Click above to learn more and reserve free tickets!
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This post is paid for by The National Theatre, however, I only promote programs, places, and events that I genuinely believe in and think will appeal to KFDC readers.
Looking for something to do with the family without breaking the bank? How about going to the theatre? Theatre Week is the best time to see shows in the DC Metro Area with tickets for $15 or $35. Presented by theatreWashington and TodayTix, the event brings together more than 25 participating theaters and productions so you can enjoy the best theatre in town at the best prices of the year. It’s a chance to sample the diverse and vibrant work on a variety of stages across the region with musicals, dramas, comedies, theatre for young audiences, and more.
This year’s Theatre Week offers amazing deals on shows that are fun for the whole family. “Elephant & Piggie,” adapted from the award-winning, best-selling children’s books, will jump from page to stage in the musical experience your kids won’t forget! “Bobtail Bong Bong: A Monkey’s Tail” is an interactive show for kids. Come early with your kids for crafts and pre-show activities, and stick around afterwards for a Meet-and-Greet with the actors.
Join theatremakers from across the DMV at the free kickoff party on Saturday, September 7, 11am – 4pm at Arena Stage! Enjoy an afternoon of performances, demonstrations, conversations, and giveaways. There will also be free food, drinks, and special programming for kids. Come talk to a designer or director and learn about your favorite company’s upcoming productions. RSVP for your free ticket on TodayTix!
Theatre Week is a signature program of theatreWashington, the only organization dedicated to supporting and representing all sectors of the Washington theatre community. All tickets are available through TodayTix, the premier digital gateway to arts and cultural experiences. TodayTix is the place for audiences to discover, explore, and engage with the best entertainment DC has to offer.
Theatre Week runs September 10-29, but you can reserve tickets now!
National Theatre has had a stellar line-up of shows this winter, and it’s continuing into spring with another Broadway hit. A Bronx Tale is coming to the stage March 26-31, and KFDC readers have a chance to win a pair of tickets to see it!
The crowd-pleasing production takes you to the stoops of the Bronx in the 1960s, where a young man is caught between the father he loves and the mob boss he’d love to be. Bursting with high, energy dance numbers and original doo-wop tunes, A Bronx Tale is an unforgettable story of loyalty and family. Academy Award winner Robert De Niro and Tony winner Jerry Zaks direct this streetwise musical, based on Academy Award nominee Chazz Palminteri’s story.
A Bronx Tale is recommended for ages 12 and up due to strong language and gunshot effects. Run time is approximately 2 hours and 10 minutes, including one intermission.
Tickets prices range from $54-114 and can be purchased online. Of course, you can also try to win them through the giveaway below.
Giveaway: For a chance to win a pair of tickets to A Bronx Tale at National Theatre on Tuesday, March 26, 2019, at 7:30pm, simply leave a comment below naming your favorite movie that has been adapted for the stage or your favorite stage production that has been made into a film. Get an extra chance to win by entering on the KidFriendly DC Facebook Page, too. This giveaway will run through March 17, 2019, then a winner will be drawn at random and announced shortly thereafter. Good luck!
The characters who join Will in the elevator have died, each of them killed by gun violence at some point during Will’s life. But they return as the people they would be now — the age they would be and with a perspective of what happened to them. There is Uncle Buck, childhood friend Dani, Uncle Mark, his father, Buck’s killer Frick, and, finally, his brother, Shawn.
One of the most amazing things about the show is that all of the characters are played by just one actor. Justin Weaks does a superb job bringing them all to life (literally, in a way). For over an hour, it was just him on stage, and he had us all mesmerized the entire time.
As Will interacts with every person, and we learn more about each of their lives and deaths, we also get a peek inside Will’s mind — his grief, anger, frustration, heartache — as he contemplates all that has happened and what he is about to do. He begins to question his intent to follow The Rules. And as the elevator doors finally open, and Shawn asks, “You coming?” it’s almost as if there’s a collective gasp as everyone in the audience holds their breath.
Needless to say, this production is immensely powerful and riveting. I highly recommend it for about ages 12+ and have to note that this is just as much for adults as it is the YA audience for whom it was written. (Owen had read and really enjoyed the book already. While I hadn’t read it yet, he told me what it was about, so I knew what to expect going in. Either way, and even without knowledge of the book, it’s a very compelling show.)
Long Way Down is running at the Kennedy Center, with several shows remaining from Thursday 11/1 – Sunday, 11/4, and there are still some tickets available for just about all of them.
And as shown in the photo above, Jason Reynolds was there for that first performance to sign books and take photos before the show. He also spoke afterward and noted that the story isn’t just about gun violence, but about “humanizing the people that feel this kind of pain.”
His book and this production convey that brilliantly.
We learn early on that the death of their child and the opportunity to start over were the impetus of Mabel and Jack’s move to this new frontier. From the opening scene, as Mabel walks across cracking ice, breaking the silence with a beautiful song, there is an aura of both melancholy and hope. It’s been a struggle for them to set up a homestead in the wilds of Alaska, and it has put a strain on the couple’s marriage, but they are determined to rebuild their life after their tragic loss.
When they meet a young mysterious girl who lives among the wild lands around them, things start to change for the better, and joy returns to their lives. Yet the tough environment forces circumstances that plunge them into a nearly desperate place. Mabel, however, resolves to overcome the challenges and make their life in Alaska succeed and make it their home.
This is all played out masterfully by the talented cast, and I’d say stand-outs are Chistiane Noll as Mabel and Fina Strazza as Faina, the wild child. Both gave beautiful performances — Noll brings so much emotion to her character, and Strazza keeps the audience captivated, though she barely says a word.
The other highlights of the show — the elements that almost had me recommending this for younger audiences — are the music and the puppetry. The score, which I’d describe as a bluegrass/folk/Americana mix, both help tell the story and add another layer of entertainment. It’s music that can be appreciated across generations.
Snow Child also contains some of the most beautiful puppetry I’ve ever seen in a show, and the puppeteers maneuver them with such graceful agility, you barely notice them. A large horse operated by two people, a snow fox, and a swan move so similarly to and exhibit characteristics of the actual creatures, they almost seem real. (You can read more about them in this interview with their creators.)
Owen (12) and I saw Snow Child together, and his input is incorporated into this review. He agreed with me that some younger kids might enjoy seeing it, but then added that while Sasha (9) would like it, some things might be “too much” for her — and that she probably wouldn’t be able to sit through the whole performance. Keep in mind this is her older brother saying this. I’m sticking with the T(w)een Scene recommendation, though.
Snow Child is running at Arena Stage through May 20. Tickets are $55-110, and Arena Stage offers a Family Fun Pack: 4 seats for only $129. They must be purchase by phone or in person, and orders must include a minimum of two patrons between ages 5 and 17.