Theatre Kibbitz: Playwright Allyson Currin and Director Jessica Lefkow on ‘Hercules in Russia’

hercules poster

Playwright Allyson Currin and Director Jessica Lefkow have joined forces to present the World Premiere of Allysson’s new play Hercules in Russia at Doorway Arts Ensemble. I asked Allyson and Jessica to take us on their Herculean journey from writing the play, auditions, selecting and directing the cast, working with designers, rehearsals, cast changes, and finally attending to […]

Theatre Kibbitz: Tasty Monster Productions Presents ‘Personals – A Love Story for the Rest of Us’

tasty monster logo

When Heather Bagnall Scheeler and Luke Tudball first met at a rehearsal in August they had no idea that their meeting would result in the newest arts organization in DC – but what a difference a few months can make.

Theatre Kibbitz: Zurin Villanueva on playing Josephine Baker in ‘Josephine Tonight’ at MetroStage

James Alexander, James T. Lane, Zurin Villanueva, Aisha de Haas, and Debra Walton. Photo by C. Stanley Photography.

I met Zurin Villanueva at The Lincoln Theatre three years ago, and instantly realized that she had all the skills to become a big star on the stage. I am very happy to have this opportunity to talk with Zurin again…

Theatre Kibbitz: Renee Calarco on ‘The Religion Thing’ and Working with Brother Joe

Renee Calarco. Photo by James Meerdter.

During the run of The Religion Thing, which closed on January 29th, I asked Renee Calarco to talk about writing the play and the production at Theatre J and working with her brother Joe, who directed the show.

The Arlington Players to Stage ‘A Little Night Music’ at The Mead Center For American Theater at Arena Stage June 1-17, 2012

little night music

The Arlington Players (TAP) announced yesterday that their Spring 2012 production of Stephen Sondheim’s A Little Night Music will be performed in the Arlene and Robert Kogod Cradle at the Mead Center for American Theater at Arena Stage – from June 1-17, 2012.

Theatre Kibbitz: Matthew Gardiner and Paul Downs Colaizzo on Directing and Writing ‘Really Really’

Top: Evan Casey, Kim Rosen, Lauren Culpepper and Paul James Bottom: Danny Gavigan, Bethany Anne Lind and Jake Odmark. Photo by Christopher Mueller.

I really really wanted to know more about this new play that I have heard so much about lately. A young playwright and a young director are working together at Signature Theatre to bring a ‘terrifying’ examination of the ‘Generation Me’ to The Ark. Paul Down Colaizzo tells us about writing his play and working with Director Matthew Gardiner, and Matthew introduces us to his talented cast and gives us some insight into directing Really Really.

Theatre Kibbitz: Eleanor Holdridge on Directing Folger’s ‘The Gaming Table’ and Playing ‘Basset’

Eleanor Holdridge

Director Eleanor Holdridge enlightens us on her journey of casting and directing Folger Theatre’s upcoming The Gaming Table, introduces us to her cast and designers and the ‘look’ of the production. She also offers some great pointers on becoming a better Basset player.

Theatre Kibbitz: Rita McKenzie on ‘Ethel Merman’s Broadway’ This Saturday, January 21, 2012 at 8 PM at Strathmore

Rita McKenzie. Photo courtesy of Music Center at Strathmore.

I am a big fan of of two women of power – Ethel Merman and Rita Mckenzie. I can’t remember when I had such a great time interviewing anyone as when I just interviewed the sassy and hysterically talented Rita McKenzie, who will be singing lots of songs Ethel Merman made famous – this Saturday, January 21st at 8 PM – at The Music Center at Strathmore – in Ethel Merman’s Broadway starring Rita McKenzie.

Theatre Kibbitz: Nu Sass Goes ‘Into The Woods’ and Socks it to the Audience!

Libby Sinback with the Bakers Wife. Photo courtesy of Abri O'Connor.

Once upon a time, in the summer of 2011, local singer and karaoke host Libby Sinback had this sort of crazy idea. “I wish!” She thought, “I wish I could produce a concert version of a musical I loved as a kid growing up, and take a lead role in it.”

Barber & Barberillo at The In Series

Photo: Ahmad Arbaboun

The In Series deals a ‘royal flush’ of magic and love and great singing as Rick Davis directs a talented group of singers/comedians in the operatic double-header of Samuel Barber and Giancarlo Menotti’s A Hand of Bridge (1959), and Francisco Asenjo Barbieri’s The Little Barber [‘barberillo’] of Lavapies (1874, in Barber & Barberillo.

‘Pal Joey’ at The Kennedy Center Cancelled; ‘First You Dream: The Music of Kander and Ebb’ Replaces it

John Kander (standing) and Fred Ebb.

The Kennedy Center today announced today that its much anticipated its production of Pal Joey, scheduled to run June 2-July 1, 2012 in the Eisenhower Theater, will be postponed indefinitely “due to scheduling conflicts.” Replacing it will be First You Dream: The Music of Kander and Ebb, which had its debut at Signature Theatre in 2009.

Theatre Kibbitz: DC Area’s Benjamin Cook on Playing Michael in Billy Elliot the Musical at The Kennedy Center

Benjamin Cook

Virginia’s own Benjamin Cook has been in two Broadway shows already – Ragtime and Billy Elliot, and local theatregoers can see Ben perform the role of Billy’s best friend and fashion expert Michael at The Kennedy Center through January 15th,

Shall We Chat? Rachel York on Playing Anna in The King and I at Walnut Street Theatre

Rachel York as Anna in 'The King and I

I went up to Philadelphia to see the multi-talented Rachel York perform the role of Anna in The King and I at Walnut Street Theatre and as usual – Rachel York acted and sang the role so beautifully. I had a chance to ask Rachel about playing Anna and her royal visit to Walnut Street Theatre.

Maryland Theatre Guide’s Staff Picks Their Favorites of 2011

BestOf2011 (1)

Here are Maryland Theatre Guide’s staff’s favorite productions and performances during the 2011 theatre season (from January – December 2011). The productions and performances highlighted in bold received the most nods by the MTG staff. Congrats to all the shows and performances that made our lists.