Author: Donna Herman

For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow is Enuf

The iconic Ntozake Shange work “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow is Enuf” is being revived at The Public Theater where it had its Off-Broadway debut over 40 years ago.  This is good news for those of you who didn’t see it then because this is the first time it’s been back in NYC since it moved from The Public to The Booth Theater where it was only the 2nd play by a black woman to reach Broadway.  Shange, one of the founders of the Nuyorican Poets Café, coined the term “choreopoem” for this piece which is a vibrant mix of poetry, music and dance.  Performed by seven women it’s both an exploration and a celebration of the what being black and female in this country means.  Read my full review here.

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Mark Arthur Miller “Soul Searching”

Mark Arthur Miller played a set, “Soul Searching,” (also the name of his 2013 album) at the Triad the other night, dedicated to Motown and the soul music he became obsessed with growing up on the South Side of Chicago in the 1960’s.  Not surprising when you consider that he found out his estranged father was the only white songwriter for Motown Records at the time by looking at the credits on a record label.  And by record, I mean a vinyl 45 rpm round black thing with grooves in it – in case you’ve never heard of it.

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The Wrong Man

The musical to see this season is not on Broadway, it’s at MCC Theater and it’s called “The Wrong Man.”  With book, music and lyrics by multi-platinum pop songwriter Ross Golan, direction by Thomas Kail of Hamilton and In the Heights fame, choreography by Emmy-winner Travis Wall and starring Joshua Henry, you don’t want to miss it.  It’s fresh, innovative, powerful and moving.  See it before it goes all Broadway on you, and you can no longer afford a ticket! 

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Heroes of the Fourth Turning

With love in his heart and a lifetime of learning from the source, playwright Will Arbery digs into his conservative Christian past to bring “Heroes of the Fourth Turning” to the Playwrights Horizons stage.  For most liberal New Yorkers, it’s a chance to do what we’ve all been moaning about since the 2016 election – understand.  It’s also a chance to see a very fine ensemble cast and restrained and dignified directing by Danya Taymor.  Read my full review here.

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The New Englanders

Playwright Jeff Augustin’s slice-of-life “The New Englanders” is a family tragicomedy for our times.  Parents struggling to keep the family intact despite obvious cracks in the seams. A daughter who is a high school senior about to go off to college and is rebellious but terrified.  An English teacher who is well-intentioned but sick to death of taking crap from teenagers, A high school student who doesn’t get high but sells weed and works at Chuck E. Cheese to save money for college and the first love of one of the parents who has been living on the road for the last 25 years.  You know, just a normal town with normal people living their daily lives.

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