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Welcome to May, everyone! This month’s Theatre Guide is brimming with phenomenal musicals, dance, thought-provoking plays, pop classics and, essentially, everything you need for a full-blown month of theatre bliss. Whether you’re catching up with The Blue Man Group or sitting down with Shakespeare, this month’s got a fresh line-up of performances and we’ve got you covered.

If you’re looking for more shows later in the season, check out BYT’s Spring/Summer Theatre Guide. Ready? Let’s begin.


  • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee @ Ford’s Theatre
    March 14-May 17                                                                                                                                                                                                Combine the pain of youth with the cutthroat world of theh spelling bee and you’ll get “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.” Follow 6 teens as they navigate the tough worlds of their youth and the competition of getting that word right. And if that’s not enough 4 audience members will get to participate. I’d like to see you use THAT in a sentence. – JT
  • Tender Napalm @ Signature Theatre
    March 18-May 11
    It’s kinda explicit, but the heartbreakingly beautiful romance will make up for it. Expect to leave with mental trauma, emotional dissatisfaction, and a sense that something is not quite right with the world. So clearly, it’s a must-see. -Morgan Baskin
    BONUS: Check out our full review and our interview with the cast.
  • Camp David @ Arena Stage
    Mar 21 – May 4
    Did you ever wonder about the Camp David Accords? Did Jimmy Carter attempt to speak Arabic? Or keep a kosher kitchen? Pulitzer Prize-winning author Lawrence Wright’s new play Camp David might give you some insight, but will at the very least bring you Ron Rifkin as Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin. -Morgan Fecto
  • Henry IV, Part 1 @ Shakespeare Theatre Company
    March 25-June 7
    It’s the classic Shakespeare drama full reproduced for your viewing pleasure. It’s important work and only twenty bucks, so really, there’s no reason not to go see it. -Morgan Baskin
  • Henry IV, Part 2 @ Shakespeare Theatre Company
    April 1-June8
    Part II of Shakespeare’s Henry IV. If ya saw the first part, there’s no reason not to see the second. -Morgan Baskin
    Screen shot 2014-05-02 at 12.18.02 PM
  • Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mama’s Hung You In The Closet and I’m Feeling So Sad @ American Century Theatre
    April 21-May 12
    The playwright described it as a “Pseudoclassical Tragifarce in A Bastard French Tradition.” And in case that didn’t clear things up for you, let me continue: it’s an absurdist black comedy about an absurdly dysfunctional family; and oddly, I really want to see this. -Morgan Baskin
  • Living Out @ GALA Hispanic Theatre
    April 24-May 18
    Through the lens of comedy we take a closer look at class and immigration status with this tale of a Salvadoran nanny and her employer, a driven and successful lawyer. When these two meet we’re taken on a trip through the human experience, regardless of creed or color. -Stephanie Breijo
  • Student Matinees: Fiasco Theatre Company’s The Two Gentlemen of Verona @ Folger Theatre
    April 25-May 7
    This is cool because it’s a chance to see a Shakespeare play without busting your wallet- the showcase offers a Pay What You Can night as well as a Student Discount night featuring a 15% ticket price discount with a valid student ID. Plus, this theater company values spontaneous chaos onstage. So, y’know, something to look forward to. -Morgan Baskin
  • Smokey Joe’s Cafe @ Arena Stage
    April 25-June 8
    If you’re a Dapper Dan man (or otherwise) then get your pompadour ready. Smokey Joe’s Cafe will transport you to a golden age of Elvis Presley and cigarrette packs rolled up into shirt sleeves. This longest-running musical revue in Broadway history has earned seven Tony nominations and is sure to have you singing along. -Morgan Fecto
  • Blue Man Group @ The National Theatre
    May 6-11
    The Blue Man Group is loud and it’s interesting and it keeps the viewer awake which is an important aspect in most on-stage performances. Banging on drums with neon paint and doing all kinds of freaky mind-tricky acts and weird shit that everyone loves, go to this. – Mackenzie Bailey
  • Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society @ ATLAS
    May 10
    This is an *eighteen* member orchestra. Eighteen. Bringing you a cacophony of jazzy goodness from all sides of the room, bringing back swing, and bringing you some old-school dancin’ tunes. -Morgan Baskin
  • David T. Little’s Soldier Songs @ ATLAS
    May 16-18
    I’m probably not the only one who’s intrigued by the concept of soldier performance art. This piece intends to highlight the loss and devastation of war, all set to classical music. Disclaimer: it’s supposed to be extremely emotional. -Morgan Baskin
  • Tere O’Connor’s Bleed @ American Dance Institute
    May 16-17
    Before you go thinking that Bleed is some sort of Carrie recreation or an off-shoot of the Vagina Monologues, here are some fun facts: Bleed will blend three dances from choreographer Tere O’Connor (hence the name) into one night of gyrating goodness. Bleed will adapt based on each tour venue and includes audience interaction. Wear leggings. -Morgan Fecto



  • The Last Days of Judas Iscariot @ Forum Theatre
    May 22-June 14
    In the comedy, Judas is in purgatory and on trial. There are appearances from the Apostles, Satan, and lawyers, and it’s just one of those things that you’d have to see to understand/justify. -Morgan Baskin
  • Ordinary Days @ Round House Theatre (Bethesda)
    May 28-June 22
    College is annoying and hard enough without shitty things like LOSING THE NOTES TO YOUR THESIS happening to you, but alas, life is life, and we gotta learn to deal. Which is pretty much the theme of this successful Off-Broadway play, all told in vignettes. -Morgan Baskin
  • Cymbeline @ Folger Theatre
    May 28-June 1
    This award-winning reproduction of one of Shakespeare’s final plays features only six actors who, somehow, manage to pull the entire thing off spectacularly. And BONUS: there’s a free talk with Valerie Wayne. -Morgan Baskin
  • Private Lives @ Shakespeare Theatre Company
    May 29-July 13
    A funny play about a divorce. No but seriously, a couple gets divorced then ends up in hotel rooms right next to each other. WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT? It’s a love thing, but it’s a funny love thing so boys shouldn’t hate it. -Mackenzie Bailey
  • Christopher K. Morgan’s In the Cold Room @ American Dance Institute
    May 30-31
    Light, dark. Hot, cold. Man, woman. No this isn’t a Katy Perry performance (and thank God because we’ve had enough pagan ritual). This performance begins with CKM&A’s In The Cold Room, an examination of darkness, isolation and temperature through dance. Christopher K. Morgan’s The Measure of a Man will cap off the night and will beg the question: what DOES make a mighty good man? -Morgan Fecto
    Screen shot 2014-05-02 at 12.20.06 PM
  • Judgment at Nuremburg @ American Century Theatre
    May 30-June 28
    It’s an emotional historical drama that reveals a lot of truths about human nature. If you like any of these things, you will like the show. -Morgan Baskin
  • NSO Pops: Rajaton: The Music of ABBA @ The Kennedy Center
    May 30-31
    Ok. You had me at ABBA. Rajaton and NSO Pops collaborate to perform a totally fab set that’ll have you humming along if not belting every word to the best ABBA hits such as “Dancing Queen”, “Mamma Mia”, and “Gimme Gimme Gimme”. So why not “Take a Chance” on this unique tribute show? We say go and sing your heart out.- Cara Gsell

Did we forget anything? Stop on by the comments section and let us know of your favorite upcoming DC shows.