Tessa Thompson, Michael Urie and Celia Keenan-Bolger to Appear in Play-PerView Fundraiser (EXCLUSIVE)

Brent Lang

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Tessa Thompson will appear in a live reading of Ryan Spahn’s comedy ​”Nora Highland” in order to raise money for arts organizations impacted by the coronavirus. “Nora Highland” is being featured on Play-PerView, a new live-streaming initiative that was co-founded by producer ​Jeremy Wein​ (NYC PodFest)​ and actor and producer ​Mirirai Sithole (“Black Mirror: Smithereens”).

The theater community has been hit hard by the coronavirus. Theaters have been closed for weeks as the public health crisis has worsened, leaving thousands of people without a job.

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Thompson will star opposite opposite ​Michael Urie of “Ugly Betty” fame in “Nora Highland,” which will stream on April 1 at 7 p.m.​ The play grapples with a topical issue, examining the complexities of casting an openly gay performer in a gay role that producers want to hire a straight actor to play. ​This reading will benefit the Broadway Cares COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund and Covenant House New York.

“Family Friday,” Play-PerView’s original, non-scripted weekly series focusing on families in the theater community, will continue April 3 at 8 p.m. with “Live from Putnam County.” ​This second installment will feature alums of the Broadway production of ​”The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee​,” including Tony Award winner ​Celia Keenan-Bolger (“​To Kill a Mockingbird​”) and her husband Tony Award nominee ​John Ellison Conlee​ (​”The Full Monty”)​. They will be joined by James Monroe Iglehart​ (​”Aladdin”)​ and Derrick Baskin​ (​”Ain’t Too Proud​”). ​ T​his episode of “Family Friday” will directly benefit Colt Coeur, a Brooklyn-based theater company and the Parent Artist Advocacy League COVID Childcare Relief Fund.

On April 6 at 8 p.m., Play-PerView will present a one-time-only reading of ​”Cadillac Crew​,” written by ​Tori Sampson​ and directed by​ Chalia LaTour ​(​”Slave Play”). The performance will feature​ Dria Brown​ (“Bedlam’s ​Hamlet”), ​Ashley​ ​Bryant​ (​”The Play That Goes Wrong:), Brontë England-Nelson​ (​”Three Tall Women”)​, and ​La Tour ​as four civil rights activists on the day of a highly anticipated speech by Rosa Parks. This reading will benefit The National Black Theatre and Women In Need.

Future Play-PerView events will feature the works of Bess Wohl ​(​”Grand Horizons”)​, ​Micah Stock (“​It’s Only A Play​”), ​Sharr White ​(​”The True”), ​Johnathan Caren ​(“Canyon​”), and Martyna Majok ​(“Cost of Living​”). Tickets start at $5.

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