One great thing about theater is that it is iterative, constantly being forged and reforged so it has immediate relevance to our social realities and problems. Major Barbara from Pallas Theatre Collective, a slight redux of George Bernard Shaw’s classic, aims to do just that by setting the play in DC during the 1930’s Bonus […]
Taffety Punk’s Hamlet, the First Quarto is the Bard’s masterwork as you’ve never seen it before. At least probably. The Punks’ new production grows from their experimental Bootleg series (which is a treat; held every year at the Folger Theatre), where they performed the first quarto of Hamlet (hence Q1), sometimes called the “bad quarto,” […]
How epic is the source material for The Fire and The Rain, the newest North American premiere of South Asian drama at Constellation Theater? Literally, the most epic.
Whenever I’m developing a new play and the playwright (or director or cast) gets stuck on figuring out a particular moment, I tell them this: a play is called a play for a reason. You’re supposed to have fun with it, fool around, try new things, and basically act like a child at recess for […]
Last fall, when American Theatre Magazine published their annual list of “American Theatre’s Top 10 Most-Produced Plays Of 2014-15,” one play ruled them all: Christopher Durang’s Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. While the magazine’s numbers are problematic,* Durang’s Vanya has hard-to-deny accolades, like a 2013 Best Play Tony, a mythical recouping of expenses […]
The drive to Frederick was long, but the destination was worth it. Not just because Frederick may be the most adorable town in driving distance of DC, but also because that town is home to Maryland Ensemble Theater and their go-to sound guy Steve Younkins.
Would you go to prison for a play, to defend what that play said about the world? What would that play look like? You can see for yourself at MetroStage in Alexandria, with Athol Fugard’s The Island, a part of the explosive canon of theater protesting South African apartheid in the ‘60’s, ‘70’s, and ‘80’s.
What object best represents Man of La Mancha, the newly opened musical at Shakespeare Theater Company? Maybe a stylish and well-fitting pair of jeans with rivets on the seams. Perhaps a classic Chrysler LeBaron with shiny wheel spokes and smooth pseudo-wood panel on the side. Or Man of La Mancha could be a fine bottle […]
History’s habit of repeating itself comes with a twist in Freedom’s Song: Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War, now playing at Ford’s Theater. The play is essentially a museum piece made of a series of songs set in the Civil War that are mashed up with the words of Abraham Lincoln and the vocal talent […]
Hip-hop is always hungry. Like the katamari of video game fame or the doubly insatiable hippos of the childhood tabletop game, hip-hop music and culture has absorbed (and remixed and made it’s own) every genre that it touches. From when it was born on the streets of New York City in the 1970’s, hip-hop has […]