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Nicole Serratore

Arts, Culture, and Travel Journalism

NEW YORK, NY

Nicole Serratore

I write about US and UK theater and my travels to and fro.

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James Comey and the Predator in Chief

As I listened to James B. Comey, the former F.B.I. director, tell the Senate Intelligence Committee about his personal meetings and phone calls with President Trump, I was reminded of something: the experience of a woman being harassed by her powerful, predatory boss. There was precisely that sinister air of coercion, of an employee helpless to avoid unsavory contact with an employer who is trying to grab what he wants.
The New York Times Link to Story
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That’s What They Wrote and ‘That’swhatshesaid’

In That’swhatshesaid, the 72 pages of Matthew Lopez’s play The Whipping Man flip by—literally. As this happens, performer Erin Pike runs around the stage searching for her place. There are no female characters in The Whipping Man, so she finds no place, which is the point the artists staging it are trying to make—not about Lopez’s play, which they have no issue with per se, but as a representative of the dearth of female voices onstage in general.
American Theatre magazine Link to Story
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Nicole Serratore: Cinema broadcast leaves angels with dimly-lit faces

Theatre productions beamed into the cinema act as soft diplomacy for the industry. It expands access beyond physical theatres and national boundaries, and connects audiences to shows they may not otherwise see. But what happens if your ambassador goes full Boris Johnson and puts the wrong foot forward for a show.
The Stage (UK) Link to Story
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The Unwritten Law

Exploring his family’s travails across America over the past hundred years, the beatboxer, songwriter, and artist Chesney Snow tells, in this rousing show, a personal story of homelessness, incarceration, inspiration, and resilience.
The Village Voice Link to Story
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Marvin’s Room review at American Airlines Theatre, New York – ‘slight and ponderous’

When it opened Off Broadway in 1991, Scott McPherson’s Marvin's Room was viewed through the lens of the Aids crisis – the disease would later take the playwright's life. Although not about Aids, the play’s focus on caregiving and hope in the face of illness spoke acutely to that moment. Twenty-six years on, without that context, the play treads well-worn family drama territory albeit with some laughs along the way.
The Stage (UK) Link to Story
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J&K 1965

In 1965, Life photographer Bill Eppridge took a series of photographs of two heroin addicts in New York City: John and Karen. The photos and accompanying article by John Mills shocked American readers from the era, who were confronted by the heroin epidemic, possibly for the first time; it quickly became the inspiration for the gritty 1971 film, Panic in Needle Park, starring Al Pacino. Now Live in Theater looks to those photos again in J & K: 1965, an interactive endeavor about the lives behind those images and the love story of John and Karen.
The Village Voice Link to Story
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Julius Caesar

Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar took on unruly cultural relevance this summer with the controversy surrounding the Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park production. If that brouhaha got you curious about how a four-hundred-year-old play can still shake people up, you may want to have a look at another provocative staging of Caesar happening this season. Shedding an explicit focus on contemporary politics, the company Pocket Universe has set the Bard’s tale in an all-girl high school.
The Village Voice Link to Story
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Measure for Measure review at Polonsky Shakespeare Center, New York – ‘an illuminating production’

In Simon Godwin's taut production of Measure for Measure the audience enters the theatre via the back entrance through Mistress Overdone’s brothel. Greeted by blasé working ladies in action, we pass peep-show booths and sex toys on shelves. This hedonistic playground establishes the world of Shakespeare’s play – a world in which the characters weigh sin, mercy, and justice.
The Stage (UK) Link to Story
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1984 review at Hudson Theatre, New York – ‘dark, audacious production’

Sales of George Orwell’s novel, 1984, have skyrocketed since the inauguration of Donald Trump. It's an apt moment for Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan’s stage adaption to come to Broadway. This dystopian world where hate is encouraged, language truncated to control ideas, and Big Brother monitors all through ubiquitous screens reverberates in the political moment.
The Stage (UK) Link to Story
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The Immersive Play “(Not) Water” Is A Fitful Seminar On Climate Change

Setting out to tackle a notion so broad as “water” is a risky theatrical endeavor. Get the balance right and you offer a survey that carefully navigates important issues like politics, science, and humanity. But overfill the vessel with too many lofty ideas and the enterprise gets bogged down. The decade-in-the-making immersive play (Not) Water, by playwright Sheila Callaghan and director Daniella Topol, uses a self-referential tone to acknowledge the wild folly of trying to create theater out of such a massive concept.
The Village Voice Link to Story
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Review: Maps For A War Tourist at Dixon Place

Sister Sylvester’s newest show, Maps for a War Tourist, is “A Performative Essay” about the theater company’s failure to make a play. The company’s abortive attempt centers around the journey of a young Turkish woman called Ayşe Deniz Karacagil, a protester involved in the Gezi protests in 2013 in Istanbul who ended up joining the PKK, considered a terrorist organization by some nations.
Exeunt magazine Link to Story
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A Hunger Artist

Operating at the intersection of puppetry and physical theater, Sinking Ship Productions makes work that can be both playful and contemplative. Their new creative adventure is the darkly comic A Hunger Artist, a stage adaptation of the same-named Franz Kafka story.
The Village Voice Link to Story

About

Nicole Serratore

Nicole Serratore is a New York City-based freelance journalist.

She has written opinion pieces, reviews, and features for the New York Times, American Theatre magazine, The Stage (UK), the Village Voice, Exeunt magazine, TDF Stages, Flavorpill, and The Craptacular. She is the Broadway editor at Exeunt magazine. She is a current member of the American Theatre Critics Association.

She was a co-host and co-producer of the Maxamoo theater podcast. She was a Fellow at the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center's National Critics Institute in 2015.

She has written about travel and world adventures for Shermans Travel and Frommers.com.

She has a B.F.A. in Film and Television from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. She has a J.D. from Fordham University. She is a former film executive and producer. She once had a prize-winning cow.