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Torch Song is playing at the Hayes Theatre located at 240 West 44th Street. It runs two hours forty minutes with one intermission. The play closes on February 24, 2019.
The play first premiered on Broadway in 1982 at the Little Theatre it ran for 1,222 performances and eight previews. It won Harvey Fierstein two Tony Awards for Best Play (with John Glines) and Best Actor in a play (1983).
Harvey Fierstein is the playwright. He won four Tony Awards for Hairspray (2003), La Cage au Follies (Best Book of a Musical 1984), Torch Song Trilogy (Best Actor and play 1982) and was nominated for three Tony Awards for Casa Valentina (2014), Kinky Boots (Best Book of a Musical 2013) and Newsies (outstanding book of a musical 2012).
Clint Ramos is the costume Designer. He won a Tony Award for Eclipsed in 2016.
David Zinn is the scenic designer. He won two Tony Awards for Sponge Bob Sponge Pants (2018 Scenic Design), The Humans (Scenic Design 2016) and was nominated for four Tony Awards for A Doll’s House (Costume Design 2017), Airline Highway (Costume Design 2015), Fun Home (Scenic Design 2014) and In the Next Room (or the Vibrator Room) (Costume Design 2010).
Mercedes Ruehl won an Academy Award in 1992 for The Fisher King, She won a Tony Award in 1991 for Lost in Yonkers. She was nominated for two Tony Awards for The Goat, or Who is Sylvia? And The Shadow Box.
Arnold (Michael Urie) is a Drag Queen and is putting on the finishing touches to her make up. She then puts on a gown, wig and heels.
It is 1971; internal stud is posted on the side of the stage. Arnold is at a gay bar.. There is a dark room in the back were patrons go to have sex. After a sexual encounter Arnold goes back to the front. Ed (Ward Horton) is flirting with someone, it turns out to be Arnold.
Arnold is waiting by the phone hoping Ed will call, so he calls him. Ed is not sure if he wants to omit he is gay so he dates women.
Times passes and we are in 1972. Arnold and Alan (Michael Hsu Rosen) are in bed. Alan is Arnolds new love, they in bed with Ed and Laurel (Roxanna Hope Radja). She knows Ed is gay but still wants to marry him.
Act two we are in 1980. The sign says on top Widows and Children First.
Ed is sleeping over. He has left Laurel.
Arnold’s mother Mrs. Beckoff (Mercedes Ruehl) is due for a visit. He told his mother he was gat at thirteen.
David (Jack Difalco) has been living with Arnold for six month. He had lived on the streets for three years and is gay. Arnold hopes in three months he will be able to adopt him.
When Arnold’s mother arrives things don’t work out as they hoped. Mrs. Beckoff knows her son is gay but isn’t happy about it. His father has been dead for three years. She tells him he can’t compare how she mourns the death of his father, to him mourning the death of Alan who was killed by a mob. He asks her to leave.
This is a very touching story of a gay man trying to be who he is and not be hassle by society.
This is a play may not appeal to everyone. If you can keep an open mind this is an interesting and funny play with an amazing cast. This is Michael Urie at his best. Jack Difalco shines.
Review b Rozanna Radakovich.
Photos by Annazor.
To read a candid interview with cast, scroll down to the left for photos. Click on photos for this and other shows.