Sunday, December 20, 2015

Phil's Lists, Part 13: Theater Companies

I almost never go to musicals, except for obligatory ones with relatives visiting from overseas, but I go to dozens of straight plays each year. Working playwrights should learn what's out there, and attending productions by these theater companies:    

New York

  • Classic Stage Company introduced me to Harold Pinter and Tennessee Williams's lesser known works in the 1970s, so I'm glad to know it's still thriving.
  • La MaMa is what brought Sam Shepard and Lanford Wilson to the world.
  • Some of our most famous actors flock to Manhattan Theatre Club to act in this company's deep list of contemporary plays.  
  • New York Theatre Workshop is hip in a cool East Village location and seeks to be on the cutting edge of drama. 
  • Pearl Theatre Company stages several provocative dramatic works each year.
  • The Public Theater, also known as Joseph Papp's Public Theater, has been a go-to company for actors like Robert DeNiro, John Malkovich, Al Pacino, and Meryl Streep.
  • Primary Stages has produced numerous new plays by prize-winning playwrights. 
  • Playwrights Horizons has lived up to its name for decades by being a central source for new American plays. 
  • Roundabout Theatre Company is one of the most upscale companies, featuring both classical and modern drama.
  • Signature Theatre, my favorite, is dedicated to the playwright and to selling reasonably priced tickets, which even students can afford.

New Jersey

Los Angeles
  • Mark Taper Forum, which is where Hollywood folks try their hand at real performance.