WASHINGTON DC -- Two of the more experimental theatres in Washington D.C. are offering summer shows with a highly contemporary flavor.
The Studio Theatre presents the Washington D.C. Premiere of Caryl Churchill's Mad Forest: A Play from Romania.. The play's title comes from an underlying theme of Rumanian folklore--"On the plain where Bucharest now stands, there used to be Teleorman: "a mad forest."
The play chronicles the lives and transformations of two different families before and after the Rumanian revolution of 1989. Although the families are from seemingly different backgrounds, they are connected by the wedding engagements of their children.
Churchill, a prolific British playwright well known for her highly satirical, political works such as Cloud Nine, Top Girls, and her more recent The Skrikrer, brought a group of students from the London School of Drama with her to Bucharest shortly after the fall of the Ceausescu dictatorship, intending to create a theatrical chronicle of the revolution. Mad Forest was the result, receiving its world premiere at Bucharest's National Theatre in 1990.
Due to renovation, the Studio Theatre will present it's production of Mad Forest in the former warehouse of Ruppert's Hardware at 1021 7th Street NW, from July 11-August 11. The spacious, airy, oak-beamed loft space is the perfect setting for a revolutionary play. Tickets are $15, available by calling (202) 332-2200.
Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company will revive it's production of The Obituary Bowl, which premiered to rave reviews this past winter. In this one-woman show by Barbara McConagha, actor Nancy Robinette portrays a strong-willed, eccentric woman who visits her friend's son's grave on what would be his 24th birthday. The graveside confession is a bizarre and comic set of tales.
Nancy Robinette performs frequently on D.C. stages, and received a Helen Hayes Award for her performance in Nicky Silver's Fat Men in Skirts.
Playwright McConagha 's play Mother's Day received a 1990 Helen Hayes nomination for Best Play.
The Obituary Bowl runs at the Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, located at 1401 Church St. NW, July 22-Aug. 11. Tickets cost $22, and can be purchased by calling (202) 393-3939.