This Week on Broadway for March 8, 2020: Girl From The North Country and Dana H.

Peter Filichia, James Marino, and Michael Portantiere talk about How to Defend Yourself by Liliana Padilla, Girl From The North Country, Dana H. @ Vineyard Theatre, About Love @ The Sheen Center, Mr Toole @ 59e59, and Mark William @ Green Room 42.


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Peter Filichia | [email protected] | Facebook
PETER FILICHIA is a playwright, journalist, and historian with a number of books. His columns appear at Masterworks BroadwayBroadway Select and many other places.

James Marino | [email protected] | Twitter | Facebook

Michael Portantiere | [email protected] | Facebook
MICHAEL PORTANTIERE is a theater reviewer and essayist. He is the founder and editor of He is also a theatrical photographer whose photos have appeared in The New York Times and other major publications. You can see his photography work at

Coming up for Michael: Bobby Cannavale and Rose Byrne Will Star in Reading of Arthur Miller’s A View From the Bridge
The Acting Company will present a benefit reading of Arthur Miller’s mid-century drama A View from the Bridge March 23 at 7 PM at The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College.

Notes and links for the podcast.



Live Action Lion King nee: Hamlet?

Peter’s Trivia Answer

New Shows in Development: How to Defend Yourself by Liliana Padilla, The Winner of the Yale Drama Series


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PF: Girl From The North Country @ the Belasco Theatre, 111 West 44th Street

After critically-acclaimed, smash-hit runs at The Public Theater, The Old Vic London, and in the West End, Girl From The North Country, written and directed by celebrated playwright Conor McPherson, with music and lyrics by the legendary Bob Dylan, brings its rousing spirit to Broadway.

Girl from the North Country stars Todd Almond as Elias Burke, Jeannette Bayardelle as Mrs. Neilsen, Caitlin Houlahan as Kate Draper, Robert Joy as Dr. Walker, Marc Kudisch as Mr. Burke, Matt McGrath as Reverend Marlowe, Luba Mason as Mrs. Burke, Tom Nelis as Mr. Perry, Colton Ryan as Gene Laine, Jay. O. Sanders as Nick Laine, Austin Scott as Joe Scott, Kimber Elayne Sprawl as Marianne Laine, and Mare Winningham as Elizabeth Laine.

Girl From The North Country is set at a guesthouse where a group of wanderers cross paths. Standing at a turning point in their lives, they realize nothing is what it seems. But as they search for a future, and hide from the past, they find themselves facing unspoken truths about the present.

Girl From The North Country is produced on Broadway by Tristan Baker & Charlie Parsons for Runaway Entertainment, Steven Lappin, Sony Music Entertainment/Sony ATV, David Mirvish, Len Blavatnik, The Dodgers, Eric & Marsi Gardiner, Dianne Roberts, John Gore Organization, Nederlander Presentations, Inc., Tommy Mottola, Independent Presenters Network, Rod Kaats, Diana DiMenna, Mary Beth O’Connor, Barbara H. Freitag, Patrick Catullo, The Old Vic (Artistic Director, Matthew Warchus; Executive Director, Kate Varah; Producer, Georgia Gatti) and The Public Theater (Artistic Director, Oskar Eustis; Executive Director, Patrick Willingham; Mandy Hackett, Director of Public Theater Productions), with Aaron Lustbader serving as Executive Producer.

PF: Dana H. @ Vineyard Theatre, 108 East 15th Street, through Saturday, April 11, 2020

Vineyard Theatre’s production of Dana H., by Lucas Hnath, adapted from interviews with Dana Higginbotham conducted by Steve Cosson, and directed by Les Waters.

Dana H. had its world premiere at the Kirk Douglas Theatre at Center Theatre Group, Los Angeles, in June 2019 receiving seven L.A. Stage Alliance Ovation Award nominations including Best Playwright, Best Actress, and Best Production of a Play. The production opened at The Goodman’s Owen Theatre, Chicago, in September 2019. Deirdre O’Connell will be reprising the title role for the New York premiere.

In Dana H., Dana was a chaplain of a psych ward where she met a charismatic patient, an ex-convict searching for redemption. A harrowing true story, Dana was held captive with her life in this man’s hands — trapped in a series of Florida motels, disoriented and terrified — for five months. Told in Dana’s own words and reconstructed for the stage by her son Lucas Hnath (The Thin Place, A Doll’s House Part 2, Hillary and Clinton), “one of the freshest playwriting voices to emerge in the past five years” (The New York Times), this innovative work shatters the boundaries of the art form and our understanding of good and evil with the Los Angeles Times calling it “a profound contribution to the theater.”

The design team includes scenic design by Andrew Boyce, costume design by Janice Pytel, lighting and supertitle design byPaul Toben, and sound design by Mikhail Fiksel.

MP: About Love @ The Sheen Center, 18 Bleecker Street, through March 22, 2020

Culture Project presents About Love, a new play with songs and music. Music and lyrics by jazz artist Nancy Harrow and script and direction by Will Pomerantz.

About Love tells the compelling story of a young man who expects to spend a quiet summer with his parents in the Russian countryside, but soon discovers those three months will be the most consequential of his life, as he learns the difference between love and passion, and the ephemeral nature of life itself. About Love is inspired by Ivan Turgenev’s beautifully crafted short story, “First Love,” originally published in 1860. Turgenev was one of Russia’s first modern writers to achieve international acclaim with his novel, Fathers and Sons, and his play, A Month in the Country.

The cast of About Love features Silvia Bond (Things Found on the Ground), Helen Coxe (Super Regret), Dan Domingues (The Tempest at The Public), Jeffrey Kringer (Cruel Intentions: The 90’s Musical, National Tour), Tom Patterson (1984, Broadway) and Jean Tafler (My Witch: The Margaret Hamilton Stories).

About Love features a scenic design by Brian Staton, costume design by Whitney Locher, lighting design by Allen Hahn, sound design by Connor Brent, musical direction by Misha Josephs, musical arrangements by Alphonso Horne and Owen Broder, and stage management by Abigail Strange.

PF: Mr Toole @ 59e59, through Sunday, March 15, 2020

MR. TOOLE, written by Vivian Neuwirth and directed by Cat Parker.

The teacher a student will never forget becomes a legend the world will always remember.

Before he was a Pulitzer Prize-winning author, John Kennedy Toole (The Confederacy of Dunces) was a teacher. That’s how Lisette, one of his students at an all-girls college in New Orleans knew him and loved him. Through her eyes, amid the music, magic, and mystery of the Big Easy we, too, learn to love “Mr. Toole.”

Playwright Vivian Neuwirth was one of Tooles’ students when he taught literature at St. Mary’s Dominican High School in New Orleans, during which time he was writing what would be his first and only novel. “He was an amazing teacher,” says Neuwirth. “He had such theatrical flair.”

While she had heard about his death, she never realized he had written a book, until she stumbled on A Confederacy of Dunces in the window of a bookstore. “His name leaped out at me,” she says. “I dove into the store, bought the book, took it home and devoured it. It was like I had him back again.” After reading the book, Neuwirth was inspired to write a play about this extraordinary man.

The cast features John Ingle (The Death and Life of Jesse James with the Lion Theater Company); Linda Purl (Broadway’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer; Getting and Spending); Julia Randall (Off Broadway debut); Stephen Schnetzer (Oslo and The Waverly Gallery on Broadway); Ryan Spahn (How to Load a Musket at 59E59); and Thomas G. Waites (cult-film The Warriors, Broadway’s Search and Destroy).

Produced by Articulate Theatre Company, in association with Lagniappe Productions, MR. TOOLE is at 59E59 Theaters (59 East 59th Street, between Park and Madison).

PF: Mark William @ Green Room 42, March 6, 2020

Peter reviews Mark’s CD on — This Week on Broadway for October 27, 2019: Scotland PA


Film and Television:



Post Script:

Michael’s Music Moment:


Coming Soon: 

JM + PF: Cambodian Rock Band by Lauren Yee @ Signature Theatre

Explicit: No


“The World Must Be Bigger Than An Avenue” from “Irene”

Other Music: Memories from

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