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Visiting Joseph in Laurel, Kate in Annapolis

Kiss Me Kate Kate and PetruchioLAUREL – “Take you the lute, and you the set of books,” writes Shakespeare in his raucous comedy “The Taming of the Shrew.” Two area shows take up both classic books and, if not the lute, then indeed a variety of instruments to bring vividly to life two classic stories which are so universal that they continue to speak to us today.

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Thoroughly modern retro musicals

SEABROOK – Two very different musical theater productions are in our midst – productions that have little in common at first other than being written early in the 2000s. At a closer view, however, both “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” performed by the Prince George’s Little Theatre and “Thoroughly Modern Millie” enacted by the Reston Community Players are – to adopt the title of the latter – “thoroughly retro modern musicals,” blending venerable broadway traditions with a dose of modern cynicism. 

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‘Snow Child’ makes world premiere at Arena Stage

snow childWASHINGTON, D.C. – The new musical, “Snow Child,” is onstage at the Arena Stage in Washington, D.C. through May 20. While interesting with its storyline of a grieving couple who find hope from a young girl who transforms their lives in the Alaska wilderness in the 1920s, never seems to hit the emotional ball out of the park.

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Greenbelt – The Art Deco Utopia

GreenbeltTheatreGREENBELT – “Beyond these houses, the elm-beset meadows ended in a fringe of tall willows, while on the right hand went the tow-path and a clear space before a row of trees, which rose up behind huge and ancient, the ornaments of a great park.” So writes William Morris in “News from Nowhere,” a late 1800s novel describing a utopia dedicated to living in harmony with nature. Living in planned utopias blending human society with nature was a common theme then and continues to the present day, and many planners have attempted to put this goal into practice.

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