All Things Entertaining and Cultural
It wasn’t for lack of trying.
I didn’t buy a ticket when the Broadway run went on sale because it never dawned on me, given history, that the theater, producer, or public relations firm would never answer my request to buy — that’s buy, as in purchase for ready cash– a house seat for a performance with the original cast. Then, I stood in line at the box office to be told repeatedly nothing is available in this decade (an exaggeration, but not by much). I could have scored a seat for Sunday, July 3, but the price when mentioned was $544, which was out of my current spending range and outrageous in general.
Except that I believe entirely in open markets, so I couldn’t complain if the theater — This happened at the Richard Rodgers box office. — charged what current traffic would bear. On web sites, “Hamilton” ticket holders offer seats for prices as high as $4,000, and I haven’t looked in a while since the cheapest seat offered is usually in the $700 range.
Oh, yes, I have been in the Hamilton lottery. More times than you’ve tied shoes.
The same answer every time — “Unfortunately, your name was not selected….blah, blah, blah.
As many know, I am an American Revolution junkie — I can’t wait for the new museum at 3rd and Chestnut to open, as dreadful as I regard the architecture; Boring! I read Ron Chernow’s biography of Alexander Hamilton years before it became fashionable. And Hamilton has always been just behind George Washington as my favorite founding father.
What’s a history buff and theater enthusiast to do? Wait, I guess. Until tickets are available or cheaper. Or until “Hamilton” comes to Philadelphia — If I’m alive; Philadelphia is treated third-class as a touring town — and I attend with a critic’s comp.
One thing I can tell you. Sam Rudy, “Hamilton’s” p.r. guy, better not catch fire if I’m the only one around to put him out!
The good news is me not seeing “Hamilton” left the field wider for nominees. This assumes I’d agree with others that the “Hamilton” cast should glom all of the accolades. I may not have. New Hamiltonians conceivably can dominate other years, but for 2015-2016, they are ineligible. (I would have enjoyed seeing and, if warranted, celebrating Leslie Odom, Jr., who cut his teeth at Freedom Theatre.)
Without more curmudgeonly griping, and with assurance to Mr. Rudy that I wouldn’t really let him burn, here are the nominees for the 2015-2016 Helen and Morris Zoren Award for World Theater. They are in six categories and listed in alphabetical order. Recipients will be announced, along with a list of the Top 40 performers in each category, later this week.
THE CRUCIBLE by Arthur Miller, Walter Kerr Theatre, New York City
THE HUMANS by Stephen Karam, Roundabout, Helen Hayes Theatre, New York City
LONG DAY’S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT by Eugene O’Neill, Roundabout, American Airlines Theatre, New York City
PYGMALION by George Bernard Shaw, The Shaw Festival, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario
LA TRAVIATA by Giuseppe Verdi and Francesco Maria Piave, Opera Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa.
GABRIEL BYRNE, Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Roundabout, NYC
JAMES IJAMES, An Octoroon, Wilma Theater, Philadelphia, Pa.
FRANK LANGELLA, The Father, Manhattan Theatre Club, NYC
PATRICK McMANUS, Pygmalion, The Shaw Festival, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario
BEN WHISHAW, The Crucible, NYC
MELANYE FINISTER, All My Sons, People’s Light & Theatre Company, Malvern, Pa.
JESSICA LANGE, Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Roundabout, NYC
LISETTE OROPESA, La Traviata, Opera Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa.
TARA ROSLING, Top Girls and You Never Can Tell, The Shaw Festival, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario
HARVEEN SANDHU, Pygmalion, The Shaw Festival, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR:
LUKE BRAHDT, 1776, Media Theatre, Media, Pa.
BEN DAVIS, The Sound of Music, National Tour, Academy of Music, Philadelphia, Pa.
BRANDON VICTOR DIXON, Shuffle Along, Music Box Theatre, NYC
BILLY PORTER, Shuffle Along, Music Box Theatre, NYC
MICHAEL SHANNON, Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Roundabout, NYC
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS:
MARIEKE HEEBINK, After the Rehearsal, Fringe Arts at Armory, Philadelphia, Pa.
JANE HOUDYSHELL, The Humans, Roundabout, NYC
ZAINAB JAH, Eclipsed, John Golden Theatre, NYC
JANE KRAKOWSKI, She Loves Me, Roundabout, NYC
FIONA REID, The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Capitalism and Socialism with a Key to Scripture, The Shaw Festival, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario
PAUL CURRAN, La Traviata, Opera Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pa.
KAMILAH FORBES, All My Sons, People’s Light & Theatre Company, Malvern, Pa.
PETER HINTON, Pygmalion, The Shaw Festival, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario
JONATHAN KENT, Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Roundabout, NYC
IVO VAN HOVE, The Crucible, Walter Kerr Theatre, NYC