random thoughts & reviews
Photo credit: Joan Marcus
Producers Joan Stein and Richard Frankel announced today that the Off Broadway premiere production of Standing On Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays will play its final performance at the Minetta Lane Theatre on Sunday, December 18.
The show will have played 7 preview performances and 41 regular performances. The producers then plan to take the play, which opened to an overwhelmingly enthusiastic response from critics and audiences alike on November 13, 2011, to markets where marriage equality is not yet a reality, in an effort to help invigorate audience members in battleground states and raise money for marriage equality organizations.
Responding to one of the defining issues of our day -- the on-going battle for marriage equality throughout the United States -- some of America’s most illustrious and Award-winning playwrights, including Obie Award winner Mo Gaffney, Heideman Award winner Jordan Harrison, Tony Award nominee Moisés Kaufman, Tony Award nominee Neil LaBute, Sundance Jury Prize winner Wendy MacLeod, Obie Award winner José Rivera, Obie and Outer Critics Circle Award winner Paul Rudnick, and Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winner Doug Wright, have created a hilarious and poignant 90-minute evening of short plays that celebrates the courage to be in a relationship – any relationship.
"We were delighted by the reception this play received in New York," producer Joan Stein said in a statement, "but it is now clear to us that its message is most vital and urgent in the forty-four states where same sex couples are still denied equal marriage rights. We are committed to finding this play a home in those places where it’s needed most."
Conceived by Brian Shnipper and directed by Stuart Ross, Standing On Ceremony: The Gay Marriage Plays features a cast that includes Theatre World Award winner Craig Bierko (The Music Man), Daytime Emmy nominee Mark Consuelos ("All My Children"), Emmy Award nominee Polly Draper ("thirtysomething"), Tony Award winner Harriet Harris (Thoroughly Modern Millie), Tony Award winner Beth Leavel (The Drowsy Chaperone) and Emmy Award-winner Richard Thomas ("The Waltons").
For its Off Broadway premiere, Standing on Ceremony partnered with Freedom to Marry, the campaign to win marriage nationwide, and Broadway Cares / Equity Fights AIDS, and has donated a percentage of all ticket sales to these and other organizations promoting marriage equality.
To launch its Off Broadway run, Standing on Ceremony joined with Tectonic Theater Project (Moisés Kaufman, Artistic Director; Greg Reiner, Executive Director) for Standing on Ceremony: The National Event, to help take the play’s message across the country (and the globe). For one night only on Monday, November 7, more than 50 participating theaters across America and beyond presented their own productions of the play to raise awareness and funds in support of marriage equality. Audience members across the country watched a live streaming introduction and post performance Q&A, and submitted questions via Twitter in real time.
Tickets for the Off Broadway run of Standing on Ceremony, priced from $25.oo to $79.00 (plus a $1.00 theatre facility fee), are now on sale via Ticketmaster.com and at the Minetta Lane box office (18 Minetta Lane). The performance schedule is as follows: Tuesday - Friday at 8:00 p.m.; Saturday at 3:00 p.m. & 8:00 p.m.; Sunday at 3:00 p.m. & 7:00 p.m.
Standing on Ceremony is produced Off Broadway by Joan Stein, Richard Frankel, Annette Niemtzow, Fakston Productions, Harley Medcalf, Jon Murray, Harvey Reese, in association with Diana Buckhantz and Niclas Nagler; Associate Producers, Luigi Caiola, Rebecca Falcon and Mary C. Solomon and Executive Producer, Joe Watson.
CRITICAL PRAISE FOR
"STANDING ON CEREMONY: THE GAY MARRIAGE PLAYS"
" ! Roars of laughter, heights of intensity."
-- Time Out New York
"Funny and moving!"
-- The New York Times
"Do I promise to love and cherish this show? I DO!"
-- New York Daily News
"Heartily recommended! Listen, shed an occasional tear, and laugh a lot."
-- New York Observer
"Laughs, tears, and a moving affirmation of the power of love."
"Do I think you will enjoy it? I do, I do!"
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