Archive | Northern Virginia


Review: ‘The Snow Queen’ at Creative Cauldron

Creative Cauldron’s Learning Theater Ensemble presents The Snow Queen, an original adaptation based on the tale by Hans Christian Andersen. Written by Ellen Selby, this production joins a long list of films and adaptations inspired by the original, including The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and Disney’s Frozen. Alongside Laura Connors Hull, Selby co-directs […]

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Review: ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’ at Reston Community Players

Reston Community Players present Tennessee Williams’ classic, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Sharon Veselic directs a talented cast for this insightful production. While a lot has changed in the nearly 65 years since its debut, some themes– like dysfunctional family dynamics– remain stubbornly timeless. Since all of the action unfolds in one setting, Set […]

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Review: ‘Death by Design’ at Aldersgate Church Community Theater

“There is nothing whatever beneath my exterior.” So proclaims a character in Death by Design, now playing at the Aldersgate Church Community Theater (ACCT) in Alexandria. How right he is, not only for him but for this theatrical trifle itself. Look elsewhere for subtlety or subtext. But it is an amusing trifle. Playwright Rob Urbinati’s […]

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Review: ‘Harvey’ by the McLean Community Players

Things are getting a little wacky with the McLean Community Players these days, and this time it’s in the form of Harvey by Mary Chase. This challenging and earnest production—directed by Eleanore Tapscott and produced by Jennifer Levy and Mike Scott—gave the players quite a lot to dive in to, and they certainly gave it […]

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Review: ‘Godspell’ at NextStop Theatre Company

NextStop Theatre is reaching the end of their July 2017 to June 2018 “Point and Counterpoint” season. Their third and final show pairing explores the contrasting effects that religious teachings can have on society. The dark comedy, Bad Jews, will close out the season, highlighting the way religion can bring out the very worst in […]

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The cast of Ken Ludwig's Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery. clockwise from upper left, Bill Van Horn, Ian Merrill Peakes, Jered McLenigan, Dan Hodge and Sarah Gliko. Photo by Mark Garvin.

Review: ‘Ken Ludwig’s Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery’ at Center for the Arts/George Mason University

In turbulent times, escaping into a yarn that is as light and high-flying as a helium-filled balloon can be a welcome respite. So, the Great Performance Series at the Center for the Arts/George Mason University welcomed the touring company of Philadelphia’s Walnut Street Theatre for a single performance of DC area playwright Ken Ludwig’s affectionate […]

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Review: ‘Avenue Q’ at Workhouse Arts Center

The audience for Workhouse Theater’s production of Avenue Q (music and lyrics by Robert Lopez and Jeff Mark, book by Jeff Whitty), loved every minute. And what’s not to love? The 2003 Tony Award-winning, Sesame Street-inspired musical about a diverse and diverting set of characters trying to find themselves in a downscale Brooklyn-like neighborhood offers […]

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In the Moment: Interview with Joe Calarco about ’12 Million Footsteps’

For nearly two decades, the inventive Signature in the Schools education program has exposed Arlington County public high school student actors to highly-charged, real-world issues well beyond the confines of a textbook by allowing them to participate in an original Signature Theatre production. The Signature in the Schools program, under the leadership of Arlington’s Signature […]

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Review: ‘The Imaginary Invalid’ by the Mason Players at George Mason University School of Theater

Satire is a comic form I have always loved. Among the greatest geniuses of the genre is Molière, whose comedies from 3.5 centuries ago still evoke howls of laughter when done well. Directed by Nicholas Horner, the Mason Players production of Molière’s The Imaginary Invalid, which opened last night in the TheatreSpace, is delightful. Using an adaptation […]

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In the Moment: Interview with Sound Designer Justin Schmitz

All too often the work of a theater sound designer can go unnoticed. In fact, not long ago the Tony Awards decided not to even provide an award category for sound design (now reinstated). Thankfully, the DC area’s Helen Hayes Awards did not follow the Tonys’ dismissive attitude toward theater sound design. But, what is […]

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Review: ‘The Gospel at Colonus’ by Avant Bard

The Gospel at Colonus, Avant Bard’s production of the gospel-infused Oedipus story, opened on February 27 with a sweet, bright salvo of a song. Members of the Women’s Ecumenical Choir (headed by Becky Sanders) greeted the audience one by one as they filed onto the stage, and e’Marcus Harper-Short led them in a verse of a […]

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as Dr. Ruth. Photo by Teresa Wood.

Review: ‘Becoming Dr. Ruth’ at Theater J

Helmed by a trio of DC’s creative talent royalty, Theater J’s production of Becoming Dr. Ruth, penned by Mark St. Germain, goes beyond just facts and dates to become an engaging exploration of how Dr. Ruth Westheimer become what she became in the 1980s – America’s favorite sex therapist. The trio of creative talent taking […]

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Review: ‘The Audience’ at Little Theatre of Alexandria

Attention Anglophiles: If you loved The Queen, and if you avidly follow The Crown on Netflix, then by all means, join the audience for The Audience at the Little Theatre of Alexandria (LTA). All three were written by Peter Morgan, who has become something of a specialist in portraying the royals. The play does not […]

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Review: ‘Speech and Debate’ at Peter’s Alley

Peter’s Alley is offering a very funny production of Speech and Debate by Stephen Karam at Theatre on the Run. Karam, whose play, The Humans, won the 2016 Tony award for Best Play, has twice been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, so the guy has chops. Howie, Solomon, and Diwata are three high schoolers […]

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In the Moment: DIAVOLO ‘The Veterans Project: A Long Journey Home’ at The Kennedy Center

“We all move, we all walk, we all run, we all fall, we all can even dance.” said Artistic Director Jacques Heim of DIAVOLO. With a motto of “architecture in motion” DIAVOLO will be bringing its highly original, contemporary styles of dance and motion melded with architecture to the Kennedy Center’s Eisenhower Theater this month. What caught […]

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Review: ‘U-Street, The Musical’ at Momentum Collective

U-Street, The Musical, directed by Alexandria, Virginia-based playwright Jason A. Ellis, explores the tribulations of the homeless in an engaging story punctuated with humor, song, dance, and a touch of spirituality. U Street, The Musical is one of a series of six socially conscious musicals written by Ellis, the others being Not My Baby, The […]

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Robbie Schaefer. Photo by Christopher Mueller.

Review: ‘Light Years’ at Signature Theatre

How does someone pay honor to a deceased parent whom they loved dearly? How does a son give thanks to his father? And when does a son really come to learn what a father went through, in those many years way before the son was even born? In a gentle, sweet retelling of his relationship […]

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In the Moment: ‘Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill’ at Creative Cauldron

“Don’t threaten me with love, baby. Let’s just go walking in the rain,” is a quote attributed to the late, and lost-too-soon, singer Billie Holiday (1915-1959). Creative Cauldron’s production of Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill picks up from this Holiday quote to be one extraordinary, bewitching, helter-skelter walk in a chilled night time pouring […]

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