Legendary Actors Studio Offers Free Plays in FiDi Now Through November
A cycle of Broadway-quality theatrical productions is being staged over the coming five weeks in Lower Manhattan, by people who will likely be working on Broadway very soon—students graduating from the fabled Actors Studio Drama School, as part of Pace University’s Master of Fine Arts program. All tickets to the ten plays are free.
The highly regarded Actors Studio Drama School at Pace University is currently exhibiting its annual repertory season of plays at the ASDS Repertory Theater in Lower Manhattan. Starting tomorrow and continuing through
Starting tomorrow (Wednesday, October 20) and continuing for five weeks (through November 20), the school will present ten productions, ranging from re-stagings of legacy works, to new dramas and musicals. All shows will be staged by students graduating with MFA degrees in acting, directing, and playwriting. All of these performances are free to attend.
Tomorrow through Saturday (October 23), the program will feature “North Carolina,” a new one-act play by Brett Goldberg that showcases the flawed nature of human connection, and the lengths we go to attain comfort, along with “Dog Sees God: Confessions Of A Teenage Blockhead,” Bert Royal’s “unauthorized continuation” that reimagines characters from the popular comic strip Peanuts as degenerate teenagers.
Next week (Wednesday, October 27 through Saturday, October 30), the headliners are John Patrick Shanley’s “Danny And The Deep Blue Sea” (about two wounded souls who meet in a bar begin a conversation that leads to an unlikely connection) and “John And Jen” (a musical by Andrew Lippa and Tom Greenwald about the relationships between a brother and sister and then, after the brother is killed, between the sister and her son).
The Actors Studio repertory season continues the following week (Wednesday, November 3 through Saturday, November 6) with a triple bill of “The Sugar Plant,” “God / Machine,” and “Roger and Vanessa.” The first is a new one-act play by Timothy Nolan about an artist who must choose between the husband she loves and the work that keeps her alive. The second is (also a new one-act play) is Joris de Graaf’s tale of a world where a machine is worshipped as a God. The third is Brett C. Leonard’s comedy about a newly released convict who schemes to hit the big time as a singer, in spite of the fact that he can’t sing.
The fourth week (Wednesday, November 10 through Saturday, November 13) features “Salacious Sins of Sister Cuthberta (All In The Name Of Porridge),” a new one-act drama that author J. Gulotta describes as, “an absurd play for an absurder world.” Also on the bill: Election Day, Josh Tobiessen’s dark comedy about the price of political (and personal) campaigns.
And the cycle concludes (Wednesday, November 17 through Saturday, November 20) with a staging of “Hope and Gravity,” playwright Michael Hollinger’s story of a falling elevator that causes nine lives to collide in surprising ways, both comic and tragic—through love and sex, poetry and dentistry—while tracing the barely perceivable threads that connect us all.
All of these plays are being staged at the ASDS Repertory Theater (80 Greenwich Street, between Rector and Edgar Streets), and the four performances begin at 7:30 pm on the days indicated. There is also a Saturday matinee for each production, which starts at 3:00 pm.
All performances are free, but space is limited to 70 percent of the venue’s capacity by COVID-19 restrictions. (Further precautions mandates for physical distancing and the wearing face coverings, along with a requirement that attendees self-certify they do not have symptoms, and have not been diagnosed with or had direct contact with a COVID-19 case in the past 14 days. Proof of vaccination or a recent negative COVID test are also necessary.) Anyone wishing to attend is urged to register in advance for complimentary tickets by browsing asdsrepseason.com, and clicking on “Make a Reservation.”
To the Editor:
I note with irony that the City has “decided to dignify” Five Points, “that was once a source of shame and that it later sought to erase, ” at the same time that it has decided to shuffle a statue of Thomas Jefferson out of the Council chambers which has inspired pride in American principles for more than 100 years.
I am moved to ask, what Council Member has contributed more to American freedom than Jefferson? Indeed, to the history of world freedom? How do all of the measures taken by Council in a hundred year’s compare to the achievements of Jefferson? If Jefferson inherited the sin of slavery, what noble actions have the individual Council Members taken to fully renounce the sins and transgressions into which they were born?
Recalling Five Points
Epicenter of a Notorious Slum Memorialized
The City has decided to dignify a district that was once a source of shame and that it later sought to erase, both from memory and the Lower Manhattan streetscape. In 1831, the City government considered a petition that warned, “that the place known as ‘Five Points’ has long been notorious… as being the nursery where every species of vice is conceived and matured; that it is infested by a class of the most abandoned and desperate character.”
A decade later, Charles Dickens, visiting New York, wrote of the same Lower Manhattan neighborhood that had inspired the petition, “what place is this, to which the squalid street conducts us? A kind of square of leprous houses, some of which are attainable only by crazy wooden stairs without. What lies behind this tottering flight of steps? Let us go on again, and plunge into the Five Points…. Debauchery has made the very houses prematurely old. See how the rotten beams are tumbling down, and how the patched and broken windows seem to scowl dimly, like eyes that have been hurt in drunken forays.” Of the inhabitants, he observed, “pigs live here. Do they ever wonder why their masters walk upright instead of going on all fours, and why they talk instead of grunting?”
Interdisciplinary artist and advocate David Thomson delves into questions of care, listening, change, trust and resilience. How do we value ourselves and others? How do we redefine intentional care and success? These are some questions that have emerged through his work on The Sustainability Project, which focuses on ideas of financial, artistic, and personal empowerment in the arts community, and are woven into larger issues we continue to wrestle with culturally, socially and politically. $10-$15
With its amazing gardens and views of the Hudson River and New York Bay, Wagner Park is the perfect setting to practice your art. Participants are expected to bring their own drawing and painting supplies, including drawing boards and containers of water if they are planning to paint. BPCA will supply drawing paper and watercolor paper only. Masks required. Participants must maintain six feet of physical distance between households. All programs will be held in accordance with New York State reopening guidance.
Bob O’Shea was a kid from New Jersey. O’Shea’s success on Wall Street is the epitome of the American dream. He was offered partnership at Goldman Sachs at age 29, making him the second-youngest partner in the firm’s history. Then, as a second act, O’Shea co-founded Silver Point Capital, a credit and special situations hedge fund, in 2002. He subsequently grew the firm from $120 million in assets under management to $15 billion. Michael Gatto, an adjunct professor at Fordham, will interview O’Shea about his meteoric rise on Wall Street. Topics will include his career and keys to his success, his views of the current credit markets and his advice for students and young professionals on how to build successful careers in credit. Reservations required.
Expect a fascinating, novel dialogue among soulful strains of music when clarinet and mandolin virtuoso Andy Statman joins forces with Jay Gandhi, Ehren Hanson, and David Ellenbogen of Brooklyn Raga Massive. This unique and amazing collaboration, taps into the rich traditions of improvisation and spiritual yearning that animate Indian classical, Jewish, and American roots music. FreeBattery Park City Authority
Community Board 1 Quality of Life & Service Delivery Committee
Experience an immersive sound installation within the Winter Garden palm trees as part of Brookfield Place‘s annual music series, New Sounds Live, curated by John Schaefer of WNYC. The installation titled, Veils and Vesper, is a composition of synthetic sounds by John Luther Adams that is formed by the interactions of a mathematical algorithm and prime numbers to create a sensuous, ever-changing soundscape. Tonight, the installation will be accompanied by live music performance. Free
The tall ship Wavertree, the lightship Ambrose, and the tug W.O. Decker are open to the public. Explore Wavertree and Ambrose while they are docked; cruise New York Harbor on W.O. Decker. Wavertree and Ambrose visits are free; Decker prices vary. Check website for times, prices and other details.
Boris Lurie: Nothing To Do But To Try is a first-of-its-kind exhibition on the 20th-century artist and Holocaust survivor Boris Lurie. Centered around his earliest work, the so-called War Series, as well as never-before-exhibited objects and ephemera from Lurie’s personal archive, the exhibition presents a portrait of an artist reckoning with devastating trauma, haunting memories, and an elusive, lifelong quest for freedom.
In drawing together artistic practice and historical chronicle, Boris Lurie: Nothing To Do But To Try is fertile new territory for the Museum of Jewish Heritage, offering a survivor’s searing visual testimony within a significant art historical context. The Museum is open Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday from 11 AM – 7 PM ET through October 17. The Museum is closed on Jewish holidays and on Thanksgiving. As of October 18, the Museum will be open Sunday and Wednesday: 10 AM to 5 PM; Thursday, 10 AM to 8 PM; and Friday, 10 AM to 3 PM.
CLASSIFIEDS & PERSONALS
Swaps & Trades, Respectable Employment, Lost and Found
Providing Companion and Home Health Aide Care to clients with dementia.Help with grooming, dressing and wheelchair assistance. Able to escort client to parks and engage in conversations of desired topics and interests of client. Reliable & Honest
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New Rental Building in Hudson Square Contains 30 Affordable Units
Downtown’s roster of affordable rental apartments will soon expand by 30 new homes, as part of a residential development at 111 Varick Street, two blocks north of Canal Street. The building will contain a total of 2100 rental units (with the remaining 70 apartments at market-rate rentals). In exchange for committing to affordability protections on the 30 units, the developer received tax incentives worth many millions of dollars, which helped to build the project.
People wishing to live in the affordable units at 111 Varick are urged enter the affordable housing lottery being overseen by the City’s the Department of Housing Preservation and Development.
Concerns Raised about Proposal to Make Sidewalk Dining Permanent
Elected officials and local leaders are mobilizing against a plan by the administration of Mayor Bill de Blasio to expand and make permanent the allowance that enabled restaurants to expand into City streets and sidewalks, originally adopted as a provisional measure during the COVID-19 pandemic.
On October 6, as the Department of City Planning began consideration of this proposal at its headquarters, at 120 Broadway, State Assembly member Deborah Glick, Community Board 1 chair Tammy Meltzer, and City Council candidate Christopher Marte joined other leaders and activists at a rally and protest outside to voice reservations about this plan.
More Survivors than Responders Now are Submitting Claims
The September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) has released its annual report for 2020, which documents some significant developments.
Over the course of its ten years of operation thus far, the VCF has awarded $7.76 billion to more than 34,400 individuals who have suffered death or personal injury as a result of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 and their aftermath. The vast majority of these injuries take the form of illness caused by exposure to toxic materials that were released by the destruction of the World Trade Center.
BPCA Chair will Depart to Serve as Ambassador to Greece
The White House announced on Friday that President Joe Biden plans to nominate George Tsunis, the chairman of the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) since 2018, to serve as the United States Ambassador to Greece. Assuming that Mr. Tsunis, a real estate developer and philanthropist, is confirmed by the United States Senate, as seems likely, he will soon be required to vacate his current post, overseeing the 92 acres of landfill between West Street and the Hudson River, which is home to more than 10,000 residents.
Mr. Tsunis said, “I am honored and humbled by the nomination, and if confirmed I look forward to promoting American interests and values in the bilateral relationship—as well as to deepening and strengthening an already strong relationship.”
World Trade Center Health Program Faces Funding Shortfall
The World Trade Center Health Program, which provides medical treatment to people affected by the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, is facing an impending budget shortfall that, if left unaddressed, could cause it to scale back services starting in 2025. Activists, local leaders, and elected officials are working to head off this possibility with new legislation.
More than 58,000 people are currently grappling with health problems arising from exposure to environmental toxins on September 11, 2001, and its aftermath. More have died from these illnesses in the years since 2001 than perished on the day of the attacks. There are now 21,000 people suffering from cancers related to September 11.
Samascott Orchard Orchard fruit, strawberries from Columbia County, New York
Francesa’s Bakery Breads and baked goods from Middlesex County, New Jersey
Meredith’s Bakery Baked goods from Ulster County, New York
Riverine Ranch Water Buffalo meat and cheeses from Warren County, New Jersey
1857 Spirits Handcrafted potato vodka from Schoharie County, New York
SNAP/EBT/P-EBT, Debit/Credit, and Farmers Market Nutrition Program checks accepted
TODAY IN HISTORY
Born in Wisconsin in 1868, Edward Curtis’ father was a minister and Civil War veteran. In 1887, his family moved to Seattle where he became a partner in a photo studio. In 1906, J.P. Morgan gave Curtis $75,000 to produce a series on Native Americans and over the course of 20 years, he made 10,000 wax cylinder recordings of Native American language and took over 40,000 photographs.
In 1907, he wrote, “The information that is to be gathered … respecting the mode of life of one of the great races of mankind, must be collected at once or the opportunity will be lost.”
202 BC – Second Punic War: At the Battle of Zama, Roman legions under Scipio Africanus defeat Hannibal Barca, leader of the army defending Carthage.
439 – The Vandals, led by King Gaiseric, take Carthage in North Africa.
1386 – The Universität Heidelberg holds its first lecture, making it the oldest German university.
1512 – Martin Luther becomes a doctor of theology.
1789 – John Jay is sworn in as the first Chief Justice of the United States.
1912 – Italo-Turkish War: Italy takes possession of what is now Libya from the Ottoman Empire.
1935 – The League of Nations places economic sanctions on Italy for its invasion of Ethiopia.
1960 – The United States imposes a near-total trade embargo against Cuba.
1973 – President Nixon rejects an Appeals Court decision that he turn over the Watergate tapes.
1987 – Black Monday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average falls by 22%, 508 points.
2005 – Saddam Hussein goes on trial in Baghdad for crimes against humanity.
1688 – William Cheselden, English surgeon and anatomist (d. 1752)
1862 – Auguste Lumière, French director and producer (d. 1954)
1922 – Jack Anderson, American journalist and author (d. 2005)
1931 – John le Carré, English intelligence officer and author
1937 – Peter Max, German-American illustrator
1956 – Grover Norquist, American activist, founded Americans for Tax Reform
1587 – Francesco I de’ Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany (b. 1541)
1745 – Jonathan Swift, Irish satirist and essayist (b. 1667)
1897 – George Pullman, American engineer and businessman, founded the Pullman Company (b. 1831)
1945 – N. C. Wyeth, American painter and illustrator (b. 1882)
1950 – Edna St. Vincent Millay, American poet and playwright (b. 1892)
1952 – Edward S. Curtis, American ethnologist and photographer (b. 1868)