The Washington Stage Guild, celebrating the 35th anniversary of its founding, announces its return to in-person production with a four-piece season. All grapple with the question of hard choices defended, challenges unexpectedly accepted, and the importance of trust – gained and lost – that requires vulnerability and courage to persevere.
The season includes production that was halted by COVID-19 just before it opened, Sam & Dédé, or my dinner with André the Giant by Gino DiIorio. This long-delayed regional premiere will be joined by three plays that were slated for 2020-21 but are coming to the stage this season instead.
“We can’t wait to get back on stage after such a long hiatus,” said artistic director Bill Largess. “The in-store season, however, will have been worth the wait. After so many doubts in the recent past, it seems particularly relevant to look at the desire we have to trust others, be they friends, colleagues, relatives or even the government. Society relies on these connections and these four pieces show us that trust is built, challenged, frayed and broken. And as always at the Stage Guild, the four pieces speak to each other, in harmony or in contrast.
My children ! My Africa! by Athol Fugard
11/11/2021 to 12/05/2021
Directed by Gerrad Alex Taylor
The great South African playwright’s meditation on education and its role in the struggle for justice, as well as its sad limits in a culture of oppression and bigotry. In a town in the Eastern Cape of South Africa’s Karoo in 1984, dedicated teacher Mr M seeks to provide a future for his award-winning pupil Thami by forming a debate team with a bright pupil from the local white school, Isabel. But Mr. M’s hopes for Thami are challenged by their generational divide and the political violence brewing outside the classroom.
Sam & Dédé or My dinner with André the Giant by Gino DiIorio
01/13/2022 to 02/06/2022
Directed by Steven Carpenter and starring Alan Wade and Scott McCormick. Carryover from last season, a revealing tale of two very unexpected friends and their influence on each other over the decades. Their unlikely friendship began when an aspiring writer, an Irishman expat in France, drove a young man (whose remarkable height made him the subject of derision) to school each day, discussing playwriting. , professional wrestling and where their lives would take them. A late regional premiere.
Mrs. Warren’s occupation by George Bernard Shaw
02/25/2022 to 03/27/2022
Directed by Michael Rothhaar
Two of Shaw’s biggest women clash as Mrs. Warren and her daughter Vivie struggle to connect in light of their very different views on women, morality and business. Shaw’s play was considered explosive when it premiered in 1905, drawing ire from the Lord Chamberlain’s office for its frank examination of the hypocrisy surrounding prostitution. It still packs a punch today. This new production will be directed by the director of the 1991 Guild production.
Memoirs of a Forgotten Man by DW Gregory
5/5/2022 to 5/29/2022
Directed by Kasi Campbell
A 2018 hit at the Contemporary American Theater Festival, Gregory’s play depicts a totalitarian regime’s determination to erase history and the tragic effect this has on a man who cannot forget anything. Based on a true story, a man with a photographic memory finds himself and his entourage in peril under an authoritarian regime that obliterates his political enemies.
SEASON PASSES are on sale now – at the same low price as before – $125 for four entries to be used in any combination! ONE TICKET nor have the prices been increased. To buy go on line.
SHOW TIMES AND PRICES
Thursday evenings at 7:30 p.m. $50.00
Friday and Saturday evenings at 8:00 p.m. $60.00
Matinees Saturday and Sunday at 2:30 p.m. $50.00
Discounts are available for seniors, students and groups.
LOCATION FOR ALL SHOWS
The Undercroft Theater at Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church, 900 Massachusetts Avenue NW, in the heart of downtown Washington, DC, at the corner of Massachusetts Avenue and 9th Street NW.
HEALTH AND SAFETY POLICY
The Washington Stage Guild has been carefully preparing for a return to live theater. To that end, we have partnered with other theaters in the area to require patrons to be vaccinated when attending performances at our theater. And we are committed to a rigorous set of health and safety protocols that include enhanced cleaning and social distancing in theater. Masks will also be required for all guests, regardless of their vaccination status. These policies will be in effect until CDC and DC/federal government guidance deems them unnecessary.
We have not been idle during the 18-month break caused by the pandemic. Thanks to a grant from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and the generosity of many individual donors, we have completed a major “green” overhaul of our lighting system, which will be more energy efficient and make the shows we present more beautiful than already. We also turned to digital production and delivered four online presentations that captured the attention of our audience; three of our online performances were plays by our “in-house playwright”, George Bernard Shaw (don juan in hell, The Devil’s Discipleand How he lied to her husband), and the fourth piece offers insight into Shaw’s personal life (Dear liar By Jerome Kilty, adapted from the correspondence of Bernard Shaw and Mrs. Patrick Campbell).
Dear liar streams for free from September 29 at 8 p.m. to October 3, 2021 at 8 p.m. To view this unique performance, patrons can visit the Washington Stage Guild event page at ShowTix4U.com/events/wsg and follow the instructions to get a free ticket to watch anytime during a 48 hour rental period.
SEE ALSO: Shaw and her lead actress to speak lines in WSG’s ‘Dear Liar’