13 Shows Not to Miss Off-Broadway August 1–16 | Playbill

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Special Features 13 Shows Not to Miss Off-Broadway August 1–16 World-premiere musicals, exciting new festivals, and Tony-winning stars are just some of the reasons to catch these productions.
Alan Muraoka and Nancy Opel in Curvy Widow Matthew Murphy

August 2: Bruce Norris’ A Parallelogram opens at Second Stage Theatre. The dark comedy examines the fine line between the things we can and can't control in life, with a cast led by Tony nominees Celia Keenan-Bolger and Stephen Kunken. Dear Evan Hansen and War Paint director Michael Greif directs the New York premiere.

A_Parallelogram_Second_Stage_2017_Production_Photo_0053_Stephen Kunken, Celia Keenan-Bolger in A PARALLELOGRAM_HR.jpg
Stephen Kunken and Celia Keenan-Bolger Phil Hamer

August 1 & 2: Cherry Lane Theatre continues its free Tongues new play series with two staged readings of Analisa Velez’s The Lovelies, directed by Kat Yen. Set in the streets of a Latino neighborhood alive with bachata, hip hop, and identity politics, the play looks at a couple’s fight for love at a time when everything is stacked against them. Two nights only.

August 2: What happens when a school teacher misguidedly attempts to make a child “normal”—and when that boy is the adopted human child of two puppets? Stephen Kaplan’s allegorical play A Real Boy, debuts Off-Broadway at 59E59 Theaters in a production from Ivy Theatre Company and Athena Theatre. Director Audrey Alford has put together an impressively diverse cast and design team for the staging, including trans artists, artists on the spectrum, artists of color, and an all-female management team. Performances run through August 27.

August 3: Following hit runs at North Carolina Stage Company and the George Street Playhouse, the musical comedy Curvy Widow officially kicks off its Off-Broadway run at the Westside Theatre. In the lead role is Tony nominee Nancy Opel, who plays a widowed, 50-something woman diving into the modern dating scene. Inspired by a true story!


August 5: The Women in Combat Theatre Project’s Bullet Catchers concludes its limited run at the Judson Memorial Church. Based on interviews with current service members and military veterans, the new play follows the first official mixed gender infantry unit in the U.S. Army, from training to deployment. The highly physical show, which features a cast made up of civilian actors, service members, and veterans, weaves dance, music, and poetry. The show is co-produced by Clutch Productions and Josiah Grimm.

August 5: “If the arts in this country are under attack,” says playwright Jake Shore, “give me a group of talented actors, an intimate space and a chair, and I’ll fight back.” That is the motivation behind his latest show, The Devil Is On The Loose With An Axe In Marshalltown. The description reads simply: “6 characters. 1 chair. 2 murders.” Performances run August 5–19 at Franklin Electric in Brooklyn.

Rebekah Morin Julieta Cervantes

August 6: Only one week left to catch Third Rail Projects’ immersive Ghost Light, which wraps up August 6. The co-production with Lincoln Center Theater’s LCT3 pays tribute to the magic of the Claire Tow Theater by inviting audiences to discover unseen corners of the space in a series of real and dreamlike landscapes.

August 9: The Corkscrew Theater Festival kicks off with its first official production: the world premiere of High School Coven by Kaela Mei-Shing Garvin. In the new play, four high school students form a coven to cope with the pressures of being a teenage girl—from finding a date for homecoming dance, to reporting sexual assault within the education system. Performances run through August 20 as part of the inaugural festival.

August 10: Phil Geoffrey Bond’s newest play, Small Town Confessions, is only playing three performances—as part of the inaugural Broadway Bound Festival at 14th Street Y—and they’re sure to fill up fast. The cast includes Tony winners Daisy Eagan and Alice Ripley, along with Tony nominees Sally Mayes and Sharon McNight. The comedy weaves a series of lively monologues from the colorful residents of Anitola, Louisiana. Performances are August 10, 12, and 14.

August 12: Pulitzer Prize finalist Tina Howe takes on climate change in her newest work Singing Beach, a play about hurricanes, aging, and the power of the imagination. Ari Laura Kreith directs the world premiere from Theatre 167 at HERE Arts Center through August 12 only.

August 13: Don’t miss the world premiere of Torrey Townsend’s The Workshop, which is playing a limited engagement at the Bank Street Theater through August 13. Tony-nominated actor and director Austin Pendleton stars in the new work—about the writing of a new play during an MFA workshop.

Phylicia Rashad, Danny Burstein, Warren Wyss, Vinie Burrows, and Keith Hart Joan Marcus

August 13: The Public Theater wraps up another summer of free Shakespeare in the Park, as A Midsummer Night’s Dream closes at Central Park’s Delacorte Theater. Broadway favorites Annaleigh Ashford, Danny Burstein, Phylicia Rashad, Kristine Nielsen, and more star.

August 16: The Sex Myth, which launches August 16 at the HERE Arts Center, bills itself as a “mixed-gender, diverse, and inclusive new-generation take on the Vagina Monologues.” The show is a mix of personal monologues—performed by real people, not actors—that challenge our perceptions of what is “normal” when it comes to sex.

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