November Staff Picks

Art to be Thankful for…

Warm yourself up in a museum, concert hall, or theatre as the cool weather rolls in this winter!

What We’re Recommending:


Heather Headley Broadway My Way | Presented by Emerson Colonial Theatre

November 3

“If you’ve ever heard Heather Headley, you’ll know why her new show “Broadway My Way” is my staff pick. Headley has a Tony Award, a Grammy Award, and a Drama Desk Award. She originated the role of Nala in The Lion King and then went on to star in Aida, Do Re Mi, Dreamgirls, and The Color Purple. Headley will be performing Broadway standards along with new material written just for her.”


The Play That Goes Wrong | Presented by Lexus Broadway in Boston

November 7 – 18

“I jump at any opportunity to spend time in Boston’s historic 118-year-old Colonial Theatre, which was of course beautifully renovated and reopened just this past summer. This month’s visit to see The Play That Goes Wrong will be especially thrilling since it will be the first national tour to perform in the theatre in over three years – and the first straight play in almost five years. And then there’s the show itself! Described as the illegitimate Broadway baby of Sherlock Holmes and Monty Python, the smash comedy is a classic murder mystery chock-full of mishaps and madcap mania. This gut-busting hit had audiences both in London’s West End and on Broadway in laughing fits, so I look forward to seeing you all there rolling in the aisles!”


True Story Theater: The experience of immigrants in our community: An interactive story-sharing | Presented by Arlington Center for the Arts

November 14

“True story: I am just getting my first passport. Aside from wonderful things like the internet and living in a major metropolitan area, I have a very narrow world view. That’s part of the reason I love theater so much: it allows us insight into an infinite number of human experiences, tapping into our empathy and widening our sense of community. True Story Theater has set out to do exactly this in a brand new way. Instead of working off of a set script, this performance invites audience volunteers to tell important stories from their own lives, which actors then honor through drama, movement, music, and song. Working towards listening to others and gaining respect for experiences outside of our own, this event invites audiences of all ages, backgrounds, and languages to join them this event. While I love a good play that simply lets me escape the world, I’d much rather leave the theater having changed in some way. I can’t wait to see what this improvisational piece has in store for all of us!”


Composers of Boston | Presented by North End Music and Performing Arts Center

November 16

“NEMPAC has an excellent night of music curated from composers either living in or inspired by Boston. Professional singers from NEMPAC’s community will put on a concert including works by Scott Wheeler, Irving Fine, Leonard Bernstein, and more. Plus, if you get there early, a wine specialist is putting together a special tasting complete with cheese just before the show. What more could you want from a night out?”


Handel Messiah | Presented by Handel and Haydn Society

November 30 – December 2

“As the first to present Handel’s Messiah in the states, Handel + Haydn’s 165th performance of the piece is just as sharp and beautiful as ever. The Halleluiah chorus in Symphony Hall is stunning and worth the standing ovation it’s known for. With only a few performances, make sure to catch it this year to kick off the holiday season!”


1776 | Presented by New Repertory Theatre

November 30 – December 23

1776 is the first musical I ever truly fell in love with. The 1972 film was a staple in my home growing up; my father and I watched together every 4th of July and sometimes even on Valentine’s Day to celebrate the love of John and Abigail Adams. 1776 inspired my inspiration with American History that followed me into adulthood. The second act stunner ‘Molasses to Rum’ even came to my aid during my AP U.S. History exam when I had to write an essay on how the northern colonies were equally responsible for colonial slavery by holding up a corner of the Triangle Trade. Because of the massive cast, 1776 is rarely produced, and given the historical homogeneity of the characters, I wasn’t sure I would even be interested in seeing it live. New Repertory Theatre will be presenting 1776 as their holiday musical, but with a gender-bent and racially conscious casting choices that will ensure the classic score will be sung by actors of all genders, races, ages, and creeds like the creators could never have imagined. If you love Hamilton, see the show that started it all and first put the Founding Fathers’ greatest moments into song.”


Breath & Imagination | Presented by Lyric Stage Company & The Front Porch Arts Collective

November 30 – December 23

“I am excited to see the premiere full-produced play from The Front Porch Arts Collective, which is coming off a successful first season of readings in residence at Central Square Theater. Now teaming up with Lyric Stage Company for a revolutionary co-production, Front Porch takes on Breath & Imagination, a play that was incubated in Boston at ArtsEmerson several years ago. Breath & Imagination follows the trials and tribulations in the epic life story of Roland Hayes, the world’s first internationally renowned African-American opera singer. With a beautiful score and a talented cast, Breath & Imagination promises to be a moving night out for anyone who values family, justice, and soul music.”


William Forsythe: Choreographic Objects | Presented by The Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston

Now – February 21

“William Forsythe first came to prominence in the arts world as a ballet choreographer, which makes the elegance and interactivity of his new exhibit at the ICA unsurprising. Currently in residence at Boston Ballet, Forsythe’s new exhibit gives an inside look to his pioneering dance career. Take a fall trip to the ICA and dance through this spacious, ultramodern with some friends!”

Check out all these picks and more on the ArtsBoston Calendar.

What arts or cultural event are you most excited for this month? Let us know on Twitter by tweeting us, @artsboston!

Want weekly recommendations on what to see and do in Boston?

Pictured above: William Forsythe’s Choreographic Objects.

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