Arena Stage is presenting Jeanne Sakata’s play Hold These Truths, directed by Jessica Kubzansky, in the Arlene & Robert Kogod Cradle, thru April 8. The play is set in the period after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, when America placed its own citizens of Japanese ancestry in internment camps. The plot is based on “the true story of Gordon Hirabayashi, the American son of Japanese immigrants who defied an unjust court order to uphold the values on which America was founded.”
Arena Stage & Seattle Repertory Theatre will present August Wilson’s playTwo Trains Running, directed by Juliette Carrillo, March 30-April 29.The play is set in in Pittsburgh’s Hill District in 1969 during the Civil Rights Movement. A diner at the center of the community is about to be demolished as part of the city’s renovation project.The play addresses how the diner’s owner and his regular customers “struggle to maintain their solidarity and sense of pride.”
Image below:The illustration for Two Trains Running is by Tim Obrien.
Arena Stage will present the world premiere of The Snow Child, based on the novel by Eowyn Ivey & directed by Molly Smith, in the Kreeger Theater, April 13-May 20. The novel was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. The musical features a score “that combines Alaskan backcountry string-band traditions and contemporary musical theater.” The setting is the Alaskan wilderness as a couple tries to save their marriage after their loss of an unborn child. “But everything changes suddenly when they are visited by a wild, mysterious girl.”
Image: Illustration for The Snow Child by Bill C. Ray
The Atlas Performing Arts Center
The Annual Atlas Intersections Festivalis in progress at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, thru March 22.All five of Atlas performance spaces are alive with world premieres and innovative collaborations among artists of all ages, races, cultures, communities, and art forms. To read more about the festival, visit http://www.atlasarts.org/intersections
Scena Theatre is presenting Three by Beckett, written by Samuel Beckett & directed by Robert McNamara at Atlas Performing Arts Center, Lab 1, thru April 8. The three short plays to be produced are Footfalls, Not I and Rockaby. A “master of minimalism and theatre of the absurd,” Beckett’s plays “explore the nature of life in a complicated world and our place in the grander universe.” The series feature “renowned DC-area actors including acclaimed actress & Helen Hayes Award-winner, Nanna Ingvarsson.”
Rorschach Theatre will present Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig’s play 410[GONE], directed by Gregory Keng Strasser, at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, March 23-April 15.The work has been called “a dark and dazzling play about the afterlife as it explores identity, love, loss and what it takes to forge a new path.” Frances Ya-Chu Cowhig wrote the play in 2009 in the wake of her own brother’s suicide.Her play tells about a young Chinese-American boy who enters the Land of the Dead where the Goddess of Mercy plays the arcade sensation Dance Dance Revolutionto transmogrify souls into their next life. Meanwhile, the young man’s sister haunts the land of the living searching for a way to bring back her lost brother.” The cast includes company members Yasmin Tuazon and Linda Bard, as well as Sebastian Amoruso, Andrew Quilpa and Jacob Yeh.
Mosaic Theatre will present the American premiere of the musical Paper Dolls, written by Philip Himberg & directed by Mark Brokaw, at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, March 29-April 22.The show is based on a film by Tomer Heymann about five Filipino guest workers in Tel Aviv. The workers care for elderly Orthodox men by day - and headline a drag show by night. The karaoke musical is about "the challenges that migrant workers face while yearning for citizenship.”
Urban Arias will present Florida, with music by Randall Eng & libretto by Donna Di Novelli at the Atlas Performing Arts Center on April 7 & 8 and April 13 & 14.The musical “examines how different people foster, embrace, and rebel against the claustrophobia of contemporary American society, and illustrates the complexities and corruption of our legal system through a tour-de-force of rhythmic delight and vocal virtuosity. By looking at one girl, in one summer, Florida brings to light how teenage girls in general become suspect due to their sexuality.” An audience talk-back will follow each performance.The presenter offers a Parental Advisory: Florida contains mature references, and may not be suitable for young children.
Scena Theatre will present George Orwell’s 1984, directed by Robert McNamara, at Atlas Performing Arts Center, April 23-May 27.It’s the classic story of a man who “must survive in a fascist society controlled by a legion of henchmen and their intimidating leader, “Big Brother.” In 1984, the country is in a state of perpetual war where “Stalin-like purges from society are a daily reality—unless you conform to the accepted modes of speech, behavior and allegiance.”
Folger Theatre will present Bedlam theatre company’s production of George Bernard Shaw's Saint Joan, directed by Erik Tucker, May 12-June 3. Four actors will perform over twenty-five roles in Bedlam’s “riveting, stripped-down production about the martyred heroine of France.
Folger Theatre is presenting William Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale, directed by Aaron Posner, thru April 22.The tale of jealousy, prophecy, and redemption “celebrates the magic of story-telling and the power of forgiveness as it transports us from Sicilia to Bohemia and safely home once more.”
Image below: Katie deBuys as Hermione in a scene from The Winter's Tale - Photo by James Kegley.
Ford’s Theatre is presenting the Tony-winning musical The Wiz, thru May 12.The adaptation of L. Frank Baum’s novel about Dorothy’s trip down the road to Oz features her friends Scarecrow, Tinman and Lion - on their quest to meet The Wiz. On the way, Dorothy meets “Munchkins, flying monkeys and a power-hungry witch named Evillene, who vows to destroy them.” The lively score includes soul, gospel, R&B and pop.
Image below: Christopher Michael Richardson (Lion), Ines Nassara (Dorothy), Hasani Allen (Scarecrow), Kevin McAllister (Tinman) in the Ford’s Theatre production of “The Wiz,” directed by Kent Gash. Photo by Carol Rosegg.
Keegan Theatre has extended the run of the award-winning musical Chicago, with music by Kander & Ebb and the classic staging created by Bob Fosse, thru April 14 - and has added Wednesday performances.The satire is set in Chicago in the roaring twenties, as two murderesses join forces in jail in pursuit of the American Dream…..fame, fortune & acquittal.
Image below: Maria Rizzo & the cast of Chicago - Photo by Cameron Whitman
The Kennedy Center will present semi-staged performances of Broadway Center Stage:In the Heights in the Eisenhower Theater March 21-25. Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Tony®-winning first Broadway musical is about a community on the brink of change in New York’s Washington Heights neighborhood.
The Improvised Shakespeare Company will perform an evening of off-the-cuff comedy in the Family Theater, April 5-8. The Chicago-based ensemble “creates a fully improvised Shakespearean masterpiece right before your eyes, based on a single audience member's suggestion for the title of a show that's never been written before... until now.”
The Royal Shakespeare Company will bring the North American premiere of its contemporary take on the Bard's Hamlet to the Eisenhower Theater May 2-6.The tragedy of murder and revenge, directed by Simon Godwin, had an acclaimed run in the UK in 2016. Godwin envisions Hamlet's Denmark as a state in west Africa and stars Paapa Essiedu in the title role.
Image below:Paapa Essiedu
The Kennedy Center will present Artes de Cuba: From the Island to the World, a festival celebrating the artistic richness of Cuba, for two weeks this Spring.The unprecedented event will feature some of Cuba's finest artists and leading Cuban American creators.The performances will include:
The Opening Night Performance, featuring Festival Highlights in the Eisenhower Theater on May 8.The performance will include “Diva of Buena Vista Social Club”Omara Portuondo, pianist Rolando Luna, Havana Lyceum Orchestra, jazz composer/pianist Aldo López-Gavilán, composer/musician Yosvany Terry, Orchestra Miguel Faílde, and more.
Image below:Omara Portuondo
Teatro El Público will perform The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant, directed by Carlos Diaz, in the Family Theater on May 16 & 17.Díaz is one of Latin America’s most well-known theater directors, and he will bring “his uniquely post-modernist Cuban sensibility to this award-winning production of Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s work, in which the three main female characters are all played by male actors.” The play will be performed in Spanish with English titles.
Image below:A scene from the Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant.
Argos Teatro will present 10 Million in the Family Theater on May 19 & 20. The play is an autobiographical theater piece written by Argos Teatro’s multi-award-winning founder Carlos Celdrán. The play “depicts his experience as a child and adolescent in Cuba, navigating his relationship with his parents, his links with history, and the tumultuous events that shaped his life.” The play will feature Caleb Casas, Daniel Romero, Maridelmis Marín& Waldo Franco. The production will be performed in Spanish with English titles.
Image below: A scene from 10 Million.
Comedy performances will continue in the Concert Hall with performances on:
April 9: David Sedaris, the award-winning humor writer and master of satire.
April 20: Tracy Morgan of 30 Rock and Saturday Night Live
The National Archives
The National Archives & Bright Star Touring Theater will present a play titled We Can Do It! American Women in Historyon April 14.The play is “an inspiring exploration of the lives and work of notable American women!From Amelia Earhart and Laura Ingalls Wilder to Sacajawea and Susan B. Anthony.” Families are invited to join in as the play “celebrates the courageous, confident women who have helped shape our country." A discussion with the actors will follow the program.”
The National Theatre will present two performances of Let it Be: A Celebration of the Music of the Beatles on April 14.The concerts will feature the Beatles’ biggest hits. The first half of each theatrical performance will feature “favorites from their career, & the all-new second half will imagine a world in which the Beatles re-united.”
The National Theatre will present the Broadway musical hit WAITRESS, directed by Diane Paulus, May 15-June 3. The show, which was inspired by Adrienne Shelly’s film, features original music and lyrics by 6-time Grammy® nominee Sara Bareillesa. It’s the story of a waitress and expert pie maker, played by Desi Oakley, who dreams of a way out of her small town and loveless marriage. It’s “an uplifting musical celebrating friendship, motherhood, and the magic of a well-made pie.” The show is recommended for ages 13+.
Shakespeare Theatre Company will present Potted Potter, written and performed by Daniel Clarkson and Jefferson Turner, in Sidney Harman Hall, April 3-15.The show condenses all seven Harry Potter books (and a real life game of Quidditch) into “seventy hilarious minutes. This fantastically funny show features all your favorite characters, a special appearance from a fire-breathing dragon, endless costumes, brilliant songs, ridiculous props and a generous helping of Hogwarts magic!”
The Shakespeare Theatre Company will present Druid’s production of Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, directed by Garry Hynes, at the Lansburgh Theatre, April 17-May 20.In Beckett’s “absurd, anarchic exploration of time, life is vaudeville and tragedy, philosophy and confusion, teetering on the edge of despair, but tuned with Beckett’s unique blend of poetry and humor.”
Studio Theatre will present Brian Friel’s play titled Translations, directed by Belfast-born Matt Torney, March 21-April 22.The Irish master playwright set his play in 1833 in rural County Donegal. “While a hodgepodge group gather at an Irish-language hedge school to study classics of Greek and Latin literature, British army engineers arrive to map the country, draw new borders, and translate local place names into the King’s English.”
Theater J will present Karen Hartman’s play Roz and Ray, directed by Adam Immerwahr, April 3-29.The medical drama is about a doctor at the onset of the AIDS crisis in the 1980s. “Dr. Roz Kagan offers a new miracle drug to save Ray Leon’s hemophiliac twins. But miracles aren’t always what they appear to be, and life on the cutting edge of biomedicine means moral ambiguity and impossible choices.”
Washington Stage Guild will present the area premiere of Kenneth Jones’s play titled Alabama Story, March 22-April 15.The story takes place in segregation-era Alabama, when a librarian purchases a new children’s book – The Rabbits’ Wedding – for the library. The purchase of “the seemingly innocent book draws the attention of a grandstanding, intolerant state senator, who leads a crusade against the book.”The play is based on a true story from the 50s.
Woolly Mammoth Theatre will present The Ars Nova Production of Underground Railroad Game, April 4-29.The play, which was written by Jennifer Kidwell and Scott R. Sheppard with Lightning Rod Special, and directed by Taibi Magar, is about two teachers who “get shockingly down and dirty with a lesson about race, sex, and power. The quick-witted duo goes round after round on the mat of our nation’s history in an R-rated, far-reaching, and absolutely unflinching comedy.” The presenter advises that “Woolly does not offer advisories about subject matter, as sensitivities vary from person to person. If you have any questions about content, please contact our box office at 202-393-3939.”
Image below: The logo for Underground Railroad Game.