Liven Up Your Fall with a New Season of Entertainment Around the DMV

Catch an electrifying performance by the Flying Steps at Warner Theatre in October



With fall comes a whole new season of live entertainment around DC. Musicals, concerts, dance performances, puppet shoes, storytelling sessions, ice skating extravaganzas, and more great acts will be on local stages over the next few months. This round-up has the line-up, ordered by opening date, so you can snag your tickets and plan ahead!

Peter and the Wolf
Where: The Puppet Co. | Glen Echo PArk, MD
When: Through September 30
Tickets: $12

Staged with half life-size marionettes, Peter and the Wolf is one of the Puppet Co.’s best-loved stories. Over a million children and adults have seen this one-man show, based on Prokofiev’s popular tale of good versus evil, performed by Puppet Master Christopher Piper. An introduction to the instruments in the orchestra precedes this story of Peter and his animal friends, and their attempts to capture wily “Old Lupus.” Recommended for ages 4+.

South Pacific
Where: Olney Theatre | Olney, MD
When: August 30 – October 7
Tickets: $42-84 (look for a discount)

With songs like “Some Enchanted Evening,” “I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair,” and “Bali Ha’i,” South Pacific is one of the most beloved of American musicals. Set on a remote Pacific island during World War II, South Pacific gave us the unforgettable love story between nurse Nellie Forbush and French expatriate Emile de Becque, a love threatened by war, as well as the dark corners of Nellie’s soul. Rodgers and Hammerstein’s 1950 Pulitzer Prize-winner was ahead of its time with its unflinching look at racism and prejudice that maintains its relevance today. The theater gives it a “PG” rating.

Turn Me Loose
Where: Arena Stage | Southwest DC
When: September 6 – October 14
Tickets: $41-105

This intimate and no-holds-barred drama chronicles Dick Gregory’s rise as the first Black comedian to expose audiences to racial comedy. His comedy spared no one including politicians, celebrities and the white supremacists who were part of his regular audience. In confronting bigotry head-on with biting humor and charm, Gregory turned his activism into an art form, risking his own safety at each performance. Turn Me Loose is an exuberant and raw tribute to Gregory’s life as a civil rights activist, comic genius and unapologetic provocateur.

Voytto Tech: a scifi fable
Where: Montgomery College Cultural Arts Center | Silver Spring, MD
When: September 14-29
Tickets: $12.50/age 12+, $10/age 4-11, free/3 & under

Voytto Tech: a scifi fable combines science and technology with a story exploring the tough topics of bullying and social inequity. Klipp Casey travels from a planet far, far away to study at Voytto Tech, the most famous science magnet school in the galaxy. Right away, Klipp has trouble fitting in at his new school, and becomes a target for bullying. What can Klipp do? Who can he go to for help? And what can anyone do about the huge energy crisis threatening the planet? This highly interactive play is performed by three actors who become a variety of characters. The entire audience participates from their seats, becoming characters in the story and brainstorming possible solutions for Klipp’s problems. Recommended for ages 4+.

Saturday Family Story Sessions
Where: Strathmore | Bethesda, MD
When: September 15 – October 20
Admission: $10-12

This fall, families gather once a week for fun and creativity, enjoying diverse and dynamic programs with the very best storytellers in the area who engage young audiences and instill a love of learning with every word.

Blueberries for Sal
Where: Adventure Theatre | Glen Echo Park, MD
When: September 21 – October 21
Tickets: $19.50

Kuplink, kuplank, kuplunk! Sal and her mother are picking delicious blueberries to can for the long winter months ahead to make delicious desserts. On the other side of Maine’s Blueberry Hill, a mama bear and baby bear are filling up for the long hybernation. But somehow Sal and a baby bear have a mixed up adventure and lose their mothers! Recommended for all ages.

Cri Cri The Mexican Singing Cricket
Where: Atlas Perfroming Arts Center | H Street NE, DC
When: September 22
Tickets: $12

Cri-Cri, the iconic Mexican radio character, has been popular all over Latin America since the 1930s. Joined by a zany announcer and two gifted musicians, Cri Cri brings students back to the age of radio in this interactive program. Come dance, play, and sing along to classic songs in Spanish and English. Recommended for ages 3-8.

The Comedy of Errors
Where: Lansburgh Theatre | Penn Quarter, DC
When: September 25 – October 28
Tickets: $44-102

Two sets of twins, each with the same name—what could go wrong? Everything, apparently. Leave logic behind and delight in the confusion of Shakespeare’s beloved comedy, where servants misplace their masters, wives overlook their husbands, and sons forget their fathers. The blunders double, triple and cube until chaos reigns—and everyone is pretty sure that everyone else is completely insane.

Tot Rock
Where: Jammin’ Java | Vienna, VA
When: Ongoing
Tickets: $5/weekdays, $10/weekends

Tot Rock is Jammin’ Java’s super-popular kids music concert series, providing wholesome family entertainment at one of the DC Metro area’s finest music clubs. Local acts perform every Thursday and Friday, and touring performers drop by on many weekends. Check the calendar often to see when your favorite act is performing, and for other calendar updates.

Boogie Babes
Where: Eastern Market | Capitol Hill, DC
When: Thursdays, 10:30am
Tickets: $5/child, free for sibling 6 months and under

Little ones can boogie along with their favorite local musicians at Eastern Market’s North Hall on Thursday mornings. Even better, proceeds from all shows benefit DC Diaper Bank! Go for the entertainment, then grab lunch in the market or at one of many nearby eateries after.

Tiny Tots
Where: The Puppet Co. | Glen Echo, MD
When: Most Wednesdays, Saturdays, & Sundays at 10am
Tickets: $5

The series presents puppet shows designed for the youngest theater patrons (ages 0-4). They are shorter, the lights stay on, and the doors stay open. They have an arsenal of shows that they switch up every performance, so be sure to check the schedule to see what’s playing when you go.

Millennium Stage
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: Ongoing daily, 6pm
Tickets: Free

The Kennedy Center presents these free, no-tickets-required performances every day at 6pm, and the public is welcome to enjoy them. The acts span the genres — you can see everything from contemporary dance to folk music to puppetry to comedy shows to opera scenes. Millennium Stage showcases everyone from local youth choirs to internationally known bands (They Might Be Giants performed there a few years ago). This is a great series to keep in mind for whenever you’re looking for some free, easy entertainment.

Rise+Rhyme
Where: BusBoys & Poets | Brookland, DC & Hyattsville/Takoma Park, MD
When: Mondays
Tickets: $5

The weekly series welcomes children 5 and under with their caregivers to enjoy a morning of performances and stories from 9:30-11am. Go to one of three locations: Brookland in DC or Takoma Park or Hyattsville in MD. Plan on breakfast, too — full service is available while the little ones are grooving.

Children’s Arts & Entertainment
Where: BloomBars | Columbia Heights, DC
When: Ongoing
Tickets: Varies by show/activity

The arts center in Columbia Heights offers a variety of enriching, entertaining, and cultural activities and performances for children. From Harambe sessions to puppet shows to musical theatre to sing-a-longs, there’s something going on for little ones just about every day of the week.

Saturday Morning at the National
Where: National Theatre | Downtown DC
When: Most Saturdays
Tickets: FREE!

The free theatre program runs on select Saturdays with performances at 9:30am and 11:30am. Musicals, plays, storytelling, and comedy shows are all part of the live entertainment line-up. See the complete schedule of performances here. Tickets are distributed day of performances on a first-come, first-served basis. Everyone must be in line to receive a ticket.

Sleepy Hollow
Where: Synetic Theater | Crystal City, VA
When: October 3 – November 4
Tickets: $20-60

This adaptation of Sleepy Hollow pulls together all the elements that made Synetic famous: Gothic horror, iconic characters and imagery, an emphasis on surreal, wordless storytelling that transcends spoken language and makes our productions something akin to live-action dreams (or nightmares, depending on the story). Recommended for ages 13+.

Hansel & Gretel
Where: The Puppet Co. | Glen Echo Park, MD
When: October 4 – November 16
Tickets: $12

Humperdink’s children’s opera, full of magic, music and dazzling special effects. The puppets, lights, music and effects, are all operated by Christopher Piper, who also performs all the live vocal characterizations. The production has long been a favorite of children and their parents, and is an excellent introduction to musical story for children. Recommended for ages 4+.

Disney On Ice: Mickey Search Party
Where: Eagle Bank Arena | Fairfax, VA
When: October 3-7
Tickets: Start at $20 (look for a discount)

Disney On Ice presents Mickey’s Search Party brings the magic closer to fans than ever before through dynamic and immersive moments that take place on the ice, in the air and in the seats. Produced by Feld Entertainment Inc., the worldwide leader in live touring family entertainment, Disney On Ice is once again elevating the ice show experience with brand-new engaging elements that will fascinate both newcomers and seasoned guests alike.

African Roots Latino Soul
Where: Discovery Theater | National Mall, DC
When: October 4, 24, 25
Tickets: $3-8

How many cultures can we be? This vibrant play explores what it means to be Latino, African American, and proud. The spirit of Celia Cruz’s songs infuses this delightful show, in which the warmth of mama’s kitchen and the bustle of city life play parts in demonstrating that the pulse of the music is the heart of the people. Written with the Young Playwrights’ Theater, this is a story of the triumphs of today’s multicultural kids. Recommended for ages 6-12.

Cuentos Muy Magicos! Magical Stories!
Where: Discovery Theater | National Mall, DC
When: October 5, 12, 23
Tickets: $3-8

This delightful Discovery Theater original offers a fresh take on three classic tales. The Little Red Hen asks the question “Who will help?” Jack and the Beanstalk proves that small is mighty. And The Gingerbread Man… well, he’s just one bad cookie. Filled with delightful songs, puppets, and audience participation, this bilingual story-time spectacular is not to be missed! Recommended for ages 3-7.

Sailing on String
Where: The Lab at Convergence | Arlington, VA
When: October 6 & 8
Tickets: TBA

Get a sneak peek of Arts on the Horizon’s production that will run later in May 2019. A simple piece of yarn can become so many things! Follow a curious explorer on a voyage into a world made entirely of string! Yarn birds fly through the air passing crocheted clouds. This gentle, engaging performance features object transformation, dance, live string music, and captivating design. Follow the twists, turns, and eventual tangles of this special immersive performance for our youngest audience members! Recommended for ages 0-2.

American Revolution
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: October 12-14
Tickets: $20

Can the history of the American Revolution be told in 21 square feet of space? Chicago’s award-winning Theater Unspeakable returns to take on the challenge, telling a big story on an impossibly tiny stage. Using only 7 actors and their bodies, the show recreates the entire American fight for independence in 50 minutes. Combining tongue-in-cheek humor with a dash of derring-do, American Revolution displays the company’s signature imaginative physical theater.
Recommended for ages 9+.

Beetlejuice
Where: National Theatre | Downtown DC
When: October 14 – November 18
Tickets: $54-114 (look for a discount)

It’s showtime, folks! Beetlejuice is ruder, raunchier and frankly, more repellant than ever in this original musical based on Tim Burton’s wonderfully demented film. Beetlejuice
tells the story of Lydia Deetz, a strange and unusual teenager obsessed with the whole “being dead thing.” Lucky for Lydia, her new house is haunted by a recently deceased couple and a degenerate demon who happens to have a thing for stripes. When Lydia calls on this ghost-with-the-most to scare away her insufferable parents, Beetlejuice comes up with the perfect plan, which involves exorcism, arranged marriages and an adorable girl scout who gets scared out of her wits.

Kids Euro Festival
Where: Venues throughout DC
When: October 20 – November 4
Tickets: FREE

Enjoy European enterntainment without leaving DC! Now in its 11th year, Kids Euro Festival is one of the largest performing arts festivals for children in America, bringing Europe’s most talented children’s entertainers to the DC metro area each fall for two weeks of free performances, concerts, workshops, movies, storytelling sessions, puppetry, dance exhibitions, magic shows, and cinema. All free!

NSO Pops: Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: October 23-25
Tickets: $34-149

The National Symphony Orchestra presents John Williams’s iconic Oscar®-nominated score from The Empire Strikes Back performed live along with the full feature film. The show is approximately 2 hours 15 minutes long.

The Fever (KidFree Suggestion!)
Where: Woolly Mammoth | Penn Quarter, DC
When: October 23 – November 4
Tickets: $20-35

Performed in complete collaboration with the audience, The Fever begins as a simple story about an ordinary party and evolves into a spellbinding examination of how we assemble, organize, and care for the bodies around us, testing the limits of individual and collective responsibility and our willingness to be there for one another.

The Tiniest Tempest
Where: Atlas Perfroming Arts Center | H Street NE, DC
When: October 24-28
Tickets: $12

The Tiniest Tempest is an interactive play, based on some of Shakespeare’s The Tempest. The play includes three big body puppets worn by three actors, shadow puppetry projected on a screen, and two actors playing three roles. It includes both live music and recorded music created especially for the play. Recommended for ages 4-10.

Flying Bach
Where: Warner Theatre | Downtown DC
When: October 26-27
Tickets: $32-77

Flying Bach, starring Germany’s four-time world champion Flying Steps breakdance troupe, interprets the music of Johann Sebastian Bach’s “The Well-Tempered Clavier”, widely regarded as one of the most important works in the history of classical music. The story follows seven dancers and one teacher, rehearsing for their big day as arguments, fights, disappointments and delights ensue. A mysterious woman joins the story and the conflicts climax: contemporary dance meets breakdance, man meets woman, desire meets refusal, and arrogance meets curiosity. The result is an entertaining and electrifying production for people of all ages and demographics.

Long Way Down
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: October 27 – November 4
Tickets: $25-35

Sixty seconds. Seven floors. One elevator. Fifteen-year-old Will’s brother has just been shot, and Will is ready to follow “The Rules”: 1) “No Crying.” 2) “No Snitching.” 3) “Get Revenge.” But on the ride down, with his brother’s gun in his pocket, his plan is interrupted by a few visitors. DC-area native Jason Reynolds’s New York Times best-selling book comes to the stage in a compelling and timely production. Told entirely in free-form poetry, Long Way Down captures the potent minute Will contemplates retaliation. As mysterious guests appear at each floor, Will realizes there might be a bigger story to be told. He knows who he’s after. Or does he? Recommended for ages 12+.

NSO Family Concert: Halloween Spooktacular
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: October 28
Tickets: $15-18

An annual tradition! The Concert Hall transforms into a ghostly sight when the NSO performs new and old classics to celebrate Halloween, which this year also marks the Dia de los Muertos (The Day of the Dead) with ghoulishly attired musicians. Arrive early for trick-or-treating and a special Haunted Hall Musical Instrument “Petting Zoo.” Recommended for ages 5+.

Anything Goes
Where: Arena Stage | Southwest DC
When: November 3 – December 23
Tickets: $66-115

The SS American has set sail from NY to London. Aboard, the lovelorn Billy has stowed away on a mission to stop the marriage of his mystery muse, countess Hope Harcourt, to the millionaire Lord Evelyn Oakleigh. Now, it is up to Billy with the help of showgirls, sailors and public enemy #13, to find, woo and win back his true love. Unlikely alliances arise as mischief and mayhem ensue in this madcap musical by beloved composer and Tony Award winner Cole Porter.

Cinderella
Where: Imagination Stage | Bethesda, MD
When: November 3 – January 6
Tickets: $17-35

This wacky retelling of the beloved fairy tale takes Cinderella on a royal adventure complete with a wisecracking rat, evil stepsisters, and a smitten prince. When Cinderella’s stepmother forbids her from attending the ball, her fairy godmother convinces here that if the shoe fits- wear it! True love may await her if only she can put down her sword. Just the right fit for the holiday season! Recommended for ages 4+.

Lessons from the Animal Peoples
Where: Discovery Theater | National Mall, DC
When: November 8-9
Tickets: $3-8

Native American stories are playful, funny, and wise. Dovie Thomason shares her culture with understanding, sly humor, and astonishing vocal transformations to become characters who weave magic with every word. Her captivating collection of stories explore some age-old questions (Why do bears hibernate? Why don’t rabbits have tails?) that reveal timeless truths about the Earth and her animal children—and all of us, too! Recommended for ages 4-8.

Native Pride Dancers
Where: Discovery Theater | National Mall, DC
When: November 13-14
Tickets: $3-8

Dancers, drumbeats, and stories celebrate the spirit and beauty of First-Nations peoples in a dynamic, one-of-a-kind cultural heritage program. Actor, educator, and world-champion fancy dancer Larry Yazzie brings together artists who share the rich heritage and customs passed down from generation to generation—and a history of bravery, fortitude, generosity, and wisdom. Recommended for ages 6-16.

The Hollow Stump
Where: The Atlas Performing Arts Center | H Street NE, DC
When: November 14-18
Tickets: $12

Seven very different animals seek shelter from the winter cold and snow in a large hollow stump. The cuddly, hand-crafted rod-puppets will enchant any child as the characteristics of each animal are revealed through a unique and descriptive poem and song. When the animals let newcomers enter and the space inside the stump grows tighter, these songs interweave. Adapted from the popular tale, The Mitten, this tale celebrates community, as the animals learn to share one space. Recommended for ages 3-9.

Grandma’s Thanksgiving Visit
Where: Discovery Theater | National Mall, DC
When: November 15, 16, 19, 20
Tickets: $3-8

Last Fall’s sold-out show returns! Grandma has arrived for the holiday—and that can only mean making puppets, cooking together, washing the car, and learning lots of fun new things. This musical play with a great big heart brings the whole audience into the family with singing, finger play, and call-and response as we all give thanks for being together. Recommended for ages 3-6.

Fancy Nancy’s Splendiferous Christmas
Where: Adventure Theatre | Glen Echo Park, MD
When: November 16 – January 6
Tickets: $19.50

What could be fancier than Christmas? Presents with elegant wrapping paper, festive decorations, Christmas cookies with sprinkles-and who could forget the tree? After all, there is no such thing as too much tinsel. Oohlala! This year, Nancy is especially excited. After selling some of her old gowns and accessories, Nancy has enough money to buy a brand-new sparkly tree topper. She can’t wait to decorate the Christmas tree. But when things don’t turn out the way Nancy planned, will Christmas still be splendiferous? Recommended for all ages.

How to Catch a Star
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: November 20 – December 18
Tickets: $20

Once there was a boy who dreamed a star could be his new friend—if only he could catch one. He tried climbing to the top of the tallest tree. He tried flying in a paper rocket ship. But nothing worked. Just when the boy was about to give up, he discovered something as dazzling and special as the star he was seeking! Best-selling author and illustrator Oliver Jeffers’s beloved children’s book about chasing your dreams comes to vivid life in a production created and directed by Jared Mezzocchi. Featuring colorful projections and choreographed movement, How to Catch a Star is a whimsical tale of discovery, friendship, and delightful surprises. Recommended for ages 3+.


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Filed under 2018, All ages, DC, Fall, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Music, Seasonal, Theatre, Virginia, Weekdays, Weekend

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