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John William Tuohy lives in Washington DC

Playwright opportunities




Greetings NYCPlaywrights
 

*** PLAYWRIGHTS OPPORTUNITIES ***

Public Theater Emerging Writers Group
The Public Theater will select the strongest candidates based on the overall strength of the applicant’s play submission, artistic statement, and interview.
The Public will look for candidates from diverse backgrounds who show tremendous artistic promise and talent, as well as responsible and dedicated individuals who are serious about a career in the theater. 
- Cannot have professional representation for playwriting including, but not limited to, agent, manager or lawyer.
- Cannot be a full-time student at any point during the duration of the program.
- Cannot be enrolled in any academic playwriting course during the duration of the program.
- Must not have had productions in New York other than those using the showcase code or in an off-off Broadway theater with 99 or fewer seats. (If your New York show used a higher contract tier than the showcase code, you are not eligible to apply. If your New York show received a festival production in a theater with more than 99 seats and did not use an Equity contract, you are eligible to apply.)

***

The Players Follies Group (a 55 and older theatre troupe) will be producing a Senior Play Reading Festival November 18 & 19, 2017. The festival coordinator is looking for 1 to 10 minute non-published plays to be performed in The Players Backstage Theatre. Local theatre artist Cinda Goeken will coordinate and lead the event. A committee of judges will select the plays to be presented in a “Reader’s Theater“ style. 

***

LEZWRITES! is a project of 3Girls Theatre Company that produces readings and performances of short works by lesbian, bi and trans playwrights of all races, ethnicities, and ages. This year's selections will be curated by a literary panel including 3GT Resident Playwright and Producer, Margery Kreitman, and playwright and Associate Producer, Mercilee Jenkins, published in The Best American Short Plays 2014-2015, and two special guest curators: Tina D’Elia, an award-winning casting director and solo performer whose shows include The Rita Hayworth of this Generation; and Thao P. Nguyen, author/performer of Fortunate Daughter, named one of the Top 10 Bay Area Plays of 2013.


*** FOR MORE INFORMATION about these and other opportunities see the web site at http://www.nycplaywrights.org ***


*** ROBERT MOSES VS. SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARK ***

When one thinks of theater in the park, the first thing that probably comes to mind is New York City's Shakespeare in the Park, perhaps the premier example of outdoor theater anywhere. New York theater icon Joseph Papp (1921–1991) founded the Shakespeare Theatre in 1954 to bring the Bard's work to a wider audience. The first production, Julius Caesar, took place in 1956 at the amphitheater in East River Park; until then, the amphitheater hosted the occasional concert but no theater (productions of Greek plays Oedipus Rex and Philoctetes took place at the East River Amphitheater in the mid 1960s before the site was closed in 1973 due to a budget shortage). Papp and his Public Theater began mobile presentations of Shakespeare plays in 1957.

In 1957, Papp and Parks Commissioner Robert Moses battled over whether the Public Theater could use Central Park. The fight took an ugly turn when Moses alleged that Papp had communist links (Papp had refused to admit to the House Un–American Activities Committee whether he was—or knew anyone who was—a communist). Under pressure from the public and Mayor Robert Wagner, Moses eventually relented and allowed Papp to stage free Shakespeare in the park. (The writer Robert Caro pointed to this embarrassing episode as one of the pivotal turning points in Moses' career in The Power Broker.)

More…

PAPP SUPPORTED ON PLAY FESTIVAL; Shakespeare 'Not Suspect,' School Aide Says -- Mayor Silent on Meetings
MAY 1, 1959
The New York Times Archives
Joseph Papp, whose plans for a summer program of free Shakespeare in Central Park are being upset, again failed to get a hearing at City Hall yesterday, but he got a pat on the back from the school system.


***

When Shakespeare In The Park Fought Robert Moses, And Won

Trump supporters and other right wing opportunists were up in arms over The Public Theater's staging of Julius Caesar starring a very Trump-like Caesar who is assassinated during the course of the play. And while political theater is making its way onto the stage of... actual theater, this is hardly Shakespeare In The Park's first tangle with a powerful, popular figure. And in some ways, the Public Theater's winning fight to survive against Robert Moses's Parks Department in 1959 is more impressive than stirring up supporters of the President of the United States, if only because Moses was still operating the city as his own private fiefdom.
As the 1959 Shakespeare In The Park season was set to begin, the festival wasn't yet the celebrated cultural institution it is today, but it got some good press. The Times called a 1958 production of Othello "clearly organized and interesting," and also made an appeal to keep the festival going because of the crowds it drew. "Certainly it deserves all the support that is available. For the long, patient line of people hoping to get into an amphitheater that seats 2,300 is a humbling sight for anyone who believes in the theater. And the alert attention of the people who do succeed in getting in chastens anyone familiar with sophisticated theatre audiences. Mr. [Joe] Papp's patrons not only know what they are seeing but believe it. They are free of cant."

More…

***

The Taming of Robert Moses

Shakespeare in the Park has been a beloved--and free--summer institution for more than 50 years. If Robert Moses had gotten his way though, that might not be the case.

New York Shakespeare Festival founder Joseph Papp aimed to make Shakespeare's works accessible to the public. By 1958, his productions on the lawn in front of Central Park's Turtle Pond were drawing thousands of people to each performance. 

That's when Parks Commissioner Robert Moses stepped in, informing Papp that he would no longer be able to stage plays in the park unless $1 and $2 admissions were charged, with 10 percent of the proceeds going to defray the cost of "grass erosion." Papp’s insistence that the plays remain free set off a battle of wills that made front-page headlines for nearly a year. 

Radio broadcast

***

Joe Papp Is Hero of New Play Skedded for 2001 Premiere in MD
MAR 31, 2000
Producer Joseph Papp's quest to offer Shakespeare's works in Central Park, facing bureaucratic adversity, is the subject of Ernest Joselovitz's world-premiere play, Shakespeare, Moses and Joe Papp, scheduled for a staging by Round House Theatre in Silver Spring, MD, in June 2001.
Producer Joseph Papp's quest to offer Shakespeare's works in Central Park, facing bureaucratic adversity, is the subject of Ernest Joselovitz's world-premiere play, Shakespeare, Moses and Joe Papp, scheduled for a staging by Round House Theatre in Silver Spring, MD, in June 2001.

The play, heard and embraced in Round House's New Voices Play Reading Series, shows Papp, who founded New York City's Public Theater, facing a "later-day Tammany Hall backdrop of graft and greed and bureaucratic corruption." The play is said to be a kind of political thriller in which New York State and City Parks Commissioner Robert Moses is a major character.

It begins in 1958, when Moses controlled decisions about city parks. Other characters include Papp's partner, Jacob Rose, and Rose's wife, Peggy; Moses' secretary Jesse Seligman; a Narrator who plays multiple roles; and New York City Mayor Robert Wagner.

More…


***

Joe Papp, the Public, and the Greatest Theater Story Ever Told

Heroes without flaws appear only in bad comics and worse books and movies. The giants who seize our attention and embody achievement at its most inspiring are often nearly as troublesome as they are noble, with defects and virtues that can stem from the same deep drives. Joseph Papp, the Brooklyn-born impresario who changed the face of the American theater by founding the New York Shakespeare Festival and the Public Theater, is unquestionably a hero of the complicated kind. His story is revisited in rich, rewarding detail in a fat new book, “Free for All: Joe Papp, the Public, and the Greatest Theater Story Ever Told,” written by Kenneth Turan and — what’s this? — yes, Papp himself.

More…


***

The Battle of Central Park

Performed at The Tank, Spring 2016
Workshop productions at The Tank, NYC & Dixon Place, Spring 2015 

The story of two proud men, the city they loved, and the fight for free Shakespeare in the Park.

In 1959 Joe Papp, the father of the Public Theater, and Robert Moses, the builder and planner of much of modern New York City, were locked in a tense legal battle regarding William Shakespeare - specifically whether Mr. Papp would be allowed to produce the Bard’s plays for free admission in Central Park. Weaving primary sources with original text, music, and movement, The Battle of Central Park explores the contradictory and captivating relationship of two public figures who shared both immense stubbornness and love of New York City. The ideological zeal of Papp and the dominant structuralist power of Moses are brought to life on the stage in this movement-rich production. Equal parts memory play and historical drama, The Battle of Central Park tells the fascinating story of these two iconic and divisive men through a lens of imagination and wonder.


*** 

Deep Cut: Ric Burns New York documentary - focusing on the unchecked power & downfall of Robert Moses


***
In July, the Delacorte Theater will transform into the most enchanted forest in all of theater in Shakespeare’s beloved comedy, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM. When the merry sprite Puck meddles with a magical love potion, young lovers lost in the woods mysteriously  find themselves infatuated with the wrong person in this hilarious, fairytale fantasia that proves the course of true love never did run smooth. Lear deBessonet, Founder of The Public Theater’s groundbreaking Public Works program and Resident Director, brings her electric theatrical vision to the classic romance about the supernatural nature of love. 

** PLAYWRIGHTS OPPORTUNITIES ***

Public Theater Emerging Writers Group
The Public Theater will select the strongest candidates based on the overall strength of the applicant’s play submission, artistic statement, and interview.
The Public will look for candidates from diverse backgrounds who show tremendous artistic promise and talent, as well as responsible and dedicated individuals who are serious about a career in the theater. 
- Cannot have professional representation for playwriting including, but not limited to, agent, manager or lawyer.
- Cannot be a full-time student at any point during the duration of the program.
- Cannot be enrolled in any academic playwriting course during the duration of the program.
- Must not have had productions in New York other than those using the showcase code or in an off-off Broadway theater with 99 or fewer seats. (If your New York show used a higher contract tier than the showcase code, you are not eligible to apply. If your New York show received a festival production in a theater with more than 99 seats and did not use an Equity contract, you are eligible to apply.)

***

The Players Follies Group (a 55 and older theatre troupe) will be producing a Senior Play Reading Festival November 18 & 19, 2017. The festival coordinator is looking for 1 to 10 minute non-published plays to be performed in The Players Backstage Theatre. Local theatre artist Cinda Goeken will coordinate and lead the event. A committee of judges will select the plays to be presented in a “Reader’s Theater“ style. 

***

LEZWRITES! is a project of 3Girls Theatre Company that produces readings and performances of short works by lesbian, bi and trans playwrights of all races, ethnicities, and ages. This year's selections will be curated by a literary panel including 3GT Resident Playwright and Producer, Margery Kreitman, and playwright and Associate Producer, Mercilee Jenkins, published in The Best American Short Plays 2014-2015, and two special guest curators: Tina D’Elia, an award-winning casting director and solo performer whose shows include The Rita Hayworth of this Generation; and Thao P. Nguyen, author/performer of Fortunate Daughter, named one of the Top 10 Bay Area Plays of 2013.


*** FOR MORE INFORMATION about these and other opportunities see the web site at http://www.nycplaywrights.org ***


*** ROBERT MOSES VS. SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARK ***

When one thinks of theater in the park, the first thing that probably comes to mind is New York City's Shakespeare in the Park, perhaps the premier example of outdoor theater anywhere. New York theater icon Joseph Papp (1921–1991) founded the Shakespeare Theatre in 1954 to bring the Bard's work to a wider audience. The first production, Julius Caesar, took place in 1956 at the amphitheater in East River Park; until then, the amphitheater hosted the occasional concert but no theater (productions of Greek plays Oedipus Rex and Philoctetes took place at the East River Amphitheater in the mid 1960s before the site was closed in 1973 due to a budget shortage). Papp and his Public Theater began mobile presentations of Shakespeare plays in 1957.

In 1957, Papp and Parks Commissioner Robert Moses battled over whether the Public Theater could use Central Park. The fight took an ugly turn when Moses alleged that Papp had communist links (Papp had refused to admit to the House Un–American Activities Committee whether he was—or knew anyone who was—a communist). Under pressure from the public and Mayor Robert Wagner, Moses eventually relented and allowed Papp to stage free Shakespeare in the park. (The writer Robert Caro pointed to this embarrassing episode as one of the pivotal turning points in Moses' career in The Power Broker.)

More…

***

Keep in mind the particular moment in time in which Moses is writing. While it would be more than 10 years until Robert Caro published his magnificent, 1,200-page biographical takedown, The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York, it had been just a couple of years since Moses, in the role of New York City Parks Commissioner, had made himself the enemy of the city’s cultural elite by refusing to issue permits for free Shakespeare in the Park performances. Here was a man who’d built, over the course of the previous three decades, more than 600 playgrounds and parks, 400 miles of urban freeways, and 13 bridges. And he’d done it, by all accounts, largely through tremendous force of will and a truly keen sense of political know-how. But by 1962, Moses had real, undeniable detractors. He was being actively painted as the enemy of a healthy, happy city. He cared, his critics claimed, more about cars than he did about people. And his consolation prize after being forced out of his most significant public roles—serving as president of the boondoggle that would become the 1964­–65 New York World’s Fair—was already proving to be a bruise, rather than a boost, to his reputation.

More…

***

ISAACS DISPUTES MOSES ON THEATRE; Urges Reversal of Decision on Admissions in Park -- Actor Supports Ruling
APRIL 27, 1959
The New York Times Archives
Stanley M. Isaacs, minority leader of the City Council, voiced disapproval yesterday of Park Commissioner Robert Moses' decision to charge admission to performances of Shakespeare in Central Park.

More…

***

PAPP SUPPORTED ON PLAY FESTIVAL; Shakespeare 'Not Suspect,' School Aide Says -- Mayor Silent on Meetings
MAY 1, 1959
The New York Times Archives
Joseph Papp, whose plans for a summer program of free Shakespeare in Central Park are being upset, again failed to get a hearing at City Hall yesterday, but he got a pat on the back from the school system.


***

When Shakespeare In The Park Fought Robert Moses, And Won

Trump supporters and other right wing opportunists were up in arms over The Public Theater's staging of Julius Caesar starring a very Trump-like Caesar who is assassinated during the course of the play. And while political theater is making its way onto the stage of... actual theater, this is hardly Shakespeare In The Park's first tangle with a powerful, popular figure. And in some ways, the Public Theater's winning fight to survive against Robert Moses's Parks Department in 1959 is more impressive than stirring up supporters of the President of the United States, if only because Moses was still operating the city as his own private fiefdom.
As the 1959 Shakespeare In The Park season was set to begin, the festival wasn't yet the celebrated cultural institution it is today, but it got some good press. The Times called a 1958 production of Othello "clearly organized and interesting," and also made an appeal to keep the festival going because of the crowds it drew. "Certainly it deserves all the support that is available. For the long, patient line of people hoping to get into an amphitheater that seats 2,300 is a humbling sight for anyone who believes in the theater. And the alert attention of the people who do succeed in getting in chastens anyone familiar with sophisticated theatre audiences. Mr. [Joe] Papp's patrons not only know what they are seeing but believe it. They are free of cant."

More…

***

The Taming of Robert Moses

Shakespeare in the Park has been a beloved--and free--summer institution for more than 50 years. If Robert Moses had gotten his way though, that might not be the case.

New York Shakespeare Festival founder Joseph Papp aimed to make Shakespeare's works accessible to the public. By 1958, his productions on the lawn in front of Central Park's Turtle Pond were drawing thousands of people to each performance. 

That's when Parks Commissioner Robert Moses stepped in, informing Papp that he would no longer be able to stage plays in the park unless $1 and $2 admissions were charged, with 10 percent of the proceeds going to defray the cost of "grass erosion." Papp’s insistence that the plays remain free set off a battle of wills that made front-page headlines for nearly a year. 

Radio broadcast

***

Joe Papp Is Hero of New Play Skedded for 2001 Premiere in MD
MAR 31, 2000
Producer Joseph Papp's quest to offer Shakespeare's works in Central Park, facing bureaucratic adversity, is the subject of Ernest Joselovitz's world-premiere play, Shakespeare, Moses and Joe Papp, scheduled for a staging by Round House Theatre in Silver Spring, MD, in June 2001.
Producer Joseph Papp's quest to offer Shakespeare's works in Central Park, facing bureaucratic adversity, is the subject of Ernest Joselovitz's world-premiere play, Shakespeare, Moses and Joe Papp, scheduled for a staging by Round House Theatre in Silver Spring, MD, in June 2001.

The play, heard and embraced in Round House's New Voices Play Reading Series, shows Papp, who founded New York City's Public Theater, facing a "later-day Tammany Hall backdrop of graft and greed and bureaucratic corruption." The play is said to be a kind of political thriller in which New York State and City Parks Commissioner Robert Moses is a major character.

It begins in 1958, when Moses controlled decisions about city parks. Other characters include Papp's partner, Jacob Rose, and Rose's wife, Peggy; Moses' secretary Jesse Seligman; a Narrator who plays multiple roles; and New York City Mayor Robert Wagner.

More…


***

Joe Papp, the Public, and the Greatest Theater Story Ever Told

Heroes without flaws appear only in bad comics and worse books and movies. The giants who seize our attention and embody achievement at its most inspiring are often nearly as troublesome as they are noble, with defects and virtues that can stem from the same deep drives. Joseph Papp, the Brooklyn-born impresario who changed the face of the American theater by founding the New York Shakespeare Festival and the Public Theater, is unquestionably a hero of the complicated kind. His story is revisited in rich, rewarding detail in a fat new book, “Free for All: Joe Papp, the Public, and the Greatest Theater Story Ever Told,” written by Kenneth Turan and — what’s this? — yes, Papp himself.

More…


***

The Battle of Central Park

Performed at The Tank, Spring 2016
Workshop productions at The Tank, NYC & Dixon Place, Spring 2015 

The story of two proud men, the city they loved, and the fight for free Shakespeare in the Park.

In 1959 Joe Papp, the father of the Public Theater, and Robert Moses, the builder and planner of much of modern New York City, were locked in a tense legal battle regarding William Shakespeare - specifically whether Mr. Papp would be allowed to produce the Bard’s plays for free admission in Central Park. Weaving primary sources with original text, music, and movement, The Battle of Central Park explores the contradictory and captivating relationship of two public figures who shared both immense stubbornness and love of New York City. The ideological zeal of Papp and the dominant structuralist power of Moses are brought to life on the stage in this movement-rich production. Equal parts memory play and historical drama, The Battle of Central Park tells the fascinating story of these two iconic and divisive men through a lens of imagination and wonder.


*** 

Deep Cut: Ric Burns New York documentary - focusing on the unchecked power & downfall of Robert Moses


***
In July, the Delacorte Theater will transform into the most enchanted forest in all of theater in Shakespeare’s beloved comedy, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM. When the merry sprite Puck meddles with a magical love potion, young lovers lost in the woods mysteriously find themselves infatuated with the wrong person in this hilarious, fairytale fantasia that proves the course of true love never did run smooth. Lear deBessonet, Founder of The Public Theater’s groundbreaking Public Works program and Resident Director, brings her electric theatrical vision to the classic romance about the supernatural nature of love. 


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*** PLAYWRIGHTS OPPORTUNITIES ***

2017 Playwrights and Artists Festival
It is that time of year again. We have chosen our artwork for the 2017 Playwrights and Artists Festival. We, as always, extend first look to those who have submitted to our festival in years previous. The artwork will follow a refresher on the rules. (Please be aware that some rules have changed)
1. The play must be inspired by one of the works of art... 

***

The Ten-Minute Musicals Project
SEEKING: Complete original stage musicals which play between seven and twenty minutes. Works which have been previously produced are acceptable, as are excerpts from full-length shows, if they can stand up on their own.

***

The Lark’s Jerome New York Fellowship provides substantial artistic and financial support to an emerging writer of extraordinary promise and vision through an intensive two-year residency that provides resources and guidance to generate and develop a significant body of work.
In the first year, the Fellow will receive a stipend of $25,000, paid in monthly increments. In addition, the Fellow will have access to an “Opportunity Fund” of $5,000 for the purposes of travel, research, autonomous workshops, and so forth, for the duration of their fellowship and for up to one year after its completion. (The Fellow will request these funds in writing to the Artistic Director and no reasonable request will be refused).

*** FOR MORE INFORMATION about these and other opportunities see the web site at http://www.nycplaywrights.org ***


*** JULIUS CAESAR PART II ***


Cops investigate death threats made against “Caesar” director’s wife

It’s a story that never ends. The Shakespeare in the Park staging that depicted President Donald Trump as Julius Caesar has produced an investigation into death threats made against the director of the play’s wife, Associated Press reported. Police are investigating threats made to the wife of Oskar Eustis, the director of the Public Theater’s production of Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” that features a Donald Trump lookalike character being assassinated.

Police said Wednesday that Laurie Eustis filed a complaint on June 9 citing death threats she had received since the fallout from the first play. She reported receiving threatening phone messages related to the Trump-adjacent character’s fictionalized assassination, AP reported. One caller allegedly told her to die after decrying her husband for showing the president’s fake death.

More…


***

'Trump death' in Julius Caesar prompts threats to wrong theatres

Shakespeare Dallas, in Texas, has had 90 emails, while Shakespeare & Company in Massachusetts has had nearly 50, plus about 10 angry phone calls. "It's a case of mistaken identity," said Raphael Parry, the artistic director at Shakespeare Dallas. "If you don't want to see political commentary, don't go see it," he said.
"Don't blast everyone who's in theatre or the arts. It's unbelievable. It's shocking. People need to do their research before they blast off."

He and his staff have received emails including "I hope you die and so do your family" and "You truly are a bunch of freaks... We should send all you freaks to ISIS. They would eliminate your stench on this earth with real knives."
Shakespeare & Company shared some of the messages with the BBC. (Some have been edited to remove swearing.) They included:
"Your play depicting the murder of our President is nothing but pure hatred. You are vial [sic] despicable excuses for human beings. I wish you all the worst possible life you could have and hope you all get sick and die."
"Hope you all who did this play about Trump are the first to die when ISIS COMES TO YOU... scumbags."
"What exactly were you idiots thinking about producing a play that depicts the killing of our President? Does anyone over there have an ounce of morality, decency, and or common sense? Your organization is a disgrace to the community and to the arts. If you have a problem with the president protest, as is your constitutional right or just vote him out. I will do my best to ensure taxpayers' dollars are not used in the future to fund your disrespect and stupidity!"

More…

***

Free Theaters Threatened In Fallout From ‘Julius Caesar’ As Supporters Plan Rally

Yesterday’s press release promoting New York Classical Theatre’s production of The Rivals, a comedy dating from 1775, promised “It is not controversy, but comedy. It is not Shakespeare, but Sheridan. It is not Julius Caesar, but The Rivals. There is no Donald Trump, but there are wonderful Equity actors performing this renowned classic. It is free in Central Park like its Delacorte colleagues, but it is a couple of stops further uptown on the C train.”

NY Classical Theatre Director Stephen Burdman tells me, however, that controversy has in fact come to the troupe that’s performing about a mile north of the Delacorte Theater. His 18-year-old company has been receiving threats and denunciations in the wake of the Public Theater’s politically charged production of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. Burdman is the founder and artistic director of NY Classical Theatre, which promotes itself as “New York’s only all-free off-Broadway theater,”

“This is the spill off,” Burdman, who staged this all-pro production. “We’re supporting our sister classical theater companies. Every theater expects criticism, but we don’t expect attacks. People are Googling Shakespeare in the Park, and we come up on the list even though Shakespeare isn’t in our name.”
Some samples provided by Burdman (asterisks by Deadline; all other spellings original):

From: [deleted]
Subject: F*ck you!
Date: June 12, 2017 at 6:14:32 AM EDT
To: info@newyorkclassical.org
Go f*ck yourselves! Every last discusting one of you. I curse every one of you. May you each die a more horrible terrifying death! Rich you all!!!

More…

***

You may have mocked claims about the existence of paid protesters as just another lie from the right. As it turns out, at least on this one issue, they’re actually telling the truth. The problem is, the right neglected to mention those paid protesters are part of the right-wing apparatus.

The story starts last week, when the right wing decided to aim its selective outrage at a free staging of Shakespeare’s play “Julius Caesar” held in New York City’s Central Park. Mike Cernovich, a self-described member of the alt-right who thinks the U.S. should give immigrants IQ tests, put up a YouTube video in which he offered cash to any protesters willing to disrupt the play for pay.

“I’ll give up to 10 people $1,000,” Cernovich says in the footage. “I need you to get up with either a ‘CNN is ISIS’ or ‘Bill Clinton’s a rapist’ or ‘The media is terrorism’ [sign]. And if you’re able to get up and be escorted out by security, then I will give you $1,000.”

In other words, Cernovich was actively and openly looking to recruit paid protesters. You know how conservatives made up that ridiculous myth about George Soros sending checks to liberals who march in protests? This is the real version of that, only sponsored by Cernovich.

More…

***

In the middle of the production, Loomer stormed the stage, briefly halting the action and earning a chorus of boos from an audience that just wanted to see some Shakespeare. There’s footage of the whole thing, including Loomer being removed from the stage as she shouts “CNN is ISIS”—the exact phrase Cernovich suggested—over and over. As Loomer was escorted out, Posobiec stood up and began yelling “Nazis” and “Goebbels” at the audience, until he was removed. He also recorded his outburst, possibly because Cernovich wants proof before he’ll pay out.

It’s important to note that Loomer works for right-wing Canadian media outlet Rebel Media, and until late May, so did Posobiec. The blog Canadaland describes it as a Breitbart-esque site filled with contributors who “have called for a new Crusade to expel Muslims from the ‘Holy Land,” outlined what they “hate about the Jews,” and most recently, said that British Muslims are “enemy combatants,” at least some of whom should be placed into camps.”

Loomer was released hours after her arrest. Rebel Media put up a “Free Laura page” on its website, including a link to a fundraising section for her “legal defense fund.” Loomer herself also tweeted a request to “support [her] legal defense fund.” The link in the message leads to a campaign on WeSearchr, a crowdfunding site that’s like a Go Fund Me for hard-right causes. As of this writing, Loomer’s page has banked more than $12,000. Josh Jordan, who’s written for both Forbes and the conservative National Review, pointed out that Loomer’s page previously noted she had a fundraising goal of $25,000, complete with screengrab. That target number has been erased, but the total intake keeps climbing. And presumably, while the Rebel Media “Free Laura” page doesn’t display tallies, there’ve been contributions via that site as well.

More…

***

Two weeks in, once we refined our performances to neutralize the laughter, you could hear a pin drop. By then, I better understood Eustis’s decision to be so literal in making Caesar Trump. A nontrivial percentage of our liberal audience had fantasized about undemocratic regime change in Washington. Acted out to its logical conclusion, that fantasy was hideous, shameful, and self-defeating.

Absorbed in our previews, I was unaware that we had become a target of right-wing attacks. In a company meeting the Friday before our opening night, we were told that some conservative websites claimed to be outraged by the production. Threats had been made. Security was being increased. I raised my hand and asked what we should do if someone tried to stop the show. Some of my castmates laughed. Brutus was making me paranoid.

The Sunday before our opening, Delta Airlines and Bank of America, fearing a boycott, withdrew their support. Their acts were disheartening but not devastating to the well-funded Public Theater. The real victims would be smaller theaters throughout the country, who would think twice about producing works that could be a lightning rod for outrage, real or invented. Perhaps more damaging to our country’s cultural life, the National Endowment for the Arts distanced itself, releasing a statement saying that no federal taxpayer dollars had been used in our production.

The Wednesday after our opening night, a gunman opened fire on the Republican baseball team, injuring four, including Representative Steve Scalise. Of the more than 150 mass shootings so far this year, this was the first that appeared to be aimed at a politician. Like most Americans, I was saddened and horrified, but when the president’s son and others blamed us for the violence, I became scared.

Working outdoors in the Delacorte Theater is always challenging. There are swarms of insects, helicopters overhead, and chatty raccoons, and soon we had new forms of distraction as well. Our first protester hurled insults about us continuously from a legal, but still audible, distance for the first hour of our show. At curtain call, a man wearing an American-flag jacket who had politely sat through the play stood and unfurled a Trump 2020 flag. At first I flinched, thinking the worst, but he just stood there smiling proudly. Relieved, I smiled back. What a country.

More…

***

The Public Theater said Monday afternoon that it stands "completely behind" its production of "Julius Caesar" following controversy over its staging of the play in New York City's Central Park, which includes a bloody assassination of a ruler who resembles President Trump.

"We recognize that our interpretation of the play has provoked heated discussion; audiences, sponsors and supporters have expressed varying viewpoints and opinions," the theater said in a statement provided to CNN. "Such discussion is exactly the goal of our civically-engaged theater; this discourse is the basis of a healthy democracy."

More…

***

The Public Theater Partners are made up of a dedicated group of individuals whose contributions are vital to advancing our mission of providing accessible art for all. Partners receive insider access to The Public Theater including backstage experiences, exclusive Partner talkbacks, dinners, and cocktail evenings, reserved seats at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park, and complimentary tickets for our downtown season.  Under 40? Explore our Young Partner Program!
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