InBox: Everything’s coming up roses THE 4TH ANNUAL PHILLY THEATRE WEEK WITH 11 DAYS, 64 COMPANIES AND 72 EVENTS has begun…

Curtains up. Theatre Philadelphia proudly announces the return of Philly Theatre Week from April 22 to May 2, 2021. After a year of dark stages, millions in lost ticket sales and thousands of lost jobs, the Philadelphia theatre scene will rise again after the pandemic shut-downs with 11 days, 64 organizations, 72 events, and hundreds of performances. This fourth year celebration will showcase the strength, resilience, talent and diversity of the tri-state region’s theatre scene through virtual and in-person shows that will be hosted in every corner of Philadelphia, and in the Philadelphia suburbs, Delaware and South Jersey. Events will include a variety of live and pre-recorded virtual performances, panels, workshops, theatre-by-mail, audio plays and in-person outdoor events. All tickets for participating shows are specially priced to be accessible to all, with tickets being free, $15 or $30 each. Philly Theatre Week tickets are officially on sale now at www.phillytheatreweek.org. (all photos provided by Philly Theatre Week)

Welcome to LaNeshe Miller-White who took over the reigns for Theatre Philadelphia just seven months ago – and several months into the pandemic. Not only was this a sensitive time for the organization bringing on a new director after its founding director had left, but the new director would need to lead the organization to a new chapter and out of the pandemic crisis. Miller-White is a cultural producer, actress, and marketer. She is a graduate of Temple University’s School of Communications and Theater. She believes in using art for social change and is the Executive Director and Co-Founder of Theatre in the X, a West Philadelphia based theater company that produces accessible theater productions for Black audiences and provides opportunities for Black artists. She became the new Executive Director of Theatre Philadelphia in August 2020.

Without A Cue Productions, LLC

Murder By Gaslight
Saturday, April 24 from 7:00pm-8:00pm
Saturday, April 24 from 8:00pm-9:00pm
Sunday, April 25 from 7:00pm-8:00pm
Sunday, April 25 from 8:00pm-9:00pm
Live Outdoor Event – In Person Event

Murder By Gaslight – Are you prepared for a touch of the eccentric, and steeled against a chill up your corset? Are you yearning to add an experience at once fantastical while also unnerving? Then join us for a historical walking tour with a murderous twist! 
There’s been a very Victorian murder in Philadelphia. Enter a world of stodgy alienists and charismatic charlatans, saucy painted ladies and tweedy robber barons, steam powered engines and horse drawn carriages. Stroll the byways and shadowy corners of Old City, led by your guide – who just happens to be the victim of a 130 year old murder! You will be tasked with inspecting the crime scene, gathering the clues, and questioning the suspects you meet along the way. And perhaps, just perhaps, you can stay one step ahead of a wily murderer, avoid a similar fate, and have a chance to solve a – MURDER BY GASLIGHT!

Without A Cue Productions is thrilled to take its interactive mystery theater on the road – literally.  During this hour long walking tour, our guests will not only learn some of the more interesting tid bits about our city, but will also solve a murder – all outdoors and on the move! This show represents a major pivot for the company known for employing professional actors in murder mystery-style theatre at Peddler’s Village in Buck’s County and at the Shore in Cape May, New Jersey. Now, after a major pivot for the female-led company, Without a Cue Productions makes its first major debut in the Philadelphia market.

Theatre Exile – Zoo Motel

Zoo Motel
April 22-May 2
Live Virtual Theatre Event

Theatre Exile invites you to check into ZOO MOTEL, devised by director, designer, and performer and Philadelphia Fringe Festival favorite Thaddeus Phillips in 2020 as a quarantine experiment that offers a window into what’s possible for live performance — a world where audiences from around the globe can share a mind-bending adventure in the comfort of their own home. Broadcast live and online from one room in a South American village, ZOO MOTEL takes audiences on a journey to Spain, Japan, the Mojave Desert, and around the world alongside fellow motel guests in a family friendly performance that showcases how connected we are even in a digital world.

Peoples Light – Deja Morgan

People’s Light – Spiritual Uprising
April 22 – May 2
Pre-Recorded Theatre Event $15
Zonya Love (Lights Out: Nat “King” Cole, Broadway’s The Color Purple) brings her forthcoming collection of re-imagined Negro Spirituals to the People’s Light stage in this filmed concert event. The nationally acclaimed actor-musician leads a full band through evocative new renditions of songs like “My Way’s Cloudy” and “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot” while illustrating the music’s deep cultural and historical significance.

Fat Ham at the Wilma Theater
Fat Ham The Wilma Theater -Comedy, Drama, LGBTQ+, Philadelphia Premiere, American Premiere, World Premiere – Access any time with Registration: Click “Buy Tickets” to register for this event. You will be provided an access link during Philly Theatre Week directly from Wilma Theater’s box office. Contact tickets@wilmatheater.org for any questions.

Inis Nua Theatre Company 
How To Be Brave
April 22 – April 25
Pre-recorded Theatre Event
Pay What You Can
Single-parent Katie is having a terrible morning: her mom is yelling, her daughter is bleeding, and the smoke alarm just went off. Overwhelmed, Katie runs out the door and on a wild ride through Newport, Wales. Featuring a stolen BMX bike, a quick dip in the River Usk, and an impromptu public dance number, How To Be Brave is an uplifting reminder of how our hometowns shape who we are.

InterAct Theatre Company
The Niceties – A Virtual Presentation
Thursday, April 22 – Sunday, May 2
Pre-Recorded Theatre Event

A “blisteringly smart” (Boston Globe) drama in which Zoe, a brilliant Black college student, and her white history professor Janine square off over the role slavery played in the American Revolution. Heightened by protests and a social media frenzy, their taut and timely debate careens out of control and threatens to derail their careers and their lives. Directed by Kathryn MacMillan. Starring Angela Bey & Janis Dardaris. Audiences register in advance and receive the streaming link on April 22nd. Register after April 22nd, and you’ll receive the link directly from InterAct Theatre Company within 24 hours!

Mallbodies, A Performative Elegy to the American Shopping Mall
Thursday, April 22 – Sunday, May 2
Audio Performance
Pay What You Can

Shopping malls hold a strong place in American culture as well as personal culture. Mallbodies, is a soundwalk performance dedicated to – and in critique of – our experience and memory of the American shopping mall. This project is designed to be listened to by individual audience members using headphones while exploring a shopping mall of their choosing. Mallbodies explores the origins of the shopping mall, our attraction to it, our histories within it, and how malls could function today and into the future. Mallbodies is performed for an audience of one (or do it with a friend!) as they stream the series of tracks on a playlist on the Mallbodies website: www.mallbodies.biz.  

The Phoenix Theatre
The Second Annual Surprise Birthday Party for William Shakespeare
Friday, April 23 from 7pm – 9pm
Love Virtual Theatre
Pay What You Can

Don’t tell Shakespeare, but we’re throwing him another surprise birthday party! This year the bard is turning 457 so we’re all getting together again to perform some more of his work! It’ll be a night of scenes, monologues, songs, sonnets, and of course…CAKE!

11th Hour Theatre Company
Quarantine Cabaret: Elena Camp & Rajeer Alford
Saturday, April 24th from 7:30pm-8:30pm
Recording will be available for 2 weeks after the original air date.
Live Virtual Theatre Event

Adorable real-life couple, Elena Camp & Rajeer Alford, will serenade audiences with moving duets, unique interpretations of classical musical theatre pieces, and more as part of 11th Hour’s spring Cabaret Series. Event will be streamed live on April 24th, and available for replay up to two weeks after original air date.

EgoPo Classic Theater
April 28 – May 2
Live Drive-In Outdoor Event (In Person Event)

“Fifteen years ago, I killed my sister”.  Thus begins this haunting story of pain and isolation. Before the event, you receive directions to a remote abandoned parking lot in Philadelphia.  You arrive in the night, your vehicle illuminating the empty landscape.  A man appears out of the darkness, blinded by your headlights. Through your FM radio, he begins to share the story of his journey to redemption.  You, and your car, become essential players in this theatrical nightmare as his life (re)emerges out of the darkness and silence.

Participation in Philly Theatre Week was free for the above and other participating organizations, artists and businesses. Enrollment was open to independent artists, organizations, theatres or establishments within a 35-mile radius of Philadelphia’s City Hall. Extensive outreach efforts included theatres, galleries, schools, artists, screening rooms, and all theatre-supporting restaurants and businesses.  

While exploring the variety of work in Philadelphia’s theatre community, audiences will also have the opportunity to make a donation to Theatre Philadelphia’s Emergency Relief program, designed to provide financial support for theatre workers and artists whose jobs and opportunities were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Philly Theatre Week is presented by Theatre Philadelphia. Additional Theatre Philadelphia funding and support is provided by the William Penn Foundation, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and the Philadelphia Cultural Fund. 2021 Philly Theatre Week partners include Ticketleap, Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, and Yelp.

Philly Theatre Week tickets are on sale on April 5th, 2021 at www.phillytheatreweek.com.