Cristina Lundy of NY Shakespeare Exchange, on “Othello” and the upcoming ShakesBEER

The New York Shakespeare Exchange recently presented Othello, setting the play’s Venice in a contemporary urban setting, with the Bard’s military officers becoming ranking police officers.

For adapter/director Cristina Lundy, the analogues between Shakespeare’s tragedy set amidst the jealousies of military officers, and the contemporary world of police work—especially in “stop & frisk”-era NYC, where those who are trusted to protect, can be the ones most feared—made this production all the more urgent to present.

While the production has closed from the posting of this episode, I’d highly recommend a listen to this interview, because NY Shakespeare Exchange has got some really interesting stuff going on—like The Sonnet Project, featuring video adaptations of all 154 sonnets, and the upcoming ShakesBEER, which…well, listen to the episode for Christina to explain it. It sounds amazing, and it’s coming up very soon…

Listen in as Cristina and I discuss hidden off-off-Broadway gems, drinking with the Bard, and how Shakespeare can be for everyone.

“The people we most want, in a way, are the people who don’t think they like Shakespeare, and let us convince them otherwise…”

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Rachel Murdy & Lucille Duncan of “Little West Twelfth Night”

Little West Twelfth Night

Walking the streets of New York City, it seems there’s a performance at every corner — planned or not. But what if you could actually follow a “staged” performance around the streets of NYC?

Wonder not, and go see Little West Twelfth Night, presented by the folks behind Conni’s Avant-Garde Restaurant in the Underground Zero Festival.

Rachel Murdy (“Frankie”) & Lucille Duncan (“Maria”), and later Dave Bennett (“Orsino”), meet me at The Brass Monkey (which figures into the show, along with the Highline, the Standard Hotel, the Gansevoort Market, a creepy van, and more) to give some insight into the first non-“avant-garde restaurant” performance from the company — a historical walking-tour of the Meatpacking District, with a healthy dash of Shakespeare.

Listen in as Rachel, Lucille, Dave & I talk impossible love affairs, chance lighting design in an outdoor walking-tour show, getting towed & questioned by the police for the sake of your show, random allusions to Law & Order: SVU are made, and Lucille & Rachel give you mixing instructions for a brass monkey, “the poor man’s mimosa.”

Conni’s Avant-Garde Restaurant & the Underground Zero Festival present
Little West Twelfth Night

based on William Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night
conceived by Rachel Murdy
written by Peter Lettre
directed by Cynthia Croot

remaining performances:
July 23 & July 29 at 8PM
July 30 at 7AM (yep — AM! sunrise special!)

tickets available via OvationTix

John Hudson & Alexandra Cohen-Spiegler of The Dark Lady Players

Romeo and Juliet Nurse's Scene, Annunciation to MaryThis week’s podcast features an interview with members of The Dark Lady Players—Artistic Director John Hudson, and ensemble member Alexandra Cohen-Spiegler (that’s her in the red, at left, as Lady Capulet).

Dark Lady is presenting Shakespeare’s Gospel Parodies, and the performance is FREE; go check it out (after you listen to the podcast)! Continue reading