Creative Survival and the Art of Adaptation:
Case Studies in Contemporary American Theater

May 19 – 21, 2023


Sara Warner, Ph.D.
Stephen H. Weiss Jr. Fellow,
Director, LGBT Studies Program
Associate Professor, Performing & Media Arts

Register now

Dive into contemporary American Theater in New York City

  • One weekend, three plays, limitless inspiration! Plus special access to the brand-new Museum of Broadway with a private tour. Download the brochure for full itinerary, tour details, and terms.

  • NYC Theater 2023
    Education vacation

    Together we’ll experience three adaptations of notable plays and analyze the director’s interpretations and playwright’s intentions, taking into consideration the uniqueness of contemporary times. In lively pre- and post-show discussions, we’ll think through the influence of historical events, previous adaptations, and current constraints to unpack deeper meanings and discover new understandings.

  • CAU NYC Theater
    Case studies in contemporary American theater

    The story of the 2023 theatrical season will be one of creative survival, of adaptations that produce a profound sense of wonder about the alchemical magic that happens when people make art together, and of audiences’ willingness to adapt to new protocols, viewing habits, and forms of aesthetic communion.

  • CAU NYC Theater
    Special access

    Pre- and post- lectures by zoom, private tour of the Museum of Broadway, behind-the-scenes talk-back with the cast members (pending).

Experience Broadway with an Ivy League professor

  • Sara Warner is a Stephen H. Weiss Jr. Fellow, Director of Cprnell's LGBT Studies Program, and an Associate Professor in the department of Performing & Media Arts. Her book, Acts of Gaiety: LGBT Performance and the Politics of Pleasure (University of Michigan Press 2012), received the Outstanding Book Award from the Association of Theater in Higher Education (ATHE), an Honorable Mention for the Barnard Hewitt Award from the American Society for Theatre Research (ASTR), and was named a Lambda Literary Award finalist. Sara has published widely in journals and anthologies and her cultural criticism can be found in media outlets such as Time Magazine and Huffington Post. She is the Co-Associate Editor of the book series Triangulations: Lesbian/Gay/Queer Theater/Drama/Performance at the University of Michigan Press.

  • CAU NYC Theater

    In 2016, Sara Warner was named a Stephen H. Weiss Junior Fellow, Cornell's highest teaching award for a recently tenured faculty member.

  • CAU NYC Theater

    Sara currently teaches what calls "one of the most innovative courses" in academia.

Live performances

  • CAU NYC Theater 2023
    Life of Pi

    The 2022 Olivier Award-winning Best Play based on Yann Martel’s Booker Prize-winning novel, Life of Pi is a breath-taking new theatrical adaptation of an epic journey of endurance and hope. After a cargo ship sinks in the middle of the vast Pacific Ocean, a sixteen-year-old boy name Pi is stranded on a lifeboat with four other survivors – a hyena, a zebra, an orangutan, and a 450-pound Royal Bengal tiger. Time is against them, nature is harsh, who will survive? Life of Pi is directed by Max Webster, with Set and Costume design by Olivier Award winner Tim Hatley, Puppet and Movement Direction by Finn Caldwell, Puppet Design by Olivier Award winners Nick Barnes and Finn Caldwell, Video Design by Olivier Award winner Andrzej Goulding, Lighting Design by Olivier Award winner Tim Lutkin, Sound Design by Carolyn Downing, Original Music by Andrew T Mackay, and Dramaturgy by Jack Bradley.

  • CAU NYC Theater
    New York, New York

    Lin-Manuel Miranda and John Kander’s musical adaptation of Martin Scorsese’s 1977 film. A spectacular show for a singular city! New York, New York features an exhilarating new score by the incomparable John Kander & Fred Ebb, an original story by David Thompson with Sharon Washington, additional lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, and visionary direction and choreography by Susan Stroman. It is 1946, the war is over, and a resurgent New York is beginning to rebuild. As steel beams swing overhead, a collection of artists has dreams as big and diverse as the city itself. Among them is New York native Jimmy Doyle, a brilliant but disillusioned musician looking for his “major chord” in life: music, money, love. The odds are against him getting all three until he meets Francine Evans, a young singer just off the bus from Philly, who is destined for greatness. If they can make it there, they can make it anywhere. With a unique blend of dazzling new songs and big band classics (“New York, New York,” “But The World Goes Round”) this jubilant new musical is destined to become the talk of the town.

  • CAU NYC Theater
    Fat Ham

    Critically-acclaimed playwright James Ijames’ Pulitzer-Prize winning take on Shakespeare’s Hamlet is a delectable comic tragedy directed by The Public’s Associate Artistic Director Saheem Ali. Juicy is a queer, Southern college kid, already grappling with some serious questions of identity, when the ghost of his father shows up in their backyard, demanding that Juicy avenge his murder. It feels like a familiar story to Juicy, well-versed in Hamlet’s woes. What’s different is Juicy himself, a sensitive and self-aware young Black man trying to break the cycles of trauma and violence in service of his own liberation. From an uproarious family barbecue emerges a compelling examination of love and loss, pain and joy. This show is running for a limited time only so now's your chance!

Learn more and register

  • CAU NYC Spring Theater Seminar
    Creative Survival and the Art of Adaptation:
    Case Studies in Contemporary American Theater
    May 19 – 21, 2023

Another way to travel with Cornell