Thursday, February 28, 2008

Living August Wilson’s century

When he died in 2005, the Pulitzer-winning playwright August Wilson left behind a cycle of plays chronicling the black experience in America in each of the 10 decades of the past century. In “August Wilson’s 20th Century,” the Kennedy Center brings them together for the first time, with a five-week repertory marathon of staged readings in the Terrace Theater that will present the plays in order of their decade. The tribute opens March 4 with “Gem of the Ocean” and winds up with “Radio Golf,” which has its final performance April 6. See Theater listings for the complete cycle and Lectures/Readings/Films for associated discussions.

Revisiting Mexican music

The Mexican Cultural Institute, the Mexican Ministry of Culture, the Library of Congress, the National Gallery of Art and other cultural institutions team up for “Two Faces of Mexican Music: Carlos Chavez (1899-1978) and Silvestre Revueltas (1899-1940) Revisited,” a week-long exploration of today’s changing views of two giants of Mexican music. Lectures, films, a symposium and concerts fill the bill. March 11-16 at venues around town. See Lectures/Readings/Films and Classical Music listings.

Arthur Miller Remembered

Arena Stage and Theater J join in a tribute to a giant of American dramatic literature that begins in March and runs into May. Anchoring the festival are three of Miller’s plays: “The Price” at Theater J from March 8 to April 18, and Arena’s “Death of a Salesman” and “A View from the Bridge,” in repertory from March 14 to May 18. Rounding out the celebration are film screenings, discussions and readings, most of them free or pay-what-you-can, at a range of venues. Through May 19. For the plays, see the Theater listings; for the rest, see Lectures/Readings/Films.

Celebrating Kander & Ebb

Signature Theatre mounts a four-month salute to the Broadway songwriting partners John Kander and Fred Ebb, kicking it off March 11 with “Kiss of the Spider Woman” in the main theater and, in the Ark, “First You Dream: The Songs of Kander & Ebb,” a series of cabaret-style performances by Karen Akers. Coming up: “The Happy Time,” “The Visit,” more song, dance, screening and conversation, all of it at the theater in Arlington. See Theater and Stage listings and check back for more events through June.

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