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January 30, 2004

2004 Looks Like A Great Year for DC Theatre

By Gregory Gorton

Perhaps the best thing about the coming of 2004 is that 2003 has finally ended. The New Year always brings with it hope and optimism, and here in the nation's Capitol, there is a definite vibe running through the theatrical community that this will be one hell of a good year.

For the best indicators of that prediction, all one needs to do is look at some of the productions planned by local theatres.

The month of January, always a busy time, brought with it two offerings from The Eleventh Hour Theatre Company, both staged at The Glaser-Luchs Studio Theatre at the National Conservatory of Dramatic Arts: the Grace McKeaney play, Chicks, running with the Gert Hoffman show, Our Man in Madras. Director Jay Thomas worked with two of Washington's finest actors, Terri Price and Ray Ficca, respectively.

Source Theatre continues its winter rep of new plays with productions of Dark Matters, Fur and Other Dangers, Interrogation Room and Silent Heroes.

The Washington Stage Guild, a theatre well known for both its classical and contemporary excellence, presents T.S. Eliot's Family Reunion directed by Bill Largess. John Macdonald will be directing Shaw's On The Rocks from March 4 until April 4. The area premiere of Enigma Derivations by Eric Emanuel Schmitt, as translated by Jeremy Sams, opens April 22 and continues through May 22.

The Round House Theatre in Bethesda will be offering August Wilson's Fences March 31 through May 2, directed by Thomas W. Jones. June 2 will be the opening night of The World Goes Round by John Kander and Fred Ebb. The show is directed by Scott Ellis and runs through July 1.

Exciting things continue to come to Washington's Arena Stage. Bertolt Brecht's A Man's Man is running until March 7 to be followed by Dael Orlandersmith's Yellowman, directed by Tazewell Thompson. Senior Discretion Himself, based on the book by Budd Schulberg, with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser will be in production starting April 9, with Charles Randolph Wright directing.

Ford's Theatre will be running Looking Over the President's Shoulder until March 7. Later in the month, Children of Eden, book by John Caird and music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, will be playing until June 6.

Continuing its world premiere production of Craig Wright's adaption of The Winter's Tale is The Folger Theatre. The adaptation, titled Melissa Arctic, is directed by Richard Cliffard and features DC favorites Holly Twyford, Catherine Flye and Naomi Jacobson. Later in the year, director Joe Banno will be at the helm of Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors. All in all, it should be an exciting time in DC.


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