Billie Holiday died in 1959, but memories of her remain in Lanie Robertson’s Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill, now at Rep Stage in Columbia, Md. Her voice has influenced American music for decades, but nobody, no matter how good, can ever really recapture the sheer cussed essence of the original woman.
Watching Rep Stage’s luminous production of The Heidi Chronicles as a spinster of a certain age, you don’t know whether to belt out “Mirror, Mirror” from Stephen Sondheim’s musical Follies or simply smile through tears like many of your fellow baby boomers in the audience.
We’re lucky to be living where we do. Opportunities abound to see exciting new work, shows in development and emerging major talent. All three fortunes converge in Rep Stage’s stirring, sequined world premiere musical, Dorian’s Closet, which delves into the marginalized lives of drag queens in ‘80s and ‘90s New York with substance and flamboyance.
Dorian’s Closet is a musical about the life of the drag performer Dorian Corey, mainstay of the Harlem ball scene and “Mother” of the House of Corey. She died in 1993, just a few years after the documentary Paris Is Burning (the definitive exploration of ball culture) had given her heightened exposure.
The devil need not be a red-skinned gent with a forked tail. He could be Jake Abadjian (Robbie Gay), a gorgeous and charismatic Hollywood star of the blockbuster Dawnwalker movies, playing an action hero who never speaks.
As this year closes, perhaps you, like we, are thinking back over your own year spent watching the various riches spread before us by Washington area theatres. I asked our staff for their most vivid memories. We hope you will share your own as comments for us all to savor.
Fast food, even with artisan bread, is a dead-end job for most people. Low hourly pay, part-time hours to exempt the “sandwich artists” from getting any benefits and brutal expectations—ever try to make and wrap a sandwich in under 20 seconds?—what a way to make a living, or more accurately, non-living.
How fitting in this season of remembrance to see a play about the nature of memory. Sharr White’s The Other Place, currently receiving a haunting, heartbreaking production under the intelligent direction of Joseph W. Ritsch, is a play about the reliability of memories, and what truth and what we may have blurred and reshaped to […]
If you’re like me, you’ve already done your Christmas shopping, filled out your budget for the next fiscal year, and made arrangements for your final repose after The Event Which Awaits Us All occurs. Now it’s time for something much more difficult: planning your theater season.
Have you ever mocked how TV characters of modest means live in apartments way beyond their means (e.g., NBC’s Friends)? Rep Stage has a play for you. The regional premiere of Brooke Berman’s clever Hunting and Gathering features young New Yorkers facing the challenges of transience in a difficult real estate market and an equally […]