The Secret Theatre

Todays Date: 06/25/22
Last Update: 03/20/17 11:44:16 PM
Address: 44-02 23rd St
Long Island City, NY    11101

History of Productions View Current and Upcoming

Macbeth  | Open: 04/14/17 Close: 04/30/17
Our upcoming production of Macbeth is a fitting response to our times in its exploration of ambition, tyranny and what it means to be a leader. With Macbeth, as with all of our work, we seek to answer the question: “What does it mean to bring our full humanity into our work, play and lives?” 

Macbeth is a part of Humanist Project’s TYRANT SERIES.  The series began in April of 2016 with a workshop production of Titus Andronicus, which played to full houses and standing ovations. Our investigation continued in the fall of 2016, with a week-long study of Richard III, in partnership with The Shakespeare Society, culminating in a public reading of the play on the night before the presidential election.

Rehearsals have begun on this trim 5-actor production of Macbeth.  Founding members Andrew Borthwick-Leslie and Michael F. Toomey, will be directing and playing Macbeth, respectively. They have a firm rooting in classical Theatre and are both long-time company members of Shakespeare & Co in Lenox, MA. Joining them will be Claire Warden, a faculty member of the Shakespeare Forum and Shakespeare & Co;  Josephine Wilson, a company member of Shakespeare & Co and faculty at New York Film Academy; Welland Scripps, founding member of Letter of Marque Theatre Company, and Fat Maggie Productions, and Zach Libresco, company member of the Humanist Project.

Featuring: Michael F. Toomey*, Claire Warden*,  Welland Scripps, Zach Libresco* and Josephine Wilson*

*Appearing courtesy of Actor’s Equity Association

*Equity Approved Showcase


Directed by: Andrew Borthwick-Leslie (dir. Double Falsehood)

Stage Manager: Gina Costagliola

Produced by: Sheila Bandyopadhyay

Costumes: Claire Townsend (SNL)

Sets: Emmie Finckel

Lights: Megan Lang

Music: Nolan Kennedy

Fights: Tramp Thompson (stunts: Birdman and Pirates of the Carribean)

Voice and Text: Jenna May Cass

Assistants: Sara Ryan and Laurel Liveseya


Performance Location:

The Secret Theatre

4402 23rd St

Long Island City, NY 11101

Dates and times:

April 14-16, 19-23, 26-29 at 7:30pm

And April 30th at 3:00pm








To arrange press interviews or reviews, contact:




The Secret Theatre, 4402 23rd St., Long Island City, NY 11101



Friday                         14                   7:30pm OPENING

Saturday        15                   7:30pm

Sunday           16                   7:30pm

Wednesday    19                   7:30pm

Thursday       20                   7:30pm

Friday             21                   7:30pm

Saturday        22                   7:30pm

Sunday           23                   7:30pm

Wednesday    26                   7:30pm

Thursday       27                   7:30pm

Friday             28                   7:30pm

Saturday        29                   7:30pm

Sunday           30                   3:00pm CLOSING


About the Humanist Project


A Brooklyn-based company, the Humanist Project was created by Michael F. Toomey and Andrew Borthwick-Leslie.  They use classes, performance and devising to explore what it means if life is the greatest piece of art.  They are committed to exploring what it means to be an artist in New York City and bring your full self to your work, life and play.  For bios and more information, visit


The Humanist Project is proudly sponsored by  Fractured Atlas, a 501(c)(3) non-profit arts service organization

Frankenstein Upstairs  | Open: 06/14/13 Close: 06/30/13
Gideon Productions (NYIT Outstanding Premiere Production of a Play Award for Advance Man) will present the World Premiere of playwright Mac Rogers’ (The Honeycomb TrilogyViral) modern horror story FRANKENSTEIN UPSTAIRS, June 14-30 at The Secret Theatre (44 02 23rd Street, Long Island City).The production will be directed by Jordana Williams (The Honeycomb Trilogy; Viral) and will feature Autumn Dornfeld* (The Graduate on Broadway; Beebo Brinker Chronicles at NYTW), Rob Maitner* (Mr. McQueen in the original cast of Urinetown!), Diana Oh (Rob Askins’ P.S. Jones and the Frozen City; Mariah MacCarthy’s The Foreplay Play), and Kristen Vaughan* (Amelia in The Honeycomb Trilogy; NYIT Award for Outstanding Actress in a Lead Role for Retro Productions Benefactors). The creative team will include Special Effects by Stephanie Cox-Williams, Costume Design by Amanda Jenks, Sound Design by Jeanne Travis, Lighting Design by Jennifer Linn Wilcox, and Set Design by Sandy Yaklin. The production will be Stage Managed by Nikki Castle. *Actor appears courtesy of the Actors’ Equity Association

Sophie and Marisol live together, love together, and run their business together, all out of one DUMBO loft. But their relationship is about to be tested beyond all imaginable limits when they meet their upstairs neighbor... a strange, reclusive woman named Victoria Frankenstein.

About the Company: Gideon Productions, Llc

GIDEON PRODUCTIONS crafts lively, engaging plays that explore what's strange about being human and what's human about being strange, using familiar genres and cultural touchstones as a springboard to something wholly unexpected. Gideon primarily produces work by playwright Mac Rogers, including Viral (Outstanding Production of a Play, FringeNYC 2009; 2010 ITBA Outstanding Off-Off Broadway Show; two ITBA citations for Individual Performances), Universal Robotsco-produced with Manhattan Theatre Source (4 2009 NYIT Award Nominations, including Outstanding Playwright and Production of a Play), and Hail Satan (Outstanding Playwright, FringeNYC 2007; Backstage "Performance to Remember"). Gideon has also produced several musicals by Williams/Rogers/Williams, including Fleet Week (Outstanding Musical, FringeNYC 2005), Air Guitar (FringeNYC 2006), and The First Annual St. Ignatius Channukah Pageant (Theatre Row, 2005). Gideon and Mac Rogers spent three years in residence at the Vampire Cowboys' monthly episodic workshop, The Saturday Night Saloon. Gideon's own Blueprint Project presented four playwrights' (Mac Rogers, August Schulenburg, Crystal Skillman, and Catherine Trieschmann) profoundly different takes on the exact same plot.

The Bacchae  | Open: 03/28/13 Close: 04/13/13
"To err is human, to punish is divine..."

When the young king of Thebes outlaws the worship of his cousin, the half-human god Dionysus, the deity returns to Earth to extract revenge on the family that has shunned him. Severed heads and cross-dressing kings populate this mysterious masterwork from 405 BC.

The Queens Players in association with Femme Fatale Theater present Euripides’ timeless tragedy The Bacchaein a production dripping with a sense of foreboding dark comedy this March 28th through April 13th at The Secret Theatre in Long Island City, Queens. Femme Fatale Theater Co-Founder Robert Ribar directs a cast lead by Peter Oliver ("Law & Order: Special Victims Unit") as the seductive god Dionysus and Michael Axelrod (The Flea’s Restoration Comedy) as the doomed king Pentheus in a production that features an all-male chorus and original ambient music employing viola, clarinet and chanting.

The Bacchae features Harlan J. Alford, Michael Axelrod, William Barnet, Stan Buturla, John Graham, John C. Hume, Alexander Kveton, Blake Merriman, Melinda Nichols, Peter Oliver, Stacy Salvette and LatticeWorks Dance Collective, who also contribute choreography.   

The production features scenic and lighting design is by Jonathan Cottle (The Flea's Job, Bushwick Starr's The House of Von Macrame), costumes by Naomi Raddatz (Half Straddle's Seagull [Thinking of You]), original music by Ryan Marino (who records as ambient artist Remnants) and projections designed by Daniel Destefano (AMC's "Story Notes"). The production stage manager is Jasmin SanchezThe Bacchae is produced for Femme Fatale Theater by Stephen Gribbin.

For more information about The Secret Theatre, visit

For more information on the production, visit or for press tickets or all other inquiries, please email Stephen Gribbin at

Much Ado About Nothing  | Open: 02/14/13 Close: 03/02/13
The Queens Players’ and Secret Theatre's Richard Mazda [Edward II, MacBeth, Othello, Knight of the Burning Pestle, Dr Faustus], once again brings a unique style and concept to a beloved Shakespeare piece, MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING with a fantastically talented team of designers; Beth Williams, Helen Ammon, Casey Rowe and John Michael Creenan helping to create a unique Trash Period world who with an extremely talented cast will bring the funny in William Shakespeare's beloved comedy. Our Benedict is noted Actor/Director/Teacher, Alberto Bonilla* who collaborated with the director and hosted Clown workshops for the cast. Although there are no red noses, the deep insights that clown elements bring to the show are self evident.

Balthazar is played by Jamey Grisham* who is also our musical director. The songs and music fuse Elizabethan madrigal, bluegrass and classical elements

Mazda's Much Ado takes us to a street strewn with boxes where Leonato's cardboard dwelling is the best on the street and where everyday objects are casually thrown away.

In our repurposed world everyday scrap becomes a crucial letter and the abstracted background compliments dazzling verbal duels between Benedick and Beatrice. The language of the play reveals hilarious double-entendre's that drop at a cracking pace which shows us Shakespeare's keen sense of humor.

The Queens Players’ production of MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING features noted Director/Actor Alberto Bonilla* [Benedick/Clown consultant], Rebecca Hirota [Beatrice], Connie Castanzo, Andy Derado, Sabrina Friedman-Seitz, Jamey Grisham*, Josh Laird, Cari McHugh, Blake Merriman, John C. Nagy III, Joseph Parks*, Cliff Miller, Ralph Petrarca*, Blaine Smith, Alexander Stine, C.L Weatherstone & Megan Greener.        

*Appearing courtesy of Actors’ Equity Association in an Equity approved showcase.


Performances of MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING are
February 14th – March 2nd, Thursday through Saturday @ 8pm

Sunday, 2/17 @ 7pm

Additional performance on Sunday, January 27th @ 3pm


The Secret Theatre
4402 23rd St. (at 23 St. and 44th Avenue)
LIC, NY 11101
At Court Square on the E, M, G and 7 train

Tickets are $18.

To purchase tickets, please visit

About the Company: The Queens Players

The Queen's players are a non-union acting company formed by English actor/writer, Richard Mazda. The inspiration is NYC's wonderful pool of actors and a desire to present new work, which is normally difficult to achieve without financial backing.

Urinetown: The Musical  | Open: 01/10/13 Close: 01/26/13
Secret Theatre Musicals presents URINETOWN: THE MUSICAL.

Winner of three Tony® Awards and one of the most uproariously funny musicals in recent years, URINETOWNis a tale of greed, corruption, love, and revolution in a time when water is worth its weight in gold. In a Gotham-like city, a terrible water shortage, caused by a 20-year drought, has led to a government-enforced ban on private toilets. The citizens must use public amenities, regulated by a single malevolent company that profits by charging admission for one of humanity's most basic needs. Amid the people, a hero decides he's had enough, and plans a revolution to lead them all to freedom! Inspired by the works of Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill, URINETOWNis an irreverently humorous satire in which no one is safe from scrutiny. Praised for reinvigorating the very notion of what a musical could be, URINETOWNcatapults the “comedic romp” into the new millennium with its outrageous perspective, wickedly modern wit, and sustained ability to produce gales of unbridled laughter.             

Secret Theatre Musicals’ production of URINETOWN features Will Sevedge as Bobby Strong and Brittney Santoro as Hope Cladwell. The cast is completed by Jan-Peter Pedross (Cladwell), Lindsay Naas (Pennywise), Brandon Schraml (Lockstock), Macaela Sears (Little Sally), Jodi Bluestein, Spencer Case, Marc Cornes, Jake Levitt, Terry Olear, Matt Savoca, Trevor Sideris, Charlie Stoop, Lauren Turner and Jill Twiss. Musical direction is by Andy King and choreography is by Caitlin Labadini. The production team also includes Helen Ammon (scenic design), Dan Jobbins (lighting design), John Creenan (costume design), Alyssa Van Gorder (associate director/producer), Richard Mazda (producer) and Sarah Van Fossen (assistant stage manager).

Hearts Like Fists  | Open: 11/30/12 Close: 12/15/12
Flux Theatre Ensemble will present the New York Premiere of Adam Szymkowicz’s (Pretty Theft; The Why Overhead) Hearts Like Fists,November 30-December 15 at The Secret Theatre (4402 23rd Street between 44th Road and 44th Avenue, Long Island City). The production will be directed by Kelly O’Donnell (Dog Act) and will feature Becky Byers* (Blast Radius; The Runner Stumbles; NYIT nomination for Dog Act), Rachael Hip-Flores (DEINDE; “Anyone But Me” webseries), Aja Houston* (Lipshtick), Jennifer Somers Kipley (Dream Walker), Susan Louise O’Connor* (Blythe Spirit on Broadway), Chester Poon (Job), August Schulenburg (8 Little Antichrists), Marnie Schulenburg* (How I Learned to Drive at Second Stage; Daytime Emmy Nomination for As the World Turns), Chinaza Uche* (Ajax in Iraq), and Chris Wight (Dog Act). The creative team will include Sound Design by Janie Bullard, Costume Design by Stephanie Levin, Scenic Design by Will Lowry, Lighting Design by Kia Rogers, and Fight Direction by Adam Swiderski, assisted by Rocío Mendez. The production will be Stage Managed by Jodi M. Witherell. *Actor appears courtesy of the Actors’ Equity Association.

Hearts Like Fists is a superhero noir comedy about the dangers of love. The city's heart beats with fear: Doctor X is sneaking into apartments and injecting lovers with a lethal poison. Lisa's heart beats with hope: now that she's joined the elite Crimefighters, maybe she can live a life with meaning. And every beat of Peter's wounded heart brings him closer to death, but he's designing an artificial replacement that will never break. Can the Crimefighters stop Doctor X? Do Peter and Lisa have a chance at love? And who is the girl with a face like a plate?

Adam Szymkowicz’s Hearts Like Fists received its World Premiere in August 2012 with Theatre of Note in Los Angeles. The inaugural production won the StageSceneLA Scenie Award for “Best World Premiere Play of 2012.”

“A trio of buxom superhero babes is taking names and kicking butt in Adam Szymkowicz’s graphic novel come to irresistible life… exhilarating, nerdy-sexy, and silly-smart. Try finding that on Fandango.” LA Times, Critics Choice

“Fun well done… [a] silly and irresistibly funny show.” LA Weekly, Pick of the Week

“A chop-socky cartoon on stage… an action-packed adventure romance set in the surreal world of female crime-fighting superheroes… Don’t miss this show!” Arts Beat LA

“An homage to Film Noir and Marvel Comics when blended together produces a hilarious theatrical experience!” NPR Station KPCC

“A play that is both campy and clever, but also full of heart and hope, another notch on this prolific young playwright’s belt.” StageSceneLA

About the Company: Flux Theatre Ensemble

FLUX THEATRE ENSEMBLE Flux is an ensemble of 12 multi-faceted theatre artists developing plays through its quarterly Food:Soul play development series, weekly Flux Sunday workshops and its annual week-long retreat. In 2008, the New York Press called Flux “The Most Underappreciated Indie Theatre Whose Work You Should Get Your Ass To” and made Flux one of their “People of the Year” for 2008.

Woyzeck / The Endless Cycle  | Open: 11/07/12 Close: 11/18/12


Buchner’s timeless play explores the brutal breakdown of one man, the soldier Franz Christian Woyzeck, at the hands of those around him. As they gradually wall him in over the course of the performance, he struggles to free himself from the punishing restraints of his society through any means necessary.

Through the use of video and a physically charged staging, this new adaptation, by director William Lewis and writer Charlie Biscotto, suggests that his disintegration is part of an “endless cycle” of past, present and future.  We are forced to ask, "Can the cycle be broken?"


Featuring actors Tim Cusack in the title role, and Annie Harper Branson of Tin Lily Productions. 

Additional performances by Laura Aristovulos, Daigoro Hirahata,  Jared Miller, Jonathan Harper Schlieman, Jillian Stevens,, and Benjamin Watson.

The production will also feature video design by Anthony Nero and Daigoro Hirahata and original music by Jason Bell.  Designers include Candace Lawrence and William Lewis.  Dramaturgy by Giselle Garcia.

About the Company: Tin Lily Productions

Tin Lily Production is a new socially charged, physically generous live performance company founded in September of 2009. We believe theatre exists to broaden views, spark conversation and overall be a moving experience. Our production scope is to focus on rarely produced or original works that utilize a diversity of artistic mediums and atypical performance spaces to instigate charged conversation.

By Rights We Should Be Giants  | Open: 10/18/12 Close: 11/03/12
Lunar Energy Productions will present the World Premiere of By Rights We Should Be Giants, created and written by Lunar Energy ensemble members Nadia Sepsenwol and Tim Van Dyck, October 18-November 3 at The Secret Theatre (4402 23rd Street between 44th Avenue and 44th Road, Long Island City).The production will be directed by Christopher Diercksen (The Seagull at The Secret) and will feature Bob C. Armstrong (All’s Well That Ends Well with New York Classical Theatre), Brenda Currin* (Obie Award winner for Wendy Kesselman’s My Sister in This House with Second Stage Theatre), Rebecca Hirota, Caitlin Johnston, Mariana Newhard, Casey Robinson, Theo Salter, George Salazar* (Godspell on Broadway), Nadia Sepsenwol, Brendan Spieth*, and Liesel Allen Yeager. The creative team will include Set Design by Jonathan Cottle, Lighting Design by Alana Jacoby (Death Valley with AntiMatter Collective), Costume Design by Kristen M. Singer (The Seagull for Wandering Bark Theatre Company), and Original Music by Franklin James Fisher. The production will be Stage Managed by Aislinn Curry. *Appearing courtesy of the Actors’ Equity Association

In 2008, a Midwestern family of would-be intellectuals and frustrated artists are facing the possibility of economic ruin, when they are unexpectedly visited by a company of soldiers returning from Afghanistan. Inspired by Anton Chekhov’s classic drama Three SistersBy Rights We Should Be Giants sheds light on the dwindling American middle class and the challenges of starting anew in a rapidly changing world.

About the Company: Lunar Energy Productions

LUNAR ENERGY is a New-York based theater company dedicated to transformation and re-imagination. In a culture of habit, routine, and been-there-done-that fatigue, we believe it is vital to seek out the surprising in the familiar.  To that end, our productions play with perspective and context in order to reveal unexpected aspects of stories and situations we thought we knew.

 Previous productions include Katharine Sherman’s christopher marlowe’s chloroform dreams at The Red Room (April 2012), Before Placing Me On Your Shelf, adapted and directed by Philip Gates from poems by James Tate, (FringeNYC 2011, Manhattan Theatre Source) and like the night by Katharine Sherman at The Tank (April 2009). Lunar Energy also produces MOONSHINE, a reading series geared towards new play development.