New Victory Theater Season Will Bring Circus Acts and Songs

Jim Henson puppets and Ethiopian jugglers will take the stage this fall at the New Victory Theater, which offers performances for children and their families. The Off Broadway theater’s 2018-19 season will include several international circus acts, beginning with Quebec’s “Machine de Cirque,” starting Sept. 28. The Ethiopian juggling brothers Bibi and Bichu — soon appearing in Tim Burton’s film adaptation of “Dumbo” — will present “Circus Abyssinia: Ethiopian Dreams,” which explores the music and movement of their home country. The show features 12 performers who tumble, contort and juggle,…

This Angel in America Takes Wing With Help From 5 Shadows

When the dancer Ron Todorowski, who has performed with Twyla Tharp’s company and in numerous Broadway shows, was asked if he wanted to audition for the part of an Angel Shadow in “Angels in America,” he recalled, he told his agent “probably not.” “I was like: How will I fit into this?” Mr. Todorowski said. “I’m a dancer. I’m used to dancing and acting through movement.” The Angel is a messenger from heaven who visits Prior Walter, a gay man with AIDS, to tell him that he is a prophet.…

Books Spring to Life Onstage in Germany

BERLIN — In Germany, the dividing line between books and plays is astonishingly fluid. Most English-speaking visitors here would probably be surprised to see names like Thomas Mann and Dostoyevsky adorning theater marquees. Perhaps the phenomenon can be traced back to Goethe, whose two-part “Faust” — a central text of German literature — is an “armchair drama,” meant to be read rather than staged. (Goethe didn’t think the latter was possible; a production of the complete epic in 2000 lasted 21 hours.) Goethe aside, directors here love finding ways to…

Review: In a Teenage Take on ‘Richard III,’ Now Is the Prom of Our Discontent

Though Shakespeare called him “that foul, bunch-back’d toad,” Richard III probably just had scoliosis. Or so archaeologists who have examined the real king’s recently discovered skeleton conclude. Luckily, Shakespeare was a poet, not an osteopath. In “Richard III,” he demonstrates more interest in psychology than physiology, exploring how social exclusion may have led a brilliant, ambitious, frustrated royal to overcompensate by exacting a hideous revenge. That approach made for great drama. But it has also made for four centuries of mostly regular-bodied actors simulating the appearance of disability with the…

Poetry and Puppets Are Part of La MaMa’s Coming Season

In its coming season, La MaMa Experimental Theater Club will continue doing what won it the 2018 regional theater Tony Award: presenting a diverse slate of challenging performances. The theater’s 2018-19 offerings include a timely look at the origins of the National Endowment for the Arts, visual theater inspired by the poetry of William Butler Yeats, and a monthlong puppetry series. “I feel each season is shaped by the artists and what they’re exploring and experimenting with,” said Mia Yoo, the artistic director of La MaMa, in an interview. “We…

For ‘Mary Page Marlowe,’ Six Actresses Share One Role

In “Mary Page Marlowe,” a play by Tracy Letts that tracks seven decades in an Ohio woman’s life, the title character is many things: a baby, a girl, a wife, a lover, a mother, a divorcée, a retiree. She’s also many people. In the Second Stage Theater production, which is now in previews and opens July 12, Mary Page is played by six actresses. Well, six actresses and one creepily lifelike baby doll. On a recent weekday evening, rehearsal wrapped and the cast rushed into the green room to celebrate…

A Play About Refugee Camps Is Coming. With Refugees in the Cast.

As debates about the treatment of migrant families rage in the United States, a play coming to New York hopes to illuminate the plight of refugees across the Atlantic. “The Jungle,” a play by two men who spent time in a camp in Northern France with refugees from Africa and the Middle East, will arrive at St. Ann’s Warehouse on Dec. 4. The show received rave reviews when it ran in London last December. The play was written by Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson, two Englishmen who traveled to the…

Review: ‘Sugar in Our Wounds’ May Make You Cry About the Past, and the Present

Have you turned off your phone? Have you unwrapped those famous candies? Do you have a few hankies at the ready? If not, sprint to the bathroom and stuff your pockets with toilet paper squares before Donja R. Love’s throat-lumpening, nose-reddening, fantastically moving and not entirely persuasive “Sugar in Our Wounds” really gets going. You are going to need them. Produced by Manhattan Theater Club and directed by Saheem Ali, “Sugar in Our Wounds,” set in the antebellum South, is an old-fashioned weepie written in lush, poetic dialect, with up-to-date…

Review: ‘Behind the City’ Immerses You in New York and Yourself

It’s an Alfred Hitchcock moment on a Frank Capra kind of a night. You are standing on a downtown Manhattan street corner, not knowing where to go, when a gesturing hand steers your eyes upward. Your gaze is directed to a window, which frames a man and a woman in bed. They appear to be making love, but you sense a restless discontent. This being New York City, some passers-by on this breezy evening simply pass by, minds buried in thoughts or cellphones. This being New York City, others stop…