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Black Tie International:
On The Town With Aubrey Reuben - May 6, 2017


Aubrey Reuben

On the Town With Aubrey Reuben
Where All the Stars Shine Brightly!
May 6, 2017


The 2017 Tony Award Nominations were announced at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. Jane Krakowski and Christopher Jackson read the nominations. There were no surprises. Most of the OCC and Drama Desk Nominations for Broadway were included. I imagine Kevin Kline and Laurie Metcalf, and Andy Karl and Bette Midler will win the Tonys for Best Actor/Actress in a play and musical, and Hello, Dolly! best revival of a musical.


We had a Meet the 2017 Tony Awards Nominees at Sofitel New York Hotel. Most of those nominated appeared, and it was a joy to photograph talented actresses and members of the creative teams like Cynthia Nixon and Laura Linney (photo below). I look forward to the Awards on Sunday June 11.

A revival of Pacific Overtures, book by John Weidman, music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, at the Classic Stage Company, is a splendid version of a fine musical re-imagined in 90 minutes, with an excellent cast, directed and designed by John Doyle. The ten member cast, headed by George Takei, sing and act wonderfully, telling us the clash between Japan and the United States, when Commodore Perry arrived in the mid-nineteenth century to open up Japan for trade.


Marry Harry, book by Jennifer Robbins, music by Dan Martin, lyrics by Michael Bello, is a York Theatre Company production at the Theater at Saint Peter's, 629 Lexington Avenue.  It is a charming, delightful 80-minute musical. The excellent seven member cast, is directed expertly by Bill Castellino. The two leads, David Spadora and Morgan Cowling, sing beautifully, and the music is  pleasant, the lyrics intelligent and the book contains many pearls of wisdom about two young lovers and romance. The opening night party was a joyous occasion at a wonderful Italian restaurant, Luna Piena, 243 East 53rd Street, where they served us a multitude of hors d'oeuvres, pasta and fine wines and beer.

New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players presented Patience or, Bunthorne's Bride, at the Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College. Thank goodness New York City has Artistic Director Albert Bergeret for keeping William S. Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan alive in New York. Their operettas are delightful. They are melodious, funny and extremely clever. The two poets, James Mills and David Macaluso, stole the show. They were hilarious. The highlight of the performance was So go to him, and say to him, sung by Caitlin Burke and Mills. The tumultuous applause brought them back for two encores. A pretty Sarah Caldwell Smith played the title role, and sang beautifully. The orchestra played the sparkling music, under the baton of the magnificent Albert Bergeret.


The New York Pops 34th Birthday Gala honored Kelli O'Hara and Bartlett Sher. (photo below).




They presented a marvelous program at Carnegie Hall, with a multitude of Broadway and Opera stars, like Matthew Broderick, Danny Burstein, Rebecca Luker, Marin Mazzie, Steven Pasquale and Isabel Leonard from the Met. A dinner dance followed at the Mandarin Oriental where I photographed the honorees and their proud families. It was a magnificent event.


Film Society at Lincoln Center presented the 24th New York African Film Festival on Wednesday May 3 at the Walter Reade Theater and will continue to May 9. I photographed the arrivals, including the director  Akin Omotoso of the opening night filmVaya and many of the other directors, actors and celebrities. I then reviewed the film and chatted with many of the guests at the reception afterwards in the Frieda and Roy Furman Gallery. Vaya, by Akim Omotoso South Africa, 2016, is a powerful film, about three naive, innocent young people who travel to Johannesburg from small towns, and, unfortunately, are mistreated in the the large city. One young man finds his cousin is a gangster, and is forced to kill another mobster. Another young man comes to take his dead father back home for burial, only to find his late father had another family in the city, and they had already claimed the body. The third person is a girl taking a young cousin to be reunited with her mother, who is now living with another gangster. The acting is superb, and the photography is wonderful, but it is a grim tale. It is also full of violence, without any humor whatsoever. It is based on true stories.


We had a Meet and Greet for Michael Moore at Sardi's. He will appear on Broadway at the Belasco Theatre in July in a one man show The Terms of My Surrender, directed by Michael Mayer. I eagerly await opening night in Augus


Another Meet and Greet was held at Ripley-Grier for Building the Wall, by Robert Schenkkan, directed by Ari Edelson, and starring Tamara Tunie and James Badge Dale. It opens on May 21 at New World Stages. I eagerly  await opening night.


Metropolitan Magazine and 25A Magazine celebrated the April Cover Star of Author & Philanthropist Jean Shafiroff at Selena Rosa Restaurant, 1712 2nd Avenue. It was  a delightful event with margaritas and delicious Mexican food. Among the guests were former Miss America, the lovely Suzette Charles.


Heterosexuals, gay men and lesbians having been filling the screen lately. It is now only fair to include trans. 3 Generations, directed and co-written by Gaby Dellal, which stars Elle Fanning as a girl who wants to be a boy, Naomi Watts as her confused mother, and Susan Sarandon as her lesbian grandmother, who live together on the top floor of a townhouse. Mounting that staircase each day is a wonderful exercise to keep all three slim. To go through the operation, Naomi has to  seek  permission  from Elle's father, Tate Donovan. He abandoned the family, when Naomi slept with his brother, Sam Trammell. She obviously is confused, because in another scene, we see her in bed with a black man also. This is a very dysfunctional family. I forgot to include Linda Edmond, Susan's lover, who also lives with Elle and Naomi. I think you can understand this is a very convoluted plot. By the way, trans, by Rogers Brubaker, 2016, is a book you should read to understand about Gender and Race in an Age of Unsettled Identities. The acting by the three leading actresses is superb.




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