Archive | DC Metro Area

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Review: Silver Spring Stage 2017 One Act Festival, Weekend Two

Silver Spring Stage kicks off its fiftieth season with a festival of one-act plays showcasing homegrown writing and acting talent and the can-do spirit of the best of local theater. Though no stated theme unites the selections for a given weekend, weekend two’s plays taken together pose interesting “what if?” questions. The first of this […]

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Madeleine Rogers as Desdemona and Faran Tahir as Othello in Shakespeare Theatre Company's Free For All production of Othello. Photo: Jennifer Reiley.

Review: Free For All ‘Othello’ at the Shakespeare Theatre Company

Every great play by Shakespeare takes on altered shades of meanings depending on a production’s directing, design, and acting. That’s a theater truism. Also well-known to practitioners is that audience reaction can influence actors’ performances. But less recognized is how an audience’s response can shift a play’s thematic focus, making the play their own, by […]

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Review: ‘Whipping, or The Football Hamlet’ at Longacre Lea

What a rush. DC area playwright Kathleen Akerley has aced her way through the hottest of “au courant” identity politics in her newest work, the penetrating Whipping, or the Football Hamlet. With trenchant taunts and a flurry of dialogue that fluently picks at the hidden away scabs of supposed oppressors, the visible wounds of assumed […]

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Review: Silver Spring Stage 2017 One Act Festival

Silver Spring Stage opened its 2017 One-Act Festival which has been part of their season for fifty years. Each weekend several short plays from the past and present are produced. There is usually no common thread except this year, two of the plays were previously directed by the late Leta Hall at SSS, Clean by […]

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Interview: Montana DeBor, Mark Harding, Gwynne Flanagan Cox, and Elise “Teddy” Sipos from Sweet Spot Aerial Production’s ‘Smoky Mirrors’

“My faith is a great weight hung on a small wire.” – Anne Sexton Each performer in Sweet Spot Aerial’s Smoky Mirrors places great faith in materials: fabric, rope, chains, muscle. There’s also a relationship – built, too, on trust – with an audience: Can I, the performer, communicate not just the truth, but the […]

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Review: Herbie Hancock at The Kennedy Center

Legendary Oscar and multi-Grammy-winning pianist and Kennedy Center Honoree Herbie Hancock solidified his avant-garde artistry on the Concert Hall stage Tuesday night, highlighting “smatterings” of his latest jazz compositions from his eagerly anticipated new album (set for release in 2018), fused with reframed hits from his 60-year career. Fastidiously accompanied by drummer Vinnie Colaiuta, bassist […]

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Review: ‘The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari’ featuring Tom Teasley at Constellation Theatre Company

When The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari hit German movie screens in 1920, it baffled and delighted audiences who had primarily been entertaining themselves with annual Film Festivals of Fred Ott’s sneeze and footage of trains. Techniques that we take for granted today – flashbacks, special effects, Germans, twist endings – were deployed first by the […]

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Magic Time!: ‘Big Fish’ at The Keegan Theatre

The musical Big Fish is by any measure a feel-good show for the whole family, as evidenced by the buoyant and beautiful production now playing at The Keegan Theatre. But the main narrative arc in Big Fish has particular resonance for sons, a specific emotional current that touches anyone who grew from boy to man […]

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Review: ‘Big Fish’ at The Keegan Theatre

Family-friendly musicals are relatively rare these days. Family-friendly musicals that have adult themes are even rarer. Big Fish, with book by John August and music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa, is a rare bird indeed. T.S. Eliot’s J. Alfred Prufrock “heard the mermaids singing, each to each,” but he didn’t think that they would sing […]

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Magic Time!: Sweet Spot Aerial Productions’ ‘Smoky Mirrors’ at Atlas Performing Arts Center

No sooner did some aerial apparatus drop from the fly space—ropes, straps, silks, hoops, trapezes—but what some artist-athletes would take hold of it and make acts of suspended animation. These performances—as balletic as they were muscular, as subtle as stupefying, as mesmerizing as sometimes shocking—were my introduction to DC’s robust circus scene. They are folks […]

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Benefit: ‘One Night in Bangkok’ Featuring Members of ‘The King and I’ to Benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS on August 14

Join members of The King and I’s royal court as they step out of character for good fun and a good cause at One Night in Bangkok, a one-night only cabaret benefit for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS at DC’s Bistro Bistro on Monday, August 14. The event will feature Broadway tunes, pop songs, dances choreographed […]

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Review: Blondie & Garbage – The Rage and Rapture Tour at Wolf Trap

Despite the torrential downpour Thursday night, Blondie and Garbage devotees came in droves to Wolf Trap, with rain ponchos and umbrellas in hand, to hear two distinctively powerful and iconic woman-led bands of different generations, inspiring forward-thinking music and cultural progression. Primed with a 20-minute set by California’s female alternative rock duo Deap Vally (Lindsey […]

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Review: ‘Lysistrata Jones’ at Red Branch Theatre Company

Red Branch Theatre Company continues to amaze with its 2017 season premiere of the perky and impertinent Lysistrata Jones. Thanks to savvy staging and choreography, this short-lived 2011 Broadway musical is tuned up to give any modern Greek scholar more than an earful. The book by Douglas Carter Beane and songs by Lewis Flinn drag […]

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Review: ‘Alice and the Book of Wonderland’ at Annapolis Shakespeare Company

Annapolis Shakespeare Company’s production of Alice and the Book of Wonderland is an entertaining treat for all ages, with delightful acting, colorful costumes, a creative use of technology, excellent directing, and sly political humor. Adapted from Lewis Carroll’s classic novel Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Sally Boyett and Donald Hicken, and directed by Sally Boyett, […]

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Interview: Performers from the Upcoming ‘Atomic Doll Productions Presents: Shocked and Amazed!’ – Part II

Atomic Doll Productions Presents: Shocked and Amazed! was inspired by James Taylor’s Shocked and Amazed: On and Off the Midway, the world’s leading journal on weirdness in entertainment for over 30 years. Taylor is an historian and storyteller of the grand days of the Side- and Freak-Show Circuit. Saturday’s one-night-only event was created in partnership with […]

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Review: ‘Anne and Emmett’ at MetroStage

Anne and Emmett, by Janet Langhart Cohen, is a play about an imagined conversation between two figures from history – teenagers, who were the victims of institutional terrorism. MetroStage produced this profoundly important work for a limited run this past weekend. The discussion takes places between Anne Frank, a Jewish girl killed in 1945 during […]

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