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Escape with Rosalind into the Forest of Arden, a world where desire is turned upside-down, women disguise themselves as men and "love is merely a madness." As You Like It boasts one of Shakespeare's most vibrant heroines in Rosalind, the beautiful daughter of an exiled duke who falls madly in love with the dashing Orlando. When she's banished from the duke's court, Rosalind disguises herself as a boy and flees to the forest. Along the way, she, Orlando and a host of other motley characters fill the forest of Arden with music, dancing and pure romance. Enchantment abounds in this new production from Folger Theatre in D.C., presented in association with the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival.
Charm offers a peek into the colorful inner-workings of an etiquette class taught by Mama Darleena Andrews, an African-American transgender woman working at an LGBTQ organization known as The Center. Mama attempts to share her rules of proper behavior with an eclectic youth group that counts a Latina transwoman, a cisgendered straight black couple and a gay suburban teen among its ranks. Though her students initially struggle to see how etiquette relates to their daily battles with identity, poverty and prejudice, Mama's powerful love and unapologetic attitude eventually win them over. Inspired by a true story, Charm carries a message of peace and dignity, as Mama and her students must ultimately find a new way to respect each other and redefine what "having charm" means. Now, the Atlas Performing Arts Center brings Philip Dawkins' fresh-faced take on sexuality, race and gender identity to Washington, DC.
Shakespeare's Macbeth is all the more shocking because the murderous protagonist isn't a robot from outer space or someone altogether unrelatable -- he's an ordinary person with an extraordinary desire for power. Now the Bard's greatest tragedy hits even closer to home in Mack, Beth, a thoroughly modern retelling of the classic tale of temptation, ambition and betrayal. A world premiere from two-time Helen Hayes-nominated playwright Chris Stezin, Mack, Beth takes the phrase "power couple" to a whole new level. Experience all the intrigue of the original while reveling in updates for the digital age when Mack, Beth comes to the Keegan Theatre in Washington, D.C.
Ali Baba, Sinbad, Aladdin -- the list of classic characters and tales spun in The Arabian Nights is unrivaled in all of literature. Also known as One Thousand and One Nights, this timeless work of imagination has been captivating audiences for hundreds of years. Now, Constellation Theatre reprises its acclaimed production of Tony winner Mary Zimmerman's stage adaptation, bringing all of the original's magic to life. The young Scheherazade, desperate to stave off her own execution, spins tale after tale for her new husband, the king. Each night, she weaves a spellbinding story, hoping that her vivid imagination will buy her the time she needs to win both the king's heart and her own freedom. Experience this testament to the power of storytelling when The Arabian Nights comes to Source in Washington, D.C.
A small house in besieged by an apocalyptic storm. Great trees crack and splinter, garbage shatters windows, a deer impales the car windshield, and the wind hurls a trampoline into the living room. While their family home collapses all around them, a prodigal daughter and her zealous relatives try to pray their way to safety.
Obie Award-winner Clare Barron’s new play is “a genuinely fragile, complex piece of work” (Time Out New York): a Rorschach test for the faithful and the faithless alike. You’ve never seen anyone pray quite like this. You’ve never met a family like this. But if you enter the eye of the storm with them, you might find an imperfect, harrowing miracle.
Join us as we present the largest musical in Round House’s history! Set in the heat of the Civil Rights Movement, the Tony-nominated Caroline, Or Change follows a black maid working for a middle-class Jewish family in Louisiana. When a small amount of money goes missing, buried tensions threaten to rip two families—and the struggling Caroline—apart. Loosely based on Kushner’s provocative and personal story, Caroline features a virtuosic score from Jeanine Tesori (Tony Award for Best Original Score for Fun Home) that blends blues, gospel, and traditional Jewish melodies into a magical, show-stopping musical masterpiece.
In his Tony-winning play Copenhagen, Michael Frayn re-imagines the 1941 meeting of famed physicists Niels Bohr and Werner Heisenberg, an event that has been subject to much historical speculation. No one knows exactly what these two men -- one a Nobel Prize-winner, the other his esteemed mentor -- discussed. What did Heisenberg believe should be done about atomic bombs? What did he want from Bohr? The spirits of the two men and Bohr's wife, Margrethe, meet after death to attempt to answer the original question: Why did Heisenberg come to Copenhagen? This modern drama is a meditation on friendship and moral responsibility that's intellectually dazzling and deeply moving. Take a journey through the realm of science and beyond, embarking from Theater J at the Edlavitch DCJCC.
The Displaced brings together authors Laila Lalami (Hope and Other Dangerous Pursuits), Luis Urrea (Into the Beautiful North) and Shobha Rao (An Unrestored Woman) to tell three stories of displaced people trying to find a place in our volatile world. From the tale of four Moroccans trying to sail to Spain in an inflatable dinghy, to a Mexican village where all the men have left to find work in the United States, to a new mother trapped on the wrong side of the India-Pakistan border, this performance at the Folger Theatre in Washington, D.C. is a powerful portrait of lives in transit.
In D.L. Coburn's sharp-witted dramedy, a game of cards between two lonely nursing-home residents turns into a battle royale with serious personal stakes. Weller and Fonsia strike up a friendly acquaintance as he teaches her to play gin rummy, revealing intimate details of their lives along the way. But as Fonsia wins hand after hand, Weller becomes frustrated and their simple pastime becomes an all-out war, with shared secrets as weapons of mass emotional destruction. This Pulitzer Prize winner was revived on Broadway in 2016 with James Earl Jones and Cicely Tyson. Washington's gifted actors Roz White and Doug Brown bring the tale to life, so grab a seat and get dealt in at MetroStage in Alexandria.
In this critically-acclaimed comedy fresh from London's West End, we meet Graeme -- a die-hard Game of Thrones fan who simply wants to recreate the epic fantasy saga as a live puppet show. To realize his dream, he enlists the help of his best friend Paul and former childhood crush Bryony to play multiple roles as both actors and puppeteers. The three of them haven't got the massive budget or cast of award-winning actors that the TV show does, but when Graeme hears that an influential theater producer is in the audience, he and his friends pull out all the stops to bring the battle for the Seven Kingdoms to life. Laughter is coming to Washington, D.C.'s Howard Theatre in Graeme of Thrones.
While something might be rotten in the state of Denmark, Hamlet is a classic masterpiece that stays fresh -- especially when the main character is reimagined as a teenage girl. Hamlette takes the classic Shakespeare play and mixes it all up into a side-splitting concoction that's recommended for ages 10 and older. Hamlette is already having enough trouble being a teenager, but she might just go mad when her mother marries her uncle and her father's ghost starts visiting her. Follow her adventures at Keegan Theatre in Washington, D.C.
As it riffs on life in Baltimore and growing up black in America, this dark comedy sets its sights on the Trayvon Martin case, mistaken identity, incarceration and more. With its multi-ethnic cast made up of five young people and four adults, Hooded: Or Being Black for Dummies is filled with arresting stylistic turns and outrageous comedy. This world premiere marks the first major production of its award-winning playwright, Tearrance Arvelle Chisholm. Catch Hooded: Or Being Black for Dummies on the stage of the Atlas Performing Arts Center in Washington, DC.
The Queen is dead. Long live the King! Hailed as 2015's best new Broadway play by Time, Entertainment Weekly and The New Times, and winner of the 2015 Olivier Award for Best New Play, Mike Bartlett's King Charles III explores the people underneath the crowns, the unwritten rules of Britain's democracy and the conscience of its most famous family. This modern-day riff on Shakespearean political drama, which was a sold-out hit both on Broadway and in London's West End, has been hailed as "fresh, thrilling and fearlessly comic" (Entertainment Weekly) and "flat-out brilliant!" (The New York Times). Set shortly after the death of the Queen, the story centers on Prince Charles, who after a lifetime of waiting is finally made king -- only to face an ethical dilemma over a bill limiting the freedom of the press. See this buzz-worthy new production at D.C.'s Sidney Harman Hall.
On the train carrying F. Scott Fitzgerald’s coffin across the country, a young couple, each returning home from unexpected disappointment, begin a journey to life together that takes several detours, in this charming WWII-era romantic comedy.
On a sweltering summer morning in 1892, in a small New England city, a prominent businessman and his wife were brutally axed to death in their home. Their daughter Lizzie Borden was the prime suspect. Lizzie’s trial was a coast-to-coast media sensation, and her story has become an American legend.
LIZZIE is four women fronting a six-piece rock band. LIZZIE is rage, sex, betrayal, and bloody murder. LIZZIE is American mythology set to a blistering rock score. LIZZIE is a new American musical with a sound owing less to Sondheim and Andrew Lloyd Webber than to Bikini Kill, the Runaways, and Heart.
Nastier than Scorsese at his bleakest, more violent than Tarantino at his bloodiest, Shakespeare's Macbeth still shocks like no other tale on the page, stage or screen. Now cutting-edge director Liesl Tommy (Eclipsed, Ruined) stages this chilling portrait of temptation, ambition and betrayal at D.C.'s Sidney Harman Hall. Set in a gloomy world of ghosts and witches, the tragedy's cycle of corruption is thrown into motion when the popular King Duncan of Scotland is murdered by his trusted friend and general Macbeth. Driven by a supernatural prophesy and his wife's deadly ambition, Macbeth goes on to claim his destiny. But just as he grasps the crown, it starts to slip through his bloody fingers.
In a frozen little town in the middle of nowhere lives Stina, a young woman filled with a desperate hope to escape her humdrum surroundings. Following her mind's twisted flights of fancy, it isn't long before Stina's imagination is driving her to create more and more bizarre diversions, leading to a sudden and shocking twist of events. This wildly original world premiere of Midwestern Gothic features a book by Royce Vavrek and a contemporary score from Josh Schmidt, the award-winning composer of Adding Machine, that weaves together rock, country and pure fantasy. Catch this provocative and innovative musical thriller at Arlington's Signature Theatre.
From Pulitzer Prize winner James Lapine (Sunday in the Park With George) comes a new comedy starring Emmy and Tony Award-winning actress Debra Monk (Mozart in the Jungle, Grey's Anatomy). Mrs. Miller may be capable of a lot, but one thing she can not do is sing -- but don't tell her that. Based on the true story of Elva Miller, this engaging play sheds amusing light on the life of the devoted, off-key songstress who became a most unlikely pop phenomenon in the 1960s. Warbling her way through songs like "Downtown," "Monday Monday," "A Hard Day's Night" and more, Monk truly shines in the role of a lifetime in Mrs. Miller Does Her Thing. Catch this irresistible show at Arlington's Signature Theatre.
This suspenseful thriller was hailed as "a first-class example of its genre" by The New York Times during its acclaimed Broadway run in the early-'70s. The story centers on Elaine Wheeler, an insomniac heiress who thinks she witnesses a murder being committed in the apartment building next door. But when the police investigate, they find nothing but an empty chair. By the time Elaine sees a second body, even her husband and best friend begin to doubt her. Is she having a breakdown, or are her visions real? This fast-moving and gripping tale from Louise Fletcher -- in the tradition of suspenseful tales like Rear Window and Wait Until Dark -- will keep you guessing right up until its chilling climax. Don't miss this production at the Bowie Playhouse.
The five-time Tony-winning show that The New York Times called "the most exhilarating storytelling on Broadway in decades," Peter and the Starcatcher is the swashbuckling prequel to Peter Pan. Inventive stagecraft and an imaginative story come together to reveal the origins of "the boy who wouldn't grow up" in this madcap music-filled adventure. The play is an action-packed journey through Neverland that brings pirates, mermaids, orphans and secret agents of the Queen together on the high seas. Based on the bestselling novel by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson, and written by Rick Elice (Jersey Boys), this Constellation Theatre production of Peter and the Starcatcher at the Source in Washington, D.C., weaves an enchanting coming-of-age tale that's bound to appeal to your entire crew.
Mel Brooks' outrageous, Tony-winning musical comedy The Producers tells the story of broke Broadway producer Max Bialystock and his accountant, Leo Bloom. Desperate for cash, these two schemers hatch a plan to produce a musical that's sure to be a failure so they can cut and run with the unspent production money. But when their "big flop" turns out to be a huge hit, they're in trouble. Based on the classic 1968 film, and featuring the hilariously tasteless show-within-a-show Springtime for Hitler, The Producers skewers the over-the-top absurdities of musical theater while delivering a heartfelt tale of the true friendship that develops between two would-be con artists. Catch this Broadway hit that scored a record 12 Tony Awards when it comes to the Washington County Playhouse Dinner Theater.
A man brings a woman to his secluded fishing cabin. Under the new moon, their pursuit is sea trout -- and an instant of perfect love and primal desire, elusive as the one that got away. This woman, this moment, is the one: mythical and mysterious as The River itself. This tense modern drama "is finely calibrated. The acting is also impeccable," writes The Guardian. The enigmatic tale by English playwright Jez Butterworth, and directed by Rebecca Holderness, comes to Spooky Action Theater in Washington, D.C.
Contemporary slang meets 17th-century farce in The School for Lies. Adapted from Moliere's The Misanthrope, playwright David Ives (Venus in Fur, All in the Timing) transforms Moliere's classic into a modern satire told entirely through verse. The result is a delightfully incongruous comedy of manners that lets you peer inside the Parisian salon of Celimene, a young widow with a sharp tongue and plenty of eager suitors. Tony Award-nominee David Ives and STC Artistic Director Michael Kahn, the team that created the award-winning French trilogy of The Liar, The Heir Apparent and The Metromaniacs, return to old stomping grounds in this uproarious update of one of the greatest masterpieces of French comedy. Outrageous gags and vicious couplets strike a hilarious balance of class and crass in this classic collision of Moliere's biting satire and Ives's modern wit. See it at Lansburgh Theatre in D.C.
A stage littered with liquor bottles and cafe chairs transforms from a Parisian bistro to the banks of the Irati River in Spain. A bar table roars to life and charges a matador. Championed by The New York Times as "a lively riff on Hemingway's first and greatest novel," The Select (The Sun Also Rises)'s innovative staging reimagines the 1926 roman à clef via a fusion of artistic forms. As the story winds its way through France and Spain and lands in the heart of the Festival of San Fermín in Pamplona, Hemingway's narrator carries the heavy burdens of a war injury and his inability to have the woman he desires -- a woman whose romantic escapades he follows with bemused but painful fatalism. Don't miss this genre-defying work by acclaimed theatre ensemble Elevator Repair Service when it takes over D.C.'s Lansburgh Theatre.
Join everyone's favorite green, swamp-dwelling ogre as he sets off on a life-changing adventure in Shrek The Musical Jr. presented by Lopez Studios. Accompanied by a wise-cracking donkey, the reluctant hero sets off on a quest to reclaim the deed to his stolen land. Watch along as a cast of young performers act out his journey, complete with a fearsome dragon, a feisty princess and a who's-who of classic children's book characters. Part romance and part twisted fairy tale, this irreverently funny stage adaptation of the Oscar-winning DreamWorks film champions the importance of real friendship and true love. Don't miss out on all the fun when Shrek The Musical Jr. comes to the NextStop Theatre in Herndon.
Silent Sky is the true story of how a group of extraordinary women banded together to find a way to measure the universe while overcoming adversity. Set in the early 1900s, Silent Sky follows Henrietta Leavitt, an aspiring scientist who joins the Harvard Observatory's all-female "human computer" team. Once there, however, she finds the women are kept behind the scenes and told to keep their ideas and theories to themselves. As Henrietta navigates these impossible waters, she tries to keep her personal life and family obligations in focus. This powerful production from Silver Spring Stage examines a woman's place in professional society during a time of both historic discovery and endless oppression.
A couple moves into an isolated, run-down house to be alone. Yet, they grow increasingly anxious that "someone is going to come." Don't miss the DC premiere of this poetic play about passion, paranoia and jealousy.
DC Legend E. Faye Bulter (Arena Stage's Oklahoma! among many others) joins Phantom of the Opera alum David Benoit for the murder musical of the century! After 15 years in exile, the barber Sweeney Todd returns to Victorian London seeking revenge against the evil Judge Turpin who separated him from his wife and child. Falling in league with the twisted and hilarious Mrs. Lovett - a restaurateur with a shortage of ingredients for her meat pies - Sweeney embarks on a deliciously chilling rampage to right the wrongs of so many year ago. The award-winning artistic team behind Carousel and How To Succeed... brings this Tony® Award-winning "musical thriller" to life with an exceptional cast and Broadway production values.
Playwright Steven A. Butler, Jr., author of acclaimed play Chocolate Covered Ants, returns to the Anacostia Playhouse in Washington, D.C. with a new story of love, loss and family. The Very Last Days of the First Colored Circus is set in rural Maryland in 1927, focusing on a group of black circus performers who struggle to be respected both as artists and as human beings. Featuring authentic vaudeville-inspired performances from the 1920s, this new musical pays tribute to a group of brave actors seeking the freedom to pursue their craft.