Top theatre to see in New York in June
Here are our top picks of New York theatre to check out in June 2022.
The official start of summer isn't until later in June, but you can get in the summer mood all month by planning an escape — at the theatre, that is! Theatre is a great way to travel to new worlds and escape the routine of daily life without jet lag or carsickness. And if you've already traveled just to get to New York, then make sure a show or two is a must-see item on your itinerary.
Broadway and Off-Broadway shows in June will whisk you away to places like England, Scotland, Greece, Texas, and the Hundred Acre Wood. Discover theatre shows opening in June below, as well as star-studded Broadway shows closing this month that you'll want to get your tickets to now. Plus, don't forget that the Tony Awards take place in June! Get theatre tickets to the hottest Tony-nominated shows now before they win.
You can also check out more fan-favorite Off-Broadway and Broadway shows that will be around all summer.
Take Me Out
Baseball season goes through October, but Take Me Out leaves its home base at the Hayes Theater through June 11. Take yourself out to the ball game now, where Tony nominee Jesse Williams stars as a fictional Major Leaguer who comes out as gay at the height of his career. He experiences every kind of reaction from his teammates and the public, from unwavering support to bitter homophobia, and finds unexpected kinship in his new, also-out business manager (played by Tony nominee Jesse Tyler Ferguson). This thrilling drama won the Best Play Tony Award in 2003 and is up for Best Revival of a Play this year. Get tickets now before you strike out!
Best Play Tony nominee Hangmen is only hanging around the Golden Theatre through June 18, so this month is your last chance to get tickets. Academy Award winner Martin McDonagh's dark comedy takes place just after hanging has been abolished in England. Harry, the country's second-most-famous executioner with some questionable hangings in his past, now runs a pub. Cub reporters and regular barflies come in to get his reaction to the news, as does a Londoner named Mooney who makes him reckon with the mistakes he made in his former career.
How I Learned to Drive
How I Learned to Drive was set to close on Broadway on May 29, but now you have two weeks in June to drive over to the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, as the show extended to June 12. Two-time Tony Award winner Mary-Louise Parker and Drama Desk Award winner David Morse reprise the roles they played in the show's Off-Broadway premiere 25 years ago. Using the framework of driving lessons, Paula Vogel's Pulitzer-winning play sees an adult woman named Li'l Bit (Parker) look back on, and eventually move past, her memories of how her Uncle Peck (Morse) molested her as a teen.
Through June 13, spend 90 minutes on a mystical Scottish island (by way of Playhouse 46 @ St. Luke's) with Islander. The young Eilidh is the only child left there until a mysterious girl named Arran washes up on the shore, claiming she's from an underwater island that migrates with the whales. Suddenly, the folktales each girl has heard about the other's island aren't fantasy anymore, and they develop a bond. Kirsty Findlay and Bethany Tennick play all the roles in this musical, and they use live looping technology to create an a cappella soundscape as they tell the story.
Winnie the Pooh: The New Musical Adaptation
Return to the Hundred Acre Wood this June! Winnie the Pooh: The New Musical Adaptation is back at Theatre Row from June 18 to July 31. This hourlong original story features Pooh, Piglet, Tigger, Eeyore, and all their friends as they discover what they love about the four seasons. The characters come to life with life-size puppetry and sweet songs that will delight all audiences, from very young children to adults. Our five-star Winnie the Pooh musical review reads, "With Winnie the Pooh, Disney has finally committed itself to theatre for all; whether they are children, people living with stimulation limitations, or individuals simply desiring a joyful time."
Oresteia and Hamlet
Two classic plays are at Park Avenue Armory this summer: Aeschylus's ancient Greek epic Oresteia and Shakespeare's Elizabethan tragedy Hamlet. The same cast performs both shows on different nights, driving home the plays' common themes of family and revenge. You may already know the story of Hamlet, but if not, the play centers on a Danish prince who swears revenge on his uncle for killing his father and marrying his mother, but Hamlet goes mad in the process. Oresteia is a trilogy of plays about a cycle of familial retribution that director/adapter Robert Icke (who also helms Hamlet) has made into one theatrical event. Hamlet begins performances June 2 and Oresteia on June 9, and both run through August 14.
Pulitzer Prize finalist Will Arbery's Corsicana tells a story of caretaking and building a found family. In the Texas city of the title, two adult half-siblings, Ginny and Chris, have lost their mother and don't know what to do. A family friend, Justice (played by Tony nominee Deirdre O'Connell) reaches out and connects them with a reclusive local artist, Lot. She hopes Lot and Ginny especially will help each other get by, and the foursome ends up developing a new family amid the loss of an old one. Corsicana runs at Playwrights Horizons from June 2 through July 10.
The dinner party drama is a popular play genre, and the table is being set for Epiphany at Lincoln Center Theater through July 24. The party host in Brian Watkins's play has gathered old friends to bring back an old tradition. But one guest — the guest of honor, in fact — is late, and no one's heard from them. Now the friends aren't thinking about old traditions; they're thinking about old questions that they've long ignored, and food and drink won't wash the bad taste out of their mouths.
It looks like a typo of a sale price, but 53% Of is actually a statistic. Steph Del Rosso named her play for the percentage of women that voted for Donald Trump to be president in the 2016 election, and 53% Of juxtaposes this group with the other 47%. The play follows the activities of two groups of women: a suburban Pennsylvania ladies' group making grand preparations for a presidential visit, and a group of Brooklyn women preparing what they think is a revolution, but might just be an event to ease their guilt. Second Stage Theater presents 53% Of in its Upper West Side theatre, the McGinn/Cazale, from June 13 to July 10.
Our Brother's Son
Charles Gluck's play at the Pershing Square Signature Center blends medical drama and family drama. An adult man's reluctance to treat an ailment properly leads him to kidney failure, and he turns to his siblings for a donation. As they all take genetic testing to find out whether they're a match, family secrets get revealed, and his siblings have to decide whether to save their brother or protect themselves. Our Brother's Son runs through June 24.
Black Panther star Danai Gurira plays the title role in this Shakespeare in the Park production, running from June 17 to July 17 at Central Park's Delacorte Theater. This Shakespeare villain is a power-hungry tyrant who charms his people with words, but bends the rules of government to his absolute will behind the scenes. Oklahoma! Tony winner Ali Stroker and Tina Tony nominee Daniel J. Watts also star in this story of manipulation and greed. As with all Shakespeare in the Park shows, all tickets are free and will be made available through multiple online and in-person channels.
Lessons in Survival: 1971
Lessons in Survival: 1971 was supposed to be a special event at Vineyard Theatre, but now this recreation of a landmark conversation lands a full run from May 30 to June 30. In 1971, poet Nikki Giovanni interviewed author James Baldwin on SOUL!, a variety show that showcased African American literature, music, and dance. Giovanni was 28 and Baldwin was 47, and they spoke on air about race and liberation in America and their different generational viewpoints. After premiering in 2020 as a digital theatre piece, Lessons in Survival: 1971 is now adapted as a live staging.
Photo credit: Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Jesse Williams in Take Me Out. (Photo by Joan Marcus)