Editor's Note: This guest post from long-time GLAAD volunteer, Dan Bacalzo, is part of GLAAD's new effort to draw more attention to theater projects with LGBT content.
2013 LGBT Theater Preview
BY DAN BACALZO
The New York City theater world will be keeping it inclusive in 2013 with a host of shows of interest to the LGBT community. Here’s a list of ten highlights for the first half of the coming year, in the order that they are scheduled to open.
Ruff (Dixon Place, January 10-19)
Multiple GLAAD Media Award nominee Peggy Shaw world premieres this new solo, which chronicles her recovery from a debilitating stroke while also paying tribute to the legendary downtown performer’s influences. This funny and moving performance is co-written and directed by Shaw’s longtime Split Britches collaborator, Lois Weaver.
Tawny, Tell Me True (Laurie Beechman Theatre, January 12-26)
David Drake, author of the award-winning The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me, brings his drag creation Tawny Heatherton back to New York for this evening of songs and stories.
All the Rage (Peter Jay Sharp Theater, previews January 19, opening January 30, through February 24)
Martin Moran, who received a GLAAD Media Award nomination for The Tricky Part, returns to the New York stage with a new autobiographical solo play. While not the focus of the new piece, LGBT issues do come up within this show that follows Moran from the Las Vegas funeral of his father to his efforts to translate an asylum seeker’s accounts of torture.
Good Person of Szechwan (La MaMa E.T.C., February 1-24)
Three-time GLAAD Media Award nominee Taylor Mac stars as the prostitute Shen Tei in the Foundry Theater’s production of Bertolt Brecht’s classic morality play. GLAAD Media Award winner Lisa Kron co-stars in this production, which also features original live music by indie musicians César Alvarez and The Lisps.
From White Plains (Pershing Square Signature Center, February 8-March 9)
Fault Line Theatre’s compelling and complex play looks at the problem of bullying of LGBT high school students from the perspective of a former bully forced to confront his past actions. The show, which had a brief run last summer, points out: “Just because it gets better doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.”
The Laramie Project Cycle (Brooklyn Academy of Music, February 12-24)
Tectonic Theater Project brings back its GLAAD Media Award-winning documentary theater piece examining the aftermath of the murder of gay college student Matthew Shepard, and pairs it with a sequel made ten years later. The newer piece asks the question, “How do you measure change,” and includes interviews with numerous Laramie residents, the victim’s mother Judy Shepard, and killers Russell Henderson and Aaron McKinney.
Kinky Boots (Al Hirschfeld Theatre, previews March 3, opens April 4)
This new Broadway musical features a book by four-time Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein with music and lyrics by Grammy winner Cyndi Lauper. Based on the 2005 film (and the true story that inspired it), the show follows the heir to a struggling shoe factory who is inspired by a flamboyant drag queen (played by Billy Porter) to reinvent his company as a maker of fetish footwear.
The Nance (Lyceum Theatre, previews March 21)
Tony Award winner Nathan Lane stars in a new Broadway play by GLAAD Media Award nominee, Douglas Carter Beane, set in the gay underground of 1930s New York and centering on a burlesque performer who specializes in playing stereotypically “camp” gay men.
Choir Boy (New York City Center, previews June 18, opens July 2)
GLAAD Media Award winner Tarrell Alvin McCraney brings his latest play to Manhattan Theatre Club. The work centers on a gay student at a conservative African American prep school who hopes to lead the school’s famous gospel choir.
Sontag: Reborn (New York Theatre Workshop, Summer 2013, exact dates TBA)
Moe Angelos – of GLAAD Media Award-winning Five Lesbian Brothers fame – adapts and performs the journals of the late cultural icon Susan Sontag in this fascinating solo show, previously seen at last year’s Under the Radar festival. The work includes details of Sontag’s first lesbian love and her tempestuous relationship with playwright Maria Irene Fornes as it chronicles its subject’s life from ages 14 through 30.