Most Read

Friends' activity

More GOG
Posted at 03:31 PM ET, 06/12/2012

Week in reviews: A cultural round-up


The must-see show of the week is Woolly Mammoth’s “Mr. Burns, a post-electric play.” (Scott Suchman/Woolly Mammoth)
Over the last week, critics for the Washington Post have reviewed dadaist plays, modernist art and comforting country music, among other shows on local stages and museum walls. Sifting through news and reviews from the last week, here’s a rundown of the most praised must-see events along with more cautionary advice about the current cultural landscape. Click on the show links for full reviews.

Review of the week:

Theater: “Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play

Peter Marks raved about Anne Washburn’s play, at Woolly Mammoth through July 1: “It’s a witty, bizarre, thoroughly riveting inquiry into the comforting — some might say confounding — durability of pop culture, as well as a rather sweet exploration of storytelling and how our innocence as a species is rekindled every time we retell or revise an old tale.”

Honorable mentions

Art: “George Bellows

“The National Gallery of Art’s large exhibition devoted to the work of George Bellows, the first major Bellows show since a 1992 painting retrospective in Los Angeles, feels more like pieces of a puzzle, a fascinating, imperfect puzzle.” — Philip Kennicott

Art: “R(ad)ical Love: Sister Mary Corita

“The exhibition of 65 prints (made between 1963 and 1967) at the National Museum of Women in the Arts is composed mainly of recontextualized advertising slogans, commercial logos, fragments of typography and handwritten inspirational quotations from such poets as e. e. cummings, Lang­ston Hughes and Walt Whitman.” — Michael O’Sullivan

Music: Chris Smither

“Smither’s country-blues guitar-picking sparkles on every number, usually supported by Morphine drummer Billy Conway and cellist Kris Delmhorst. Smither’s baritone can be as comforting as a wool blanket, but it usually contains a hidden barb.” — Geoffrey Himes

Music: Marissa Nadler

“Her spare, downplayed instrumentation and feminine, pristine voice possess a haunted quality — it could easily be played in an abandoned mansion filled with cobwebs and candelabras.” — Dan Miller

More reviews

Music: Langhorne Slim

“Langhorne and the Law don’t necessarily tread new ground but rather make a convincing case for the lasting power of music that filters the best parts of Americana through a 21st-century sensibility.” — Chris Kompanek

Theater: “Suicide Incorporated

“The one-act play by Andrew Hinderaker is the product of the forced marriage of sketch comedy and earnest, social drama.” — Peter Marks

Theater: “Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All For You

“Director Joe Banno and his cast in the American Century Theater’s production tread the tightrope between drama and farce with mixed results.” — Jane Horwitz

Theater: “DADA Returns!

“The pair of one-acts presented under the title ‘DADA Returns!’ by Legitimate Stage at the D.C. Arts Center can’t avoid a whiff of antiquity.” — Jane Horwitz

Theater: “Home of the Soldier

“This 90-minute dance-play, about a young man who enlists in the military to save his father — a general who has been captured by an enemy wearing gauzy, free-flowing netting — is a whole album of echoes. As a result, it never reverberates with an identity of its own.” — Peter Marks

Theater: “Double Indemnity

“‘Indemnity’ won’t mark the high point of [Blake] Robison’s watch; Lodge’s world-weary turn, Nancy Schertler’s brilliantly dark lighting scheme and Matthew M. Nielson’s sinister sound and compositions are about all that ring true.” — Nelson Pressley

Exhibit: “In Full Glory Reflected: Maryland During the War of 1812

“With 5,000 square feet of displays and more than 100 artifacts, it is Maryland’s largest bicentennial exhibit, which feels about right given the psychic ground it has to cover.” — Lonnae O'Neal Parker

Cultural news:

Post writers have also covered producing “Beauty and the Beast” on a budget, the story of theatrical collaborators John Kander and Fred Ebb and the star of Keegan Theatre’s “Spring Awakening.” Click on the links below for the full story.

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast

First You Dream: The Music of Kander and Ebb

Memphis

Spring Awakening

Puerto Rico... Fua!

You might also like:

‘Madagascar 3,’ ‘Prometheus’ and more new movie reviews

By  |  03:31 PM ET, 06/12/2012

Categories:  Museums, Theater, Museums

 
Read what others are saying
     

    © 2011 The Washington Post Company