Metro Weekly

Stage: Fall Arts Preview 2014

Plays and musicals at DC, Maryland and Virginia theatres

Photo by Todd Franson

Photography by Todd Franson

All of Washington’s a stage. Has a nice ring to it, no? But in fact, D.C. theater continues to grow and thrive, as several of our veteran stages achieve milestone anniversary seasons — 25 years for Signature, 35 years for Woolly Mammoth, and a whopping 65 years for Arena Stage. But with growth also comes a loss, as American Century Theatre will shut its doors after this, its 20th year. We guess there just aren’t enough older plays to go around.

ADVENTURE THEATRE MTC

7300 MacArthur Blvd.
Glen Echo, Md.
301-634-2270
adventuretheatre-mtc.org

  • Stuart Little — A mouse born to a family of humans ventures from his home to track down his missing best friend, a bird named Margalo (9/19-10/26)
  • Tiny Tim’s Christmas Carol — Tony Award-winning Ken Ludwig and his son Jack adapt a new version of the popular Dickens classic. Directed by Jerry Whiddon (11/14-1/1/15)
  • Petit Rouge: A Cajun Riding Hood — The latest musical by Joan Cushing is based on the classic fairy tale. (1/30-3/8/15)
  • The Wonderful Wizard of Oz — A modern take on the L. Frank Baum classic, adapted by Jacqueline E. Lawton and starring Paige Hernandez(4/3-5/25/15)
  • Garfield, the Musical with Catitude — The sarcastic, tubby cat of comics fame is brought to life in a book by its creator, cartoonist Jim Davis, and Michael J. Bobbit (6/19-8/23/15)
  • Oliver! — The bittersweet Lionel Bart musical, based on the Dickens novel, about that danged porridge-demanding orphan. Directed by Joseph Ritsch and starring Felicia Curry and Rick Hammerly. More, please? (7/24-8/16/15)

AMERICAN CENTURY THEATER

Gunston Theater II
2700 South Lang St.
Arlington, Va.
703-998-4555
americancentury.org

  • The Seven Year Itch — An encore production of the George Axelrod comedy, first produced by TACT in 2002. Rip Claassen directs(9/20-10/11)
  • Crime & Punishment in America — Two plays, the first, Cops by Terry Curtis Fox, encompasing the “crime” portion of the evening and the second, Hello Out There by William Saryoan the “punishment” half (1/9-1/31/15)
  • Broadway Hit Parade — A parade of musical comedy stand-outs from TACT’s past and present(3/19-3/22/15)
  • Twelve Angry Men — In 1994, Reginald Rose’s jury drama was the very first TACT show. It will also serve as its very last (7/17-8/8/15)

ARENA STAGE

1101 6th St. SW
202-488-3300
arenastage.org

  • The Shoplifters — Alma is a career shoplifter who prefers the “five-finger discount” over senior citizen deals. Her life of petty crime is halted by an overzealous rookie security guard and his mentor. Starring Tony-nominee Jayne Houdyshell (Now to 10/19, Kreeger)
  • Fiddler on the Roof — Molly Smith directs an in-the-round production of Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick’s beloved musical, celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year (10/31-1/4/15, Fichhandler)
  • Five Guys Named Moe — A celebration of the feel-good music of Louis Jordan, whose hits included “Let the Good Times Roll.” Directed by Robert O’Hara (11/14-12/28, Kreeger)
  • Baskerville — Five actors play 25 characters in this comedic retelling of one of Sherlock Holmes’ most famous cases. A World Premiere by Ken Ludwig (Lend Me a Tenor)(1/16-2/22/15, Kreeger)
  • King Hedley II — In the ninth installment of Pulitzer Prize-winner August Wilson’s “Century Cycle,” an ex-convict has the chance to achieve an entrepreneurial dream (2/6-3/8/15, Kreeger)
  • The Originalist — Molly Smith directs this World Premiere drama by John Strand, starring Ed Gero as Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia (3/6-4/26/15, Kogod Cradle)
  • Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike — The brilliantly funny, Tony Award-winning comedy by Christopher Durang turns Chekhov on his ear. Directed by Aaron Posner (4/3-5/3/15, Fichhandler)
  • The Blood Quilt — Four disconnected sisters reunite to create a family quilt honoring their recently deceased mother in this World Premiere by Katori Hall (4/24-6/7/15, Kreeger)

CENTER STAGE

700 N. Calvert St.
Baltimore, Md.
410-332-0033
centerstage.org

  • Amadeus — An epic new revival of the Tony Award-winning drama that raises the question, how far would you go to secure your legacy? (Now to 10/12)
  • Next to Normal — Tom Kitt’s Pulitzer Prize-winning musical gets a blistering new production (10/8-11/16)
  • It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play — Be a part of the live studio audience, and join the cast and crew as they take you on a journey through the most important evening in one man’s life. Adapted by Joe Landry (11/18-12/21)
  • 4000 Miles — A grandmother and grandson bond in this Amy Herzog drama (4/1-5/24/15)
  • Marley — A World Premiere Musical based on the life and music of Bob Marley (5/6-6/14/15)

CONSTELLATION THEATRE

1835 14th St. NW
202-204-7741
constellationtheatre.org

  • Absolutely! {Perhaps} — Allison Stockman directs this comedy by absurdist playwright Luigi Pirandello (10/9-11/9)
  • The Lieutenant of Inishmore — A gruesome Irish comedy by Martin McDonagh (2/5-3/8/15)
  • The Fire and the Rain — A north American premiere (4/23-5/24/15)

FOLGER THEATRE

201 East Capitol St. SE
202-544-7077
folger.edu

  • King Lear — The Shakespeare Globe brings its touring production of one of Shakespeare’s finest tragedies (Now-9/21)
  • Julius Caesar — Political and literal backstabbing abounds just one block from the Capitol. Robert Richmond directs (10/28-12/7)
  • Mary Stuart — Friedrich Schiller’s drama unfolds as Mary, Queen of Scots awaits her fate at the hands of Queen Elizabeth I. Holly Twyford and Kate Eastwood Norris star (1/27-3/8/15)
  • Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead — Tom Stoppard’s classic directed by Aaron Posner and starring Ian Merrill Peakes (5/12-6/21/15)

FORD’S THEATRE

511 10th St. NW
202-347-4833
fordstheatre.org

  • Driving Miss Daisy — Longtime theatrical veterans Nancy Robinette and Craig Wallace take on the iconic roles of the cantankerous Miss Daisy and her chauffer Hoke in Alfred Uhry’s Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece. Directed by Jennifer Nelson (9/26-10/26)
  • A Christmas Carol — Edward Gero returns to play Scrooge in Michael Wilson’s adaptation of the Dickens classic (11/20-1/1/15)
  • The Widow Lincoln — Mary Todd Lincoln sparked more controversy than any First Lady in history, and this World Premiere by James Still, commissioned by Ford’s Theatre, and set during the weeks following Abraham Lincoln’s murder at Ford’s Theatre, should have particular dramatic resonance (1/23-2/22/15)
  • Freedom’s Song: Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War — An epic, concert-style musical featuring the words of Abraham Lincoln and music inspired by those who lived through the Civil War. Directed Jeff Calhoun (3/13-5/16/15)

FORUM THEATRE

Round House Silver Spring
8641 Coleville Road
Silver Spring, Md.
240-644-1390
forumtd.org

  • How We Got On (10/30-11/23)
  • The T Party — An immersive theatrical event written and directed by Natsu Onoda Power, celebrating gender transformation in D.C. (1/2-1/17/15 )
  • Passion Play (3/19-4/12/15)
  • The Shipment (5/21-6/14/15)

GALA HISPANIC THEATRE

3333 14th St. NW
202-234-7174
galatheatre.org

  • Cancun — Two vacationing couples reveal old secrets in this comedy about contemporary relationships by Jordi Galceran, one of Spain’s leading playwrights (Now to 10/5)
  • House of Desires — A wild tale of confusion and mistaken identities, directed by Hugo Medrano (2/5-3/1/15)
  • Mariela in the Desert — A look at what happens to a family when creativity is forced to dry and wither away by Karen Zacarías. Directed by Abel Lopez (4/16-5/10/15)
  • Las Polacas: The Polish Girls of Buenos Aires — The dreams, losses, and struggles of Polish-Jewish women who were lured into prostitution in Argentina by an international slave trading organization in the early 1900s. By Patricia Suárez Cohen, with music by Mariano Vales (6/4-6/28/15)

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KENNEDY CENTER

202-467-4600
kennedy-center.org

  • Evita — Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Tony Award–winning musical tells Eva Peron’s passionate and unforgettable true story, and features some of theater’s most memorable songs, including “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina” and “Another Suitcase in Another Hall.” Directed by Michael Grandage and choreographed by Rob Ashford (9/30-10/19, Opera House)
Evita!

Evita!

  • Little Dancer — This world premiere Kennedy Center-commissioned musical is inspired by the story of Marie van Goethem, a young ballerina who posed for Edgar Degas and became, inadvertently, the most famous dancer in the world. Starring Boyd Gaines as Degas, Rebecca Luker as adult Marie, and New York City Ballet Principal Dancer Tiler Peck as young Marie. With book and lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, music by composer Stephen Flaherty and choreography by Susan Stroman (10/25-11/30, Eisenhower)
  • Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat — Husband-and-wife duo Diana DeGarmo and Ace Young star in this revival of the Andrew Lloyd Webber-Tim Rice classic that takes a page out of the bible and makes it rock (12/15-1/4/15, Opera House)
  • The Illusionists — Direct from Broadway, this spectacle of magic features seven world-class magicians performing mind-blowing illusions (1/6-1/11/15, Opera House)
  • Gigi — Eric Schaeffer directs a new World Premiere production of Lerner and Loewe’s Oscar and Tony-winning musical comedy, set in turn-of-the-century Paris (1/16-2/12/15, Eisenhower)
  • The Book of Mormon — The hit musical from the creators of South Park makes another pass, for a solid two-month run. With a run that long, they may need a coffee or two (6/16-8/16/15, Opera House)
  • Once — Winner of eight 2012 Tony Awards including Best Musical, Once features an ensemble of actor/musicians who play their own instruments onstage, and tells the enchanting tale of a Dublin street musician who’s about to give up when a beautiful young woman takes a sudden interest in his haunting love songs (7/7-8/16/15, Eisenhower)

METRO STAGE

1201 North Royal St.
Alexandria, Va.
703-548-9044
metrostage.org

  • Three Sistahs — Written and directed by Metro Stage go-to Thomas W. Jones II, this musical tapestry of gospel, rhythm and blues, funk, and folk music is inspired by the Chekhov play (9/17-11/2)
  • A Broadway Christmas Carol — Michael Sharp returns to direct Kathy Feininger’s cross between the Dickens classic and parodies of 33 classic show tunes (11/26-12/28)
  • Bessie’s Blues — The legacy of the blues told through the eyes and lens of Bessie Smith, “Empress of the Blues.” Written and directed by Thomas W. Jones II, this is the 20th Anniversary of the show, first produced by Studio Theatre (1/21-3/15/15)
  • The Island — Athol Fugard’s two character, South African drama, first produced at Metro Stage in 1991 (4/1-4/26/15)
  • The Letters — John Vreeke directs this tense psychological game of cat and mouse, set in an office in the Soviet Union in the 1930s (5/6-6/7/15)

NATIONAL THEATRE

1321 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
202-628-6161
nationaltheatre.org

  • Donnie & Marie: Christmas at the National — For those of you who yearn to become diabetic (12/2-12/7)
  • Pippin — The smash Broadway revival with a stunning pop score by Stephen Schwartz (12/16-1/4/15)
  • Chicago: The Musical — Who doesn’t love a return to the Windy City? (2/10-2/15/15)
  • Dame Edna: The Final Farewell Tour — So long as it’s fond (4/21-4/26/15)
  • Disney’s Newsies — A band of underdogs who become unlikely heroes when they stand up to the most powerful men in New York. Score by Alan Menken and Jack Feldman, book by Harvey Fierstein (6/9-6/21/15)

OLNEY THEATRE CENTER

2001 Olney-Sandy Spring Road
Olney, Md.
301-924-3400
olneytheatre.org

  • Colossal — Structured like a football game (performed in four quarters with a pre-show training session and half-time show), Andrew Hinderaker’s play tells the story of an injured college football player, paralyzed from the waist down (Now-9/28, Theatre Lab)
  • Awake and Sing! — A Jewish family in the Bronx tries to make ends meet in this Clifford Odets classic (9/24-10/19, Mainstage)
  • Disney’s The Little Mermaid — The Menken-Ashman musical based on the animated film (11/12-12/28, Mainstage)
  • Godspell — The Stephen Schwartz hit musical tells the story of Jesus Christ in hip, ’70s terms (2/4-3/1/15)
  • Grounded — An ace fighter pilot is reassigned to operating drones from a windowless trailer in the desert outside Las Vegas (2/25-3/22/15, Theatre Lab)
  • Carousel — The Rodgers and Hammerstein classic about a carnival barker who attempts to set things right in his life (4/15-5/10/15, Mainstage)
  • The Price — In this Arthur Miller classic, two estranged brothers reunite to dispose of their late father’s belongings (5/13-6/21/15, Theatre Lab)
  • The Producers — The zany Mel Brooks musical, based on the zany Mel Brooks film (6/24-7/26/15, Mainstage)

REP STAGE

10901 Little Patuxent Parkway
Columbia, Md.
443-518-1500
repstage.org

  • Venus in Fur — A battle of the sexes between a playwright and an auditioning actress. Directed by Joseph Ritsch (10/1-10/19)
  • The Whale — A morbidly obese man longs to reconnect with his estranged daughter. Directed by Kasi Campbell (1/14-2/1/15)
  • The Circle Mirror Transformation — A group of small town residents enrolled in a community center drama class experiment with seemingly harmless theater games, to emotionally disastrous results (3/4-3/22/15)
  • Sunset Baby — In Dominique Morriseau’s drama, a former black revolutionary and political prisoner decides to reunite with his daughter and discovers that fatherhood is the most challenging revolution of all. Directed by Joseph Ritsch (4/29-5/17/15)

ROUND HOUSE THEATRE

4545 East-West Highway
Bethesda, Md.
240-644-1100
roundhousetheatre.org

  • Fool for Love — From Sam Shepard, one of America’s most renowned playwrights, comes an explosive tale of love, hate, and the dying myths of the Old West. The cast includes Marty Lodge in his 40th Round House production (Now-9/27)
  • Fetch Clay, Make Man — Will Power’s drama is based on the unlikely friendship between boxer Muhammad Ali and controversial Hollywood star Stepin Fetchit. With Eddie Ray Jackson and Roscoe Orman (10/10-11/2)
  • The Nutcracker — A new musical based on the famous story by E.T.A. Hoffman. Directed by Joe Calarco (11/26-12/28)
  • Rapture, Blister, Burn — Gina Gionfriddo’s comedy takes a sharp, unflinching look at 21st century gender politics (1/28-2/22/15)
  • Uncle Vanya — A new version of Chekhov’s classic adapted by Annie Baker and directed by John Vreeke (4/8-5/3/15)
  • NSFW — From noted playwright Lucy Kirkwood hails a trenchant, provocative comedy about how magazines objectify women (5/27-6/21/15)

SHAKESPEARE THEATRE COMPANY

Harman Center for the Arts
610 F St. NW
Lansburgh Theatre
450 7th St. NW
202-547-1122
shakespearetheatre.org

  • As You Like It — Frothy Shakespearean comedy, complete with a girl disguised as a boy, directed by the internationally acclaimed Shakespearean director Michael Attenborough (10/28-12/7, Lansburgh)
  • The Tempest — One of Shakespeare’s late masterpieces, a magical tale in which sprites, goddesses and fools hold court. Directed by Ethan McSweeney (12/2-1/11/15, Harman Hall)
  • The Metromaniacs — Alexis Piron’s classic 1738 French farce, in a new adaptation by David Ives. Directed by Michael Kahn (2/3-3/8/15, Lansburgh)
  • Dunsinane — David Greig’s dramatic sequel to Shakespeare’s Macbeth, presented by the National Theatre of Scotland and Royal Shakespeare Company (2/2-2/21/15, Harman Hall)
  • Man of LaMancha — As Miguel de Cervantes presents his tale of knight errant Don Quixote, his journey comes alive in a play-within-the-play in this timeless musical (3/17-4/26/15, Harman Hall)
  • Tartuffe — Dominique Serrand directs Moliere’s classic (6/2-7/5/15, Harman Hall)

SIGNATURE THEATRE

4200 Campbell Ave.
Arlington, Va.
703-820-9771
signature-theatre.org

  • Sunday in the Park with George — Sondheim in ethereal, introspective mode (Now to 9/21, Max)
  • Elmer Gantry — Charismatic, broke salesman Elmer Gantry stumbles upon a struggling religious tour, led by pious evangelist Sister Sharon Falconer in this timeless musical. Directed by Eric Schaeffer (10/7-11/9, Max)
  • Sex with Strangers — Holly Twyford stars in this play about a one-night stand in a secluded cabin. Directed by Aaron Posner (10/14-12/7, Ark)
  • Diner — A new musical by Barry Levinson, based on his classic ’80s movie and featuring music and lyrics by Sheryl Crow. Directed by Kathleen Marshall (12/9-1/25/15, Max)
  • Kid Victory — A World Premiere musical by John Kander and Greg Pierce about a 17-year-old boy who returns home after vanishing for a year (2/17-3/22/15, Max)
  • Soon — Matthew Gardiner directs this World Premiere musical by Nick Blaemire (3/10-4/26/15, Ark)
  • Simply Sondheim — An original tribute celebrating Stephen Sondheim and Signature Theatre’s special partnership over the last 25 years, directed by Eric Schaeffer (4/2-4/19/15)
  • Cabaret — Matthew Gardiner directs one of Broadway’s most electrifying treasures, featuring Wesley Taylor as the Emcee (5/12-6/28/15, Max)

STUDIO THEATRE

1501 14th St. NW
202-332-3300
studiotheatre.org

  • Belleville — Amy Herzog’s play unmasks the seemingly perfect marriage and Parisian life of expats Abby and Zack. Directed by David Muse (Now to 10/12)
  • Bad Jews — Serge Seiden directs Joshua Harmon’s savage comedy about family, faith, and identity politics as three cousins battle over a family heirloom (11/05-12/21)
  • Terminus — Irish playwright Mark O’Rowe’s compelling and experimental drama (12/10-1/4/15, 2ndstage)
  • Choir Boy — A music-filled coming of age story set in the gospel choir of an elite prep school for young black men (1/7-2/22/15)
  • Laugh — A World Premiere of Beth Henley’s newest play, a slapstick comedy of mishaps and moxie (3/11-4/19/15)
  • Jumpers for Goalposts — Set in a Yorkshire fishing city, Tom Wells’ play about romance, resilience, taking chances, and moving on makes its stateside debut (5/13-6/21/15)
  • Mary-Kate Olsen is in Love — Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are Grace’s only friends, and she’s just market research for them in this comedy directed by Holly Twyford (6/3-6/21/15, 2ndstage)
  • Silence! The Musical — A musical spoof based on the 1991 Oscar-winning thriller, The Silence of the Lambs (7/15-8/9/15, 2ndStage)

SYNETIC THEATER

Crystal City
Arlington, Va.
800-494-8497
synetictheater.org

  • The Island of Dr. Moreau — Paata Tsikurishvili directs and stars as the title character (10/1-11/2)
  • Beauty and the Beast — A primarily movement-based telling of the famous story (12/3-1/4/15)
  • Much Ado About Nothing — More “wordless” Shakespeare (2/11-3/15/15)
  • Hunting Cockroaches (5/13-6/14/15)

THEATRE J

1529 16th St. NW
800-494-8497
theaterj.org

  • Yentl — The Isaac Bashevis Singer classic with new music and lyrics by Jill Sobule (Now to 10/5)
  • The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Capitalism and Socialism with a Key to the Scriptures — When retired longshoreman and lifelong Communist Gus summons his three adult children to their Brooklyn home to explain why he’s selling the family brownstone and ending his life, things don’t go exactly as planned. Written by Tony Kushner. Directed by John Vreeke (11/13-12/21)
  • Life Sucks (or The Present Ridiculous) — A World Premiere written and directed by Aaron Posner and based on Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya (1/14-2/15/15)
  • G-d’s Honest Truth — Rene Calarco’s comedy asks how far we would go to believe a story that’s too good to be true (3/18-4/19/15)
  • The Call — When Annie and Peter decide to adopt, they set their sights on a child from Africa in this drama directed by Jennifer Nelson (5/6-5/31/15, Atlas)
  • The Tale of the Allergist’s Wife — Charles Busch’s raucous comedy (6/3-7/5/15)

WASHINGTON IMPROV THEATER

Source
1835 14th St. NW
202-204-7770
washingtonimprovtheater.com

  • District Improv Festival — Several dozen troupes from around the country will participate in this improv festival (9/24-28)
  • Harold Night — Each Tuesday is a demonstration and experimentation in the world-famous long form technique, Harold (every Tuesday night)

WOOLLY MAMMOTH

641 D St. NW
202-393-3939
woollymammoth.net

  • Marie Antoinette — Cake enthusiast and infamous one-percenter opens Woolly’s 35th season with a burst of high fashion and shaky morals (9/15-10/12)
  • Famous Puppet Death Scenes — Curated and narrated by puppet Nathan Tweak, this Canadian import is a collection of 22 infamous and theatrical end-of-life sequences, spanning a vast array of styles and genres (12/9-1/4/15)
  • Cherokee — Two couples, one black, one white, flee their suburban pressures and re-connect with nature by going camping in Cherokee, North Carolina in Lisa D’Amour’s newest comedy (2/9-3/8/15)
  • Light Rises on Grace — Chad Beckim’s play is an examination of race, sexuality, and family as unconventional as the relationships it depicts (3/30-4/26/15)
  • Zombie: The American — Howard Shalwitz directs Robert O’Hara’s warped sci-fi thriller about a zombie attack in 2063. Featuring the first openly gay President of the United States!(5/25-6/21/15)

For more Fall Arts Preview, including Music, Film, Museums, Dance and TV, please click here.

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  • Family
  • Lectures & Classes

Develop creative writing and performance skills while discovering your inner comedic genius! Walt Frasier and his team at EIGHT IS NEVER ENOUGH bring their popular Times Square program online to the e... Read more

"Partners": A World Premiere Play — Streaming Online

Box Cast Live Stream,
Thursday, July 16 - Sunday, August 02
  • Theater
  • Online & At Home

What does love look like in times of chaos — and what might it look like once normalcy returns? Billed as "a 21st-century love story," "Partners" is a new play by writer-director Emil Thomas about n... Read more

Ultimate Broadway Hangout: Online Event

Online Event,
Thursday, July 16 - Thursday, August 13
  • Theater
  • Online & At Home
  • Under $10

Here's a fun way to get your Broadway fix every Thursday night: Hear stories, play trivia and get all your burning questions answered live in this theater-lovers' hangout hosted by "Be More Chill" sta... Read more

Broadway Comedy Club NYC Presents Interactive Improv Comedy Online

Zoom Stream,
Thursday, July 16 - Thursday, July 30
  • Comedy
  • Online & At Home
  • Under $10

Come be a part of the show! The cast of "EIGHT IS NEVER ENOUGH" present original music and sketch improvised on the spot based on audience suggestions and participation. One can watch these shows for ... Read more


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Randy Shulman is Metro Weekly's Publisher and Editor-in-Chief. He can be reached at rshulman@metroweekly.com.

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