In D.C. Dream Day, we ask our favorite people in the area to tell us how they would spend a perfect day in the District. See previous dream days from Mayor Muriel Bowser, the BYT’s Svetlana Legetic, Story District’s Amy Saidman and more.
After 30 years as a writer-director, Aaron Posner is tackling something he’s been avoiding for his 19th production at Folger Theatre: Shakespeare’s “The Winter’s Tale” (201 E. Capitol St. SE; Tue. through April 22, $25-$79). Posner has made a career out of finding new ways to tell old stories, but “Winter’s Tale” had always intimidated him. “A world that’s simultaneously full of spirit and ghosts and magic and music and insane jealousy and endless resourcefulness and comedy: It’s a big tent,” Posner, 54, says of the play. “Not only was I not old enough and mature enough, I wasn’t good enough to do it before.” True to form, Posner has livened up the classic text with music: Almost all of the actors play instruments during the show. Until “Winter’s Tale” rehearsals are over, he’s dreaming up the perfect “Dada-daughter date” with his 6-year-old, Maisie.
One of the most amazing things in D.C. is that you have three major theaters doing interesting and engaging work for young people: Imagination Stage, the Kennedy Center and Adventure Theater. So I’m going to a children’s theater and watching a good play, with my daughter, and watching her love it — that’s a morning thing.
My daughter has allergies, so really good sorbets are key. Dolcezza over by Studio Theatre for some honey-cardamom-lavender weird-ass sorbet definitely makes her day. That’s her joy. And they’re always changing their flavors.
Then the museums are great. She loves [playing at] the National Museum of Natural History, as do I. The National Building Museum is awesome — it’s become a big favorite; we’re members there. She also loves “all the people” at the National Portrait Gallery, and just also that atrium. She loves the big open spaces. I like that place to go and sit and write, too.
If I’m going to put in one thing where I’m not with my daughter, I’ll take a couple hours out to write in a coffee shop, especially the coffee shops on Capitol Hill, like Port City Java, where I can sit and write and put in my earphones — but not actually put on music — and listen to conversations. I was upstairs at the Starbucks at Third and Pennsylvania the other day and there was a congressman with two of his staff, and they were going over stuff that I was surprised they were talking about in public. For pure entertainment value, I like overhearing little snippets of conversation, those little moments where you’re like, “What is the whole story of that?”
We have a couple of favorite restaurants, like Kin Da in Takoma Park, Md., which is a little Asian place. [We get] a lot of tofu with broccoli and peanuts. We’re pretty healthy: It’s a lot of vegetables and a lot of tofu; my wife [actress Erin Weaver] is a vegetarian. We did not eat healthy before my daughter was born, at all. But because my daughter has sensitivities to gluten, dairy and nuts, we had to learn to cook, which we never did before. It’s had a big impact on me.
On a special night, we go to that fabulous iPic theater in North Bethesda, where you can get a drink at your seat and all the popcorn you could want and sit in your comfortable reclining chairs. If this perfect day could come in June, then we’ll go to see “Incredibles 2.” To end the day with “Incredibles 2” at the iPic would be awesome.