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Posted at 3:30 PM ET, 02/28/2011

On stage in March

By Stephanie Merry

Molotov Theatre Group unveils the English language premiere of "Morgue Story" this month. (Chris Eichler)

With Arena Stage's celebration of playwright Edward Albee, the Kennedy Center's spotlight on India and Atlas's heaping buffet of music, theater and dance, you'd think D.C. had reached its festival quota. Yet this month promises a deep dive into the work of Irish playwright Enda Walsh and a blow-out for Tennessee Williams's 100th birthday, not to mention some promising productions that stand alone.

Washington Stage Guild, always dependable for witty and thought-provoking productions, takes on Michael Hollinger's Cold War-era farce "Red Herring." The company has found success with the playwright's works, including the well-received "An Empty Plate in the Cafe du Grand Boeuf" in 2006. This offering follows three couples (one of which includes Joseph McCarthy's daughter) dealing with Russian spies, murder and nuclear arms. (March 3-27)

You might describe Molotov Theatre Group as gutsy. Literally. Shows from the local masters of gory Grand Guignol theater have involved bloody splash zones, lost limbs and even tongue-removal. But the Fringe Festival favorites have outdone themselves with the English language premiere of the Brazilian "Morgue Story," which culminates in a cutthroat fight scene -- performed in the nude. (March 3-April 2)

If every good turn deserves another, then it must be time for another collaboration between the Washington Ballet and arts organization In Series. The companies present "WAM II," a ballet/opera hybrid chronicling the life of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and a continuation of last year's show. The performance runs as part of the Intersections festival. (March 4-12)

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of its hit play "The Chosen," Theater J heads south for a guest performance at Arena Stage. Aaron Posner adapts and directs this rendition of Chaim Potok's story about two boys growing up in Brooklyn, starring Rick Foucheux ("The Odd Couple") and Edward Gero (from Signature Theatre's "Sweeney Todd"). (March 8-27)

Director Keith Baxter is no stranger to Shakespeare Theatre Company or Oscar Wilde, having directed "Lady Windermere's Fan" at the Lansburgh Theatre in 2005. Baxter returns with "An Ideal Husband," Wilde's charming play about a well-respected politician whose past threatens his promising future. Imagine that in this town. (March 8-April 10)

Hot on the heels of its production of "The Cripple of Inishmaan" at the Kennedy Center, Ireland's Druid Theatre stages Enda Walsh's critically lauded play "Penelope." This fresh take on Odysseus's more patient half is part of Studio Theatre's festival celebrating the works of the Dublin-born playwright. (March 15-April 3)

The world premiere of "And the Curtain Rises," part of Signature Theatre's American Musical Voices Project supporting the creation of musicals, is a fictional -- and farcical -- retelling of the staging of America's first musical. (March 17-April 10)

Monologist Mike Daisey isn't big on bells and whistles. Usually seated at a wooden table in a black shirt, Daisey manages to enthrall his audience with words alone. After taking on the financial crisis ("The Last Cargo Cult") and the Department of Homeland Security ("If You See Something Say Something"), Daisey returns to Woolly Mammoth Theatre to turn his perceptive eye and clever wit on the ever-expanding Apple empire in "The Agony and Ecstasy of Steve Jobs." (March 21-April 10)

You may not get to hear an alarming "STELLA!," but Georgetown University's Tennessee Williams Centennial Festival promises a weekend full of activities, including performances of "The Glass Menagerie," a concert inspired by "A Streetcar Named Desire" and a visit from John Waters, who will stage his one-man show "This Filthy World" and discuss his admiration for Williams's work. (March 24-27)

After taking on "A Midsummer Night's Dream" and "Othello," among other Shakespearean classics, Synetic Theater gives the tragedy "King Lear" the group's singular movement-focused treatment. (March 24-April 24)

By Stephanie Merry  | February 28, 2011; 3:30 PM ET
Categories:  Theater  
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