October 17: The Public Theater continues its fall programming with the New York premiere of Office Hour, a taut new drama by Julia Cho about a high school teacher and a troubled student. Performances began October 17 and run through December 3.
October 19: Denise Gough reprises her Olivier award-winning role Off-Broadway in the anticipated American premiere of Duncan MacMillan’s People, Places & Things at St. Ann’s Warehouse. The West End hit takes over the Brooklyn theatre beginning October 19 through November 19.
October 19: The 35th anniversary production of Harvey Fierstein’s Torch Song officially opens at Second Stage Theatre. Michael Urie takes on the role originated by Fierstein in 1982, playing a gay man in a tempestuous relationship with his closeted lover. Moisés Kaufman directs the revival, now extended through December 3.
October 19: The Keen Company celebrates the official opening of its first show of the season: Steven Dietz’s Lonely Planet. The two hander offers a portrait of two friends (played by Arnie Burton and Matt McGrath) navigating the height of the HIV/AIDS crisis. Performances began October 3 and run through November 18 at The Clurman Theater at Theatre Row.
October 22: Richard Nelson returns to the Public Theater following the success of The Gabriels and Apple Family Plays. His newest work, Illyria, recounts the earlier career of Public founder Joe Papp and details a forgotten chapter of the theatre’s colorful history. The production will officially open October 30 for a run scheduled through December 10.
Also playing at the Public Theater is the return engagement of Nia Vardalos’ sold-out hit Tiny Beautiful Things, which officially opened October 10 and runs through December 10.
October 23: Zoe Kazan’s After the Blast opens at LCT3 at Lincoln Center Theater. The new play takes place in the wake of an environmental disaster, and presents a world in which fertility is scarce and the human population has retreated underground. Performances continue through November 19.
October 23: Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train opens at the Signature Theatre. Stephen Adly Guirgis’ darkly comic exploration of redemption and faith returns to the New York stage following an acclaimed Off-Broadway debut in 2000. Performances run through November 12.
October 24: The Sol Project continues its groundbreaking work in elevating Latinx theatre with a production of Luis Alfaro’s Oedipus El Rey. Directed by Chay Yew, the play re-imagines the Greek tragedy in modern-day South Central L.A., with a troubled Latino man at its center. The production opens October 24 at The Public Theater for a run scheduled through December 3.
October 24: Roundabout Theatre Company’s Laura Pels Theatre is transformed into a stadium at the U.S. Open for Anna Ziegler’s The Last Match, which opens October 24. The new play sees two tennis champions face off for the match of their lives. Performances continue through December 24.
Downstairs in the Black Box theatre, Roundabout Underground presents the world premiere of Jiréh Breon Holder’s Too Heavy For Your Pocket. The new play, about the civil rights movement, is playing through November 19.
October 24: Manhattan Theatre Club celebrates the opening of John Patrick Shanley’s romantic comedy, The Portuguese Kid. Seinfeld star Jason Alexander and three-time Tony nominee Sherie Rene Scott play two people who have known each other since childhood but never been involved romantically. The run has been extended through December 3.
October 25: The Wooster Group debuts The B-Side: “Negro Folkore From Texas State Prisons” A Record Interpretation. The show is inspired by Eric Berryman’s exploration of the LP Negro Folklore from Texas State Prisons, which features songs, blues, sermons, and toasts performed by a group of inmates in then-segregated prison farms. Performances, starring Berryman, begin October 25 and run through November 19 at the Performing Garage.
October 26: The Vineyard Theatre kicks off its new season with the world premiere of Harry Clarke, a solo piece about a Midwestern man who lives a double life as a highbrow Londoner. Stage and screen star Billy Crudup stars in the new monologue play by David Cale with direction by Leigh Silverman. Performances run through December 3.
October 28: Theresa Rebeck’s 1992 play What We’re Up Against receives its New York premiere in a production from WP Theater and Segal NYC Productions. Set in an architecture firm, the comedy examines gender politics in a way that feels all-too relevant today. Performances run through November 26 at the WP Theater.
October 31: Last Match playwright Ziegler is keeping busy this fall with two shows Off-Broadway. Performances of her new play Actually, a story of race and consent on a college campus, begin October 31 in a production from Manhattan Theatre Club. The production is scheduled to run through December 3 at The Studio at Stage II.
Also in October: Irish Repertory Theatre presents Brian Friel’s play, The Home Place through November 19; Amy Herzog’s moving portrait of a single mother, Mary Jane continues its extended run at NYTW through October 29; and the return engagement of Lisa Lampanelli’s Stuffed opens at the Westside Theatre October 31.