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Article Published September 24, 2020

Shakespeare’s Scariest, a Little Irish, Cabaret, Viva Broadway, and More

By Karen Isaacs/

Helping Halloween: Elm Shakespeare Company is offering teens a way to enjoy the scary season of Halloween safely. It’s with the Teen Troup, which has teens working with theater professions receiving two private coaching sessions each week via Zoom. The students will be studying Shakespeare’s scariest moments. A final outdoor panoramic event open to the public is planned for Halloween night. For information, visit

A Favorite Theater: The off-Broadway Irish Rep is one of my favorite theaters; it has already presented some excellent digital productions. Therefore, I was delighted to learn that it is planning a digital fall season. In addition, it has a created a membership program with benefits that include patron nights with post-show discussions, conversations with actors, and even tech assistance with your device. Among the shows scheduled is the outstanding On Beckett, which featured a stellar performance by Bill Irwin, Eugene O’Neill’s A Touch of the Poet, and more. Visit for information. Tickets for individual productions are also available.

Virtual Yale Cabaret Season: The long-running Yale Cabaret (this year is its 53rd season) is all virtual for 2020-’21. Fifteen productions are scheduled during the academic year. As usual with the Cabaret, which is run by students of the Drama School, you can expect outside-the-box shows and interpretations. Tickets to shows are available at It is introducing a membership option that includes access to every show plus other events.

Stream in Your Home: Playhouse on Park is presenting Kennedy: Bobby’s Last Crusade on video through Sunday, Oct. 4. You must purchase a ticket at and you are then sent a link. Once you activate the link, you have 48 hours to view the production.

Ben Brantley Retiring: Influential theater critic Ben Brantley is leaving his position. He has been the chief theater critic of The New York Times since 1996. Jesse Green joined him as co-chief theater critic a few years ago. Green will continue in that role. They are both loved and hated in the theater community; positive reviews from them can help at the box office and also in receiving award recognition. Negative reviews can sometimes doom a show.

London Stages Reopening: Some productions are opening in London with reduced capacity, though mainly in smaller theaters. Recently Ralph Fiennes opened in Beat the Devil by David Hare. A monologue play, it is one of the first works to deal with the coronavirus, based on Hare’s experience of contracting it.

Mark Your Calendar: On Thursday, Oct. 1, Broadway stars from Lin-Manuel Miranda, John Leguizamo, Raül Esparza, Chita Rivera, and others will perform in the Playbill and Broadway League digital concert in celebration of Latinx Heritage Month (October). ¡Viva Broadway! Hear Our Voices will salute the contributions of Latinx stars and creative team members to Broadway. Among the highlights will be a look at the first Spanish-language production of A Chorus Line, which was directed by and starred Antonio Banderas. There’s been talk that the production, which originated in Spain, may come to New York. The show can be viewed at

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