Goblin Market

Goblin Market

A haunting folktale of sisterhood, enchantment, and salvation, Goblin Market is based on the widely popular poem of Christina Rossetti. Told through the lens of the Depression-era South by Jennifer Jewell with an original bluegrass score. 

Happily After Ever

Happily After Ever

By turns whimsical, campy, hallucinatory and poignant, Laura Zlatos’s candy-colored play about gender identity begins as a rom-com about a couple who expect their new baby will be a cookie-cutter-perfect addition to their Ward-and-June-Cleaver lives... 

“Wrestling Jerusalem

“Wrestling Jerusalem

Aaron Davidman’s smartly written solo show about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict believes in the power of listening to one another’s stories. But its 17 characters — Israelis, Palestinians, a sprinkling of American Jews — need far more room to breathe than they’re allowed in this puzzlingly paced production, which moves too fast for clarity and feeling (1:30). 

Ideation

Ideation

The sinister tangos with the madcap in Aaron Loeb’s comedy, which satirizes office politics, skewers groupthink and adds a dose of moral horror as a team of consultants spitball ideas for their latest commission:creating a system to annihilate a million or so of their fellow human beings... 

“Dead Dog Park

“Dead Dog Park

(closes on Sunday) A white police officer is accused of pushing a black boy out a window, and this play, directed by Eric Tucker from a script by Barry Malawer, explores the aftermath (1:20). 

I and You

I and You

(previews start on Friday; opens on Jan. 27) A boy, a girl and the poetry of Walt Whitman. These are the characters in Lauren Gunderson’s new play. Kayla Ferguson stars as a Caroline, a teenage girl housebound with a serious illness; Reggie D... 

Wide Awake Hearts

Wide Awake Hearts

In this drama by Brendan Gall, a screenwriter plays a psychosexual game, casting his wife and old friend as lovers in his movie even as he suspects them of having an affair. The play’s structure loses its stability, though, with the addition of a fourth point to its geometry (1:15). 

Cuckooed

Cuckooed

Mr. Thomas is a politically motivated British comedian who describes his work as “a mix of stand-up, theater, journalism and the odd bout of performance art.” In this show, the activist comic recounts his discovery that a good friend was actually a spy for a major arms manufacturer. 

Songbird

Songbird

(previews start on Tuesday; opens on Oct. 28) A Russian comedy-drama set to a country-and-western tune, this musical updates Anton Chekhov’s “The Seagull” and sends it winging toward the American South... 

Welcome to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Welcome to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

In this mock-musical, the experimental troupe Monk Parrots is trying to say something about what happens when cultures collide. A Texas couple goes to Saudi Arabia in 1981 when the husband gets a petroleum job... 

Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally

Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally

Told from the perspective of a cellphone, Kevin Armento’s clever, funny-sad new play traces an affair between a high school student and his algebra teacher. Presented by One Year Lease Theater Company in a fast-paced, highly physical production by Ianthe Demos, it is an elegantly constructed examination of contemporary isolation and the illusory nature of electronic connection (1:20). 

Pondling

Pondling

Madeleine, the faintly disheveled menace at the center of Genevieve Hulme-Beaman’s poignant and engrossing solo play, pedals around her village on a My Little Pony bike, absorbed in glorious fantasy... 

Sense of an Ending

Sense of an Ending

(closes on Sunday) A discredited New York Times reporter investigates a Rwandan massacre in this play by Ken Urban. The script is fast-paced, fluid, taut and often finely acted. Also somewhat slick and tidy... 

Pimms Mission

Pimms Mission

(previews start on Thursday; opens on Aug. 4) There are plenty of protests against “Big Pharma,” but few quite as explosive as the one at the center of Christopher Stetson Boal’s play at 59E59 Theaters... 

Summer Shorts Series A

Summer Shorts Series A

Exercises in ethics, and some plain old exercise, mark the first half of this “Summer Shorts” festival from 59E59. Neil LaBute, Vickie Ramirez and Matthew Lopez offer one-act works — about suburban joggers, daytime drinkers and One World Trade widows — that are sometimes compelling, sometimes implausible and all admirably performed (1:30). 

Threesome

Threesome

(previews start on Saturday; opens on July 22) In Yussuf El Guindi’s drama, starring Alia Attaliah, Quinn Franzen and Karan Oberoi, an Arab-American couple attempt to improve their troubled marriage with mutual sexual adventure... 

Summer Shorts Series B

Summer Shorts Series B

In the second series of the 59E59’s Summer Shorts festival, an adrift Southerner writes letters to Kim Jong-il and a couch potato tries to peel himself away. The highlight is Robert O’Hara’s seamy, steamy “Built,” a treacherous thriller about a sexual encounter between a middle-aged professional woman (Merritt Janson) and a younger male hustler (Justin Bernegger) (1:30). 

Cuddles

Cuddles

Vampire stories don’t get any creepier than this sensational little shocker written by Joseph Wilde, about a teenage blood-drinker, Eve (the haunting Carla Langley) and the older sister, Tabby (a commanding Rendah Heywood), who keeps Eve in captivity but allows her to feed offer Tabby’s blood (1:20). 

Tuesdays at Tescos

Tuesdays at Tescos

(previews start on Thursday; opens on May 19) As an actor, Simon Callow often plays dress-up, but he’s never been dressed quite like this: in miniskirt, mascara and heels. In this Brits Off-Broadway monologue, adapted from a French original, Mr... 

One Hand Clapping

One Hand Clapping

This adaptation of Anthony Burgess’s 1961 comic novel, part of Brits Off Broadway, is moderately amusing but is more interesting for the perspective. The story, about a couple whose lives change when the husband uses his photographic memory to win money on a game show, reminds us that the mocking of shallow consumerism, a popular pastime of late, began almost before the “Mad Men” culture had even fully materialized (1:20). 

Cool Hand Luke

Cool Hand Luke

Godlight Theater Company has adapted Donn Pearce’s novel, a story about a charismatic rebel slapped with a stint on a Florida chain gang, reiterating its themes of repression, suffering and resistance... 

The Tailor of Inverness

The Tailor of Inverness

The writer and performer Matthew Zajac offers a ghost story, an adventure story, a detective story and apparently a true story, his and that of his father, a Polish-born tailor. It’s never clear exactly why Mr... 

Underland

Underland

Alexandra Collier’s comic drama about murder, boredom and crocodiles in an Australian stone-quarry town has vivid characters, finely delineated performances and enough metaphor to suffocate Samuel Beckett (1:20). 

Music Hall

Music Hall

Jean-Luc Lagarce’s beautiful, incantatory play is about a company of three performers who cling to art and shredded dignity as they hoof from stage to ever more pathetic stage... 

Lonesome Traveler

Lonesome Traveler

The songs in this drive-by history of folk music sound great, but the play suffers from over-familiarity: It mines the genre’s greatest hits and the familiar stories that go along with them, aspiring only to tell the PBS pledge-show crowd what it already knows (2:00). 

C.O.A.L. (Confessions of a Liar)

C.O.A.L. (Confessions of a Liar)

David Brian Colbert’s one-act drama about a West Virginia boy with a bad habit — and eventually, a major secret worth lying about — offers four laudable performances and a worthy theme... 

The Road to Damascus

The Road to Damascus

Two terrorist attacks on American soil have the president ready to give orders to invade Syria in this political thriller set in the near future. The only person standing in his way is the new pope (1:40). 

The Woodsman

The Woodsman

A reimagining of L. Frank Baum’s world, James Ortiz’s movement piece with puppets tells the Tin Man’s back story — how a regular human came to be a rusting pile of metal in need of a heart... 

Everybody Gets Cake!

Everybody Gets Cake!

(previews start on Jan. 16; opens on Jan. 23) The physical theater company Parallel Exit returns with this sweet-tooth comedy, a surreal tribute to silent film funnies and “Adult Swim” gags, directed by Mark Lonergan and performed by Joel Jeske, Danny Gardner and Brent McBeth... 

On a Stool at the End of the Bar

On a Stool at the End of the Bar

In Robert Callely’s overstuffed new drama, set in the 1980s, a family’s tranquility is blown to smithereens when Tony (Timothy John Smith) discovers that his longtime girlfriend, Chris (Antoinette Thornes), used to be a man... 

Asymmetric

Asymmetric

(previews start on Nov. 14; opens on Nov. 19) The downtown playwright Mac Rogers, semi-famous for an epic trilogy about an insectoid takeover, treks to the Upper East Side with this new thriller... 

Lift

Lift

(in previews; opens on Oct. 28) Easy Rawlins won’t saunter in to press the up button, but fans of Walter Mosley’s atmospheric mysteries might still crowd into 59E59 Theaters for the New York debut of this elevator-set thriller... 

Deliverance

Deliverance

In Godlight Theater Company’s adaptation of James Dickey’s 1970 novel, four businessmen encounter sniper fire and rape in backwoods Georgia. Tautly directed and vigorously performed, the company packs a lot of macho posturing onto a small stage... 

Uncanny Valley

Uncanny Valley

(previews start on Oct. 2; opens on Oct. 8) The personal is mechanical in Thomas Gibbons’s new two-hander, which explores artificial and emotional intelligence. Directed by Tom Dugdale and performed by Barbara Kingsley and Alex Podulke, it concerns a neuroscientist who is trying to create a robot with all the abilities, facilities, feelings and memories of a person... 

Bauer

Bauer

(previews start on Sept. 2; opens on Sept. 9) The German expressionist painter Rudolf Bauer receives a dramatic retrospective courtesy of the playwright Lauren Gunderson. This three-character piece, which debuted at the San Francisco Playhouse, centers on Bauer, his wife and his former lover... 

Boys and Girls

Boys and Girls

(previews start on Sept. 3; opens on Sept. 7) Dylan Coburn Gray’s play, a hit at last year’s Dublin Fringe Festival, follows four booze-sodden university students through a wild night in Dublin... 

The Opponent

The Opponent

(previews start on July 31; opens on Aug. 6) What happens to a boxer who can’t quite deliver the knockout punch? In the first half of this play by Brett Neveu, starring Kamal Angelo Bolden and Guy Van Swearingen, a boxer and his trainer try to hang on to their hopes of glory in the ring... 

The Pianist of Willesden Lane

The Pianist of Willesden Lane

(previews begin on Friday; opens on July 22) The actress, writer, and concert pianist Mona Golabek uses 88 keys and a crowd of characters to narrate the story of her mother, Lisa Jura, sent from Vienna to London via the kindertransport at the age of 14... 

Summer Shorts: Series B

Summer Shorts: Series B

This evening of new works features Daniel Reitz’s “Napoleon in Exile,” a tender, very funny short play about a young man “on the spectrum”; Neil LaBute’s compassionate, morally complex “The Mulberry Bush,” whose park-bench confrontation between strangers echoes “The Zoo Story”; and Albert Innaurato’s “Doubtless,” a slapdash spoof replete with cursing nuns, orgy-hosting priests and diatribes that don’t make good dialogue (1:30). 

Summer Shorts

Summer Shorts

(previews begin on July 18; opens on July 27) Barring a garbage strike, summer never seems to last quite long enough. So why not honor the season with a couple of evenings of brief plays? This annual festival returns with one-acts by Roger Hedden, Eric Lane and Warren Leight in Series A and  by Albert Innaurato, Neil LaBute and Daniel Reitz in Series B. 

Pat Kirkwood Is Angry

Pat Kirkwood Is Angry

(previews start on June 10; opens on June 15) This solo show by the British actress Jessica Walker recreates the life of Pat Kirkwood, a stage and screen star in wartime England. Through popular song and monologue, the piece explores Kirkwood’s tumultuous career and the allegations of an affair with Prince Philip, which Kirkwood denied, that nearly scuttled it. 

Blink

Blink

(in previews; opens on June 8) The playwright Phil Porter finds an unusual use for a baby monitor in this gentle comedy (part of the Brits Off Broadway Festival), about two lost souls finding love in seemingly dreary London... 

Ayckbourn Ensemble

Ayckbourn Ensemble

(previews start on May 29; opens on June 4) At 75, the British dramatist Alan Ayckbourn has written a play for every year he’s been alive —   and a few to spare. To celebrate this exquisite corpus, 59E59 Theaters will honor him with rotating productions of three of his works: “Arrivals & Departures,” a new play about a police operation; “Time of My Life,” a 1992 piece about a birthday dinner; and “Farcicals,” a double bill of comedies about love and barbecue. 

The Lovesong of Alfred J. Hitchcock

The Lovesong of Alfred J. Hitchcock

Part of the excellent Brits Off Broadway series, David Rudkin’s play pries the lid off Hitchcock’s psyche, the better to peer in and consider the ghosts and ordeals that Mr... 

Playing With Grown Ups

Playing With Grown Ups

This ominous comedy-drama about an impromptu dinner party is the site of one more skirmish in the mommy wars. There are multiple casualties. Hannah Patterson’s script is sometimes too on the nose, but just when the characters slant toward stereotype — harridan, rake — she offers them depth and complexity (1:30). 

Peddling

Peddling

Harry Melling, best known for having played Dudley Dursley in the “Harry Potter” films, gives a powerful and delicately calibrated solo performance in his poetic first play about a volatile lost boy, grasping his way toward the possibility of a better existence... 

Stockholm

Stockholm

Meet the couple everyone wants to be. Tomorrow they will be in Stockholm for his birthday and she has surprises in store. Teetering between tenderness and cruelty, it’s beautiful, but it's not pretty... 

Chalk Farm

Chalk Farm

Chalk Farm is the first high-profile piece of theatre to consider the consequences of the riots and looting that ignited main cities in Britain last summer. I find this fairly surprising, as the events feel like particularly fertile grounds for the sort of social commentary drama currently in vogue... 

Blink

Blink

‘Love is whatever you feel it to be’, says Jonah (Harry McEntire) at the start of this quirky romance by playwright Phil Porter. Shortly after the death of her father, still-grieving Sophie loses her job at a software developer, made redundant due to her apparent ‘lack of visibility...