Archives for January 2017

Off-Broadway review: Oscar nominee Lucas Hedges in Yen

Yen, a bleak British play that opens tonight Off-Broadway, stars Lucas Hedges, Oscar-nominated last week for his role in Manchester by the Sea, and Justice Smith, of the Netflix hip-hop drama The Get Down, as two teenage brothers living alone, with no school, no friends, little food and one t-shirt to share between them.

Falling for As You Like It at Folger (review)

Full of song, love, and laughter, As You Like It will sweep you off your feet. If you don’t love it at first sight, wait.

Show Boat at Toby’s Dinner Theatre (review)

The legendary team of Oscar Hammerstein and Jerome Kern created some of the best music ever written for the American stage in Show Boat. And each song gets a stellar rendition by Toby’s cast. Reason enough to grab a ticket.

Two strangers meet on a train – Last Train to Nibroc at Washington Stage Guild (review)

In December, 1940, the bodies of two prominent American writers, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Nathaniel West were shipped cross country in a railcar.  This strangely titled piece is the first of a trilogy about a couple who meet on that train from California, their destination, Corbin, Kentucky. 

Michael Kahn’s direction of David Ives’ The Liar opens in New York

In The Liar, the title character wonders whether, given his disposition, he should become a politician. But, if David Ives’ version of Pierre Corneille’s 1644 verse play may benefit from new relevance (what I call the Trump Effect), its main strength lies not in its timeliness or plot but the subversive whimsy of its language.

American Ballet Theatre’s Swan Lake at The Kennedy Center (review)

As I walked up the steps into Kennedy Center’s Opera House for the season’s opening of American Ballet Theatre’s Swan Lake, my heart was fluttering as if for a first love. As indeed it was; classical ballet was my earliest passion. No other performance art form promises such a sweet anti-gravitational lift. How we need […]

Holly Twyford leads a powerful cast in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf at Ford’s Theatre (review)

Jean-Paul Sartre said that Hell is other people, but in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? we look to ourselves to find Hell, horrifying and intimate.

Tom Stoppard’s Hard Problem. Insights from the director and playwright

Tom Stoppard’s newest play The Hard Problem refers to philosopher David Chalmer’s “hard problem” of how to explain consciousness.  Science can explain how our brains perceive sensations like pain, but not why we feel emotions like sadness.  How do we explain our consciousness? Why are humans different from a monkey or a machine?  The play’s protagonist, […]

Lumina Studio’s adapted LEAR (review)

Lumina Studio Theatre packs LEAR with high-concept projections and mute scenes, but does best when they give their actors room to play. Director/Assistant Director David Minton’s adaptation begins with a wordless scene wherein Lear (John O’Connor) trades a duck mask with a mysterious figure with a shopping cart to get a crown. This figure returns wearing […]

Mack, Beth at Keegan Theatre (review)

Yes, yes, I know; the family that slays together stays together. But why is it that of all the astonishing plays in Will Shakespeare’s oeuvre, it is this story of a homicidal Scottish King that gets reimagined the most frequently?

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