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Articles by Jonathan Spira

‘Avenue Q’ Has an Important Message for the World: Covid is ‘Only for Now’

The cast of the award-winning Broadway show “Avenue Q” has a message for the world in a new video: Covid “is only for now.”
“Nothing lasts,” a line from the song “Only for Now” tells us, including the pandemic.
After calling out “sex” and “your hair” as the standard faux ad libs in the course of the song, the third original faux ad lib “George Bush” from 2003 has been updated multiple …

First Look: The New 2021 Lucid Air Luxury Sedan with 517-Mile Range

If anyone thinks that the race for the best electric vehicle has been won and that the King of the Hill title has been awarded to Tesla, the conclusion is premature, to say the least.
Lucid Motors unveiled the Air in a coronavirus-friendly online event earlier in the fall, and its Greenfield factory in Arizona is already manufacturing early prototypes.  Lucid took two a few of those on the road to …

Theater Review: ‘Temping’ is a Play for the Coronavirus Age

It was an eerily familiar feeling.  I left my house to go to the theater but this time I drove, bypassing public transit. I parked, walking past restaurants that had set up tables outdoors on the street, in some cases separated by acrylic panels.
Appropriately enough, I was going to see “Temping,” an immersive play for one.  I wasn’t surprised that I had the best seat in the house, not because I …

Take Me to the Four Seasons… No, Not That One!

When President Trump advertised that his lawyers’ news conference, held this past Monday, would be at the Four Seasons hotel in Philadelphia, few people flinched. After all, it was the Four Seasons and the president himself owned some fairly luxurious properties.
“Lawyers News Conference Four Seasons, Philadelphia. 11:00 a.m.,” President Trump said in a tweet Saturday morning.  No sooner had he sent the tweet than the hotel itself chimed in, saying it …

Rethinking the Cinema: Will Theatergoers Have a Bijou to Return to After the Pandemic?

As theaters slowly begin to reopen in the United States (theaters in much of New York State got the green light to reopen with limited capacity on Saturday), a larger question looms: will moviegoers return to the Bijou?
The film “Tenet” – the first Hollywood tent-pole to open in theaters as pandemic shutdowns in some areas were being lifted – was intended to kick off a motion-picture revival. Instead, it alone …

Review: ‘What the Constitution Means to Me’ on Amazon Prime Video

At the age of 15, Heidi Schreck was a relentless debater and high school student in Wenatchee, Washington, participating and triumphing in the American Legion Oratorical Contests.  A quarter of a century later, her memories of these experiences formed the basis of a play that, in December 2018, I called “the best civics class ever.” 
I first saw “What the Constitution Means to Me” at the New York Theatre Workshop …

Review: Final British Airways 747 Flight – London to New York on the Upper Deck

Heading to Heathrow Airport on a rainy evening in March, I had little idea that the flight I would board would not only be my last for many months, but that it would also be my last flight on a British Airways 747.  Perhaps more significantly, it would also be one of the final 747 passenger flights operated by the airline.
While I grew up flying on countless Pan Am 747s …