Arena Stage is presenting Dave, a world-premiere musical, with music by Tom Kitt & lyrics by Nell Benjamin, directed by Tina Landau, in the Kreeger Theater, thru August 19.The show is adapted from the Oscar-nominated Warner Bros. motion picture written by Gary Ross. The musical tells the story of a high school teacher (and presidential lookalike) who is hired by the Secret Service as a stand-in for the Commander-in-Chief. When the President “falls ill under less than “presidential” circumstances, Dave is thrust into the Oval Office to avoid a national scandal, and must find a way to gain the trust and love of the American people … and the First Lady.” Drew Gehling plays the roles of both Dave Kovic and President Bill Mitchell.
Mosaic Theatre will George Brant’s musical titled Marie and Rosetta, directed by Sandra L. Holloway and featuring Roz White as Rosetta Tharpe at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, August 23-September 30. Sister Rosetta Tharpe was “a pioneer of mid-20th-century music with a huge influence on Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jimi Hendrix, and Ray Charles. The musical is a celebration of two extraordinary Black Women as it chronicles the unlikely first rehearsal between Rosetta and the prim young, Marie Knight, to see if the potential protégée could summon the stuff to allow for a professional partnership that might topple the male stranglehold suppressing Rosetta's career. "They would embark on a tour to establish them as one of the great duos in musical history.”
The Annual Capital Fringe Festivalis in progress thru July 29. All of the participants are within several blocks of each other in the Waterfront Southwest neighborhood. The festival was started in 2006 as “a celebration of cultural democracy and art for everyone. "By embracing diversity and a spirit of independence, they create or rent a series of theatre spaces made available to participants on a first-come, first-served basis. The aim is to challenge perceptions and shake up the hierarchy, to be brave and unafraid and to serve as a launching pad for unseasoned to existing theatre artists.” The venues participating include Arena Stage, Mead Center, Saint Augustine’s Church, Christ United Church, Westminster Church & Blind Whino.
Gala Hispanic Theatre will present the U.S. premiere of Como agua para Chocolate (Like Water for Chocolate), directed by Olga Sánchez, September 6-October 7. The show is about "a young woman trapped by traditions who finds freedom in cooking so magical it inspires people to laugh, cry, and burn with desire." The production will be performed in Spanish with English surtitles.
Keegan Theatre will present the musical titled The Bridges of Madison County, directed and choreographed by Kurt Boehm, August 4-September 2. The acclaimed musical, with music by Jason Robert Brown, is based on the best-selling novel of the same name. The story has been described as “A sweeping romance about the roads we travel, the doors we open and the bridges we dare to cross.” The production will star Susan Derry & Dan Felton.
Image below: The poster for The Bridges of Madison County
The Kennedy Center is presenting The Second City's Generation Gap….or How Many Millennials does it take to teach a Baby Boomer to text Generation X in the Theater Lab, thru August 12. The company’s new work was created especially for Kennedy Center audiences. The show “finally answers one of life’s biggest questions: when exactly were the good old days?” The story line “follows three families on a satirical crash course spanning miscommunications, careers, dating, and more in a two-act, interactive new spin on the age-old battle of the ages.”
The producer notes that “This performance contains strong language and is recommended for mature audiences.”
The Kennedy Center is presenting the musical Hamiltonin the Opera House, thru September 16. Please note that www.kennedy-center.org is the ONLY authorized source for HAMILTON tickets in Washington, DC. If you purchase tickets from any other source, the Kennedy Center cannot guarantee your seats.
The Kennedy Center will present a District of Comedy Festival, July 19-21.The summer event will feature acclaimed stars and rising acts “for an all-laughs takeover of the nation’s center for the performing arts.” The comedy performances will include stars such as Jeff Foxworthy, Ophira Eisenberg, Alan Cumming & more.
The Kennedy Center will present the musical The Color Purple, directed by Tony® winner John Doyle, in the Eisenhower Theater, July 31-August 26.It's “a re-imagining of an epic story about a young woman’s journey to love and triumph in the American South.” The 2016 Tony Award® winner for Best Musical Revival on Broadway features a soul-raising score of jazz, gospel, ragtime, and blues.
Looking ahead to next season, the National Theatre will present the world premiere of the new pre-Broadway musical comedy BeetlejuiceOctober 14-November 18. Tickets will go on sale on Friday, July 13 at 10:00 AM at http://thenationaldc.org The show will be directed by two-time Tony Award nominee Alex Timbers & choreographed by Connor Gallagher. The show will feature an original score by Eddie Perfect & and a book by Scott Brown and Emmy Award nominee Anthony King.
Image below:The logo for Beetlejuice.
The Shakespeare Theatre Company
The Shakespeare Theatre Company will present Romeo & Juliet, directed by Alan Paul, in the annual Free For All at Sidney Harmon Hall, August 21-September 2. The tradition of offering free performances of a Shakespearean classic to the general public each summer started in 1991 at the Carter Barron Amphitheater. The Free For All was brought to downtown D.C. in 2009.
Studio Theatre will present Steven Levenson’s play titled If I Forget, directed by Matt Torney, September 12-October 14.The setting is July, 2000 as a modern Jewish family in Tenleytown, D.C. debate whether to sell their real estate on 14th Street.
The Synetic New Voices Series is presenting The Wonderful Wizard of Oz in the Devine Theater located in the Davis Performing Arts Center on the Georgetown University campus, rather than at the usual venue in Arlington, Virginia, thru August 12. The performance space at Synetic Theater was made temporarily unavailable due to excessive water damage from a sprinkler system/pipe malfunction. This adaptation of L. Frank Baum’s beloved tales is the premier production in Synetic’s New Voice Series.In the series, theater professionals will work together to create, choreograph, cast, and direct an original adaptation of the classic tale.
Theater Alliance, which is the resident company of Anacostia Playhouse, will present Holly Bass’s The Trans-Atlantic Time Traveling Company, July 25-29.The work tells the story of three freedwomen as they travel through the American south in the 1860s with a medicine show. The mysterious women give away their healing potions in an attempt to cure a dangerous disease that threatens to destroy future generations. A work of dance theater, the show “combines vaudeville, sampling culture and time travel to engage the audience in a conversation about what it means to be free and ways we can move towards an equitable and just society.”
Theater Alliance will present the Word Becomes Action Festival: Flipping the Script, August 30-September 9.The festival will present works that explore themes from upcoming productions, bringing together performances, readings, and workshops “to illuminate divergent perspectives on reproductive rights, gun ownership, intersectionality, and more.” Associate Artistic Director Raymond O. Caldwell has said that the goal of the Festival is to “probe the gray areas, the complexities, and the other sides of the stories we are telling. The festival starts conversations that will continue throughout the season.”
Theater Alliance will present David Greig’s drama titled The Events, directed by Colin Hovde, September 13-October 7.It's the story of a woman who is the lone survivor of a mass shooting and how she “yearns to find the compassion, understanding, and peace she needs to overcome her trauma—but thoughts and visions of the shooter haunt her every step.” The play “excavates the humanity found even in circumstances of extraordinary evil, examining the actors on both sides of an unimaginable tragedy.”
Woolly Mammoth Theatre will present The Story of the Gun, created & performed by Mike Daisey, July 31-August 5. The master storyteller will tackle America’s relationship with guns. Daisey will "throw easy answers and partisan bickering out the window, as he delves into the history of the gun and its place in our national culture, cutting through the political static with hilarious comedy, brilliant observation, and pitch-perfect timing."
Woolly Mammoth (WM) will present Gloria, a play written by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins & directed by Kip Fagan, September 3-30.The play is about “the squabbling editorial assistants at one of New York's most prestigious magazines. When an ordinary day at the office suddenly becomes a living nightmare, two survivors transform the experience into career-making stories.” Jacobs-Jenkins wrote two other plays which were staged by WM:An Octoroon (2016; remounted in 2017) and Appropriate (2013).