Mile Square Theatre brings its 17th annual celebration of theater and baseball into living rooms this season with 7th Inning Stretch: from the dugout.
Since 2003, MST has commissioned playwrights to create short works on the theme of baseball to celebrate Hoboken’s historical claim as the birthplace of professionally organized baseball. On June 19, 1846, the first match game of baseball was played on the Elysian Fields between the Knickerbockers and the New York Nine.
This year, MST Artistic Director Chris O’Connor is rounding up a team of audience-favorites to create an evening full of sketches, short plays, musical acts, and other baseball-related content that will be available for streaming online due to COVID-19.
“Our theater is shuttered due to the pandemic, but it’s giving us an opportunity to re-imagine The Stretch on the online platform,” said O’Connor. “The event is a labor of love for MST and we’re going to miss working on The Stretch in our space, but it’s been fun to come up with such a variety of material for 7th Inning Stretch: from the dugout.”
Mile square money
The event will raise much needed funds for the theater which has been closed because of the public health crisis.
“This is a critical fundraising event for us as well, so ‘the show must go on,’ so to speak,” said O’Connor. “We’re facing an unprecedented challenge in sustaining our organization through the pandemic, so hopefully the proceeds from The Stretch will provide some relief.”
This year’s artists include Gary Kroeger (“Saturday Night Live”), Michael Emerson (“Person of Interest,” “Lost”), Thomas Lennon (“Reno 911”), Jim Vallance (Songwriter: Summer of ’69; What About Love), Elizabeth Ward Land (CBS’s “The Good Fight; Amazing Grace on Broadway), Matt Lawler (ABC’s “The Family”), Ellen Lancaster (The Visit on Broadway), Catherine Porter (Next to Normal on Broadway), Matt Bittner (Present Laughter on Broadway), Ray McAnally (Daily Fiber; “Modern Family”), Adam Ottavino (New York Yankees), Kevin Short (Metropolitan Opera’s Porgy and Bess), Stacey Dana Scotte (HBO’s “Succession”), Barbara Pitts McAdams (Tectonic Theatre’s Laramie Project), Ames McNamara (ABC’s “The Conners”), Matilda Lawler (The Ferryman on Broadway), Joseph Gallo (MST’s My Italy Story; Long Gone Daddy), Mia Randall among others.
The Stretch will be aired online beginning on June 19 at 7 p.m., the same day the first organized game in history was played.
Performances are also scheduled for June 20 at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. and June 21 at 3 p.m.
Pay-What-You-Will Virtual tickets begin at $20 and are available at www.milesquaretheatre.org
Virtual attendees are asked to purchase one ticket per viewing device because they will get a unique access link that cannot be shared.
If they miss the show time or want to watch it again, they will get a second link that will be available for 24 hours after the initial broadcast.