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BWW Review: SIMPLY SONDHEIM at Signature Theatre PhotoBWW Review: SIMPLY SONDHEIM at Signature Theatre
by Elliot Lanes - February 5, 2021

We all remember back in the day (meaning before mid-March 2020) when we would gather in a theatre, wait for the house lights to dim and hear the first notes from a live orchestra played. Since that time, theatre companies have found some very inventive ways to present plays in the new medium of streaming pandemic theatre. Presenting musicals however are always more of a challenge because of the number of people allowed in a space at any one time due to COVID-19 restrictions. Signature Theatre has solved that problem and is now presenting Simply Sondheim the first in their five show Signature Features subscription series.
BWW Review: JOY! WITH MARIA SIMPKINS AND VATO TSIKURISHVILI at Synetic Theater PhotoBWW Review: JOY! WITH MARIA SIMPKINS AND VATO TSIKURISHVILI at Synetic Theater
by Hannah Wing - October 21, 2020

Synetic's JOY! is an exploratory theater experience, which blends intimate storytelling with audience interaction.
Review Roundup: What Did Critics Think of ASSASSINS at Signature Theatre? PhotoReview Roundup: What Did Critics Think of ASSASSINS at Signature Theatre?
by Alan Henry - August 27, 2019

Sondheim's Assassins recently opened at Signature Theatre in Arlington, Virginia. The production runs through September 29, 2019 in The MAX space. Read what the critics had to say!
BWW Review: ASSASSINS at Signature Theatre PhotoBWW Review: ASSASSINS at Signature Theatre
by Elliot Lanes - August 26, 2019

Signature Theatre and Stephen Sondheim have been a winning combination in the DC theatre scene since 1991when the company presented Sweeney Todd at Gunston. In 1992 it presented the Stephen Sondheim/John Weidman collaboration known as Assassins. The show was produced again by Signature in 2006 in their garage space.
BWW Review: Creative Cauldron's ON AIR at ArtSpace Falls Church PhotoBWW Review: Creative Cauldron's ON AIR at ArtSpace Falls Church
by Hannah Wing - May 13, 2019

Creative Cauldron's On Air needs tinkering with its storyline and songs in order to broadcast its message loud and clear.
BWW Review: GRAND HOTEL at Signature Theatre PhotoBWW Review: GRAND HOTEL at Signature Theatre
by Elliot Lanes - April 11, 2019

There are certain things that really bother me in theater.  One of the biggest is when a theater company that is capable of brilliance presents a show that should be a perfect fit – and unfortunately ultimately delivers a final product that does not meet my expectations.
BWW Review: MASTERPIECES OF THE ORAL AND INTANGIBLE HERITAGE OF HUMANITY at Signature PhotoBWW Review: MASTERPIECES OF THE ORAL AND INTANGIBLE HERITAGE OF HUMANITY at Signature Theatre
by Elliot Lanes - March 11, 2019

Sometimes a particular genre of theater isn't necessarily popular with a general audience. Theater of the Absurd might be the biggest example of this. Playwrights like Eugene Ionesco and others have left audiences scratching their heads for years as to what they were trying to say within their plays.
BWW Review: AIN'T MISBEHAVIN' at Signature Theatre PhotoBWW Review: AIN'T MISBEHAVIN' at Signature Theatre
by Elliot Lanes - February 1, 2019

It's hard to believe that it's been over 40 years now since a little revue that started at New York's Manhattan Theatre Club took Broadway by storm. The show was Ain't Misbehavin' and if you didn't know who composer Thomas “Fats” Waller was before, you did after seeing this show. It also made Nell Carter a star and garnered her a television series called Gimme a Break. Besides Carter the cast was comprised of Charlaine Woodard, Armelia McQueen, Andre De Shields, and Ken Page. When the original cast returned for a Broadway revival of the show in the 80's, Nell Carter received star billing even though the show is truly an ensemble piece. Ah, the power of television.
BWW Review: THREE SISTAHS at MetroStage PhotoBWW Review: THREE SISTAHS at MetroStage
by Elliot Lanes - January 30, 2019

MetroStage continues its winning 2018/19 season with the company's fourth production of Three Sistahs. This musical premiered in 2002 and it's easy to understand why it is one of Producing Artistic Director Carolyn Griffin's favorites.
BWW Review: JUDY GARLAND: A STAR IS BORN at Signature Theatre PhotoBWW Review: JUDY GARLAND: A STAR IS BORN at Signature Theatre
by Elliot Lanes - January 10, 2019

If you were to ask anyone who they think was one of the greatest all-around performers of the twentieth century, chances are Judy Garland would definitely be one of the most popular answers. It's hard to fathom all she accomplished in her short 47 years of life. It's even more challenging to consider what would have been had she lived longer.
BWW Review: MY FATHER'S DRAGON Dazzles Both Children and Adults at Synetic Theater PhotoBWW Review: MY FATHER'S DRAGON Dazzles Both Children and Adults at Synetic Theater
by Barbara Johnson - December 10, 2018

I've come to expect the unexpected from Synetic Theater's exquisite, wordless productions. Somehow they're always able to dazzle me, and their holiday season production of MY FATHER'S DRAGON, based on Ruth Stiles Gannett's children's novel, is an absolute gem. Wide-eyed performers, memorable scenes, and delightful puppets (puppet design by Matthew McGee) make this one a must-see for children (5+) and adults alike.
BWW REVIEW: CHRISTMAS AT THE OLD BULL & BUSH at MetroStage PhotoBWW REVIEW: CHRISTMAS AT THE OLD BULL & BUSH at MetroStage
by Elliot Lanes - December 4, 2018

Some pieces of theater require your undivided attention because of some deep underlying message that the playwright doesn't want you to miss. This is not the case for MetroStage's return holiday engagement of Catherine Flye's Christmas at The Old Bull & Bush and that's totally ok. This British Variety Music Hall Entertainment is full of music, good performances, and some really corny jokes. In other words, it is everything you would expect from a show set in 1918 in Hampstead, London.
BWW Review: BILLY ELLIOT THE MUSICAL at Signature Theatre PhotoBWW Review: BILLY ELLIOT THE MUSICAL at Signature Theatre
by Elliot Lanes - November 15, 2018

For something completely different this holiday season, you might want to consider Signature Theatre's latest offering. Billy Elliot the Musical is not your standard holiday fare by any means. Sure, there are big production numbers, but the story features important underlying themes of labor tensions, economic inequality, and acceptance. In other words, this show follows my philosophy that theater is meant to educate as well as entertain. The production also features some pretty incredible ballet and tap choreography with a cast that performs it beautifully.
BWW Review: THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME at The Arlington Players PhotoBWW Review: THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME at The Arlington Players
by Elliot Lanes - October 13, 2018

Here is the scenario. Imagine going to a community theatre in Arlington, VA to see a show that requires a good size choir and a fourteen-piece orchestra. I imagine some of you might think that the company was crazy. I'm here to tell you that, in the case of The Arlington Players' 68th season opener The Hunchback of Notre Dame, you would be totally wrong. Never assume anything until you witness it. The production indeed features a twenty-member choir and it utilizes Michael Starobin's full orchestration but besides that, the production overall is as good as I've seen from some professional theatre companies. Yes, you read that right folks.
BWW Review: WSC Avant Bard Conjures an Energetic TEMPEST PhotoBWW Review: WSC Avant Bard Conjures an Energetic TEMPEST
by Barbara Johnson - June 7, 2018

I've seen a lot of Shakespeare lately. It's a staple of the theater scene because it's relevant to nearly every time and place. In this spirit, WSC Avant Bard calls forth an enthusiastic, semi-contemporary version of THE TEMPEST, Shakespeare's New World piece predicting the drama of the American melting pot.
BWW Review: THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS at Signature Theatre PhotoBWW Review: THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS at Signature Theatre
by Elliot Lanes - June 1, 2018

The topics of the distinguished Broadway writing team of John Kander and Fred Ebb's musicals have never been light and frothy. Their first musical Flora the Red Menace deals with the red scare. Cabaret uses Nazi Germany as a backdrop. The Rink deals with family dysfunction in a dilapidated roller rink and, of course, there's Chicago with the shadiness of 1920s Chicago murderesses and the media that fueled them.
BWW Review: Synetic Theater's TITUS ANDRONICUS is Beyond Words PhotoBWW Review: Synetic Theater's TITUS ANDRONICUS is Beyond Words
by Barbara Johnson - April 29, 2018

It's strange to think a Shakespeare production could render words unnecessary, but Synetic Theater's most recent wordless Shakespeare play, TITUS ANDRONICUS, gives you the impossible idea that dialogue might ruin the drama. Without speech, and without stage blood, this incarnation of TITUS is a violent spectacle brought to life by impeccable choreography, top-notch acting, and innovative scenic and lighting design (Phil Charlwood and Brian Allard).
BWW Review: JOHN at Signature Theatre PhotoBWW Review: JOHN at Signature Theatre
by Elliot Lanes - April 18, 2018

One thing can be said about award-nominated playwright Annie Baker. She captures the human condition in the most realistic of ways. This is no more apparent than in Signature Theatre's production of Baker's latest work, John. Director Joe Calarco delivers his finest staging to date. He's assembled a superb cast that includes the grand dame of DC theater, Nancy Robinette.
BWW Review: I DID IT MY WAY IN YIDDISH (IN ENGLISH) at MetroStage PhotoBWW Review: I DID IT MY WAY IN YIDDISH (IN ENGLISH) at MetroStage
by Elliot Lanes - April 17, 2018

I have seen and worked on plenty of solo shows in my more than twenty years in the business and sometimes I see one that just leaves me asking, 'How did this performer get to do this show?' Unfortunately Deb Filler is in that situation right now at MetroStage with her concoction called I Did it My Way In Yiddish (In English).
BWW Review: George Mason University School of Dance Proves Their Worth With a Diverse PhotoBWW Review: George Mason University School of Dance Proves Their Worth With a Diverse DANCE GALA
by Sam Abney - March 26, 2018

George Mason University is a bit of a trek when discussing arts organizations in the DMV area. If Saturday night's School of Dance Fete and Gala Concert is any indicator, then this trek is worth making. Celebrating the strides Mason's (still young) dance program has made in recent years, the evening was a unique combination of educational panels and dance showcases. With four moving performances capping off the evening, Mason's dance program cements itself as one to not be underestimated.
BWW Review: BROOKLYN comes to Virginia PhotoBWW Review: BROOKLYN comes to Virginia
by Keith Tittermary - March 23, 2018

Brooklyn the Musical is one of those rare gems of a show that the back story of its creation can influence what you experience on stage. The duo behind the show, Mark Schoenfeld and Barri McPherson were songwriting partners in the early 1980's and lost touch and about 20 years later, Mr. Schoenfeld was singing on the streets of Brooklyn when his old writing partner, Ms. McPherson ran into him and a new partnership was born, this time creating art out of life in Brooklyn.
BWW Review: GODSPELL Gets Updated PhotoBWW Review: GODSPELL Gets Updated
by Keith Tittermary - March 7, 2018

Godspell is one of those shows that is reinvented with each production. There is a timelessness about it that makes it just as applicable today as it did when the first production opened off-Broadway in 1971. NextStop Theatre Company's current production, Godspell is more grounded in our obsession with electronics and social media, then with the overall notion of becoming a community.
BWW Review: 45 PLAYS teaches us about 45 PRESIDENTS PhotoBWW Review: 45 PLAYS teaches us about 45 PRESIDENTS
by Keith Tittermary - January 16, 2018

In the course of American history there have been 44 men to become President of the United States. In the course of just under two hours, 5 very capable women embody those 44 men, plus their wives, mistresses, political opponents, and everyone's favorite non-POTUS, Benjamin Franklin.
BWW Review: Christmas Comes to Metrostage PhotoBWW Review: Christmas Comes to Metrostage
by Keith Tittermary - November 28, 2017

Back in the late 90's I went to the old Vat Room at Arena Stage to see this Christmas show that my Catholic University professor talked about. Being the grandchild of a British war bride, I had many British Christmases growing up, so I knew what to expect. What I didn't expect back then was how enjoyable that night would be. Sometimes you go to the theater to have fun and escape from the troubles of your day.
Your ACT Theatrical Co. presents: THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW PhotoYour ACT Theatrical Co. presents: THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW
by Andrew Burrill - October 14, 2017

Your ACT Theatrical Co. will present THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW on October 27th and 28th at Brewbakers restaurant in Winchester, Virginia.

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