- The Washington Times - Saturday, March 31, 2001

The British are coming, the British are coming.

"UK/KC: The Kennedy Center Celebrates the Arts of the United Kingdom" begins next week with the play "A Servant to Two Masters," staged by London's Young Vic theater company and the Royal Shakespeare Company.

The production — British playwright Lee Hall's new adaptation of the comedy by 18th-century Venetian playwright Carlo Goldoni — runs from 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through April 29 in Kennedy Center's Eisenhower Theater. (Performances are nightly except Mondays, with matinees at 2:30 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. 202/467-4600 or 800/444-1324.)

In the farce, the character Truffaldino lands jobs with two masters and struggles to deal with them. One of the masters is a woman who has disguised herself as her slain brother to search for her lover, Truffaldino's other master.

Three other plays make up the theater portion of the festival. "Spoonface Steinberg," a one-woman show performed by Kathryn Hunter, runs from May 9 to 13. The character Spoonface is 7, autistic, loves opera singers and has just learned that she is terminally ill.

The Shared Experience Theatre Company will present George Eliot's "Mill on the Floss" from May 16 to July 10, and the Almeida Theatre will stage Frank Wedekind's epic "Lulu" in its entirety June 16 to July 15.

Other festival events are:

Dance: The contemporary company Random Dance brings its technological advanced, athletic choreography to the center's Terrace Theater May 31 and June 1. It will join dancers from the Royal Ballet the next two days in "Duo:Logue." The Royal Ballet will dance works by its founding choreographer, Sir Frederick Ashton, from June 5 to 10. Mr. Ashton is being celebrated by the Kennedy Center as one of the 20th century's four greatest choreographers.

Chamber music: The Nash Ensemble performs an all-English program May 8 in the Terrace Theater. The National Symphony Orchestra Chamber Ensemble performs a free concert on the Millennium Stage on May 4.

Symphony: Violinist Sarah Chang joins the London Symphony Orhcestra for a concert April 28. The National Symphony Orchestra presents a three-week British Festival beginning May 3 that will include three performances of Benjamin Britten's choral work "War Requiem"; a mini-Shakespeare Festival of three programs with Christopher Plummer as host; and three programs featuring violinist Hilary Hahn performing an Edward Elgar work, percussionist Colin Currie doing a new NSO commission by composer Steve Martland, and a performance of NSO Music Director Leonard Slatkin's version of "The Last Night of the Proms," a London concert tradition.

Film: The center and AFI present a look at past and current British films. For specifics, check the Web site (www.afionline.org/nft).

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