Archive | The Kennedy Center

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Review: ‘NSO Pops: West Side Story in Concert’ at The Kennedy Center

West Side Story remains glorious from its opening notes to its incredibly powerful final curtain. The National Symphony Orchestra’s (NSO) Pops concert version adds its own distinctive, intelligent luster and pizzazz to the decades-old theater staple that has had many a production in the DC area. With such a recognizable score (Leonard Bernstein), lyrics (Stephen […]

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Ben Folds. Photo courtesy of the Kennedy Center.

In the Moment: Report on ‘Declassified’ with Ben Folds and Sara Bareilles at The Kennedy Center

Under the masterful, musical code-switching curation of National Symphony Orchestra (NSO) Artistic Advisor Ben Folds, the future for new audiences finding their way to the usually buttoned-up, High Arts atmosphere of a classical music venue was very clear at the most recent NSO Declassified concert. The one performance-only Declassified on Friday evening, January 12th, was […]

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In the Moment: The National Symphony Orchestra at The Hamilton Live This Thursday, January 4th, 2018

Ready to un-compartmentalize your music tastes? Open to thinking differently about what some may call stodgy “High Art” for the well-fixed? Ready to have some new musical experiences that fuse classic and pop genres in a singular venue? Well, the opportunity is here. With a healthy disregard for music category boundaries, including what may be […]

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Review: ‘An American in Paris’ at the Kennedy Center

Glistening The Kennedy Center’s lush Opera House with feted Hollywood glitz and glamour, the national tour of the 2015 multi-Tony-winning musical, An American in Paris, debuted Tuesday for a month-long engagement, featuring Bethesda native, Allison Walsh. Adapted and modernized, while still retaining the splendor of the iconic multiple Oscar-winning 1951 Vincente Minelli film, which won […]

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Review: Isley Brothers at The Kennedy Center

The Isley Brothers rocked into The Kennedy Center’s Concert Hall this last Sunday night. Though the Hall is still standing, it may never be the same. Since their founding in 1955, the Isley Brothers have recorded numerous Gold and Platinum Albums, with dozens of number 1 hits. Their first Grammy Award came in 1970 with “It’s Your Thing.” Since […]

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Who’s in Town?: Tony Award-Winner Cynthia Erivo to Perform at the Kennedy Center This Saturday, November 4th, 2017

In my mind, Cynthia Erivo’s name is synonymous with strength and confidence. But it’s not just me. “Diva,” “lion,” and “dragon slayer” are just a few of the ways people have described her since she burst onto the US theater scene in 2015 with The Color Purple. A brief recap for those who don’t follow these […]

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Review: NEA Jazz Master Ron Carter Trio at The Kennedy Center

The Ron Carter Trio visited The Kennedy Center this Friday night. Consisting of bassist Carter, pianist Donald Vega, and guitarist Russell Malone, the harmonics couldn’t have been sweeter; the melodies, more agreeably delightful; or the riffs, more creative of joy. Led by Jazz Master Carter, the trio began the evening with several in memoriam pieces for […]

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Photo courtesy of The Kennedy Center.

Review: Dizzy Gillespie Centennial Celebration at The Kennedy Center

Dizzy Gillespie’s 100th birthday celebration at The Kennedy Center jazzed the Eisenhower Theatre last night. I’m sure the rooftop is still aglow this morning. Dizzy Gillespie (1917-1993) revolutionized bebop; he and Charlie “Bird” Parker launched modern jazz. The evening began when NEA Jazz Master Jimmy Heath, a lifelong friend of Gillespie, described his first big […]

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Review: NEA Jazz Master Lee Konitz’s Birthday Celebration at The Kennedy Center

Nonagenarian jazz–what is it? It’s Lee Konitz leading a quartet that includes George Schuller on drums, Jeremy Stratton on bass, and Dan Tepfer on piano. And in his Kennedy Center’s Birthday Celebration, Konitz couldn’t have been any more expressive, or ready for flight. Nuanced, graceful, unhurried, and sublime are but a few of the descriptors […]

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Review: National Symphony Orchestra with Guest Conductor Juanjo Mena and Pianist Garrick Ohlsson at The Kennedy Center Concert Hall (Final Performance TODAY, 10-15-17 at 3:00 p.m.)

It’s not unusual for concertgoers to be greeted by the sounds of orchestra members tuning their instruments, so commencing Thursday night’s concert with Kennedy Center Composer-in-Residence Mason Bates’s Auditorium, whose opening scrapes, bleats, squeaks and toots could easily be taken for those of an orchestra warming up, was both genial joke and masterstroke. Making his […]

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Terrace Theater to Re-Open with Series of Events at the Kennedy Center

The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts will officially re-open the Terrace Theater on Friday, October 6, kicking off a month-long suite of performances that highlight the theater’s unique position as the Center’s most intimate and versatile space. The re-opening follows a 16-month renovation intended to update the theater and facilities, and enhance […]

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