Another time would be the start of Broadway's eagerly anticipated spring season. The cast would drop their scripts, the fans would plan their show schedules, and the reviewers would sharpen their pens. Sadly, Broadway and many theaters around the world are on their longest hiatus in history, but to keep the industry alive big stars are taking the virtual stage and much-lauded past productions are available to stream. These productions cannot be compared to the energy of a full theater, but what accessibility they make is not to be underestimated. The theater community is currently experiencing a devastating loss, but their ability to innovate, invent and continue to create joy gives great hope for what will return.
The startling exclusion of Michaela Coel's "I May Destroy You" from the Golden Globe nominations has only drawn more attention to the actor, director and writer's unique talent. Current streaming offers from the National Theater in London include the 2014 production of “Medea”, which starred Coel as the nurse for Helen McCrory's title character in the famous story of a woman's revenge on her stray husband. The production also features an intense score by Will Gregory and Alison Goldfrapp, the pairing behind the music duo Goldfrapp. Available to stream for three days for $ 9.99. ntathome.com/products/medea
"25 years of rent: measured in love" If your kids think "Hamilton" was the first musical to surpass the genre, introduce them to the 1996 cult hit that lasted for over a decade. The New York Theater Workshop's annual gala celebrates Rent's 25th anniversary with a virtual concert that brings together an impressive cast of the show's original cast, including Idina Menzel, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Jesse L. Martin and Anthony Rapp. They are joined by an all-star cast of "Rent" fans including Neil Patrick Harris, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Billy Porter and Jeremy O. Harris. The program will also honor "Rent" creator Jonathan Larson, who died on the morning of the show's first performance at the age of 35. Available to stream March 2 at 8 p.m. Eastern and through March 6. Tickets start at $ 25. nytw.org/
"Elaine Stritch at Liberty"
BroadwayHD streaming service has hundreds of live performances (available for a monthly fee of $ 9 or $ 100 per year). A special gem in the mix, however, is Elaine Stritch's raw 2001 autobiographical show, which combines stories of her unique life with some of her most popular songs, notably "The Ladies Who Lunch" by "Company". Filmed in London's Old Vic in 2002, this bioshow recounts her Broadway victories as well as her battle against alcoholism and her many rocky romances. broadwayhd.com/movies/AW2GxBd-px3F9_4Aqe1K
"Frederick Douglass: My eyes have seen the fame"
As part of the Black History Trilogy, a series of virtual productions from Flushing Town Hall in Queens, 2019 Tony winner André De Shields will portray Frederick Douglass in a rousing one-man performance. The transcendent "Hadestown" star also wrote the show, which examines the abolitionist leader's accomplishments and ingenuity, as well as the darkness and horror he experienced. The program follows Flushing Town Hall's Divine Sass: A Tribute to the Music, Life and Legacy of Sarah Vaughan by Lillias White on February 18. All performances are free. February 26, 7 p.m., flushingtownhall.org/black-history-trilogy-iii
"An evening with Ali Stroker from the Enlow Recital Hall"
Ali Stroker, who shone in her performance on the 2019 revival of "Oklahoma!" And won one of the best actresses Tony for the role of Ado Annie, will perform on the stage at Kean University in New Jersey for a night of classics the Great American Songbook. Stroker, the first person to win a Tony in a wheelchair, will sing favorites from Stephen Sondheim, Carole King, Rodgers and Hammerstein, and Lin-Manuel Miranda during the livestream event. February 27 at 7:30 a.m. Tickets $ 25, kean.universitytickets.com