Friday: saw King Charles III at the Shakespeare Theater.

Saturday: went to Millennium Stage for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater workshop based on his signature work Revelations: we did "Didn't My Lord Deliver Daniel", "Wade in the Water", and "Rocka My Soul iin the Bosom of Abraham", admittedly with somewhat simplified choreography -- nobody was asking a group of amateurs to do hinges, after all. It was a lot of fun, but I did have the usual problem of children who weren't participating but were running around being underfoot. I don't want to trip on or knock over a 7-year-old!

Sunday: a short excursion to Labyrinth Games & Puzzles -- we got sucked into the jigsaw puzzle vortex, as they had a Ravensburger Antique Map puzzle out for fiddling with, and the salesclerk helpfully showed us the roll-mats for puzzles, so there are tentative plans to have an all-day puzzle party sometime soonish. Then dinner at Belga Cafe. We got a couple of waffles to share as starters, and then entrees. Desserts we decided to share among the table -- basically, we'd talked [personal profile] greenygal into ordering the asparagus beignets with candied asparagus and asparagus ice cream, and everyone wanted to try a bit of it. We actually ordered every desert except the endive clafoutis...maybe next time?..but I think the best dessert was the warm cherry almond cake.

Monday: stayed in bed with a head cold... which is a let-down after a very fun weekend.
Due to [personal profile] fabrisse having an extra ticket, I got to see the Shakespeare Theater Company's production of King Charles III tonight. Let me say this -- it's a modern play that really rewards being a Shakespeare buff!

It's a pretty amazing story that deals with rights of the press, the right to privacy, the conscience of a king, and a constitutional crisis!
On Monday I went out with [ profile] fabrisse to see the National Theater Live filmed production of Tom Stoppard's The Hard Problem, as she had a spare ticket. It was quite an excellent play, which deals scientific ambition, financial trading, unreciprocated sexual attraction, scientific integrity, and adoption from the viewpoint of the birth mother. The hard problem of the title is the question of consciousness, which is currently one of the thorniest problems in science, since we really don't know enough about the brain to know anything other than "we don't how to ask that yet".

Yesterday, I went with [personal profile] greenygal and [personal profile] pleasance to see the filmed version of Julie Taymor's version of A Midsummer Night's Dream at the AFI. It was amazing. Given that it was Taymor, the costume design was fantastic, including use of fiber-optic lights in Titania's costuming, body paint -- Oberon's was either blue-black or blued steel, with glitter and gold accents -- and a donkey mask with hand-operated mouth movement for Bottom. The fairies entered and left through the ceiling and floor, and the entire cast made fantastic use of all the stage space, including catwalks above the audience. Max Casella as Bottom was hilarious, Mandi Mansen as Helena made me really feel for her when she was accusing Hermia, Demetrius and Lysander of mocking her, Demetrius and Lysander were hilarious when they kept getting in slap-fights and competive stripping over Helena (because it's not Midsummer if all four of the young lovers don't end up in their underwear), Kathryn Hunter as Puck was apparently made of rubber, I would love to see David Harewood (who played the Prince of Morocco in the 2004 film of The Merchant of Venice -- Portia should have run off with him, he was so damned charming) and Tina Benko as Oberon and Titania live, and Zachary Infante was surprisingly touching as Flute playing Thisbe.
Yesterday, [personal profile] greenygal and I went to see Synetic Theater's A Midsummer's Night Dream. I had seen this show before, in a previous production. This year they had the same Oberon, Puck, and Bottom, but the rest of the cast had changed. It was still a lot of fun, and Bottom's transformation was still amazing; the actor ripped off his clothes to reveal a set of donkeyskin breeches instead of donning a donkey mask -- basically, Bottom turns into Bachus, complete with crown of leaves.

It turns out that Synetic is having a kickstarter to fund renovations to their new studio space -- they lost their old one, and are trying t to raise money to bring the new space up to code. I'm contributing, and I'm seriously considering buying a subscription because I do love their productions.

This coming season the shows are:

  • The Picture of Dorian Gray, Sept. 26, 2013 – Nov. 3, 2013

  • Twelfth Night, Jan. 9, 2014 – Feb 16, 2014

  • Hamlet … the rest is silence, March 13, 2014 – April 6, 2014

  • Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog), May 8, 2014 – June 8, 2014

I've seen a production of their Hamlet interpretation, but I think the others are all new. I definitely want to see their Twelfth Night.

Who else is interested in seeing one of these shows?
Yesterday, [personal profile] greenygal and I went to see the production of Three Musketeers at Synetic Theater, the local stage company that uses dance, Russian physical theater, and non-traditional interpretations in their performances. They're well known locally for putting on silent (wordless) production of Shakespeare. These are the people who put on the all-clown production of King Lear that was creepy as fuck.

Thankful, The Three Musketeers was not creepy. It was awesome! )

Basically, it was a ton of swashbuckling, some tragedy with Athos and deWinter's backstory (her wanting revenge on everyone was great, but I missed why she thought her first murder was justified...), the sweetness of Constance and D'Artagnan's romance, D'Artagnan's complete puppyness, and generally a lot of fun and good dancing.

Next, Synetic is doing their A Midsummers Night's Dream adaptation, which I have seen before, but wouldn't mind seeing again. I'm actually thinking about buying a subscription for the season, since 2013-14 is The Picture of Dorian Grey, Twelfth Night, Hamlet … the rest is silence, and Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog).
So, [personal profile] zvi and I went to see Synetic Theater's King Lear this past Saturday.

King Lear as clowns -- surprisngly creepy )

We also ate before the show at Carmine's -- two sandwiches were entirely too much food for two people. I think we could have fed *six* with what was brought to the table. Unfortunately, the 'side' salads were quite oily, which is not at all how I like my raw greens. The cannoli were not bad, though I have never had any with the proper thin shells all the time I've lived on the East Coast


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