Theater

363: Cynthia Erivo

This actor and singer won a Grammy, an Emmy, and a Tony for The Color Purple. She played Harriet Tubman in Harriet and Aretha Franklin in Genius. Is there anything she can’t do? “I will not be releasing an album of Hawaiian guitar music; I don’t think I can nearly get good enough to do that.” Hey, if she turned her … Continue reading »

Theater

332: Bill Irwin

“I identify as a clown,” he says, understating his range as a performer, having portrayed George on Broadway in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf and Mr. Noodle on Sesame Street in Elmo’s World. And yet even a career as luminous as his has its disappointments: “I once asked John Cleese to play Pozzo in Waiting for Godot. Wouldn’t it have … Continue reading »

Movies / Television / Theater

326: Alec Baldwin

Admired for both comedy (30 Rock) and drama (Streetcar), he is an astute observer of other actors and once wrote a fan letter to Tom Courtenay for his work in The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner. Courtenay replied, “How odd that you would take the time to write this to me about this film I did so long ago.” No … Continue reading »

Theater

325: Daryl Roth

She has produced more than 90 plays on and off Broadway, from The Normal Heart to Kinky Boots. Producers open shows and close shows. She enjoys the rare distinction of having unclosed a show. “I went to the theater one night,  just quietly by myself, before half-hour, and I walked over to the board where the closing notice was posted, … Continue reading »

Theater

320: Rebecca Luker

This celebrated Broadway actor–-The Secret Garden, The Music Man, Mary Poppins–-much admired for her glorious voice, sees parallels between cooking and theater. Both are ephemeral. A recipe is akin to a script: neither is the thing itself; each provides instructions for creating the thing. None of this contradicts audience etiquette: no eating during the performance, … Continue reading »

Theater

318: Dominique Morisseau

She is the author of The Detroit Project, a three-play cycle, and the Broadway musical Ain’t Too Proud–The Life and Times of the Temptations, another kind of Detroit story. Even at its most ferocious, her work is suffused with love. “Love is not approval or agreement or acquiescence. Love is challenge, love is provocation, agitation, and pushing us toward … Continue reading »

Theater

317: Julie Taymor

She directed and designed costumes for the stage version of The Lion King, seen by 90 million people in 100 cities, attributing its success, in part, to its use of puppets. “I actually think people are often more touched by a puppet’s gesture than a human’s.” Make up your own Trump/Putin joke. Continue reading »

Theater

315: André De Shields

This fine performer — Ain’t Misbehavin’, The Wiz, Hadestown — notes that Shakespeare has much to say about our times, including “Macbeth is seen as a great killing machine,” alluding to the virus, the police, or the president. We find the metaphors we need. Our first episode made with Broadway on Demand, the video version can be seen – seen! … Continue reading »