Award-winning stand-up comedian Mike Birbiglia’s sold-out show The Old Man & the Pool, having played to venues in Chicago, Los Angeles, Berkeley since its premiere, is now heading to Broadway. Having a limited engagement for 70 performances, the solo show starts on October 28 and runs through December 30, with an opening night on November 13. The Vivian Beaumont Theater at Lincoln Center will host the performances.
Defining his new show as “a tale of life, death, and a highly chlorinated YMCA pool”, Birbiglia dives into the stories of a middle-aged who ponders on the questions such as “What’s next? What happens when the items at the doctor’s office that you thought were decorative become functional?” while reminding the audience of laughter indeed being the best medicine.
In his statement in New York Times, Birbiglia adds: “The most crucial thing about it is that it’s funny — it goes to the darkest places about life and death for hopefully 90 minutes of laughs, where at the end of it people feel better on the way out than when they came in.”
Written and performed by Birbiglia, The Old Man & the Pool was originally produced by Center Theatre Group. Play’s Broadway production belongs to Sue Wagner, John Johnson, Patrick Catullo, Seaview, and Center Theatre Group. It is directed by Seth Barrish who collaborated with the comedian before for his 2018 Broadway show The New One, and Ira Glass contributes as a story consultant to the play. Other members of the creative team are Scenic Designer Beowulf Boritt, Costume Designer Toni-Leslie James, Lighting Designer Aaron Copp, Sound Designer Kai Harada and Projection Designer Hana S. Kim.
The news about show’s going for Broadway was spread by Birbiglia himself when he attended The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.
He said The Old Man & the Pool had given him the most rewarding experience he had ever felt with audiences in his 22 years of performing comedy, and five solo shows. “This is a show I’m very proud of, and I can’t believe I get to perform it at Lincoln Center Theater – after auditioning for the Philharmonic, the Opera, and the New York City ballet,” he said in a statement.
Birbiglia went on: “It’s always been a cliché that audiences need to laugh but, honestly, after all we’ve been through in the last few years, people really do need to laugh. And sometimes, laughing about the darkest topics can be the most cathartic. I hope you join me. You’ll laugh. You’ll cry. You’ll call your parents. You’ll write your will.”
In addition to The New One that ran on Broadway, Birbiglia performed some other solo plays such as Sleepwalk With Me, My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend, and Thank God for Jokes. The New One and Thank God for Jokes were also included in Netflix’s screenings.
Having performed worldwide so far, Mike Birbiglia had nominations for The Lucille Lortel Award with all his solo plays, and won the 2011 award with My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend. The New One won the Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk Awards for Outstanding Solo Performance. His book Sleepwalk with Me and Other Painfully True Stories that was published in 2010 became a New York Times bestseller.
Tickets to Mike Birbiglia: The Old Man & the Pool are on sale now at Telecharge. See all Broadway ticket links below.
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Last Updated on September 22, 2022