Shakespeare Theatre Company to Stage The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound

Dec 23, 2015
The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound

The Shakespeare Theatre Company presents a madcap night of life in the theatre with The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound, directed by STC Artistic Director Michael Kahn, and featuring an ensemble cast that takes on both shows. A coproduction with the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, the production runs at STC's Lansburgh Theatre (450 7th Street NW) from January 5 through February 14.

Shakespeare Theatre Company's 2015/2016 season continues this winter with two classic behind-the-scenes theatre comedies, The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound. First, playwright and adaptor Jeffrey Hatcher (The Government Inspector) returns with a fresh take on Richard Brinsley Sheridan's 18th-century romp The Critic, a whirlwind comedy about bad theatre, worse playwrights...and, worst of all, the critics. The laughs continue with Tom Stoppard's absurdist tour-de-farce The Real Inspector Hound, an ingenious play-within-a-play in which two critics find themselves caught up as unsuspecting suspects while they watch a classic 1950s Agatha Christie-style whodunit.

"The similarities between The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound are extraordinary, yet their styles could not be more different. Putting them together is a dizzying, thought-provoking, and very fun challenge," says STC Artistic Director Michael Kahn. "And the critics have had a lot of fun with me over the years, so I think we can have some good-natured fun with them."

Following STC's Lansburgh run of The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound, the company will fly off to the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis at the end of February. "This is a very happy co-production," says Kahn. "I've known the Guthrie since it got started, and years ago I directed John Webster's The Duchess of Malfi there. Joe Dowling (Artistic Director of the Guthrie from 1995-2015) has invited me for years to return. We decided a double bill would be great and the plans came together, even as it was his last year as Artistic Director." Bringing the cities together, the cast includes several Minnesotan artists, including actors, composer (Adam Wernick), and playwright and adaptor of The Critic, Jeffery Hatcher, to Washington. When the show moves on, several favorite local D.C. actors will join Michael Kahn on the trip to Minneapolis.

The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound begin preview performances on January 5, celebrate Opening Night on Monday, January 11, and continue through February 14 at STC's Lansburgh Theatre (450 7th Street NW). To purchase tickets or to learn more, patrons can call the box office at 202.547.1122 or visit

The Critic and The Real Inspector Hound are sponsored by Michael R. Klein and Joan I. Fabry and Arlene and Robert Kogod. The Critic was commissioned through a grant from the Beech Street Foundation. Official Media Sponsor: WAMU 88.5.