Transport Group to Present David Greenspan, and Mary Testa and Michael Starobin in Upcoming Concerts
Transport Group, the Drama Desk and OBIE award-winning theatre company, has announced that it will present two, special, one-night-only, dark night performances, featuring Transport Group alumni: David Greenspan on Sunday, April 28, at 7pm, and Mary Testa and Michael Starobin on Sunday, May 5, at 7pm.
Mary Testa and Michael Starobin combine forces to craft an evening of music that is unlike anything you're likely to see in a cabaret theatre. Mary Testa is one of New York's most celebrated and hardest working actors. Her Broadway credits, too numerous to mention in their totality, include Tony-nominated performances in On the Town and 42nd Street, as well as appearances in Guys & Dolls, Xanadu, Chicago, Marie Christine, A New Brain, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, The Rink and off-Broadway in In Trousers, Lucky Stiff, First Lady Suite, and most recently, her acclaimed performance in Transport Group's Queen of the Mist. She is last year's recipient of a Special Achievement Drama Desk Award for her prolific contributions to the theatre. Two-time Tony Award-winner Michael Starobin has provided orchestrations for some of Broadway's most beloved scores, among them Falsettos, Sunday in the Park with George, Assassins, and Next to Normal.
David Greenspan performs two one-man shows in one evening. Based on both Aristotle's Poetics and the essays of Gerald F. Else, The Argument, written by Greenspan, is a passionate student's love-letter and farewell to his teacher - reminding us of the personal pathos that binds us to the Greeks, and firing us to capture that chimera, art. The 40-minute monologue dramatizes the attack on poetry made by Plato in the Republic, and the coherent rebuttal offered by Aristotle in the Poetics. The evening's companion piece is Gertrude Stein's Plays, a whimsical and provocative lecture on theatre; a hidden gem of theatricality and wit that only Stein could have delivered - a coherent account of her development as a playwright and her exploration of theatre from the standpoint of sight and sound rather than story and action.
Michael Feingold of the Village Voice called The Argument "a solo gem... [Greenspan] knows, to a hairsbreadth, how and when to vary the passion with irony, with analytic lucidity, and with sly, anachronistic zingers to keep you alert. This is an Aristotle anybody would be glad to study with." Charles Isherwood of The New York Times wrote of Plays: "In Mr. Greenspan's lilting delivery, this dense display of Stein's curious mixture of the obvious and the abstruse makes for delicious hearing. Adding just a touch of humor by sardonic emphasis on a word here and there, he turns this long, logorrheic meditation on the differences among life, literature, and the stage into an endearing bedtime story."
Transport Group is currently presenting the New York premiere of The Memory Show, a new musical with book and lyrics by Sara Cooper; music by Zach Redler; directed by Joe Calarco, at The Duke on 42nd Street, a NEW 42ND STREET project, 229 W 42nd Street. The Memory Show, which features Catherine Cox and Leslie Kritzer, opens Tuesday, April 30 at 7pm.
Founded in 2001, Transport Group, under the leadership of Jack Cummings III, Artistic Director, and Lori Fineman, Executive Director, is a not-for-profit theatre company that stages new works and re-imagined revivals by American writers. Their visually progressive productions of emotionally classic stories explore the challenges of relationships and identity in America. Transport Group is the winner of a special Drama Desk Award for its "breadth of vision and its presentation of challenging productions." Transport Group presented its premiere production in 2002: Thornton Wilder's Our Town, which featured older actors in the roles of Emily and George and a twelve-year-old girl as the Stage Manager. Its second production, Requiem for William, an evening of seven seldom produced plays by William Inge, that featured a cast of 26 as well as original songs, premiered in 2003. In 2004 the company presented the first New York revival of Michael John LaChiusa's First Lady Suite, which received rave reviews, played to sold-out houses, and earned two Drama Desk Award nominations including Outstanding Revival of a Musical. Other productions include the world premiere of the musical The Audience, which featured a cast of 46 actors and earned three Drama Desk Award nominations, including Outstanding Musical; Normal, a new musical about a mother's battle to save her daughter from anorexia; cul-de-sac, a new play by Tony Award nominee John Cariani; the first New York revival of Tad Mosel's Pulitzer Prize play, All the Way Home; the 50th anniversary, OBIE-winning production of William Inge's The Dark at the Top of the Stairs; the world premiere musicals Crossing Brooklyn, Marcy in the Galaxy, and Being Audrey, and the first New York revival of Irwin Shaw's Bury the Dead. Both First Lady Suite and Bury the Dead were filmed for the New York Performing Arts Library's Theatre on Film and Tape Archive at Lincoln Center. In 2010 Transport Group presented a sold-out, extended engagement of Mart Crowley's The Boys in the Band, which received an OBIE Award and was nominated for five 2010 Drama Desk Awards, including Outstanding Revival of a Play-the most for an off-Broadway play. Transport Group's productions of See Rock City and Other Destinations by Brad Alexander and Adam Mathias, and Hello Again by Michael John LaChiusa combined for eleven 2011 Drama Desk Award nominations and one win. Transport Group's production of Lysistrata Jones, by Douglas Carter Beane and Lewis Flinn, opened to rave reviews, played to sell-out houses, transferred to Broadway, and was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical. In 2011, the company produced a critically acclaimed run of The Patsy and Jonas at The Duke on 42nd Street, starring OBIE winner David Greenspan and Michael John LaChiusa's world premiere musical, Queen of the Mist, winner of the 2012 Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding New off-Broadway Musical. Most recently, Transport Group produced the world premiere of House for Sale, an essay by National Book Award-winning author Jonathan Franzen adapted for the stage and directed by Daniel Fish.
Transport Group is currently in the middle of its 20th Century Project, a ten-year initiative spanning ten productions, each production focusing on a different decade of the 20th century. The ten productions comprise five musicals and five plays-including three commissioned musicals, two commissioned plays, and five revivals. Its most recent production, Queen of the Mist, was the project's inaugural presentation, taking place in the first decade of the 20th century. For more information about Transport Group visit www.transportgroup.org.
Greenspan and Testa/Starobin perform at The Duke on 42nd Street, a New 42nd Street project, at 229 W 42nd Street. Tickets are $25 and available at www.Dukeon42.org or by phoning The Duke on 42nd Street box office at 646-223-3010. Online box office is available 24 hours; regular box office hours at The Duke on 42nd Street are: Tuesday-Friday 4pm-7pm; Saturday 12pm-6pm. On performance days the box office is open Tuesday-Saturday 4pm till performance time, Sunday 12pm till performance time. For more information about Transport Group, visit www.transportgroup.org.