PRESS CENTER

2021 FACTS & FIGURES

Name: United Solo Theatre Festival (first reference), United Solo Festival or United Solo
Dates: Tuesday, October 26 through Sunday, November 21, 2021
Location: a resident company of Theatre Row, 410 West 42nd Street, New York City

About: The Annual United Solo Festival, the world’s largest solo theatre festival, presents a selection of local and international productions including storytelling, puppetry, dance, multimedia, improv, stand-up, magic, musical, and drama. Since its inaugural year in 2010, United Solo has featured more than 1,000 productions from all over the world. In 2021, United Solo is launching a new virtual platform to present shows and masterclasses for its global audience and theatre enthusiasts.

For the Press: www.unitedsolo.org/press-center/
The Press Quotes: www.unitedsolo.org/company/
Website: www.unitedsolo.org

CURRENT PRESS RELEASE:




Will Titus

+1 (239) 322-8245

willtitus@unitedsolo.org

http://www.unitedsolo.org‬

For Immediate Release
November 22, 2021
New York City

United Solo Closes 2021 Season With Grand Awards Gala

Following a month-long run that featured several dozen one-person theatre productions from across the globe, United Solo, the world’s largest solo theatre festival, concluded its twelfth season at Theatre Row on 42nd Street in New York by presenting this year’s awards at the United Solo Closing Gala. On behalf of the United Solo Academy, Dr. Omar Sangare, artistic director of the Festival, presented the United Solo Special Award to Lee Roy Reams for his performance in “Remembering Jerry Herman.” In his acceptance speech Mr. Reams said: “We all need the same things: love and affection, food and water – we have so much in common” and added “That’s why sharing our experiences is so important – especially in an intimate situation where you don’t have to appeal to multi-million dollar productions. You can just walk in, turn on the lights, sit down, talk and listen – that’s what the theatre is all about for me. I love solo performance and that’s why I’m here, and thank you for appreciating what I’m trying to do.” Mr. Reams, a Tony and Drama Desk Awards nominee, will join such illustrious past honorees of the United Solo Special Award as: Anna Deavere Smith (2010), Patti LuPone (2011), John Leguizamo (2012), Fiona Shaw (2013), Billy Crystal (2014), James Lecesne (2015), Staceyann Chin in collaboration with Cynthia Nixon (2016), Michael Moore (2017), Renée Taylor (2018), Aasif Mandvi (2019), and Ian McKellen (2020).

The Festival’s return was noted by the New York Times as they chose United Solo as one of their Fall Picks in their annual arts preview. The season began on October 26th and offered a robust selection of performances in categories including drama, comedy, stand‑up, musical theatre, dance, and performance art. Many shows sold out and received additional performance dates by popular demand. Over half of the shows were presented for the first time on a New York City Stage, and several pieces made their world premieres at the Festival.

In addition to the Special Award, the Festival presented awards to its participants in categories such as Best One-Man and One-Woman Show, Best Direction, Best Actor and Actress, as well as the United Solo Audience Award, chosen by an online popular vote. All About Solo presented its Critics’ Choice Award to a performer selected by the staff writers of the online publication. Wendy-Lane Bailey opened the Gala with a song from her show “Five Minutes” which was directed by Omar Sangare. One of the composers of “Five Minutes,” Michele Brourman, was awarded Best Song for her composition titled “Aurora.”

The Gala was also a celebration for United Solo’s new online platform, United Solo Screen, which allows viewers from around the world to engage with United Solo productions. Among the shows available for streaming are many of the Festival’s awarded productions, as well as premieres of shows created for United Solo Screen. The Festival will continue presenting solo productions on United Solo Screen until it returns to Theatre Row next season. Artists and companies can submit their shows as virtual performances on United Solo Screen at unitedsolo.org/usoloscreen. Submissions for the 2022 United Solo Festival at Theatre Row, NYC, are now open at unitedsolo.org/nyc-2022/about.

In its twelfth season, United Solo once again supported members of the performing arts community by fundraising for The Actors Fund. “Thank you to everyone at United Solo who has supported The Actors Fund with audience appeals over these past twelve years and collectively raised over $14,000 to help those in need in our community,” said Joseph P. Benincasa, President & CEO of The Actors Fund. “The Fund is proud to be here to offer services that foster stability and resiliency and serve as a safety net over the lifespan of everyone who works in performing arts and entertainment, including the solo artists and creative teams of United Solo.”

The full list of award winners at the 2021 United Solo Festival includes:

United Solo Special Award: Lee Roy Reams in “Remembering Jerry Herman”

Best Production: “Becoming Othello: A Black Girl’s Journey” performed by Debra Ann Byrd
Best One-Woman Show: “Who Goes There” performed by Tara Hugo
Best One-Man Show: “Not My First Pandemic” performed by César Cadabes
Best International Show: “Ghislaine|Gabler” performed by Kristin Winters
Best Direction: Beth Bornstein Dunnington, “I Feel the Need” performed by Loree Draude
Best Actress: Becca Schneider in “Trich”
Best Actor: Jason Woods in “The Near-Disaster of Jasper and Casper”

Best Encore: “Chocoholic” performed by Lilly Dennis
Best Storyteller: Vince Bandille in “3 Egg Creams – A Rhapsody in the Rain”
Best Drama: “This Garden Plot” performed by Gil Cole
Best Comedy: “The Elephant in the Room” performed by Melanie Greenberg
Best Physical Theatre: “Six Solos: Legend, Myth, and Nature” performed by Lynn Needle
Best Autobiographical Show: “One Hundred Dollar Bill” performed by Muhammed Can Yasar
Best Concert: “The Pass Musical” performed by Denise Marsa 
Best New York Premiere: “The Ivory Thread” performed by Michael J. Gonzales
Best Festival Debut: Amie Enriquez in “Lightweight”
Best Composer: Heather Forest, “Earthsong” performed by herself
Best Song: Michele Brourman, “Aurora” in “Five Minutes | Snapshots in Time”
Best Lighting Design: Shane Mathews designing for 7 productions at United Solo 2021

Best Emerging Artist: Erika Land in “PTSD & Me”
All About Solo Critics’ Choice Award: “Not My First Pandemic” performed by César Cadabes
The United Solo Audience Choice Award: “Trich” performed by Becca Schneider

*The winner of the 2021 All About Solo Critics’ Choice Award was chosen by the staff writers of allaboutsolo.com
**The winner of the Audience Award was chosen in an online poll at unitedsolo.org
***Winners selected by an independent panel of The United Solo Academy Members

Related inquiries may be addressed to Will Titus, Director of Operations, at willtitus@unitedsolo.org. For more info please visit our Press Center at https://unitedsolo.org/press-center/.

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PREVIOUS PRESS RELEASE:




Will Titus

+1 (239) 322-8245

willtitus@unitedsolo.org

http://www.unitedsolo.org‬

For Immediate Release
November 1, 2021
New York City

United Solo Special Event Celebrates Return to their Audience

In celebration of United Solo Theatre Festival’s return to its resident stage/home at Theatre Row in New York’s theatre district, Omar Sangare, the Festival’s founder and artistic director, joined forces with actor and singer Wendy-Lane Bailey to create “Five Minutes: Snapshots in Time”. The solo piece premieres Sunday, November 14th at 7:00 PM.

“We are coming back home to the place where we belong: the stage,” said Sangare. “One of the best ways to enter the world after the pandemic is to put a spotlight on our lives. This is the greatest gift we miraculously still have, and it is something we should be reminded of as long as we live.” From its inception, United Solo has been committed to presenting and promoting solo shows as a way to treasure individual journeys and experiences. Sangare’s extensive directorial career spanned shows such as “A Streetcar Named Desire,” “The Crucible,” and “August: Osage County” for Williams Theatre. Additionally, he is a board member of the Williamstown Theatre Festival, the author of six books, and the chair of the Department of Theatre at Williams College.

The collaboration between Bailey and Sangare grew out of their shared passion for American popular songs and singers as well as the glamor and excellence in stage performance of European chanteuses like Edith Piaf or Ewa Demarczyk. “What excited us was the dramatic possibilities of taking a variety of compelling songs and collaging them in order to tell the story of a survivor. This story reflects on what was lost and what can still be found,” said Bailey.

“Five Minutes” is being presented as part of United Solo’s 2021 Festival at Theatre Row, 410 W 42nd St. New York, NY. Sunday, November 14 at 7:00 PM. Tickets are $35 and can be purchased at https://unitedsolo.org/shows/five-minutes/ or by calling 212-714-2442.

Wendy-Lane Bailey has a classic pop voice and a rather cavalier attitude towards the idea of genre. Wendy-Lane’s debut solo recording, Breathing, was produced by composer, arranger, and pianist Michele Brourman. Her performances in venues across the country have earned critical praise for her versatility and sophistication, and she has appeared as a guest artist on multiple recordings, including those of pop legend Leslie Gore and Broadway’s Susan Egan. She received her training at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, HB Studios, and the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center. Off-stage, Wendy Lane is a creative advocate for artists. While living in Washington, D.C., she founded a regional networking organization for musicians. For five years, Wendy Lane was the Associate Director of the Cabaret Conference at Yale University. She is the recipient of a 2007 Bistro Award for outstanding achievement. In addition to her work as a performer, she teaches and consults both privately and in masterclasses for singers of all genres, and she works with various companies developing, directing, and producing. www.wendylanebailey.com

Dr. Omar Sangare is a Polish American producer, director, writer, and educator. A graduate of The National Academy of Dramatic Art in Warsaw, he studied with the Oscar-winning director Andrzej Wajda. Awarded a scholarship to The British American Drama Academy in Oxford, England in 1994, he worked with, among others, Michael Kahn, Jeremy Irons, Derek Jacobi, and Alan Rickman. Currently, a tenured full Professor and Chairperson in the Department of Theatre at Williams College, he is also the Founder and Artistic Director of the United Solo Theatre Festival. In 2013, John Guare wrote a part for Sangare in his play “3 Kinds of Exile” produced by New York’s Atlantic Theater Company and filmed for The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. His performance was praised by Charles Isherwood in The New York Times, who described Sangare as a “smoothly handsome actor with penetrating eyes and a silky voice.” Dr. Sangare holds many film, television, and radio credits. For his one-man drama “True Theater Critic,” he was voted Best Actor by the New York International Fringe Festival in 1997. The same year, Sangare was invited to the Jerzy Grotowski Theater in Wroclaw, Poland, where he won four prizes at the oldest solo Theater Festival in the world. His award-winning monodrama was presented in Poland, Canada, England, Ukraine, Germany, and the United States. For his lead part in the Arena Players Repertory Theater production of Othello, Sangare was featured in the New York Times’ profile article by Barbara Delatiner, who introduced Sangare as “born to play Othello.” Professor Sangare was selected by the U.S. Department of State for a video project that appeared as part of President Barack Obama’s trip to Poland in May 2011. He is a proud father of his son Maximilian, and a cousin of Oumou Sangare, a Grammy Award-winning singer.

Related inquiries may be addressed to Will Titus, Director of Operations, at willtitus@unitedsolo.org. For more info, HQ pictures, and Facts & Figures, please visit our Press Center at https://unitedsolo.org/press-center/.

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PREVIOUS PRESS RELEASE:




Will Titus

+1 (239) 322-8245

willtitus@unitedsolo.org

http://www.unitedsolo.org‬

For Immediate Release
October 18, 2021
New York City

United Solo Theatre Festival Announces Nominees for the 2021 Special Award

Later this month, the world’s largest solo theatre festival returns to its resident stage at Theatre Row in New York, resuming the tradition of honoring outstanding solo performances with the United Solo Special Award. Every year, this award goes to an artist who has created a captivating performance which is rich with sensitivity, audacity, and wisdom; a performance which reminds us of the immense power of a singular performer, and the possibilities of solo storytelling. 

This year, the United Solo Academy has nominated five performers for the Special Award: Tovah Feldshuh in Tovah Feldshuh is LeonaHarriet Harris in EleanorRuben Santiago-Hudson in Lackawanna BluesLee Roy Reams in Remembering Jerry Herman, and Andre De Shields in Black by Popular Demand. The winner will be announced at the closing Gala on November 21st at Theatre Row. 

For over a decade, United Solo has recognized numerous artists for their outstanding solo performances. This year’s recipient of the United Solo Special Award will join such illustrious past honorees as: Anna Deavere Smith (2010), Patti LuPone (2011), John Leguizamo (2012), Fiona Shaw (2013), Billy Crystal (2014), James Lecesne (2015), Staceyann Chin in collaboration with Cynthia Nixon (2016), Michael Moore (2017), Renée Taylor (2018), Aasif Mandvi (2019), and Ian McKellen (2020). For its efforts in promoting the genre of solo art, United Solo was recently included in the New York Times’ fall theatre preview. 

Tickets for the closing Gala, as well as for other solo shows presented this season at Theatre Row, are now on sale and may be purchased by visiting https://unitedsolo.org/shows/

Related inquiries may be addressed to Will Titus, Director of Operations, at willtitus@unitedsolo.org. For more info, HQ pictures, and Facts & Figures, please visit our Press Center at https://unitedsolo.org/press-center/.

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PREVIOUS PRESS RELEASE:




Will Titus

+1 (239) 322-8245

willtitus@unitedsolo.org

http://www.unitedsolo.org‬

For Immediate Release
October 12, 2021
New York City

United Solo Theatre Festival Returns With Double Force This Year

United Solo, the world’s largest solo theatre festival, will launch its new season at Theatre Row with a full slate of productions from across the globe. Performances will start Tuesday October 26th and run through Sunday November 21st, concluding with a closing Gala in honor of the outstanding group of solo artists, directors, writers, and theatre designers.

The fall lineup represents a broad spectrum of themes and styles, including productions that undertake the subject of the COVID crisis, classical dramas, comedies, autobiographical shows, dance and music pieces, and multimedia productions. In addition to new talents, the Festival will feature accomplished artists such as: Laurence Olivier Nominee Tara Hugo in “Who Goes There”; Grammy Nominee Milbre Burch in “Sometimes I Sing”; and New York Innovative Theatre Award Nominee Michelle Felice Hartley in “Life Encounters 2,” as well as two past recipients of United Solo Festival awards, Elise Forier Edie, an author of “American Pain, and Lilly Dennis in “Chocoholic.” The Festival will also feature “Five Minutes,” a solo piece performed by Wendy Lane Bailey and directed by Omar Sangare, Founder of United Solo.

In over a decade, United Solo has presented more than one thousand solo shows in the heart of New York City’s theatre district, and was recently included in the New York Times’ fall theatre preview. “The show must go on with the audience. We’ve been waiting for this moment for too long,” said Omar Sangare, Artistic Director of United Solo. “This year we welcome our audiences returning to our theatre with an excitement that has proved to be mutual – as we added additional presentations of numerous sold-out shows in our response to popular demand.”

Theatre enthusiasts who will not be able to attend the Festival in New York may enjoy virtual offerings, which will be presented online. A new platform, United Solo Screen, will allow viewers from all around the world to engage with United Solo productions. Among the shows available for streaming are many of the Festival’s current productions, as well as shows by alums and emerging artists.

A complete listing of showtimes and dates, as well as further information, can be found on United Solo’s website http://www.unitedsolo.org – where audience members can purchase their tickets for in-person performances at Theatre Row, or subscribe to a virtual streaming of United Solo Screen.

Related inquiries may be addressed to Will Titus, Director of Operations, at willtitus@unitedsolo.org. For more info, HQ pictures, and Facts & Figures, please visit our Press Center at https://unitedsolo.org/press-center/.

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PREVIOUS PRESS RELEASE:




Will Titus

+1 (239) 322-8245

willtitus@unitedsolo.org

http://www.unitedsolo.org‬

For Immediate Release
August 24, 2021
New York City

United Solo Launches Revolutionary Solo Theatre Streaming Platform

United Solo Theatre Company, creator of the largest solo theatre festival in the world, completed its launch of a new virtual platform dedicated to the genre of solo performances.

“We are thrilled seeing how this ambitious project came together,” said Omar Sangare, Founder and Artistic Director of United Solo. “It truly has been an incredible ride to get to this new virtual chapter, and I cannot wait to see where this will take the world of solo theatre.”

United Solo Screen is a new virtual theatre platform that hosts performances by award-winning artists and new talents alike. Content is available 24/7 for streaming around the world. With a subscription to the All-Access Pass for just $5.99 per month, theatre-goers can access United Solo Screen’s growing library of content from their laptops, phones, or tablets.

“United Solo Screen promises to revolutionize the world of theatre by providing a centralized platform for viewing performances from around the world,” said Will Titus, Director of Operations at United Solo. Indeed, United Solo Screen is the first-of-its kind platform to specialize in solo theatre performances.

Currently, United Solo Screen hosts nearly twenty individual solo performances, along with interviews and documentaries. New content is added to the platform frequently. The virtual nature of United Solo Screen means that the annual United Solo Theatre Festival can continue year-round, as new artists are always invited to apply to have their content featured on United Solo Screen. Artists receive a portion of the revenue generated from viewers’ purchases and rentals of their performances.

“We created United Solo Screen with our artists in mind,” explained Pat McAndrew, Associate Artistic Director at United Solo. “We wanted to offer a way for artists to easily share and promote their work to a global audience, and that is exactly what United Solo Screen provides.”

According to Omar Sangare, the demand for the content on United Solo Screen has been “extraordinary” as new subscribers join the platform daily. The reception has been just as positive from artists.

United Solo Screen continues to welcome new performances, and subsequent rounds of submissions will open on a regular basis in the coming months. Artists, producers, and companies are encouraged to check out the submission page at https://unitedsolo.org/usoloscreen/.

Visit https://screen.unitedsolo.org to experience United Solo Screen.

Related inquiries may be addressed to Will Titus, Director of Operations, at willtitus@unitedsolo.org. For more info, HQ pictures, and Facts & Figures, please visit our Press Center at https://unitedsolo.org/press-center/.

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