United Solo Theatre Festival 2021
The 12th Annual United Solo Theatre Festival, based at Theatre Row in New York City, is the world’s largest solo theatre festival. After a decade of presenting over one thousand solo shows, the Festival returns to its stage at Theatre Row. There, it will feature productions from around the globe. United Solo features a vast array of shows ranging from drama, storytelling, and multimedia shows to stand-up, improv, dance, and musical. To learn more, visit www.unitedsolo.org.
Below are the performances with their dates and showtimes. Please scroll to the bottom of the page and select the corresponding date to purchase your tickets.
Please note all sales are final. We do not offer refunds or exchanges.
All patrons 12 & older must be fully vaccinated 2 weeks prior to their performance date. All patrons aged 2 – 11 must provide a negative COVID test. Masks must be worn inside the building at all times.
WHO GOES THERE by Tara Hugo – 10/26 @ 7:30pm, 10/30 @ 7:30pm, & 11/13 @ 9:30: Trumpists, liberals, artists, child prodigies, atheists, evangelists, white supremacists, addicts. A divided family in a divided country. Hugo traces the divide. “I searched ancestor’s letters, diaries, poems, some in the Library of Congress, to understand today’s lies and truths. I’m a descendant of the great divide, individuals that risked reinventing themselves. Christians married Jews, whites married blacks, women rejected tradition, same sex love, gender transition. Many disowned, or at best labeled, tolerated. For love of family, parents compromised their dreams within the confines of conservative communities informed by Fox news. The civil war is alive today: “I’m the descendant of a union soldier, called the Missouri Poet Laureate. I read his letter to his daughter saying “sing the song I wrote”
PTSD & Me by Erika Land – 10/27 @ 3:00pm: PTSD and ME is a one woman play irresistibly lined with truth and palpable poetry. The story is about Land’s personal life, military experiences, and her struggles with PTSD. The story highlights the nuances of living with post-traumatic stress disorder and the journey toward coming to terms with not being okay. Patrons can expect to leave the raw performance thoroughly entertained and with a better understanding of PTSD.
The Near-Disaster of Jasper and Casper by Jason Woods – 10/27 @ 7:30pm: Jasper, adopted brother of Casper, is looking for his true family and discovers a witch, a mysterious dragon, and a purpose he never expected. Ghosts, magic, and hilarity abound in The Near-Disaster of Jasper & Casper, an adventure of the heart!
SIX SOLOS – Legend, Myth and Nature conceived and narrated by Lynn Needle 10/28 @ 7:30PM a one act spanning six plus decades from 1953-2021 features work by seminal choreographers Alwin Nikolais, Claudia Gitelman and Lynn Needle exemplifying the German school of modern dance and its evolution. Former Nikolais Dance Theatre soloist, Needle opens the evening appearing in Nikolais’ signature work, NOUMENON. The evening unfolds with interludes of spoken text giving each solo context and includes Gitelman’s IMPROMPTU. HAUNTED, Needle’s autobiographical, multi-media solo is set to an original score, and mandala-inspired video. MONARCH, FOREST and SHAKTI follow, all excerpts from AOMDT’s creation and nature myth HEAVEN and EARTH, andSecret Life of Gardens features costuming by Annie Hickman. Butterfly wings, jeweled masks, deconstructed modernism and a Gaia creature explore all things organic. Lighting Design and Stage Management by Stephen Petrilli.
American Pain by Stephanie Burden – 10/29 @ 7:30pm: When Jenna Sayre gets a job selling Purdue Pharma’s miracle drug Oxycontin, she’s over the moon with happiness. A poverty-stricken single mom, Jenna can suddenly afford everything she’s ever wanted for her son Donnie, a nice house, a good education and a chance to be part of the prestigious Shep Master’s National Youth Football League. But just as Jenna and Donnie start enjoying the good life, they learn Purdue’s promises are not what they seem, and their sweet American dream quickly becomes a nightmare.
Chocoholic by Lilly Dennis – 10/30 @ 3:00pm: Chocoholic is a one-person show based on the true story of the loss. Chocoholic tells the story of a young woman who is on trial in the ‘court of preposterous addictions’ for being an ‘out-of-control’ chocoholic. The show is set in an imaginary courtroom where the audience becomes the jury. However, what starts as a comedic show, with the actor playing many hilarious and dynamic characters, quickly takes a dark turn, as the real reason behind this young woman’s addiction to chocolate is revealed. The past, present and future all come together to debate what is behind this young woman’s addiction. The play brings to life the reality we all feel in the loss of a loved one. How death doesn’t just kill the life it takes but also leaves a horrible path of grief in its wake.
This Garden Plot by Gilbert Cole – 10/31 @ 3:00pm & 11/20 @ 7:30pm: This Garden Plot grew out of my experience through two pandemics: AIDS and COVID 19. That experience found vivid reverberations in poems drawn from Walt Whitman and Thom Gunn, work that traces the experience of being gay in America from the Civil War through AIDS. The show begins with Whitman’s great poem about the trauma of tending to the wounded in the Civil War, and moves through those about his determination to live and love freely as a Gay man in a time when the term “homosexual” had only just been coined, through his radical ideas about what it means to live in community with others, and about death. The second section is built from the work of Thom Gunn. It begins with poems written before Stonewall, about a Gay culture that was removed from the attention of most people, but shifts quickly to the trauma of life with AIDS. I believe that this story offers something important to younger generations, and in a way it answers the plea Matthew Lopez makes in his play, “The Inheritance.” “This Garden Plot” is an expression of the experience and wisdom of previous generations of Gay men.
A Million Breaths by Sarkaut Taro 11/2 @ 7:30pm: It is one man show, playing several roles as a theatrical drama.
BIPOLAR & THE ENGLISH CHANNEL by Julie Ridge – 11/03 @ 3:00pm & 11/16 @ 9:00pm: This is the story of how a casual mile-a-day pool swimmer became an English Channel swimmer in nine short months, and how that zig-zag journey across the grey murky seas has paralleled a life with bipolar disorder. Act I is the Channel saga and culminates on my 25th Birthday, with charting of my 17 hour 55 minute swim from England to France. Act II is a cautionary tale of depth-defying, suicidal depressions and dangerous manias that spanned my lifetime – until one fateful day when I flew up into an almost fatal manic episode. After 21 hellish days on a NYC psychiatric ward, I vowed never to repeat the experience.
The Elephant in the Room by Melanie Greenberg 11/03 @ 7:30pm, 11/06 @ 9:30pm, 11/07 @ 3:00pm & 11/18 @ 1:00pm: The tale of a nice Jewish girl who goes on a psychedelic odyssey through Pentecostal churches, psych wards, the Ivy League and 12-step meetings that finally brings her closer to God, herself and a resolution of intergenerational trauma. But funny! And with music!
The Lift by Liz Bryan Elliot – 11/4 @ 7:30pm & 11/17 @ 5:00pm: A comedy for the Me Too era, The Lift is a show about dating, self-love and finding clarity in elevators. Main character Liz gets stuck in an elevator on the way to yet another date and gets some lessons about raising her self-esteem from a jaded, foul-mouthed emergency button operator.
BECOMING OTHELLO: A Black Girl’s Journey by Debra Ann Byrd – 11/4 @ 9:30pm & 11/20 @9:30pm: Through rhyme, meter, lyrical language, and soulful songs, this one-woman theatrical drama chronicles the life of classical actress, Debra Ann Byrd; her trials and triumphs with race and the classics; and her gender-flipped journey on the road to becoming Shakespeare’s noble flawed general Othello. A personal, poignant and powerful story of perseverance, tragedy, triumph—and ultimately unconditional love.
Trich by Becca Schneider – 11/5 @ 7:30, 11/6 @ 2:00pm, 11/12 @ 9:30pm, 11/13 @ 7:30pm, 11/19 @ 1pm: This is a solo show about living with Trich. You might not know what that is, but don’t worry, I’ll tell you when you get here. You’ll meet a teenage girl with an undeniable secret that no one seems to notice, so she hides in her basement cubicle wondering if anyone will come downstairs. Whoa, did this get too dark too fast? I only have a 90-word limit for this blurb, so let me explain more succinctly that – oops, out of time. Guess I’ll have to see you there!
Life Encounters 2 by Michelle Felice Hartley – 11/5 @ 9:30pm: Ms. Hartley performs 14 characters that depict life encounters that reflect racism, determination, loss and triumph. They begin at her age of 6 and conclude during present day. The various themes are presented in a way that the audience can relate, empathize, ponder and cheer! The show has been described as real and thought-provoking.
EARTHSONG by Heather Forest – 11/6 @ 7:30pm & 11/7 @ 7:30pm: EARTHSONG is a musical monologue about planetary ecology. Through storytelling, science, and song, this work offers insights into Mother Earth’s cosmological, geological, and anthropological history. It encourages planetary citizenship and a reverence for the web of life.
Flirting Like an American by Sufian Zhemukhov – 11/9 @ 7:30pm: A naïve, single professor comes from Russia without love and navigates the foreign world of dating in the New World! His fluency in numbers and statistics is only matched by his cluelessness in the not-so-international language of women and romance.
Lightweight by Amie Enriquez – 11/9 @ 9:30pm & 11/14 @ 9:30pm: Based on the true story of Amie Enriquez’s year-long journey through a 28 day addiction treatment program, “Lightweight” examines a complicated young woman’s attempt to survive anorexia and maintain a debilitatingly positive attitude in post 9/11 New York City.
I’ll Be Okay by Mimi Hayes – 11/10 @ 3:00pm: Mimi had a brain hemorrhage on a blind date, but don’t worry, she’ll be OK. Or at least we hope so. Follow Mimi into the depths of her brain as she tries to learn how to love herself after a heartbreak and a head injury. Filled with raw insight and surprising humor, Mimi shows us the real meaning of the phrase “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”
3 Egg Creams – A Rhapsody in the Rain by Vince Bandille – 11/10 @ 7:30pm: One man’s lessons in life, loss and love, featuring 1 actor, 7 characters, with the timeless music of the Legendary Lou Christie, all in 90 minutes and 3 EGG CREAMS.
Not My First Pandemic by Cesar Cadabes – 11/10 @ 9:30pm: What kind of community can survive two pandemics? César Cadabes’ one man show takes a closer look at what a Gay Filipino man goes through traveling from Hawaii to San Francisco. It is a journey where he discovers his most empowered self with a community that helps him survive the AIDS pandemic and enables him to thrive during the COVID pandemic. While there is now a COVID vaccine, there is none for AIDS after 40 years from the first reported cases. This is not just a one man show, but a bridge to a better understanding of the AIDS pandemic and its importance to the current pandemic.
Waiting Room by Jessica Bates – 11/11 @ 7:30pm & 11/12 @ 7:30pm: Twenty years into her career as an actress, Jessica is questioning how she can keep going. She hits a major twist in the road which ultimately deepens her faith in her chosen path. In this autobiographical musical journey through the wilds of an actress’s life on and off the stage, we are led though the triumphs and tragedies that can shape our lives, and the courage we find to keep showing up. When we face our fears with humor and with courage, we reveal hidden strength that celebrates the sublime imperfect beauty of our human condition.
Boy Crazy Psycho Slut by Jo Dellapina – 11/11 @ 9:30pm: “Are we who we say we are? Or do others get to decide that? Jo Dellapina explores this from ages 5 to 50, in a solo show equal parts comedic and heart wrenching.”
Her Infinite Variety by Elina Mustonen – 11/12 @ 4:30pm: “Her Infinite Variety – Women of Shakespeare in Word and Music” is a unique solo performance by the actress-musician Elina Mustonen, combining texts by William Shakespeare with the music of his contemporaries performed on the virginal.
Shirley Chisholm, Robert E. Lee, & Me by Ashley Leach – 11/13 @ 2:00pm: As one statue goes up, another comes down. Shirley Chisholm, Robert E. Lee, & Me urges Americans to seek commonalities, even amongst the most unlikely characters, in hopes of healing an already fractured nation.
DISORDERED: a one-white-wom(x)n show about anorexia, food addiction, white supremacy, & other bullshit, I mean, disorder by Isabella Florence – 11/14 @ 3:00pm: DISORDERED is a dramatization of my relationship with my body, a lifelong relationship defined fundamentally by race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, and—above all—food. For as long as I’ve been alive, my relationship with food has been somewhat flawed, somewhat troubled, somewhat…well…disordered. Whether manifesting as chaotic binging, full-blown anorexia, or a quiet but potent obsession, food has long been my “enemy.” DISORDERED explores my relationship with food and its intersections with my other identities, particularly whiteness. What does it mean to “nourish” a white body in a white supremacist society? What does it mean to repair the harm I’ve done to my body, when I have not repaired the harm my European ancestors did to people they abused, enslaved, and stole land from? I play 16 characters in the show.
Five Minutes | Snapshots in Time by Wendy-Lane Bailey – 11/14 @ 7:00pm A single moment – you blink an eye, you turn your head, you breathe the air — takes you into the unknown. Five Minutes is a musical examination of the turning points that transform your life into an unexpected journey — the joy of a night ride home. Whether traveling by jet or subway — don’t miss your boat. Staring: Wendy Lane BAILEY. Directed by Omar Sangare.
A Hundred Dollar Bill by Muhammed Yasar – 11/16 @ 7:30pm: A multicultural story of a Turkish man rummaging for truth and searching for his name Al Wadood, the Loving? Or “Manhattan Love?” God and Sex share the same wing space, take off from the Brooklyn Bridge and fly into uncertainty. A bare shoulder at the Met, red lipstick, and my aunt’s wig. In Sex and God, I trust.
What is Love by Michele Simms – 11/17 @ 3:00pm: April 5, 1987, a girl’s heart was broken when The Karate Kid tied the knot. A deep mother wound sparks the journey to find out what love is. Feel the love, in all its forms.
I Feel the Need by Loree Draude – 11/17 @ 7:30pm & 11/20 @ 2:00pm: “I Feel the Need” is a 60-minute, one-woman show, written and performed by one of the first women to fly combat jets in the navy – Loree Draude. Loree brings the audience along on her journey as an accidental aviation pioneer and the various forms of flight in her life. Join Loree in the cockpit as she lands on an aircraft carrier and relives the adventure, humor and tragedies in her life.
PLAY by Boutros El Amari – 11/17 @ 9:00pm: Play, a funny, little man, is swallowed by his video game console. He becomes, despite himself, the hero of a new video game! Play, thanks to his imagination, brings us to see the world through his eyes while opening the world to Playland. Throughout this “Role Playing Game” Play lives a lot of extraordinary adventures: he is chased by a zombie, rides on a dizzy roller coaster, passes through some parallel universe, takes part in crazy car racing, falls in love with a princess, and fights a dragon…
The Ivory Thread by Michael Gonzales – 11/18 @ 7:30pm: The Ivory Thread is a story of a musician’s journey into acting. Michael is a musician, turned film composer turned actor. His musical journey began at the age of 10 with the piano. His first public performance of an original piano composition was at 13. His music career would take him around the world, playing in a network talk show band and scoring films for world renowned directors. He even found himself playing up the worlds top comics at the comedy store on the Sunset Strip. Michael changed careers into acting as a middle aged man after a life changing event. He can be seen on shows such as 2 Broke Girls, S.W.A.T, Snowfall and Too Old to Die Young.
The Pass Musical by Denise Marsa – 11/18 @ 9:00pm: The Pass is a compelling series of autobiographical vignettes incorporating songs and stories penned and performed by award-winning singer-songwriter Denise Marsa, featuring Tracy Stark on piano and additional vocals. A raw biographical performance comprised of life-defining moments, humour, heartbreak, and self-discovery accompanied by beautiful music…A story about the human spirit.
BOJ by Job Ethan Christensen – 11/19 @ 7:30pm: BOJ (The Book of Job) – The journey of a man named after a prominent biblical figure and the parallels he discovered through surviving a stroke.
Ghislaine|Gabler by Kristin Winters – 11/19 @ 9:00pm & 11/20 @ 4:00pm: Ghislaine Maxwell is in a cell awaiting trial. But she is also trapped in a psychological prison of abuse at the hands of her dominant father – and her subsequent choices. In her isolation, she dreams that she is Hedda Gabler: both of them charismatic, beautiful, and above all, manipulative.
Sometimes I Sing by Milbre Burch – 11/21 @ 3:00pm: Sometimes I Sing is written in the voice of the unseen protagonist in Susan Glaspell’s 1916 play “Trifles.” In 1901, domestic abuse survivor Minnie Wright shares “the story the law wasn’t interested in” with a young reporter visiting her in prison.
Back on the Couch with Nora Armani – 11/21 @ 4:30pm: Back on the Couch with Nora Armani, is the sequel, 20 years on, of the humorous yet poignant tale of a woman trying to reconcile her past and her heritage, with who she has become. Told with music, song, prose, and poetry, the play takes the audience on a very personal journey of self-discovery filled with bittersweet memories, comical anecdotes, life, and love; a journey all audiences can identify with, especially BIPOC, LGBTQ, and those who have struggled to belong somewhere all their lives.
Praise for United Solo
“United Solo is the center mecca of solo shows in the world” –Fiona Shaw
“Whether it’s comedy, drama, new work, or new adaptations you’re looking for, United Solo performances are fascinating to take in and inexpensive to attend” –Jack Smart, Backstage
“The event, as well as bringing theatre-makers together, invites theatres and producers to discover original scripts and performers” -Olivia Clement, Playbill
“The United Solo Theatre Festival is overflowing with a program of truly exceptional one-person productions that celebrates the uniqueness of the individual” –Jacquelyn Claire, Stage Biz
“I urge you to make your way to Theatre Row so that you too could experience an unforgettable one-night stand with one of these truly sensational solo shows” –Jacquelyn Claire, NY Theatre Guide