theater

Another producer of a Spanish-language play in Miami is apologizing for showing a character in blackface.

Neil Simon, the enormously productive comic playwright who often adapted his work into screenplays, died on early Sunday morning. He was 91. The cause of death was complications from pneumonia, according to Bill Evans, his longtime friend and publicist.

Among the most prolific playwrights in American theater from the 1960s through the 1990s, he won the Pulitzer Prize in 1991 for Lost in Yonkers, which he said was his deepest play. But Neil Simon was better known for being funny.

Adrienne Arsht Center

One actress in South Florida is aiming to show people what it's like to be a Latina. 

There are no costume changes and 24 Latina characters in ¡FUÁCATA! or a Latina’s Guide to Surviving the Universe -- all played by Cuban-American actress Elena María García, who was raised in Broward. The idea is that whether audience members are from South America, Central America, Cuba, Puerto Rico or Mexico, they'll be able to relate.

Associated Press

Members of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School's drama team stole the show at the 72nd Annual Tony Awards Sunday night.

The performance brought the crowd— many of whom were wiping tears from their eyes— to its collective feet at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The surprise showing wasn't part of that afternoon's dress rehearsal.

The Tony Awards felt a little different this year than they have recently. It was a year without a Hamilton or a Dear Evan Hansen; there was no one original, out-of-nowhere show that came into the Tony Awards as a pop phenomenon. In fact, all four of the four nominated musicals were adaptations of existing properties: SpongeBob SquarePants, Disney's Frozen and the non-musical films Mean Girls and The Band's Visit.

Courtesy of Harry Castiblanco

Since January, the Teatro Trail in Little Havana has been showing the play, “Tres Viudas en un Crucero” (“Three Widows on a Cruise”), to sold-out crowds. The Spanish-language production featured a blackface character. A fair-skinned actress wore brown face makeup and overdrawn big red lips.

 

The theater recently decided to eliminate blackface from the play after an El Nuevo Herald report denouncing it. 

Harrison School for the Arts

Floridians have mythologized Publix. The supermarket is celebrated for its Pub Subs, chicken tenders, sappy commercials and catchy slogans.

The two most-nominated shows at this year's Tony Awards might sound familiar, even to those who don't keep an eye on Broadway: Mean Girls, based on the 2004 movie, and SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, based on the long-running animated TV show, each earned a dozen nominations.

There is a fundamental audacity to Jesus Christ Superstar, which was staged as a live "concert" performance on NBC on Sunday night. First released as a concept album in 1970, the work by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice not only imagines a very human story behind the final days in the life of Jesus, but it focuses on that story even when it involves ugliness, vanity, and conflict. It posits that Jesus felt not only frustration, but even resentment and ambivalence — not only about his faith, but about his own followers. On the one hand, it's kind of an obvious choice for Easter.

In the balcony of the Marquis Theatre on Broadway, Jimmy Buffett watches the final rehearsal for his new musical, Escape to Margaritaville. Down below, technicians inflate beach balls, which, in true Buffett fashion, are to be dropped on theater-goers' heads at the end of the show.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

The author of A Streetcar Named Desire and The Glass Menagerie did not set any of his well-known plays in Key West.

But the island was his primary residence from the 1940s until he died in 1983. That’s a lot longer than a certain other famous writer.

Today on Sundial: Miami Beach’s new mayor, Dan Gelber, joins us in the studio to talk about the future challenges the city faces.

Miami Beach residents can expect a low-key  style from Gelber, who understands the intricacies of policymaking and knows the influence the mayor can have in the city. Gelber has a very different style than his predecessor, Phillip Levine, who has officially launched his run for governor.

Hummingbird Films

The women from the novel A Thousand Splendid Suns first came alive on stage in Key West, in a workshop version of the opera's first act. 

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Edward Albee has been in the news a lot lately. Albee died in 2016, and since then his estate has turned down a multi-racial production of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and put his contemporary art collection up for auction for an estimated $9 million.

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