The rock musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch, with text by John Cameron Mitchell and music and lyrics by Stephen Trask, started as a performance in drag clubs and became an international phenomenon. It’s now playing at the State Theater of Olympia’s Harlequin Productions, starring Adam Rennie as Hedwig and Mandy Rose Nichøls as Hedwig’s husband and assistant, Yitzhak.
In many ways the Martins, the quintet of characters who populate Deanna Jent’s hour-long, 2011 play Falling, resemble a typical American family. Mother Tami, in some ways a stand-in for Jent herself, is overwhelmed and fond of red wine. Teenage son Josh demands a day off from school. There’s one all-important factor missing from that synopsis, however: Josh is a person with autism, given to veering from giddy hilarity to violent frenzy with little provocation or warning.
It’s surprising and delightful when an amateur company chooses an entire slate of obscure material. Such is the case with Olympia Little Theatre (OLT), which will offer a roster of seven shows entirely new to most audience members. Feeling adventurous?
This spring, Olympia’s Harlequin Productions is doing something that’s never been done in this area. It’s producing Sovereignty, a historical drama about Native Americans, written and directed by Native Americans, performed by an ensemble of Native and non-Native actors, with direction, set, costume and lighting design by Native artists brought to Olympia from all over the United States.
Fully Vaxxed at Olympia Family Theater is one of the funniest, most distinctive and important theatrical events out there. It’s a campaign that will continue and move to other towns after its run at OFT. It’s a plea and a lesson on the importance of vaccinations in the time of COVID-19. It’s a performance of three bilingual, one-act plays running two weekends at OFT, then touring the state.
It can sometimes be hard to tell the difference between bad acting and good actors playing the part of bad actors — or between a bad script and a play about a badly written show. Audiences at Olympia Little Theatre’s farcical The Bold, the Young, and the Murdered, written by Don Zolidis and directed by Katelyn May, are left to decide for themselves.
Coming soon to The Washington Center for the Performing Arts is a touring tribute show, The British Invasion — Live on Stage, which includes Shannon McEldowney on keyboards and vocals alongside six other onstage performers.
Olympia Family Theater’s Fully Vaxxed, opening March 18, is much more than a theatrical production. The trio of bilingual, one-act plays — which will tour throughout the state and be available for streaming — is part of a public health campaign harnessing the power of art to inspire people to get vaccinated.
The arrival of artistic director Lily Raabe to Olympia Family Theater (OFT) means big things for the family entertainment company in spring of 2022. Two mainstage shows open days apart, followed by the long-awaited debut of a musical mystery by Oly playwright Ted Ryle.
In OLT’s “The Wickhams: Christmas at Pemberley,” Mr. and Mrs. Darcy are hosting a Christmas party. That creates endless work for the servants downstairs, but the real hitch is the impending arrival of Mr. Darcy’s sworn enemy, Mr. Wickham.