Week of June 19, 2022
1. “Fires in the Mirror” at Theater J
“LaVoy is so effective at embodying each character that there were times when I had to remind myself that every monologue was performed by the same person. “ – Jakob Cansler
Synopsis: August 1991: simmering tensions in the racially polarized neighborhood of Crown Heights erupt into riots after a Black child was killed by a car in the Chabad-Lubavitcher Rebbe’s motorcade and a white Jewish scholar was slain in retaliation. Anna Deavere Smith’s groundbreaking documentary play uses verbatim testimony from individuals throughout the diverse community, creating a nuanced portrait of a shared but divided geography. This theatrical event – performed over 30 years after these life-changing riots – promises a tour-de-force solo performance and a story which touches upon every American regardless of race, color, or beliefs.
2. “To Kill a Mockingbird” at The Kennedy Center
“The cast is superb…a ‘Mockingbird’ for the 21st century—a powerful new tool in the battle for racial justice in America. – Jeannette Mulherin
Synopsis: All rise for Academy Award® winner Aaron Sorkin’s adaptation of Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning masterwork. The New York Times Critic’s Pick To Kill A Mockingbird is “the most successful American play in Broadway history” (60 Minutes). Rolling Stone gives it 5 stars, calling it “an emotionally shattering landmark production of an American classic,” and New York Magazine calls it “a real phenomenon. Majestic and incandescent, it’s filled with breath and nuance and soul.” With direction by Tony Award® winner Bartlett Sher, To Kill A Mockingbird—“the greatest novel of all time” (Chicago Tribune)—has quickly become “one of the greatest plays in history” (NPR). Emmy Award®-winning actor Richard Thomas plays the role of Atticus Finch in the National Tour.
3. “Mr. Popper’s Penguins” at Imagination Stage
“…family-friendly, charming, and uplifting story with captivating props and performances.” – Taryn Carone
Synopsis: Mr. Popper, a painter of modest means, dreams of taking an Antarctic adventure. So he’s thrilled when a penguin named Captain Cook waddles out of a mysterious box left on his doorstep. The zookeeper donates a female companion and soon…the patter of 20 baby penguin feet! To feed all of these mouths, the imaginative Mr. Popper and his wife turn his talented penguins into a must-see traveling vaudeville act full of song and dance. But the rigors of performing take a toll on them all, and they must make a difficult decision. This musical play, featuring expert puppetry, depicts a wild and witty way to follow your dreams–and your convictions.
4. “The Spongebob Musical” at Toby’s Dinner Theatre
“…great fun, both for children and adult SpongeBob fans!” – Ben Fisler
Synopsis: The stakes are higher than ever in this dynamic stage musical, as SpongeBob and all of Bikini Bottom face the total annihilation of their undersea world. Chaos erupts. Lives hang in the balance. And just when all hope seems lost, a most unexpected hero rises up and takes center stage. The power of optimism really can save the world! Adapted from the iconic Nickelodeon series and nominated for 12 Tony Awards, the dynamic score features original music by Cyndi Lauper, John Legend, Panic! At the Disco, Yolanda Adams, Sara Bareilles and many, many more!
5. “In His Hands” at Mosaic Theater
“…rich and moving…With bold and distinctive style, this play leaves you with plenty to ponder.” – Charlotte Selton
Synopsis: Daniel, a video game wizard and aspiring Lutheran pastor, is falling for Christian. But as these men explore the potential of their new relationship, voices from Christian’s past threaten to overpower the connection they share. – A radically contemporary, queer rom-com that asks provocative questions about faith and desire, with a gentle and lyrical voice.