"Carousel" closing September 16th; “Tootsie” books the Marquis; "Network" to play the Cort; all female revival of "Glengarry Glen Ross" coming to Broadway next May; Michael C. Hall will star in "Thom Pain (Based on Nothing)"; "Pipeline" to play select cinemas; "Once on This Island" wins Equity award for diversity; trans actor Kate Bornstein responds to heckling; list of the most produced high school musicals and plays; producer John Glines dead at 84

REVIEW: “Gettin’ the Band Back Together”

“Gettin’ the Band Back Together” is a genuinely funny new guilty pleasure of a musical with a tried-and-true formulaic structure and a host of scrappy, likable characters; the score is unfortunately unremarkable, derivative, and forgettable, but the book, developed through improv rehearsals, is sitcom-light, irreverent, well-beat, and really silly.  Others may pile on, but I must admit: I had fun.

REVIEW: “Be More Chill” is Teenage Musical Manna

“Be More Chill” is a new sci-fi, pop-rock, satirical allegory of a musical for tweens and early teens, and probably not anyone else.  Based on a 2004 novel about a high school loser who swallows a pill-sized computer that makes him cool, the show is well-staged and performed, but remains an emotionally disengaging experience.  Willed into production re-existence on the strength of its international, online teenage fanbase, expect to be hearing about it for some time to come.

Rosemary Harris to replace Diana Rigg in "My Fair Lady"; Hugh Dancy and Megalyn Echikunwoke join "Apologia"; "School Girls” cast reuniting for encore run; MTC expands "30 Under 30” program to age 35; TKTS pilots price listing; “Mean Girls” to offer free fan performance; “Sweat” to tour the Midwest; “Be More Chill” sells out; “Moulin Rouge” aiming for summer 2019 Broadway bow; Tommy Tune hints at “Grand Hotel” revival; Ruthie Ann Miles returns to the stage; Charlotte Rae dead at 92

REVIEW: “This Ain’t No Disco” Ain’t Kidding

“This Ain’t No Disco”, an original rock opera about the art, music, and dance club scenes of 1979 New York, ain’t kidding.  This new musical is bland and soulless, overstuffed, overdone, and under-dramatized, with a cacophony of characters, ideas, and issues offering only a sprawling, shallow story that is neither unique, distinctly tethered to the history of the setting, or frankly, engaging.  This isn’t just a flop, but a belly flop—the likes of which you rarely see on stage in New York anymore. 

REVIEW: Shakespeare in the Park’s Festive and Musical “Twelfth Night”

The Public Theater presents a free, Public Works musical adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” in Central Park.  Featuring songs by Shaina Taub and a cast in excess of 75 professional and amateur performers of all ages, races, sizes, and abilities, this “radically inclusive” production is magical, festive, and highly accessible.  Infectiously energetic and buoyantly spirited, do not miss this jubilant new musical.

Lin-Manuel Miranda announces several projects; Nicolette Robinson becomes first actor of color to play Jenna in "Waitress"; Daniel Alexander Jones' "Black Light" returns Off-Broadway this fall; Matt Doyle will star in new musical featuring music by Huey Lewis and the News; NBC's "Hair Live!" sets date; profiles of Joel Grey and Young Jean Lee are must reads

REVIEW: “Fire in Dreamland” Simmers

The convergence of history and art, and the way stories can capture us, are explored impressionistically in “Fire in Dreamland”, a funny, heartfelt, but ultimately emotionally-thin and mysteriously-drawn new play at the Public Theater.  Rebecca Naomi Jones is a standout, but the play contains too many furtive motivations and not enough stakes.

REVIEW: Young Jean Lee’s quietly enveloping “Straight White Men”

Young Jean Lee makes history as the first female Asian-American playwright with her quietly enveloping play “Straight White Men”; far from the raging jeremiad that many liberal theatregoers no doubt anticipate, this tightly directed and finely acted play is a smart, funny, and surprising look at questions of privilege and identity through the lens of America’s oldest and newest, and soon to be minority, group: straight white men.