Arena Stage will present Gretchen Law’s Turn Me Loose – a play about comic genius Dick Gregory – in the Kreeger Theatre September 6-October 14. Directed by John Gould Rubin, the drama chronicles Dick Gregory’s rise as “the first Black comedian to expose audiences to racial comedy."
Anacostia Playhouse in Southeast DC is presenting Happy Endings, written by Douglas Turner Ward & directed by Ella Davis, thru August 25.It's "the hilarious story of the plight of two African American domestics, sisters Ellie and Vi, whose white employers' divorce threatens to cut off the household graft which has brought considerable luxury to their lives."
Theater Alliance, which is the resident company of Anacostia Playhouse, 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.”
Mosaic Theatre will present 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.”
Folger Theatre will present William Shakespeare's Macbeth, directed by Robert Richmond as adapted and amended by Sir William Davenant, with music performed by the Folger Consort - September 4-23.Davenant’s Restoration-era adaptation delighted audiences for most of the 18th-century. The special engagement will feature Helen Hayes Award-winners Kate Eastwoord Norris and Merrill Peakes
Images below:Kate Eastwood Norris & Ian Merrill Peakes.
The Folger Theatre will present William Shakespeare’s King John, directed by Aaron Posner, October 23-December 2. The play is about the epic struggle of John, who assumed the throne of England after the death of his older brother, King Richard the Lionheart. John’s battles with the King of France, who challenged John’s claim to the throne, is at the heart of a tale of ambition, politics, corruption, and murder. Kate Eastwood Norris will portray Philip the Bastard and Holly Twyford will play Constance, Arthur’s tragic mother.
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.
Images below: Illustrations by Mauricio Reyes for Como agua para Chocolate (Like Water for Chocolate)
Keegan Theatre is presenting the musical titled The Bridges of Madison County, directed and choreographed by Kurt Boehm, thru 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 stars Susan Derry & Dan Felton.
Image below: The poster for The Bridges of Madison County
Keegan Theatre will present John Strand's play titled Lincolnesque, directed by Colin Smith, September 22-October 14.Set in DC, it’s the story of a speechwriter who is in the final month of the campaign of an endangered mediocre Congressman. The writer's brother is a psychiatric outpatient recently released from St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, despite having a powerful delusion that he is Abraham Lincoln. The speechwriter turns to his brother for help writing “lincolnesque” speeches. Lincolnesque received its regional premiere at Keegan in 2009.
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 is presenting the musical The Color Purple, directed by Tony® winner John Doyle, in the Eisenhower Theater, thru 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.
Theater J will present The Pianist of Willesden Lane in The Kennedy Center Family Theater, September 12-30.The settings are Vienna in 1938 and London during the Blitzkrieg. The solo production uses “tour-de-force storytelling and extraordinary live piano music to tell the true and inspiring story of Lisa Jura, a young Jewish pianist whose dream of making her concert debut at the storied Musikverein Concert Hall is dashed by the onset of World War II.” The role of Lisa Jura is performed by Jura’s daughter, Grammy®-nominated pianist Mona Golabek, and combines storytelling with live performances by Golabek of works by Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Rachmaninoff, and more.
Image below: Illustration for The Pianist of Willesden Lane
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 are now on sale 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 National Theatre now has tickets available for Beautiful - The Carole King Musical.The Tony® and Grammy® Award-winning Broadway smash hit will be on stage November 27-December 30. Beautiful "tells the inspiring true story of King’s remarkable rise to stardom, from being part of a hit songwriting team with her husband Gerry Goffin, to her relationship with fellow writers and best friends Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann, to becoming one of the most successful solo acts in popular music history. "Along the way, she made more than beautiful music, she wrote the soundtrack to a generation."
Image below:SarahBockel as Carole King.Photo by Matthew Murphy
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.
The Shakespeare Theatre Company (STC) will present The Comedy of Errors, directed by Associate Artistic Director Alan Paul, at Sidney Harmon Hall, September 25-October 28.Shakespeare’s play about two sets of twins, each with the same name, will star STC performers. They will bring “the madcap world of The Comedy of Errors to life in all its antic, anarchic glory.”
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. debates whether to sell their real estate on 14th Street.
Washington Stage Guild will present Arlitia Jones’s play titled Summerland, September 27–October 21.The play, which is based on a true story, tells the mysterious tale of William H. Mumler, a spirit photographer with a talent for capturing haunting images from the world beyond the veil. At the time of the story, The Civil War had ended, and a grieving nation saw many turning to spiritualism to contact the dead. Mumler's business boomed as mourners, including a very famous one, flocked to his studio. Meanwhile, a city official made it his mission to prove that spiritualism is a fraud, "but found that harder than he'd hoped.” The company performs at The Undercroft Theatre which is on the ground (street) level of the Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church in downtown D.C.
Image below: The logo for Summerland - Image Design: Robert Sacheli
Woolly Mammoth (WM) will present Gloria, a play written byBranden Jacobs-Jenkins & directed by Kip Fagan, September 3-30.The play is about “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.”