While doing his research, Laboissonniere found that preconceived notions of how these people might have looked completely clashed with, well, reality. For instance: the powdered wig.
“It’s a little bit earlier than this particular time period, [and] it’s also a little more formal,” he said. “I know in a lot of previous ‘1776’ productions they’re all very fancy. And these men, though some of them were well-to-do and aristocratic, for the most part they had an American sensibility.
“We really want the audience to see these people as human beings who have come from different places in the country. . . . The challenge that I gave myself was, ‘We will not repeat a hairstyle, ever.’ So there are 24 different looks on that stage.”
In addition to the past, there is the present to consider. “One of the things about actors it you’ve got to actually make them look good,” he said. “The historical research is a map. It just gives you a direction to go in. And then you have to tweak it to have the feeling, the flavor. We’re not doing Disney’s Hall of Presidents.”
Through May 19, 511 10th St. NW, www.fords.org, 202-347-4833.
‘Twelve Angry Men’ extended
Keegan Theatre’s production of “Twelve Angry Men” has been extended through March 31.
The play is Christopher Gallu’s directorial debut at Keegan. Cast member Dave Jourdan is reprising his Helen Hayes-nominated role from 2001. The 11 other angry men are played by Colin Smith, Tim Lynch, Rich Montomery, Bradley Smith, Michael Innocenti, Mike Kozemchak, Jon Townson, Mark Rhea, Richard Jamborsky, Andres Talero and Kevin Adams.
Through March 31, Church Street Theater, 1742 Church St. NW,