Category Archives: Review

The Last New Play in Washington for Now

It may have been unrealistic to open a new play amid the coronavirus pandemic, but “The Realistic Joneses” did just that on Saturday at Spooky Action Theatre, a group whose name inspires no further confidence (it’s named after Einstein’s term for quantum entanglement – the ability of separate objects to share a condition at a [...]

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When the Riches Ran Out for ‘Timon’

The week the stock market erases its year’s gains may be just the right time to open a not-often produced play about swift changes in fortune. “Timon of Athens” has a home at the Shakespeare Theatre Company if only because it’s one of his lesser-known plays. Long suspected to have been co-written, the splashy production imported [...]

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The Touring ‘Simon & Garfunkel Story’

There is certainly a dramatic story to be told behind the highly successful 60s duo Simon & Garfunkel from a brief high school success that got them on “American Bandstand” to their later 1960s stardom, love/hate relationship and mutual artistic dependence. All of that is barely mentioned, though, in the nationally touring “The Simon & [...]

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A New Year’s Eve Tribute to Aretha Franklin

Some of Aretha Franklin’s greatest performances happened at the Kennedy Center — chief of which may have been a 2015 performance of “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” at the Kennedy Center Honors that made Barack Obama shed a tear in the Presidential box. Clips of some of Franklin’s performances in the fabled [...]

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She & Him Throw a Christmas Party

The first time Zooey Deschanel sang a Christmas song for huge audiences was 16 years ago in the movie “Elf,” crooning “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” in the shower, eventually dueting with an unwelcome Will Ferrell. It was that moment that showed M. Ward that the actress could actually sing, and they eventually got together to form [...]

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A Soulful ‘Motown Christmas’ at Signature

Because Christmas is mandatory on entertainment stages all month, it’s no surprise that a cabaret at Signature Theatre is again devoted to the Yuletide songbook. But in a clever and very welcome variation, they’ve approached the holiday through the classic interpretations of one of America’s favorite labels. “A Motown Christmas” brings together enduring holiday originals [...]

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Marshall Crenshaw’s Timeless Tunefulness

Marshall Crenshaw tours these days take different forms. Sometimes he goes solo, other times he shares the stage with the Bottle Rockets. He was the lead voice for a Smithereens tribute tour earlier this year as well. But Saturday for a show at City Winery in Washington D.C., he fronted a trio that gave both [...]

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Mark Morris’ Non-Spicy ‘Pepperland’

“Pepperland” is the name of a suite that longtime Beatles producer George Martin wrote for their animated “Yellow Submarine” in 1968. Martin, who had devised the stirring string arrangements  behind “Yesterday” and “Eleanor Rigby” turned in a sprightly, propulsive ditty that may have been his best composition in the Beatles canon not related to anything  [...]

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Kinky Friedman: A Resurrection at 75

He’s been a popular detective novelist, a singer, a columnist, Peace Corps volunteer, animal rescuer, and a politician. He played at the Grand Ole Opry, “Saturday Night Live” and the Rolling Thunder Revue. He’s the only performer in 45 years to record an episode of “Austin City Limits” that was never aired. And he won [...]

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The New Pornographers Rise to Challenge

From the big sound that comes from The New Pornographers you’d almost expect more people on stage. But just seven were there Wednesday at the Lincoln Theatre in Washington D.C., covering songs from eight different albums before a happy, largely seated audience. It was the rare second day in the city to satisfy demand. Even [...]

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