May has arrived, which means that there's a whole month of fun and exciting theatrical events ahead of us! Read on to see what we've picked as the cream of the crop from the week ahead, including the off-Broadway openings of Nikolai and the Others and A Family For All Occasions and a slew of stars bringing their talents to 54 Below.
MONDAY, MAY 6
NIKOLAI AND THE OTHERS MOVE INTO LINCOLN CENTER
Tony-winning playwright Richard Nelson does not believe in “less is more.” With Nikolai and the Others, he gives theatergoers 18 characters to keep track of—with a ballet piece thrown in for good measure! Starring Tony winners Michael Cerveris and John Glover and Tony nominee Kathryn Erbe, the play centers on a group of Russian emigres, including choreographer George Balanchine and composer Igor Stravinsky, who gather to eat, drink and chat in Westport, Connecticut, during Cold War era 1948. The play opens tonight at the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theatre.
ALSO: Addams Family and Hairspray alum Jackie Hoffman brings her signature brand of funny to 54 Below.
TUESDAY, MAY 7
CAISSIE LEVY & WILL SWENSON ROCK OUT IN MURDER BALLAD
It's sexy as hell and beautiful as a murder ballad can be! Murder Ballad, the steamy new musical from Julia Jordan and indie rock singer/songwriter Juliana Nash, heats up the Union Square Theatre for a limited nine-week engagement after a sold-out run at Manhattan Theatre Club. The show explores the complications of love, compromise and the betrayals that can ultimately undo us. Murder Ballad features Broadway faves Caissie Levy, John Ellison Conlee, Rebecca Naomi Jones and Will Swenson.
ALSO: Old-Fashioned Prostitutes (A True Romance) opens at the Public Theater; Nick Adams, Kate Rockwell and more perform for the Broadway Backs Boston Benefit at the Laurie Beechman Theatre; the digital release of the original Broadway cast recording of Cinderella is available; Lifetime’s remake of Steel Magnolias, starring Tony nominee Condola Rashad, is out on DVD; the film version of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s Jesus Christ Superstar is available on Blu-Ray.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 8
CHRISTINE BARANSKI GOES ON YOUR TOES AT ENCORES!
Rodgers & Hart's sparkling 1936 musical On Your Toes is back, in the first of six Encores! performances at New York City Center. This dance-based tuner boats a cast including two-time Tony winners Christine Baranski and Karen Ziemba and actor/director Walter Bobbie and songs like "There's a Small Hotel." We can't wait to see what director/choreographer Warren Carlyle does with this one!
ALSO: Tony nominee Daniel Breaker brings a mix of blues, jazz and rock to 54 Below.
THURSDAY, MAY 9
BUNTY BERMAN BRINGS BOLLYWOOD OFF-BROADWAY
Get set to have a ball with this Bollywood bash! The off-Broadway musical Bunty Berman Presents…, written by and starring Ayub Khan Din and directed by New Group artistic director Scott Elliott, opens at the Acorn Theatre. Set in a 1950s Bollywood studio, with new songs in the style of Hollywood’s Golden Age, the show tells the story of movie producer Bunty Berman, who's the toast of Bombay until his new movie bombs. Bunty must cross through divas, gangsters and ruthless tea-boys to keep his studio alive.
ALSO: Aaron Tveit brings his handsome face, irresistible charisma and velvety voice back to 54 Below.
FRIDAY, MAY 10
STEVE KAZEE SHOWS OFF HIS SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY
Tony winner Steve Kazee is bringing a soulful country sound to 54 Below. Joined by his band The Shiny Liars, the Broadway.com Star of the Year will perform two shows at the Times Square nightclub. In his new solo concert, Kazee will introduce the music he plans to feature on his upcoming debut album, which he is recording this summer. The alt-country-inspired evening includes original songs, covers of artists like Damien Jurado, Night Beds, Wilco and music reflected by Kazee’s southern upbringing.
ALSO: The cast recording of the 2012 Broadway revival of Annie is available for purchase at the Palace Theatre.
SATURDAY, MAY 11
VENICE GIVES A PREVIEW AT JOE’S PUB
Meet Matt Sax! The young composer and lyricist of Venice, which is headed to the Public Theater later this month in a production starring Jennifer Damiano, Claybourne Elder and Leslie Odom, Jr., is headed downtown to give audiences a preview of the show. Sax and his Venice co-stars will perform songs from the “part epic romance, part political tale,” in a special sneak-peek at Joe's Pub. Public Theater Artistic Director Oskar Eustis considers Sax to be “one of the voices of a new generation,” so head over to see what this rising star is made of.
ALSO: Tony winner James Naughton is the Master of Ceremonies at the American Cancer Society’s Starry Night Gala.
SUNDAY, MAY 12
GET SOME QUALITY TIME WITH A FAMILY FOR ALL OCCASIONS
Who doesn’t love family drama? The Philip Seymour Hoffman-helmed staging of Bob Glaudini’s A Family For All Occasions moves into the Bank Street Theater, starring Tony nominee Jeffrey DeMunn and Deirdre O’Connell. Starved for conversation, newly retired Howard reaches out to his exhausted wife, his digitally addicted teenage son and his promiscuous daughter, only to be rejected. So he's thrilled when his daughter's latest admirer shows up, obsessed with the idea of family—until the new arrival steers the entire family off course.
ALSO: Jeremy Jordan, Ben Fankhauser and Ashley Spencer and more join Michael Mott's Write Now concert at the Laurie Beechman Theatre.