Stage & Candor

Stage & Candor A platform for artists & stories that address intersectional & inclusive issues in the performing arts.

Friends,You may have noticed that Stage & Candor has been quiet all year.Late last year, a phenomenal group of theater a...
05/23/2019
3Views on Theater

Friends,

You may have noticed that Stage & Candor has been quiet all year.

Late last year, a phenomenal group of theater artists led by The Lillys reached out and asked if I’d be interested in helping them create and manage a new platform that increases the coverage on theater by providing cultural context and illumination on the art form by embracing a multiplicity of voices, inviting a spectrum of cultural luminaries to write, converse, and review theater.

I am ecstatic to announce the fundraiser for 3Views​ on Theater to kickstart our official launch, slated for fall of this year. We look forward to bringing you content beyond what a singular type of voice thinks of a multiplicity of stories told on stage. We look forward to publishing writing by artists such as Gloria Steinem, Roxane Gay, Zadie Smith, and Eve Ensler.

In Stage & Candor’s mission statement, we write that our dream is to put ourselves out of business; that we dream of a world with an even playing field, in which the conversation about equity is long since solved. We are nowhere near that, and we are not giving up!

We are in the process of creating an archive version of Stage & Candor, so that its content will live on and continue to be accessible to all.

In the meantime, please continue to support inclusive theater coverage and consider donating to the 3Views Kickstarter campaign at bit.ly/vie3s!

Learn more at https://3viewstheater.com and follow us on @3viewstheater on Twitter and Instagram.

With love,
Michelle Tse | Stage & Candor

Help us launch 3Views on Theater – bringing more light to the art of the stage and new voices to writing about theater

It's Election Day! Have you voted yet?While you're in line, read Sarah Durn's piece on how A Doll’s House Part 2 and B...
11/06/2018
How A Doll’s House Part 2 and Brett Kavanaugh Taught An Actor How To Listen - Sarah Durn | Stage & Candor

It's Election Day! Have you voted yet?

While you're in line, read Sarah Durn's piece on how A Doll’s House Part 2 and Brett Kavanaugh taught an actor how to listen

https://stageandcandor.com/features/sarah-durn-dolls-house-kavanaugh

What happens in A Doll’s House Part 2 and not in Dr. Ford and Judge Kavanaugh’s hearings is the space to see the people beneath the arguments, to create the space for empathy. Politics and political news coverage is often so reductive, that there’s no space to see the people beneath the extrac...

William Jackson Harper’s impressive debut play Travisville, though set in the 1960s, feels like a contemporary piece t...
10/26/2018
A Conversation with the cast of Travisville | Stage & Candor

William Jackson Harper’s impressive debut play Travisville, though set in the 1960s, feels like a contemporary piece tackling issues of race, gentrification, and political revolution. We sat down with cast members Denny Dale Bess, Sheldon Best, Brian D. Coats, Bjorn DuPaty, Lynnette R. Freeman, and Ivan Moore of the sold-out run Ensemble Studio Theatre over lunch to discuss the play’s impact and importance in our current political climate.

"...this country was very much built with certain inherent biases already entrenched in its creation and its fabric. But then one of the big things that this country was built on was the fact that we can overthrow things and there can be messy revolution and that as Americans we should do that in order to have ourselves better representative forward democracy. Now, that has never actually been true. We say it’s true. But it's not. And so I think that before we can even address things in full revolution or even peaceful protests, there is a necessity for everyone to speak very frankly about inherent biases, to speak very frankly about racism and sexism and misogyny and all of that. That is literally built into our institutions because it's hard to move forward when the laws themselves are not fair or built with those same ideals in mind." — Lynnette R. Freeman

https://stageandcandor.com/conversations/travisville

William Jackson Harper’s impressive debut play Travisville, though set in the 1960s, feels like a contemporary piece tackling issues of race, gentrification, and political revolution. We sat down with cast members Denny Dale Bess, Sheldon Best, Brian D. Coats, Bjorn DuPaty, Lynnette R. Freeman, an...

This is always a fun night and a great cause! We can’t wait!
09/14/2018

This is always a fun night and a great cause! We can’t wait!

Join us! October 29th. 24 Hour Musicals. Tickets here: bit.ly/Lilly24M

Two women and lifelong friends are stranded together in a faraway land. That deceptively simple premise is the impetus f...
09/12/2018
A Conversation with the cast and director of The Waters of Friendship | Stage & Candor

Two women and lifelong friends are stranded together in a faraway land. That deceptively simple premise is the impetus for Argentinian playwright Arístides Vargas’ poetic, funny, and poignant Donde el viento hace buñuelos (The Waters of Friendship), which will have a world premiere English production at Teatro LATEA September 16 through the 23rd. We sat down with director Jerry Soto and cast members Nicole Betancourt and Zahydé Pietri to discuss the play, their involvement in the translation, and how current events —particularly the devastation of Hurricane Maria on their homeland of Puerto Rico — have helped shape and illuminate this piece for contemporary New York audiences.

"Catalina is a character that mentions hurricanes a lot. It’s been tough but also has been a way to cope with this tragedy. We’re actually going to be performing during the one year anniversary of when the hurricane hit Puerto Rico, on September 20. When it happened and there was no communication, we didn’t hear from our people for weeks at a time, because the communications were down, electricity was off. We were here, and we saw the images of the damage in Puerto Rico before they did. We knew what a disaster it was. We saw what was happening, but we couldn’t reach them to make sure they were ok. I felt like I was screaming everyday on social media. I would see someone and I couldn’t help myself, it was all I could talk about. Why aren’t we doing more? People are dying, or are going to die if there’s no electricity. People don’t have access to the oxygen or dialysis they needed, and that’s why so many died. But we’re finally getting an official death toll now, a year later. It’s a lot higher than what the government had officially told us. And we knew. Everything that we’ve been screaming about is finally being acknowledged. Even though, as Nicole said, we still don’t know the names of all the victims; they’re not all accounted for. So for me, playing this character is another way to deal with all that’s been happening for the last year. All that frustration, and sadness, and anger." — Zahydé Pietr

https://stageandcandor.com/conversations/waters-of-friendship

Two women and lifelong friends are stranded together in a faraway land. That deceptively simple premise is the impetus for Argentinian playwright Arístides Vargas’ poetic, funny, and poignant Donde el viento hace buñuelos (The Waters of Friendship), which will have a world premiere English produ...

Marcus Gardley’s The House That Will Not Stand is an adaptation from Federico García Lorca´s seminal The House of Be...
08/14/2018
A Conversation with the cast of The House That Will Not Stand | Stage & Candor

Marcus Gardley’s The House That Will Not Stand is an adaptation from Federico García Lorca´s seminal The House of Bernarda Alba inspired by real-life stories of Creole women of color in New Orleans in the early 19th century who had, for a time, freedom and status allowed due to their romantic relationships with powerful white men. While covering somber topics like the evils of slavery, racism, and the patriarchy, the play is a joyous celebration of black women. It is running through August 19 at New York Theatre Workshop. We sat down with five of the talented women who make up this all-female cast–Joniece Abbott-Pratt, Juliana Canfield, Harriet D Foy, Marie Thomas, and Michelle Wilson–to talk about the play and its resonance to contemporary audiences.

"We are powerful. Sometimes we don’t realize it. Because we live in a patriarchal society. I’ve never felt less than any man in my life, including my husband. I’ve never been anybody’s shrinking violet. I didn’t come from that kind of environment and I don’t intend to in my life, which is why I left a place where everybody had to be a shrinking violet. Can’t do it. I guess in my personal history, it’s right on for me to be able to do this play at this junction in my life and I feel very appreciative of it. I’m inspired by all of this talent around me." — Marie Thomas

https://stageandcandor.com/conversations/house-that-will-not-stand

Marcus Gardley’s The House That Will Not Stand is an adaptation from Federico García Lorca´s seminal The House of Bernarda Alba inspired by real life stories of Creole women of color in New Orleans in the early 19th century who had, for a time, freedom and status allowed due to their romantic re...

08/10/2018
Kate Bornstein

Kate Bornstein

I’m deeply touched by the outpouring of love and support in response to an attempted shaming of me that happened during a performance of Young Jean Lee’s “Straight White Men” on Broadway last night. It’s true what people are saying: a woman, in response to my opening line of the show, “Good evening, ladies, gentlemen, and the rest of us,” called out from the audience “You’re not welcome here.”

She could not have been more wrong. The cast, crew, and company of “Straight White Men” have been warm, welcoming, and inclusive of me and the other trans actors in the show, Ty Defoe and T.L. Thompson. The production company, Second Stage Theater, have only expressed delight in welcoming us aboard. And the staff of the Helen Hayes Theater could not be more welcoming—we all of us give and receive nightly hugs. So, I don’t know who she thought she was talking about when she claimed that I’m not welcome. I was not shamed by her. I was puzzled. What could have caused this woman’s outburst?

I’ve been chewing that over, and the best I can come up with is that one of her children or grandchildren has gone through a gender transition that troubled her greatly, to the point that she just boiled over when I took the stage. Look, “Straigh White Men” is a great work of art. And great art does upset people. It happens all the time. Please know that I’m not upset, or afraid. I’m more than ever proud to be part of this show.

Again, thank you for your love and support.

Darrel Alejandro Holnes’ Bird of Pray (recently featured as part of the Brick Theater’s Festival of Lies) beautifull...
07/31/2018
A Conversation with Darrel Alejandro Holnes and Jonathan González | Stage & Candor

Darrel Alejandro Holnes’ Bird of Pray (recently featured as part of the Brick Theater’s Festival of Lies) beautifully uses spoken word, language, and dance to illuminate issues of race, sexual identity, depression, PTSD, and the high suicide rate among U.S. veterans. We sat down with Darrel and choreographer Jonathan González to discuss their collaboration and creative process.

"Well, one of the reasons why I really am drawn to this community is because so many of the stories related to LGBT service in the military specifically focuses on gay, CIS, white men. And so many stories of veterans in general focus on straight, CIS, white men. With all of my work, I always think about who is left out of the history books and I take it on as a mission to write those stories into the history books by writing them into the history of the American stage. And so this is really made to honor those stories which are complex and full of contradiction and sometimes the stories are completely opposite experiences because we are diverse people, right? Some people have it great, some people have it bad, some people have up and down, some people have everything in the middle. And so I think it’s really important to show that diversity even within this specific community; to show the wide range of experiences within the military, within blackness, and within queerness as well." — Darrel

https://stageandcandor.com/conversations/bird-pray/

Darrel Alejandro Holnes’ Bird of Pray (recently featured as part of the Brick Theater’s Festival of Lies) beautifully uses spoken word, language, and dance to illuminate issues of race, sexual identity, depression, PTSD, and the high suicide rate among U.S. veterans. We sat down with Darrel and ...

In 1976, three sisters – Gloria Miguel, Muriel Miguel and Lisa Mayo (née Elizabeth Miguel) from Kuna and Rappahannock...
06/20/2018
A Conversation with Muriel Miguel and the cast of Fear of Oatmeal | Stage & Candor

In 1976, three sisters – Gloria Miguel, Muriel Miguel and Lisa Mayo (née Elizabeth Miguel) from Kuna and Rappahannock ancestry – formed the legendary Spiderwoman Theater, the first indigenous feminist theater group in the United States. Their plays have been produced all over the world and published in numerous anthologies. Fear of Oatmeal by Muriel Miguel is playing through June 24 at Theater for the New City. An elder Native woman (played by Muriel’s sister Gloria) sits at her colorful Brooklyn apartment as the spirits of her ancestors – ever present – materialize with stories that illuminate her past, present, and future. The play features an entirely Native cast, and is a vibrant, funny, and heartfelt tribute to heritage, memory, family, and the perseverance of culture. We sat down with Gloria and Muriel, as well as the remaining cast members – Donna Couteau, Joe Cross, Soni Moreno and Sheldon Raymore – to discuss the play and the importance of Native representation in the arts.

https://stageandcandor.com/conversations/fear-oatmeal/#.WypevBJKhBg

In 1976, three sisters – Gloria Miguel, Muriel Miguel and Lisa Mayo (née Elizabeth Miguel) from Kuna and Rappahannock ancestry – formed the legendary Spiderwoman Theater, the first indigenous feminist theater group in the United States. Their plays have been produced all over the world and publ...

We were invited to Tabula RaSa NYC Theater & Performance Lab's latest piece, In The Eye Of The Needle—a funny, inventi...
06/07/2018
A Conversation with Ramiro Antonio Sandoval | Stage & Candor

We were invited to Tabula RaSa NYC Theater & Performance Lab's latest piece, In The Eye Of The Needle—a funny, inventive, and ultimately poignant look at communication in the modern age— and sat down with Ramiro Antonio Sandoval, the founder and artistic director, who was gracious enough to share his thoughts on theater, social change, diversity, and the importance of interpersonal communication.

" I think that theater in that sense is above all arts. The direct contact with the audience is something that can’t be replaced, because the farther we steer from everybody, the more we appreciate when we can get together around one idea, one thought, one feeling, one sound. Through theater, and these are not my words, I’m paraphrasing Peter Brooks, who acknowledges that in society, those dynamics that break up society because we cannot see each other dismembers all of the parts, and they find in theater a place where all those members get together to become one big organ, if you will. So because of that you can go beyond ideologies, religion. You can go beyond many borders that are created by men to supposedly evolve and to solve problems, but end up separating us, isolating us from even ourselves. When we don’t even go out to see and feel what the weather’s like today, but we just ask our phones; we’re losing that level of awareness, the human touch. Theater breaks through that and sheds light on those issues that will come together, and we have something in common now that we’ve seen this and when we have something in common, then we can do things together."

https://stageandcandor.com/conversations/ramiro-antonio-sandoval

On a rainy Monday, I stopped by Teatro LaTea, located on the second floor of the Clemente Soto Velez Cultural Center on the Lower East Side. LaTea is hosting a residency of the international theater collective Tabula Rasa whose mission statement is, among other things, to foster dialogue on an inter...

We sat down with the entire cast of New York Theatre Workshop's Light Shining in Buckinghamshire to talk about interpret...
05/31/2018
A Conversation with the cast of Light Shining in Buckinghamshire | Stage & Candor

We sat down with the entire cast of New York Theatre Workshop's Light Shining in Buckinghamshire to talk about interpreting a play set in 1600s England for a modern audience, stamina, and different types of accessibility in the theater.

"...the casting of this particular ensemble embodies a level of programmatic accessibility, which I’ve never seen, been a part of, or experienced in your theater ever.

People don’t look at all those different facets of accessibility together and I think you’re absolutely right Mikéah, this expanding and broadening [of economic access]. When we look at the question of accessibility, you need to look at economics, look at structural, look at programming. So you’re getting at all those things and you’re making theater available to all, the entire community, because if I was a teenage kid or adolescent kid or even an adult and seeing the bodies that are inhabiting these words on [this] stage right now, I would be absolutely blown away and broken open in a way. But if I can’t get in the door, due to whatever reason, structural, economic, whatever, then a great opportunity is being lost." —Gregg Mozgala

https://stageandcandor.com/conversations/light-shining-in-buckinghamshire/

We sat down with the entire cast of Light Shining in Buckinghamshire on a Saturday afternoon, now playing at the New York Theatre Workshop, to talk about interpreting a play set in 1600s England for a modern audience, stamina, and different types of accessibility in the theater.

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