United Solo to Begin Fourth Season at New York City's Theatre Row, October 3
A lineup of over 120 solo performers from six continents and 23 countries will present their shows during the fourth annual world's largest solo theatre festival, October 3 - November 24 at Theatre Row on 42nd Street. Twenty-five shows are currently sold out, with others set to reach that status over the next several days. Compared to the inaugural season three years ago, United Solo expanded its schedule four times, from two to eight weeks, gaining the status of a resident company at Theatre Row.
The festival offerings include shows by renowned artists and emerging performers, world premieres and performances returning by popular demand. Emmy-winning, Tony-nominated actor Gordon Clapp will embody the poet Robert Frost in A.M. Dolan's play "This Verse Business" on Nov. 16 at 9:00pm. Oscar-nominee Eric Roberts and Eliza Roberts co-direct "Beneath My Fathers' Sky," performed by Zara Phillips and scheduled for Nov. 12 at 7:30pm and Nov. 24 at 4:00pm. Broadway veteran and 2012 United Solo Best Actress award winner Ann Morrison will bring her new play "Word Painting: Soliloquies Around An Easel" on Nov. 10 at 4:00pm. Off West End Award nominee Vicky Araico Casas will present her solo piece "Juana in a Million" on Oct. 15 at 7:30pm.
Presented categories include drama, comedy, storytelling, magic, stand-up, and multimedia, among many others. Festival shows will compete for a number of awards, such as Best Production, Best Acting, Best Direction, and Audience Award. The winners will be announced on November 24 during the Closing Ceremony held at Theatre Row. There will be also a special United Solo Award, presented to an artist with outstanding achievements in the field of solo theatre. This year's nominees are Alan Cumming, Alec Mapa, Bette Midler, Anthony Rapp, William Shatner, Fiona Shaw, and Holland Taylor.
As in the past years, United Solo will continue its efforts to support the theatre community by fundraising for the Actors Fund, the organization that helps performing arts and entertainment professionals. David Engelman, the organization's Director of Communications and Marketing, will be present at the opening of the festival to provide remarks for the artists and the audience, familiarizing them with the Actors Fund mission and its programs.
Earlier this year, United Solo expanded its operations across the Atlantic, with its first program in Europe. The presentation of six International Artists was concluded with a solo show by Regina Advento, a member of Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch. In her message to New York audiences, Regina wrote, "Last season, I saw several performances at United Solo in New York. It was inspirational. While developing a solo piece, we have the opportunity to look deeper inside ourselves and to find answers related to our lives."
As the solo performers and their teams get ready to present their solo shows in New York, they shared their thoughts about participating at the festival, among so many other participants from all over the world:
"The fact that there are 120 others taking up the same challenge makes it an exhilarating experience," wrote Eliza Roberts, co-director of "Beneath My Fathers' Sky."
"Being part of United Solo creates its own energy and feeling of community, something that's often hard to come by," commented Mina Samuels, The New York Times bestselling author, bringing her show "Hazards" to the festival this year.
"The opportunity to be a part of a global community such as United Solo allows me to engage, absorb and be exposed with fellow artists and their work," added Christian Moralde, an actor, TV host, and author of solo show "Don't Call Me Walter!"
Tickets for all festival shows are $18, available through Telecharge at 212.239.6200, online at www.telecharge.com and at the Theatre Row box office open daily from noon to the last curtain. The box office will keep a waiting list for the sold out shows, as some last-minute openings may be available.