Pick of the Pack
The Apple Family Plays
In Washington, the latest political scandal is reported as local news. What do Americans outside of the Beltway think about this strange town? “The Apple Family Plays,” a series of four plays taking place over four years by Richard Nelson (“Hyde Park on Hudson”), might answer the question. The plays take an in-depth look at families in America and how they respond to politics and war. On Wednesday, Washington’s Studio Theatre opens the first two in a rotating repertory, allowing you to see one or both with a discount. “That Hopey Changey Thing” explores the Apple family’s history over dinner on the eve of the midterm election in 2010, and “Sweet and Sad” takes place on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, which one Apple family member remembers especially vividly. Wednesday through Dec. 29 at the Studio Theatre, 1501 14th St. NW. 202/332-3300. Web: studiotheatre.org.
Whether you’re an early Creedence Clearwater Revival fan or a “Glee”-watching millennial, you probably know and love “Proud Mary,” the roots rock band’s 1969 hit that was featured in the television show’s famous wheelchair number. Though the band broke up in 1972, the music lives on — especially since lead singer, songwriter and guitarist John Fogerty continues to produce albums with the same “swamp pop” sound. Mr. Fogerty’s ninth and latest album, “Wrote A Song for Everyone,” debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 and shows the broad appeal of his music as he performs his biggest hits and a few new tunes with some of music’s biggest contemporary stars, including an acclaimed rendition of “Born on the Bayou” with Kid Rock. The Grammy Award winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer is currently on tour to promote the album, and stops in Washington. Friday, Nov. 8 at DAR Constitution Hall, 1776 D St. NW. 202/628-4780. Web: dar.org or ticketmaster.com.
Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty
Tchaikovsky’s “The Sleeping Beauty” debuted at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg in 1890, and the ballet adaptation of Charles Perrault’s classic fairy tale remains one of the most popular ballets of all time. All little girls know the story of Princess Aurora, who falls asleep for 100 years when she pricks her finger on an enchanted spinning wheel, but the story takes a dark, mature twist with Tchaikovsky’s haunting score and, now, a gothic backdrop. This week, acclaimed British choreographer Matthew Bourne and his company New Adventures bring a fresh production of the classic ballet to the Kennedy Center for a limited run (with discounted tickets if you also purchase them for the Joffrey Ballet’s “The Nutcracker,” opening later this month). In Mr. Bourne’s version, Aurora falls asleep during the Edwardian era, and awakens in the modern world. On opening night, stick around for a post-performance discussion with members of the company. Tuesday through Nov. 17 at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, 2700 F St. NW. 800/444-1324. Web: kennedy-center.org.
When girls (or guys) just wanna have fun, there’s no better music to play than Cyndi Lauper’s infectious pop song. The singer’s first solo album, “She’s So Unusual” (1983), propelled her to international fame and won numerous international music awards, including the 1985 Grammy for best new artist. Thirty years later, Miss Lauper is still a force in the music scene. “Kinky Boots,” the Broadway musical for which she wrote the music and lyrics, earned 13 Tony Award nominations, and she recently launched a tour to mark the 30th anniversary of the album that started it all. On Wednesday, she stops at the Warner Theatre, where you can expect to hear hits including “Time After Time,” “She Bop,” “True Colors” and, of course, “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.” Wednesday at the Warner Theatre, 513 13th St. NW. 202/783-4000. Web: warnertheatredc.org.
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