PLAYBILL PICKS: The Top Theatre Stories of 2011 From Spider-Man to Sondheim to Site-Specific Shows

By Robert Simonson
23 Dec 2011

Nicholas Bruder and Sophie Bortolussi in Sleep No More.
photo by Yaniv Schulman

YOU HAD TO BE THERE: Site-specific theatre is nothing new. But in 2011, it seemed to be, well, all kinds of places. Also, it was popular. Punchdrunk's wordless, sprawling, non-linear take on Shakespeare's Macbeth, held in the fictional McKittrick Hotel (really an old Chelsea club), extended and extended again, attracting an atypical theatre audience. (So trendy has it become that it was mentioned in an episode of "Gossip Girl.") The Woodshed Collective opened The Tenant, a five-story theatrical adaptation of Roland Topor's novel (famous for being made into a Roman Polanski film) at the West-Park Presbyterian Church. It, too, extended its run — check out Playbill Video's walking tour of the show's playing spaces. The Amoralists' production of HotelMotel — three one-acts by different playwrights — was set at The Gershwin Hotel. And, you know a trend's afoot when four-time Tony winner Zoe Caldwell makes one of her rare stage appearances, in Elective Affinities, set in an Upper East Side townhouse.