The 8th annual Origin’s 1st Irish launch party took place August 26, 2015 at the elegant Park Avenue space of Mutual of America. The party provided a wonderful opportunity for attendees to learn more about some of the extraordinary projects and people that make this excellent, well-curated Festival such a rich cultural feast. This year’s productions will take place from September 2 to
October 4 at venues around New York City.
George C. Heslin, artistic director of Origin’s 1st Irish, began his welcome remarks by thanking Festival sponsors including Mutual of America, McVicker and Higginbotham, The Northern Ireland Bureau, Tourism Ireland, The American Ireland Fund, New York State Council for The Arts and The Irish Government. He also gave a shout out of appreciation to Origin’s “passionate” board members, volunteers and patrons.
By the end of this year’s Festival, Heslin observed, 1st Irish will have presented more than 100 Irish playwrights to New York audiences. Representatives of several sponsors also spoke before the evening became an opportunity to enjoy the bountiful food and drink and mingle with playwrights, actors and other, associated members of the Festival theater-going community.
Origin Theatre Company premieres a diverse range of contemporary European theatre in New York City. Since its inception in 2002, Origin has been devoted to discovering, nurturing, and introducing new exciting voices from Europe, whose work provide unique perspectives on national identity, cross-cultural relations, and global understanding.
Free Shakespeare in the Park and the Mobile Theater Unit courtesy of our friends at The Public Theater is just the tip of the ice-cone for a great New York City summer. Please visit www.publictheater.org to learn more.
Of course, it’s not all free but it is all fun.
On August 4th, the first annual fundraising bash in support the South Street Seaport features Duran Duran and Wyclef Jean for a five hour celebration. Dock Rocks – Party on the Piers begins at 5pm on Pier 15 and Pier 16 at South Street Seaport with tickets starting at $55.
Unity (1918), written by Kevin Kerr and directed by KJ Sanchez. begins performances on Thursday, August 6 for a limited engagement through Sunday, August 23 atThe Gene Frankel Theatre. Part Gothic tale, part romance, part pandemic horror story, Unity (1918) recounts a historic moment in WWI when the “Spanish flu” killed more people than had been cut down in battle.
The small town of Unity takes drastic action, sealing off its borders and even burning incoming mail. For more information on Unity (1918), which won the Canadian Governor General’s Award for Drama in 2002, please visit www.projecttheater.org.
Not strictly speaking at the height of summer: join The Wild Project for the fifth annual Between the Seas festival beginning on September 8th. Between the Seas is the only festival in New York celebrating Mediterranean performance, and presenting some of the most acclaimed and innovative performers– both theatrical and dance– from the region. Highlights from Between the Seas includes an absurdist exploration on the nature of tyranny in The Dictator by Lebanese playwright Issam Mahfouz; The Dictatoris offered in its English language premiere during the festival. Catalan artist Borja Gonzales performs a piece based on puppetry and sand drawing; Esperimenti, the Italian dance company is inspired by Italian songs of the 60s and 90s for its presentation; and Rebecca Tomas dancesa vibrant flamenco for the Between the Seasaudience. For more information, please visit www.betweentheseas.org.
The27th Annual Festival Of New Musicals at New World Stages in October 15-16 is not yet ready for prime time. NAMT’s goal is to expand the musical theatre repertoire, bringing new musical theatre to thousands of audience members around the world. In the meantime, the Festival connects producers with writers, so that their shows can continue their development trajectory. The 27th Annual Festival Of New Musicals, overseen by NAMT New Works Director and Festival Producing Director Branden Huldeen and Festival General Manager Lisa Dozier King, presents eight musicals in 45-minute presentations before an audience of over 600 industry professionals.
The general public is invited to join by making a donation to The National Alliance for Musical Theatre.
Visit www.namt.org/festival to see about ticket availablity; there is also a day-of stand-by line for the general public for free admission (based on availability).