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Article Published September 10, 2020

Concerts by the River, More Approvals, Plea for Help, and More

By Karen Isaacs/Zip06.com

Concerts by the River: Goodspeed by the River Concerts will continue at least through Sunday, Sept. 27. David Lutken, who starred in the production of The Will Rogers Follies at Goodspeed, and The Seat of the Pants Band will perform Thursdays through Sundays at 5:30 p.m. on the lawn of Goodspeed Park, adjacent to the Goodspeed, 6 Main Street, East Haddam. You can bring chairs and picnics. Lutken and the band play everything from sing-along folk songs to show tunes. For tickets, call the box office at 860-873-8668.

Three More Equity Approvals: Equity has approved an indoor production of Fully Committed at Norwalk’s Music Theatre of Connecticut (MTC) plus two productions at Weathervane Theatre in New Hampshire and a production at Northern Stage in Vermont. All of these are small theaters. Fully Committed opens on Friday, Sept. 11 and will run through Sunday, Sept. 27. Fully Committed will also be available for live streaming for those who don’t want to attend in person. The one-person show is about an out-of-work actor who works as a reservationist for a high end, in-demand New York restaurant.

Theaters Need Help: Six major producing theaters in Connecticut have banded together as the Connecticut Flagship Producing Theaters to appeal to Governor Ned Lamont for financial assistance so they can continue their operations with, as the press release says, “hopes of safely reopening when restrictions are lifted.” These six lost nearly $12 million in revenue since the shutdown. The theaters contribute $42 million in direct economic activity as well as providing community and educational programing. The six include Long Wharf, Yale Rep, Goodspeed, Westport Playhouse, Hartford Stage, and the Eugene O’Neill Center. Recently, the presenting theaters like the Shubert and Bushnell made a similar plea for assistance.

Yes, Virginia, there will be Tony Awards: Although the Broadway season was shortened drastically, the Tony Awards are going forward. The 74th ceremony will be a digital one sometime this fall. Shows that opened before Feb, 19 are eligible. Only 17 productions will be eligible as many shows were scheduled to open in March and April. The surprise is that there are no eligible musical revivals. The date for the award ceremony will be announced.

Berkshire Success: Godspell, which was one of the first Equity live productions, has extended its run at the Berkshire Theatre Group through Sunday, Sept. 20. The show received excellent reviews as well as pointing the way to how bigger shows can be done adhering to the Equity protocols. For tickets (they are very limited) call 413-997-4444 or visit berkshiretheatregroup.org.

What’s Streaming: Jim Parsons and more are repeating their roles in the 2018 Tony-winning The Boys in the Band in a Netflix movie directed by Joe Mantello, who directed the revival. It will debut Wednesday, Sept. 30. The Cabaret in Indianapolis has released on its YouTube channel more than 200 archived performances, many featuring Broadway stars included Alan Cumming, Billy Porter, Norm Lewis, Kate Baldwin, Megan Hilty, and Cheyenne Jackson.

Subscriber Bonus: BroadwayHD is a subscription streaming service that offers access to a variety of Broadway shows. Some have been shown on PBS, others were filmed. Earlier this year, two regional theaters used the service to stream staged productions shut down due to the virus. Now BroadwayHD is working with the Broadway Booking Office to allow both producing theaters (like Long Wharf, Goodspeed, and Hartford Stage) and presenting theaters (Bushnell, Shubert, and Palace) to offer subscribers discounted three-month memberships. Ask the theater you subscribe to, if they are offering this.

Karen Isaacs is an East Haven resident. To check out her reviews for New York and Connecticut shows, visit 2ontheaisle.wordpress.com. She’s a member of the Connecticut Critics Circle, New York’s Outer Critics Circle and the American Theatre Critics Association.