. Sherry Eitzel plays the title character, a role that was originated in New York by Jim Parsons. She's joined by Eric J. Criner and Alex Swanson. Jake Blakeman directs.
a farm for meme
Cara Mía Theatre Company | Dallas | 7:30 p.m. Thursday July 30
The first happening for Virginia Grise as Cara Mía's newly announced playwright-in-residence is a Zoom performance of this play about a 114-acre farm built after the 1994 L.A. Rebellion. The performance is co-presented with Allgo, a Texas-wide organization for queer people of color, and Innovations in Socially Distant Performance at Princeton University.
Online, streaming and other performances, and a few podcast recommentations from national and international organizations. Have a suggestion? Email Mark Lowry at firstname.lastname@example.org.
PERFORMING ARTS ON TV
Performing Arts Streaming Apps
There's much more than Hamilton on Disney+. These apps are dedicated to the performing arts:
- BroadwayHD: Offers more than Broadway productions, and is focused on theater (with some other performing arts): $8.99/month or $99.99/year, after free seven-day trial
- MarqueeTV: Opera, music, dance and theater productions from around the world, including Royal Shakespeare Company, Bolshoi Ballet and the Royal Opera: $8.99/month or $99.99/year after free 14-day trial
- Metrpolitan Opera On Demand: Productions from the Met's archives: $14.99/month or $149.99/year after free seven-day trial
- Great Performances on PBS: The PBS app is free to download, but keep in mind that to access some of the Great Performances archival shows, you might have to become a member through your local PBS TV station. WHICH YOU SHOULD BE DOING ANYWAY. In the current season of GP you can watch Anna Deavere Smith's original performance in Twilight: Los Angeles, about the Rodney King riots; Holland Taylor as Ann Richards in Ann; and Gloria: A Life, about feminist icon Gloria Steinem starring Christine Lahti.
- Medici.TV: An app for classical music, with streaming concerts from around the world daily.
Notes from the Field
Anna Deavere Smith's 2018 work, Notes from the Field, examines how the school-to-prison pipeline has played a big part in systemic racism. Her her patented style, she interview lots of people and plays 18 of them in this work, available on HBO.
Spike Lee filmed this stage production of Antoinette Nwandu’s play, directed by Danya Taymor. It's a riff on Waiting for Godot in which two young black men await on the street corner as two other characters appear, a white man in a suit, and a white police officer. It's streaming on Amazon Prime.
Lincoln Center Theater | New York City
Dominique Morisseau's play was going to be seen locally at the Dallas Theater Center, but was one of several shows canceled in the wake of the pandemic. But the Lincoln Center premiere was filmed, and it's on BroadwayHD. But you don't even have to sign up for a free trail of BroadwayHD to watch it. The company is making it temporarily free.
Nya, an inner-city public high school teacher, is committed to her students but desperate to give her only son Omari opportunities they’ll never have. When a controversial incident at his upstate private school threatens to get him expelled, Nya must confront his rage and her own choices as a parent. But will she be able to reach him before a world beyond her control pulls him away?
PERFORMING ARTS ONLINE
Shows streaming on websites, YouTube, and social media
Ailey All Access
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater | New York City | Through July
The acclaimed dance company's new Ailey All Access channel has weekly broadcasts. From July 16 to 23, the performance is Camille A. Brown's City of Rain, and from July 23 to 30, it's Ailey's Blues Suite. Learn more at the Ailey website.
ALVIN AILEY'S YOUTUBE CHANNEL
Joe's Pub at The Public Theater | New York City | Streaming indefinitely
I loved watching this 2018 performance from Jomama Jones, an evening of songs and storytelling with a bad-ass band and lots of humor and poignancy. She begins by speaking in the darkness by saying "What If I Told You It's Going to Be All Right?" ... "But Not Yet."
Description: BLACK LIGHT is a revival for turbulent times. Jomama Jones invites us to the Crossroads to contemplate what we must choose at this moment in our own lives, in our civic relationships, in our country, and our world(s).
National Theatre of London | National Theatre at Home | Through July 9
National Theatre of London's has been sharing its archives for free since the shutdowns begin, and than run is about to come to an end. The penultimate production is of Lorraine Hansberry's unfinished play Les Blancs, directed by Yaël Farber and adapted by her husband Robert Nemiroff, with restored text directed by Joi Gresham. It's available through 1 p.m. (CST) July 9. The final free showing in this series is Peter Shaffer's Amadeus, featuring Lucian Msamati as Salieri (July 16-23).
The Public Theater | New York City | Through Aug. 4
This might be the first play about the Coronavirus in the U.S., written by Jessical Blan and Erik Jensen (of The Exonerated), using interviews with New York healthcare workers as the cases of COVID-19 were overwhelming New York City hopsitals. This free performance features Santino Fonatana, Arjun Gupta, John Ortiz, Alison Pill, Nicholas Pinnock, Jamey Sheridan, and Lorraine Toussaint, and is directed by Blank.
And So We Come Forth: The Apple Family: A Dinner on Zoom
The Public Theater | New York City | Through Aug. 26
Beginning in 2010, Richard Nelson wrote and directed four plays about the fictional Apple family for New York's Public Theater (and his since added new families, The Gabriels and The Michaels, to his repertoire). His pandemic-inspired latest edition to the Apple series is a one-hour work performed as a Zoom meeting with the family members. Available on The Apply Family YouTube channel.
Canada's acclaimed Stratford Festival had to cancel its 2020 season, but all of the productions are available to stream at some point in the Stratford@Home Film Festival. There is a cost to watch them. Productions available in July include:
- Antony and Cleopatra: Through July 23
- The Adventures of Pericles: Through July 16
- King John: Through July 9
- Romeo and Juliet: July 9-30
- The Taming of the Shrew: July 15-Aug. 6
You can also buy On Demand productions of King Lear, Coriolanus, Macbeth, The Tempest, Timon of Athens, Love's Labour's Lost, and Hamlet
Royal Opera House | London | Through July 16
The Royal Opera House is streaming some of its archival productions for free. Currently, Puccini's La bohème is available on the company's YouTube channel.
La Mama Moves
La Mama Experimental Theatre Club | New York City | 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 7
The invaluable downtown New York space, a haven for independent arts-makers and small national and international companies for many decades, has some free online offerings. The next happening features dances from choreographers of the La Mama Moves! Dance Festival 2020, including a puppet dance from Kevin Augustine, and works by Kari Hoaas, Anabella Lenzu, and Tamar Rogoff.
Instagram and IGTV
This Instagram-based dance organization has several offerings, including the 2020 KnowBoxDance Short Series, featuring NBSS Visionary Award Winner, 51 Days in Quarantine by Dallas' Danielle Georgiou.
The Movement Theatre Company | New York City | Streaming Indefinitely
This group creates and produces social justice work by artists of color. Catch the recent short, Soft Light by Aleshea Harris and Whitney White, on the group's YouTube channel. Also look at the group's website for more digital content.
To My Distant Love
OnSite Opera | New York City | Through Aug. 9
This gets the award for most innovative outside-the-space production. This group specializes in site-specific opera, and To My Distant Love can be experienced anywhere, provided you have telephone reception. You buy a ticket and sign up for a specific time, and one of the performers calls you at the time. There is obviously some involvement on your part.
Description: This new immersive opera experience invites you to be “the distant love” for a one-on-one performance featuring a live singer (you choose soprano or baritone) and pianist over the phone — no need to download any additional app or platform. The “site” for this performance will be yours to decide as your beloved calls you by phone to express their longing and joy to you, their distant love. Where will you take such an intimate phone call? A walk through the park? A cozy chair by a window? The immersive experience will begin even before your phone call, as your beloved will send you e-mail love letters in anticipation of finally re-connecting.
The music is from Beethoven's song cycle An die ferne Geliebte (To the Distant Beloved), which has song text by Alois Isidor Jeitteles, and is sung in German. Additional English dialogue is by playwright Monet Hurst-Mendoza. It's $40.
PERFORMING ARTS PODCASTS
Arts District the Podcast
This one is Dallas-based, and features weekly interviews with North Texas artists and creatives. Recent interviews are with Ryan Matthieu Smith, Morgana Wilborn, Lauren LeBlanc and Bren Rapp.
Token Theatre Friends
New York critics Diep Tran and José Solis have created their own independent website in which they review, discuss, write essays, and have a weekly podcast. (They previously did TTF for American Theatre Magazine.) The artists they interview in the podcasts are women and/or from the BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, and Differently Abled communities. Disclosure: Several of the events listed above I learned about from their site. Support them if you can.
This podcast-heavy theater website based in Raleigh-Durham, N.C., is fairly new and founded by my friend and colleague Lauren van Hemert. She loves podcasts, and has been going the extra mile after the shutdowns started, and especially in response to the Black Lives Matter protests after the murder of George Floyd. She and others have been creating lots of content with conversations about representation in every facet of theater. Follow the site on Facebook here, and there's a related Facebook group called Theater On Racist Negativity, here.
Broadway Podcast Network
Find a slew of theater podcasts, not just about Broadway or produced in New York, but from around the country and world on a variety of topics, from musicals to stagecraft to auditioning to fitness to BIPOC topics.
Up is Down, Left is Right
This is the TheaterJones podcast in which co-hosts Brian Wilson and Monalisa Amidar interview local creatives. Like our site, it has been on hiatus, but we hope to return to it soon. There are 10 episodes for you to enjoy.