Looking for something to do this weekend? I have been having a blast seeing shows all over town and here is what I recommend…
Top 5 Publisher’s Picks:
1. Fela! at Morgan State University
The energy from the cast, music, and dancing was so invigorating, that I felt 20 years younger!
READ Mark Beachy’s review of the play.
Synopsis: FELA!, the most critically acclaimed musical of the season, received three 2010 Tony Awards®: Best Choreography, Best Costume Design for a Musical and Best Sound Design of a Musical! His story inspired a nation. His music inspires the world. FELA! tells the true story of the legendary Nigerian musician Fela Kuti, whose soulful Afrobeat rhythms ignited a generation. Motivated by his mother, a civil rights champion, he defied a corrupt and oppressive military government and devoted his life and music to the struggle for freedom and human dignity. FELA! is a triumphant tale of courage, passion and love, featuring Fela Kuti’s captivating music and the visionary direction and choreography of Tony Award® winner Bill T. Jones.
Below is Mark Beachy’s interview with Stephen Hendel. (The person who co-conceived and produced FELA!)
2. The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee at Tidewater Players
The Tidewater Players, located in Havre de Grace, attracts notable local Baltimore talents, like Gary Dieter.
Tidewater is running the 2 for 1 Special all weekend! Buy 1 ticket and get 2nd for free. New reservations only. Ask for the special by phone by calling 410-939-8433.
Synopsis: Six young people in the throes of puberty, overseen by grown-ups who barely managed to escape childhood themselves, learn that winning isn’t everything and that losing doesn’t necessarily make you a loser. THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE is a hilarious tale of overachievers’ angst chronicling the experience of six adolescent outsiders vying for the spelling championship of a lifetime. The show’s Tony Award winning creative team has created the unlikeliest of hit musicals about the unlikeliest of heroes: a quirky yet charming cast of outsiders for whom a spelling bee is the one place where they can stand out and fit in at the same time.
3. The Mansaku-no-Kai Kyogen Company at the Kennedy Center
Last seen at the Kennedy Center in 2008 as part of the JAPAN: culture + hyperculture festival, the Mansaku-no-Kai Kyogen Company brings three kyogen works.
READ Elliot Lanes’ review of the show.
Synopsis: Kyogen is a Japanese spoken word art form based on laughter and comedy, and with a 70-year history in the genre Mansaku Nomura has been designated as a Living National Treasure of Japan. Nomura’s theater company The Mansaku-no-Kai Kyogen Company is known for captivating interpretations of comic classics and well-received performances. The troupe last performed at the Kennedy Center as part of the JAPAN: culture + hyperculture festival in 2008 and will now perform a trio of pieces during this return engagement including Suminuri (Black Crocodile Tears), Tsuki-mi Zato (The Moon-Viewing Blindman), and Kubi Hiki (Neck Pulling). The Mansaku-no-Kai Kyogen Company performs in Japanese, with English supertitles.
4. Anything Goes at Riverside Center Dinner Theater
If you haven’t been to Riverside Center before, the facility is amazing. The theatre includes a traditional proscenium stage with fly loft and seats 436. The center also houses a conference facility where you may schedule your events.
READ Erica Shadowsong’s review of the play.
Synopsis: Featuring a smash musical score by Cole Porter, the world’s favorite “shipboard” musical sails on, as fresh and captivating as when it was first launched on Broadway, and continues to enjoy multiple revivals including a current Tony-Award-winning run. Billy Croker, an ambitious but bumbling broker, boards the S.S. American just before a midnight journey to plead with his former boss, Elisha J. Whitney, to rehire him. He runs into an old acquaintance, Reno Sweeney, nightclub owner turned evangelist, who is sailing with her quartet of beautiful girls dubbed “the Angels.” Billy’s most recent love interest, Hope, is also on board, but engaged to a British nobleman.
5. Rooms: A Rock Romance at Kensington Arts Theatre
Romance and rock are explored in this two-person show.
READ Eric Shadowsong’s review of the play.
Synopsis: Rooms: a rock romance begins in late 1970’s Glasgow where Monica, an ambitious singer/songwriter meets Ian, a reclusive rocker. The two quickly become entangled creatively and romantically. Their music takes them first to London and ultimately to New York City, where they discover the vibrant new music scene and create an intimate partnership, their love deepening while their personalities drive them apart. A five-piece rock band accompanies these two characters as they search for the balance between ambition and happiness.