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Backstage Whispers overheard by Richard Andrews

Last updated : 3rd May 2010

The winners of the 25th Annual Lucille Lortel Awards for Outstanding Achievement Off-Broadway were headed by the Lincoln Center Theatre production of Andrew Bovell's When The Rain Stops Falling, taking Director - David Cromer, Featured Actress - Mary Beth Hurt, Scenic Design - David Korins, Lighting Design - Tyler Micoleau and Sound Design - Fitz Patton; the Roundabout Theatre Company production of Tennessee Williams's The Glass Menagerie, winning Revival and Lead Actress - Judith Ivey; the Vineyard Theatre production of the David Thompson-John Kander-Fred Ebb musical The Scottsboro Boys, garnering Musical and Choreographer - Susan Stroman; and the Signature Theatre Company/Hartford Stage production of Horton Foote's The Orphans' Home Cycle snagging Outstanding Play. Further information about the awards can be found on the Lucille Lortel Awards web site, via the link from Organisations in the Links section of New York TheatreNet.

The York Theatre Company will stage a new musical Falling For Eve, book by Joe DiPietro, music by Brett Simmons, lyrics by David Howard, a re-telling of the story of Adam and Eve, directed by Larry Raben, from July 6th. The York Theatre Company's Theatre at Saint Peter's is on 54th Street, between Lexington and 3rd Avenues.

On The Casting Couch: Brandon Victor Dixon, Nikki Renee, Harrison White and Tasha Taylor Daniels will head the cast in Suzan-Lori Parks's musical Unchain My Heart - The Ray Charles Musical, opening at the Shubert theatre yet to be announced on November 7th.

Forthcoming performers in Algonquin Hotel's Oak Room will include Johnny Rodgers combining American songbook classics with his own compositions, from May 11th to 29th; Karen Oberlin celebrating the centenary of composer-lyricist Frank Loesser, from June 1st to 19th; Karen Akers featuring the songs of Rodgers and Hart, from September 14th to October 23rd; Jack Jones from October 26th to November 13th; and Andrea Marcovicci, with a history of the Torch song, from November 16th to December 30th. The Algonquin Hotel is located in at 59 West 44th Street, between 5th and 6th Avenues.

My Big Gay Italian Wedding, a comedy about the preparations for a wedding, written by and featuring Anthony Wilkinson, with Reichen Lehmkuhl, Brett Douglas, Randi Kaplan, Joe Scanio, Tricia Burns, Carla-Marie Mercun, Fabio Talierco, Liz Gerecitano, Meagan Robar, Adam Zelasko, Bryan Anthony, Erik Ransom, Chad Kessler, Kevin McKintyre and Leah Gerstel, directed by Teresa A Cicala, will preview from May 5th at St Luke's Theatre, opening on May 22nd. St Luke's Theatre is located at 308 West 46th Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

Future productions at Performance Space 122 will include the premiere of Branden Jacobs-Jenkins's The Octoroon: An Adaptation Of The Octoroon Based On The Octoroon, inspired by Dion Boucicault's 1859 play about American slavery, directed by Gavin Quinn, previewing from June 16th, opening on June 24th. PS 122 is located at 150 1st Avenue at East 9th Street

The Town Hall has announced its 4th Summer Broadway Festival, conceived by Scott Siegel, a series of Monday night events featuring Broadway performers. Broadway Winners: The Award Winning Music of Broadway on July 12th, with a host of Broadway stars, will celebrate music created on the Great White Way that won Tonys, Grammys and Oscars; Broadway's Rising Stars, on July 19th, will feature students from New York City's performing arts schools and programs, directed by Scott Coulter; and All Singin! All Dancin!, on July 26th, will feature a cast of Broadway regulars interpreting musical theatre's greatest songs and dances, directed and choreographed by Jeffry Denman. The Town Hall is located at 123 West 43rd Street, between 6th Avenue and Broadway.

A new musical I'll Be Damned, by Rob Broadhurst and Brent Black, about a friendless, comic-book-loving high school student who makes a pact with the devil, with Mary Testa, Kenita Miller and Kurt Robbins, directed by April Nickell, with choreography by Luis Salgado, will open at the Vineyard Theatre on July 1st. The producer is Jaradoa Theater. The Vineyard Theatre is located at 108 East 15th Street, between Union Square East and Irving Place.

The Vineyard Theatre will open its 2010/2011 season with the world premiere of Will Eno's Middletown, in which the lives of the inhabitants in a small American town intersect in strange and poignant ways in a journey that takes them from the local library to outer space and points between, directed by Ken Rus Schmoll, from October 6th.

Forthcoming productions at Theatre Row will include Justin Tanner's Voice Lessons, about a self-deluded community theatre actress and her catatonically despairing vocal coach, with Laurie Metcalf, French Stewart and Maile Flanagan, from May 22nd at The Studio; Martin McDonagh's The Pillowman, a dark comic thriller in which a writer in a totalitarian state is interrogated about the gruesome content of his short stories because of their similarities to a number of local child murders, with Justin Anselmi, Jonathan Blakeley, Nicolas R Camp, Brian Uhrich, from June 15th at The Studio; and Aaron Loeb's Abraham Lincoln's Big, Gay Dance Party, a comedy about a 4th grade Christmas pageant in Lincoln's rural hometown that sets off a firestorm of controversy when it calls into question his sexuality, directed by Chris Smith, previewing from July 27th at the Acorn Theatre, opening on August 12th, produced by BlueRare Productions. Theatre Row is located at 410 West 42nd Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues.

Celebrating Anna Sokolow is an exhibition at the New York Library for the Performing Arts marking the 100th aniversary of the birth of the American choreographer Anna Sokolow, running until July 24th. The display features an installation inspired by Sokolow's major works by Robin Meems. New York Public Library for the Performing Arts is located at 40 Lincoln Center Plaza.

The 15th annual free Lower East Side Festival of the Arts will bring together over 100 performing arts organizations based in the neighborhood at Theater for the New City on Memorial Day Weekend, May 28th to 30th. This year's participants include jazz luminary David Amram, talk show host Joe Franklin, comedians Reno, Penny Arcade, Lavinia Co-op, Zero Boy, Steve Ben Israel and Gary Corbin, and theatre companies New York Theatre Workshop and La MaMa, and the Rod Rodgers and Mariana Bekerman dance companies. Additional attractions include film, multimedia, dance, poetry, puppeteers, musicians, readings and theatre pieces that reflect life on the Lower East Side, plus a community arts fair with food and crafts vendors. Theater for the New City is located at 155 1st Avenue, between 9th and 10th Streets. Further information can be found on the TNC web site, via the link from Off Broadway Venues & Companies in the Links section of New York TheatreNet.