Sunday, June 30, 2013

The Best Gay Plays

Happy Gay Pride!  To celebrate the day, we've asked some of our favorite gay playwrights to share their top 10 LGBT plays.

We left it up to the playwrights to define what constitutes an LGBT play (Kathleen Warnock cheekily suggested The Odd Couple as one of hers before changing to Sontag: Reborn, and Tony Asaro chose several non-traditionally gay plays including Lips Together, Teeth Apart, which he called a gay play with all straight characters).

Without further ado, here are their choices.  We'll add ours at the end.

Tony Asaro, composer/librettist of Our Country.

1. The Normal Heart, Larry Kramer
2. Streetcar Named Desire, Tennessee Williams
3. Angels In America, Tony Kushner
4. Lips Together, Teeth Apart, Terrence McNally
5. The Zoo Story, Edward Albee
6. Fifth of July, Lanford Wilson
7. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Tennessee Williams
8. Twilight of the Golds, Jonathan Tolins
9. The Children's Hour, Lillian Hellman
10. Torch Song Trilogy, Harvey Fierstein

Kathleen Warnock, whose Grieving for Genevieve just finished a run at the Venus Theatre.

1. The Haunted Host, Robert Patrick

2. The Madness of Lady Bright, Lanford Wilson
3. Street Theater, Doric Wilson
4. The Secretaries, Five Lesbian Brothers
5. Angels in America, Tony Kushner
6. Hedwig & the Angry Inch, John Cameron Mitchell and Stephen Trask
7. The Baltimore Waltz, Paula Vogel
8. Corpus Christi, Terrence McNally
9. Monstrosity, Lucy Thurber
10. Sontag: Reborn. Adapted & performed by Moe Angelos

She gives honorable mention to The B Factor by Donnetta Lavinia Grays, Milk, Milk Lemonade by Joshua Conkel, Almost Home by Meryl Cohn, and No Need for Seduction by Victoria Libertore.

Duncan Pflaster, whose latest play, Messin' With the Kid, had a reading last week.

1. Angels In America, Tony Kushner
2. Torch Song Trilogy, Harvey Fierstein
3. Bent, Martin Sherman
4. The Boys in the Band, Mart Crowley
5. A Late Snow, Jane Chambers
6. Cloud Nine, Caryl Churchill
7. Beautiful Thing, J. Harvey
8. The Dying Gaul, Craig Lucas
9. Untold Decades, Robert Patrick
10. The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told, Paul Rudnick

Robert Patrick, Caffe Cino playwright and author of Kennedy's Children.

1. Fifth of July, Lanford Wilson
2. As Is, Wiliam M. Hoffman
3. Street Theater, Doric Wilson
4. Michelangelo's Models, Robert Patrick
5. The Madness of Lady Bright, Lanford Wilson
6. Goodnight, I Love You, William M. Hoffman
7. The Bed, Bob Heide
8. The Brown Crown, Haal Borske
9. Torch Song Trilogy, Harvey Fierstein
10. Moon, Bob Heide

We agree with the lists above and would add:

The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me, David Drake
The Laramie Project, Moises Kaufman and members of the Tectonic Theater Project
Rent, Jonathan Larson
Jeffrey, Paul Rudnick
Love! Valor! Compassion!, Terrence McNally
Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde, Moises Kaufman
Falsettos, William Finn
The Sum of Us, David Stevens
Take Me Out, Richard Greenberg
The Tempermentals, Jon Marans
The Ritz, Terrence McNally

So what have we missed?  Any particular favorites that should be added to the list?

As an extra bonus, Robert Patrick has sent us a link to his lecture, "Caffe Cino: Birthplace of Gay Theatre."  While checking it out, look at the other videos he's posted, which include productions of several of his plays.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

"Bare" to make its Westchester premiere July 26-28

BARE will be making its Westchester premiere at the White Plains Performing Arts Center on July 26-28.

The musical is a coming-of-­age story featuring five high school seniors at a Catholic boarding school. Knowing their stay in this insular world is drawing to a close, each of them questions where they are in their lives and what the future holds for them. Answers are sought in the church confessional and in less formal venues including a stage, a rave, and a well-­locked dorm room. The story zooms in on the love relationship between two boys, Peter and Jason. Peter a socially awkward loner and Jason the golden boy popular jock. Throughout the story we see the struggles, trials and tribulations that they face in keeping their relationship alive and hidden, and how their love affects their friends and the people around them. Will the world accept them? This is a musical about going against adults, religion and everything that you've been told.

BARE is directed by Jeremy Quinn with musical direction by Stephen Ferri, choreography by Lexie Fennell Frare and lighting design by Jamie Roderick.  It has a book by Jon Hartmere and Damon Intrabartolo with music by Damon Intrabartolo and lyrics by Jon Hartmere.

The cast includes Travis Amiel, Richie Barrella, Sarah-­Teresa Brown, David Cronin, Colin Earyes, Kaitlin Ferrara, Natalia Fogarty, Kerri George, Terri-­Ann Gordon, Aaron Michael Krueger, Darian Marchetto, Kurt McMannus, Triona O'Callaghan, Paulette Oliva, Thomas Oliverio, Sydney Parra, Analise Rios, Adam Salazar, Stephanie Savino, Melissa Trainor, and Adam Welsh.

BARE will be performed July 26-­28, 2013 (Friday & Saturday evenings at 8 PM; Sunday at 7 PM).

To Purchase Tickets: call 914.328.1600 or order online at or visit the WPPAC Box Office at 11 City Place, White Plains, NY 10601. For Group Sales, please call 914.328.1600. Tickets are $25 for adults and $20 for students (22 and under). 

Monday, June 24, 2013

Broadway Bares 23

Have you ever found yourself thinking, "Christopher Sieber is a good actor, but why haven't we ever seen him in bondage gear"?  If so, I hope you attended last night's Broadway Bares, because Sieber, who is probably one of the best sports on Broadway, wore a great outfit during the first number of the show.  And that was just one of the many highlights in this great evening of burlesque featuring some of the most talented actors and dancers in the Broadway community.

This year's theme, The United Strips of America, featured a bawdy tour of the country following boyfriends from each coast (played by Max von Essen and Michael Cusumano) who decide to take a road trip and meet up in America's heartland.

Along the way, they meet a variety of characters and see a lot of nudity.

Every year I'm amazed by the incredible talent on display at this show.  Terrific choreography, great music, talented guest stars, and some of the most stunning dancers in New York.

Among the outstanding numbers were a fashion-inspired New York number; a beautiful dream-like number for Maine featuring a ship captain and a mermaid; some incredible aerialist numbers; a Mormon  wedding (with a passel of wives and the requisite magic underwear); a Latin dance competition for Florida; a sexy cowboy number for Texas; and several other equally great numbers.

While I've always been blown away by the aerialists (and they were amazing), this year's best number was a Vegas number with Max von Essen on a romp right out of The Hangover.  Fun and hilarious.

Soon Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS will announce the amount of money that this year's event raised (and send around some pictures), so stay tuned for the results.  This year's event is looking like it will have raised a record amount.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Mermaid Parade Today

Today is the 31st Annual Mermaid Parade in Coney Island.  We know many members of the NYC theatre community (especially a number of burlesque performers) who participate and we hope they have a great time (and take a lot of photos).

If you want a fun way to enjoy the beautiful weather, head out to Coney Island today!

Friday, June 21, 2013

New York Neo-Futurists To Present Annual Pride Show June 28 and 29

It nearly Gay Pride Weekend, and the New York Neo-Futurists are gearing up for the annual Pride Show.  The show will be presented at The Kraine Theatre (85 East 4th Street) on June 28 and 29 at 10:30 PM.

Following the format of their weekly performance series, "Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind," the Pride Show will feature 30 plays in 60 minutes, all with queer themes (or queer takes on some of their more popular plays).  The Pride Show is always a raucous, sold out event, so you should get tickets as early as possible.

The performances will feature a larger cast than normal, including Emma, Cecil, Yolanda, Dylan, Cara, Mike, Borg, Roberta, Jeffrey, Kevin, Nicole, Christopher and Dan.

All proceeds from the two performances will go to the Global Fund for Human Rights to fight for LGBTQ advocacy and activism in Uganda. The Fund for Global Human Rights finds the best human rights activists in countries around the world and gives them the resources to do their work.  They currently support twenty-five LGBTQ advocacy groups in countries across the globe, from Pakistan to the Democratic Republic of Congo.  The Fund currently supports five LGBT advocacy groups in Uganda, including SMUG (Sexual Minorities Uganda).

For more info and to buy tickets, visit their website.

Doric Wilson's "Street Theater"

I can think of no better tribute to the late Doric Wilson than last night's special benefit performance of his play, Street Theater.  In what has become an annual tradition, this one-night-only performance of Wilson's play about the Stonewall Uprising benefits the theatre company he founded, TOSOS, and the LGBT Community Center.

Ably directed by TOSOS Artistic Director, Mark Finley, Street Theater was smart, moving and insanely funny.  Featuring a cast of some of the best TOSOS performers (and stars of the Off-Off Broadway scene), the show was a delight to watch.

The audience featured a variety of well-known downtown actors, playwrights, activists, and friends of Wilson.

The outstanding cast featured Christopher Borg, J. Stephen Brantley, Rebecca Nyahay, Eilis Cahill, Jason Pintar, Chris Anderson, Travis C. Artz, Jeremy Lawrence, Michael Lynch, Tim Abrams, Ben Strothmann, Chad Austin, Russell Jordan, and Desmond Dutcher.

Congratulations to everyone involved in this wonderful performance.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Broadway Bares This Sunday

Hard to believe that it is almost time for this year's Broadway Bares benefit supporting Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.  The show is Sunday, June 23rd - 9:30 PM and Midnight.  The midnight show sometimes gets a little racy.... just sayin'.

This is one of the must see events of the year.

The theme this year is:

The United Strips of America.  All the dance numbers will feature states from this fair land of ours.  Here are some samples.

My former home state:

My current home state:

And a state that I have no connection to, I just like the... um... wood:

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

TOSOS to present a special performance of Doric Wilson's "Street Theater"

On Thursday, June 20th at 7:30 PM, TOSOS and the LGBT Center will present a a special presentation of Doric Wilson's award-winning satire about Stonewall, Street Theater.

A participant in the Stonewall Uprising, Doric Wilson wrote Street Theater not so much as a history of the event but as a record of the people he knew and the incidents he was involved in on Christopher Street in the months, days and hours leading up to the night gays fought back. The play focuses on a panorama of drags, dykes, leathermen, flower children, vice cops and cruisers— the innocent and not-so-innocent bystanders who would turn June 28, 1969 into Stonewall—the D-day of gay history. 

Frequently called the “father of modern queer theatre,” Doric Wilson’s 50 year dedication to queer culture was recognized with the first Robert Chesley Award for Lifetime Achievement in Gay Theatre; the 2007 IT Award for Artistic Achievement; in 2009, the ATHE (Association for Theatre in Higher Education) Career Achievement Award for Professional Theatre; and last year the Fresh Fruit Festival presented playwright Doric Wilson with the 2010 PassionFruit Award for Enduring and Continuing Pioneer Work in LGBT Theater.

This performance benefits TOSOS and the LGBT Center.

Tickets - $20 in advance

$25 cash at the door

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center, 208 West 13th Street 
(between 7th Ave. and Greenwich Ave)

Facebook invite:

About the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center

A beacon of hope for 29 years, the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center builds and supports our community through arts and culture, wellness and recovery, HIV/AIDS services, family services and life-saving youth programs designed to foster healthy development in a safe, affirming environment. The Center envisions a world where LGBT people will no longer face discrimination or isolation because of who we are or who we love. We offer a welcoming home to 300,000 visitors each year and we are committed to serving all LGBT people through a variety of programs, services and activities that are designed to meet existing and emerging needs. The Center is many things to many people. We invite you to experience our home at 208 West 13th Street in person and online at


In 1974, playwright and gay activist Doric Wilson founded the first professional gay theatre company. It was called The Other Side of Silence (TOSOS for short). In 2002, directors Mark Finley and Barry Childs and Wilson resurrected the company, rededicating it to an honest and open exploration of the life experience and cultural sensibility of the GLBT community and to preserving and promoting our theatrical past in a determined effort to keep an important literary heritage alive. TOSOS has presented a number of critically acclaimed plays by playwrights David Bell, Meryl Cohn, Linda Eisenstein, Mark Finley, Robert Patrick, Chris Weikel, The Five Lesbian Brothers, Lanford Wilson and Charles Busch. TOSOS also runs the highly successful Chesley/Chambers play reading series under the directorship of Kathleen Warnock. The program is a recipient of grants from The Dramatists Guild Fund. For more information about TOSOS visit

Twitter: @TOSOSNYC