At one level, “Stardust,” which received its world premiere this past weekend at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at the University of Maryland, is very old fashioned. It is a 90 minute piece that tells a story, which many new dance pieces tend to avoid in favor of patterns and moods.
It is interesting that Ford’s Theater is mounting a production of the musical “Violet” right now. The creative team behind this musical is currently in the process of revising the show for a Broadway run. The production at Ford’s allows us to see the original version of this story.
Constellation Theater, down at the Source Theater in DC, frequently mounts plays based on fantasy and mythology – ranging from the ancient epic Gilgamesh to the dark dreams of Clive Barker. But even folklorists want to have fun.
So currently at Constellation is a modern adaptation of “Scapin,” a lesser known farce by the great French playwright Moliere. Writers Bill Irwin and Mark O’Donnell have cleverly updated this neo-Classical comedy for modern audiences – it is witty and often uproarious: just be sure to check your brain at the door before entering.
The plot – well, since this is a farc
When it comes to classic literature – literature being read a generation or more after it was published – there are those huge tomes by Dickens and Tolstoy. Next to them, those dozen or so thin books by Beatrix Potter seem almost insignificant. But while you may never have cracked the covers of “Bleak House,” you know the story of Peter Rabbit, and no doubt many other characters from Potter’s imagination.