Tag Archives: Imagination Stage

The BFG Marks a Giant Leap in DC Children’s Theatre

bfg

Have you heard the big news? The BFG, the beloved Roald Dahl book, has been brought to life for the stage and will be at The National Theatre through July 25. Owen and I saw a performance this past weekend, and we both found the production hugely entertaining.

Integrating magnificent puppetry, rich visuals, and imaginative storytelling, this stage version presents the tale of the world’s only friendly giant, who brings good dreams to humans, and Sophie, an orphaned little girl, as they embark on a magical journey to save the children of England from bad giants. It does so with adventure and humor that captivates both children and adults.

And this presentation of The BFG is more than just a wonderful show. It’s the inaugural production of The National Children’s Theatre, an alliance between Imagination Stage and The National Theatre to bring the theatre arts to more children in DC. In pre-performance remarks about the partnership, it was announced that 10,000 children from each ward in the District would be invited to see The BFG in November — a tremendous treat for many! I can’t wait to see what’s coming next.

The BFG is running at The National Theatre through July 25, with morning performances during the week, an evening show Friday, and a matinee on Saturday. It’s recommended for ages 5 and up. Tickets are $14-38.


Disclosure: I received complimentary tickets to see The BFG, however, all opinions expressed here are entirely my own.


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Filed under DC, Gradeschoolers, Live Entertainment, Preteens, Summer, Teens, Theatre, Weekdays, Weekend

Save Your Seats for Live Entertainment this Spring

Catch Blue at Imagination Stage through April 12

Catch Blue at Imagination Stage through April 12



With the new season comes a whole new crop of shows for young audiences! Here’s a round-up of where you can catch some live entertainment throughout spring, listed in order by start date. Tickets are available for all of them now, so go save your seats!

Blue
Where: Imagination Stage
When: Through April 12
Tickets: $12

Imagine a world where the only color is blue. Blue flowers, blue grass, even blue cereal! Inky and Pale live in such a world until they discover something RED! In this interactive show, two friends find fun in every color of the rainbow!

Jack and the Beanstalk
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: Through May 3
Tickets: $10

Fe-fi-fo-fum. A timely version of the classic children’s tale about the young lad that doesn’t know beans about trading, but still manages to climb his way to the top. Jack finds that happiness lies in helping others rather than mere personal gain. Told with rod puppets and some surprising twists, Jack has long been a favorite of our audiences. Recommended for K – Grade 6.

Tot Rock
Where: Jammin’ Java
When: Ongoing
Tickets: $5/weekdays, $10/weekends

Tot Rock is Jammin’ Java’s super-popular kids music concert series, providing wholesome family entertainment at one of the DC Metro area’s finest music clubs. Local acts perform every Thursday and Friday, and touring performers drop by on many weekends. Check the calendar often to see when your favorite act is performing, and for other calendar updates.

Saturday Morning at the National
Where: National Theatre
When: Saturdays, 9:30am & 11am
Tickets: Free

The free theatre program runs on select Saturdays with performances at 9:30am and 11:30am. Musicals, plays, storytelling, and comedy shows are all part of the live entertainment line-up. See the complete schedule of performances here. Tickets are distributed day of performances on a first-come, first-served basis. Everyone must be in line to receive a ticket.

Tiny Tots
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: Most Wednesdays, Saturdays, & Sundays at 10am
Tickets: $5

The series presents puppet shows designed for the youngest theater patrons (ages 0-4). They are shorter, the lights stay on, and the doors stay open. They have an arsenal of shows that they switch up every performance, so be sure to check the schedule to see what’s playing when you go.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
Where: Adventure Theatre
When: April 3 – May 25
Tickets: $19

Life in Kansas has been a bit boring for Dorothy and her little dog Toto. Until one day, a cyclone swoops in and takes them “over the rainbow” to the wonderful and magical land of Oz. With the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, and the Cowardly Lion, Dorothy sets off on the adventure of a lifetime down the yellow brick road to the Emerald City. These new friends brave witches, flying monkeys, and a Haunted Forest all to meet the Wizard of Oz, who promises to make their dreams come true.

Wacky Science with Ken Scott
Where: Discovery Theater
When: April 7
Tickets: $3-6

Whiz, bang, poof, and pop—Dr. Science’s zany show makes science look way cool! With a focus on amazing science experiments that use everyday objects, Scott makes the scientific method easy to understand in a high-energy, hands-on experience.

Sinbad: The Untold Tale
Where: Imagination Stage
When: April 8 – May 31
Tickets: $10-25

Sinbad the Sailor has retired from his notorious adventures. He tries to keep his feisty daughter Ittifaq safe from the sorceress Jan Shah. But when a mysterious cloud descends upon Baghdad putting all of the adults to sleep, proud Ittifaq must enlist the help of Sinbad the Porter, a street orphan whom she despises. A quest full of humor, genies, sword fights, diamonds, magic boats, and flying carpets ensues! The two young explorers cross the chasm of their differences to become fast friends and fellow adventurers for life. Recommended for ages 5-12.

Nature Jam: We Dig Earth
Where: Discovery Theater
When: April 9-10
Tickets: $3-6

The Tot Rock: Jammin’ at the Smithsonian series presents a show with a nature them! From wiggly worms to weather patterns, mud pies to meandering rivers, singer-songwriters Rob and Zach go green (and a little crazy) as they celebrate the wonders of the earth. Featuring call-and-response songs, energetic dance numbers, and an HD video backdrop, this interactive show makes learning how to take good care of our planet easy, fun, and memorable.

Much Ado About Nothing
Where: The Theatre On The Run
When: April 10-12
Tickets: $8

Encore Stage & Studio presents a classic in this “by kids for kids” production: What would a Shakespeare play be without young love, comical family ties, and a super villain to destroy all of the fun? Absolutely nothing! In this Bard in the Box production, Encore brings us to Messina, Italy where love stories intertwine and hilarity ensues. Beatrice and Benedick have vowed never to marry anyone, and Hero and Claudio can’t wait to be united. With two such different couples, and a plot twist which threatens to ruin everyone’s plans, can everyone reach a happy ending? Recommended for ages 8 and older.

NSO Teddy Bear Concert: Imagination Duo
Where: Kennedy Center
When: April 11 – 12
Tickets: $20

Ever hear a violin gallop? Wonder why a lullaby sighs? Curious how a bumblebee takes flight on wings of song? Then join husband-and-wife violin duo–Glenn Donnellan of the NSO and Jan Chong–as they use stories, sound effects, children’s songs, and gems from the classical repertoire to make your imagination come alive! Kids can bring their favorite stuffed animal to these interactive programs and have their teddy bear friend join in all the fun! Lasting approximately 45 minutes, they’re perfect for even the youngest music lovers in your family. Go early for “Musical Playtime,” staring 45 minutes before each Teddy Bear Concert, to enjoy music and movement activities especially designed for small children.

Seussical, Jr.
Where: Family Worship Center in Lorton, Va.
When: April 17, 18, 24, 25
Tickets: $12

Northern Virginia Players’ production will transport audiences from the Jungle of Nool, to Whoville, to the Circus McGurkus, as the Cat in the Hat tells the story of Horton, an elephant who discovers a speck of dust containing tiny people called the Whos. Jojo, a Who child who gets in trouble for thinking too many “thinks” and Horton develop a bond as Horton not only must protect the Whos from a world of naysayers and dangers, but must also guard an abandoned egg that’s been left in his care by Mayzie La Bird. Although Horton faces ridicule, danger, kidnapping, and a trial, the intrepid Gertrude McFuzz never loses faith in him. With the help of Gertrude JoJo, Horton emerges triumphant!

BSO Music Box: On Safari
Where: Strathmore
When: April 18, 10am & 11:30am
Tickets: $15

Adventure awaits as your family is whisked away to enjoy a musical safari full of elephants, giraffes, lions and zebras. The BSO Music Box concert series is created for babies and toddlers 6 months to 3 years and their families. Attendees of all ages are required to have a ticket. Concerts take place in the lobby and seating is unreserved. Limited seating for those unable to sit on the floor for an extended period of time is available.
http://www.strathmore.org/eventstickets/calendar/view.asp?id=11514

Kingman Island Bluegrass Festival
Where: Kingman Island
When: April 25
Tickets: $15

The Sixth Annual Kingman Island Bluegrass and Folk Festival features two main stages of bluegrass and Americana music with co-headliners Cabinet and Larry Keel Experience and more. The festival will celebrate local music, food, and culture as well as the revitalization of the Anacostia River, while supporting hands-on education programming provided by Living Classrooms on Kingman Island. The Festival will include eight hours of performances by local bluegrass, folk and Americana artists, games and outdoor beverages, DC’s favorite food trucks, outdoor bike course, free kayaking courtesy of REI, giveaways and a number of activities for children of all ages including a children’s stage with arts & crafts. Festival sponsor REI will be bringing the REI Village, a touring celebration of the outdoor lifestyle (with special gifts for REI members).

The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Other Eric Carle Favourites
Where: The Alden
When: April 25
Tickets: $15 or $10/McLean district residents

Three beloved stories by Eric Carle, award-winning children’s book illustrator and author, are retold on stage through the magic of black light and fanciful puppets. “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” follows the wonderful adventures of a very tiny and very hungry caterpillar as he eats his way through an amazing variety of foods on his path to becoming a beautiful butterfly. High up in the sky, “Little Cloud” playfully transforms himself into various creatures, including a sheep, an airplane and a shark. “The Mixed-Up Chameleon” is bored with his life, sitting about predictably changing color all day. Following an adventurous trip to the zoo, he attempts to emulate the beautiful animals he sees before coming to the conclusion that there is value in his own unique self. Recommended for ages 4 and up.

TETRISplus
Where: Kennedy Center
When: April 25-26
Tickets: $20

Arch8 dance company from the Netherlands brings together two of their most physically awe-inspiring works–Tetris and No Man is an Island–to explore how we connect, communicate, cooperate, and invite others into our world. Recommended for ages 7 and up.

NSO Family Concert: Gershwin’s Magic Key
Where: Kennedy Center
When: April 26
Tickets: $20

Extra, extra! Read all about it! On the streets of New York, a poor newspaper boy has a chance encounter with a talented musician. Turns out, it’s George Gershwin, one of the greatest American composers of all time! In this entertaining and educational world premiere concert, the NSO magically weaves Gershwin’s greatest hits into the drama, as the master composer shares anecdotes about his life and musical passion. Pretty soon, a friendship develops highlighting the vast melting pot of American music–which ultimately becomes the key to unlocking the boy’s own potential! Go early for the Musical Instrument “Petting Zoo” in the Atrium. Young concertgoers can get up close and hands-on with the instruments they’ll see played on the stage–from violins, trumpets, and oboes to trombones and percussion. Stay after the 4pm concert for a Kids’ Chat, where young audience members can ask questions and hear engaging stories in an up-close-and-personal talk with the concert artists. Recommended for ages 5 and up.

NSO Ensemble Concert: Connections: Science & Math + Music
Where: Kennedy Center
When: May 2
Tickets: $20

Calling all math nerds, science geeks, and music lovers to this world premiere Connections program! This fast-paced multimedia program shows 26 ways (a full alphabet’s worth!) that math and science are related to music. From “a” for accents and “h” for harmonics, to “s” for sine waves and “x” for xylophones, this exciting new concert experience promises to give students a musical AND mental workout!

The Washington Ballet: ALICE (in wonderland)
Where: Kennedy Center
When: May 6-17
Tickets: $46.00 – $135.00

ALICE (in wonderland) is a work of rich and impressive creativity that is full of whimsical charm and a feeling for the absurd, the visual splendor and imaginative choreography of TWB’s production was highly popular with adults as well as children. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is, without a doubt, one of the most famous and enduring of children’s classics. Join Alice as she stumbles into adventure, following a time-obsessed rabbit into a wonderland where everything is illogical. She has a series of marvelous adventures with the White Rabbit, Cheshire Cat, the Mad Hatter, and other strange creatures.

Tigers, Dragons and Other Wise ‘Tails’
Where: Discovery Theater
When: May 5-8 & 12-15
Tickets: $3-8

Folktales are fun when they include dancing dragon puppets, a crazy tiger, and moles that get movin’ to J-pop. Audiences learn a little about each story’s culture, try out Asian languages and enjoy Asian tales both ancient and new in this Discovery Theater original. Folktales include: The Tiger, the Thief, and the Dried Persimmon (Korea), which puts a new spin on mistaken identity with a very silly tiger, a babysitting grandma, and dried fruit; The Wise Mole (Japan), which updates an ancient story of young love (complete with cell phones and iPods) and the mythic Four Dragon Rivers of China, which features beautiful flying dragon puppets. Recommended for ages 5-10.

Once on this Island
Where: Creative Cauldron
When: May 8-
Tickets:

From the Tony Award-winning songwriting team of Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty (Seussical and Ragtime) comes a highly original and rousing calypso-reggae flavored tale of one small girl who finds love in a world of prejudice. Once on This Island garnered eight Tony nominations in its Broadway run, including Best Musical, Book and Score. The folk tale tells the story of Ti Moune, a peasant girl who falls in love with the well-born Daniel and is aided by the gods of earth, water and love in her desire to be with him. Visually splendid, and exploding with music and motion, this enchanting musical parable is a rousing tribute to the resilience of the human spirit.

NSO Kinderclassics: Beethoven at the Ballpark!
Where: Kennedy Center
When: May 9
Tickets: $20

Find out what baseball and music have in common when NSO violinist Glenn Donnellan — famous for his Electric Slugger, a fiddle made out of a baseball bat — joins Washington Nationals ballpark organist Matthew Van Hoose in this zany program that’s sure to entertain as much as it educates! Using musical examples from classical, pop, and baseball-themed works, plus Ernest Thayer’s beloved poem “Casey at the Bat,” this grand slam duo will show how the basics of ball play relate to the fundamentals of fiddling and mastery of music. You’ll see how numbers play their part, how music adds drama to America’s favorite pastime, and how to hit your spot on an instrument, just like players on the field do. So slide into a seat and cheer along as our tuneful team hits this family concert experience right out of the park! Go early for the Musical Instrument “Petting Zoo.” Starting one hour before each Kinderkonzert, this hands-on activity in the Kennedy Center Hall of States gives children a chance to get up close with the instruments they’ll see played on stage, from violins and trumpets to oboes and flutes. Recommended for ages 4 and up.

Cinderella
Where: The Puppet Co
When: May 7 – June 21
Tickets: $10

The elegance of 17th-century France, combining elaborate costumes of the Comedie Francais and Offenbach’s “Gaiety Parisian” to adorn the tale of the cinder girl who captures the heart of the handsome prince. The production was acclaimed at the 1997 National Puppet Festival, and performed by invitation at the Center for Puppetry Arts, in Atlanta. Recommended for K – Grade 6.

Dog Loves Books
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: May 12
Tickets: $8

Based on The New York Times best-selling children’s book, ArtsPower’s new musical is about the irresistible dog who loves books so much that he decides to open his own bookstore. At first, no customers come to his store, but Dog decides that he’s not alone if he’s surrounded by books, and he begins to read everything in his store. When customers finally arrive, he knows exactly which books to recommend. The delightful performance celebrates the power of imagination, encourages self-expression, and helps ignite the desire to read. Recommended for K – Grade 2.

Feet Don’t Fail Me Now!
Where: Kennedy Center
When: May 15-17
Tickets: $20

Known for transforming its tap shoes into new instruments of rhythm, innovative performance company Rhythmic Circus infuses its unpredictable blend of hard-hitting tap, high-spirited humor, and finger-snapping tunes into one amazing show. Recommended for ages 7 and up.

BSO Music Box: In the Treetops
Where: Strathmore
When: May 18, 10am & 11:30am
Tickets: $15

The cacophony of the rainforest comes to life through the sounds of exotic birds, monkeys and more! The BSO Music Box concert series is created for babies and toddlers 6 months to 3 years and their families. Attendees of all ages are required to have a ticket. Concerts take place in the lobby and seating is unreserved. Limited seating for those unable to sit on the floor for an extended period of time is available.

NSO Teddy Bear Concert: Violins and Trombones and Bears, Oh My!
Where: Kennedy Center
When: May 30-31
Tickets: $20

We can be as different as trombones and violins, and still play together in harmony! Kids and stuffed animals alike will hear the unique sounds of a garden hose, funnel horn, a grownup violin and a baby one, and trombones in three sizes! Kids can bring their favorite stuffed animal to these interactive programs and have their teddy bear friend join in all the fun! Lasting approximately 45 minutes, they’re perfect for even the youngest music lovers in your family. Go early for “Musical Playtime,” staring 45 minutes before each Teddy Bear Concert, to enjoy music and movement activities especially designed for small children. Recommended for ages 3-5.

Dreamtime: An Australian Adventure with Barefoot Puppets
Where: Discovery Theater
When: June 4-5
Tickets: $3-6

Emus, crocodiles, and frogs—oh my! Experience the magic of the Land Down Under as a mother platypus tries to lull her young one to sleep by sharing three stories inspired by Aboriginal folktales. In these how-and-why tales, learn how the emu became a flightless bird, why the platypus looks so strange, and meet a giant, bloated, ocean-swallowing frog. Perhaps you’ll even be invited onstage to help. Recommended for ages 4-8.

The Little Prince
Where: Creative Cauldron
When: June 5-21
Tickets:

“All grown-ups were once children…but only a few of them remember it.” Antoine de Saint-Exupery’s poetic tale tells the story of a world-weary aviator who gets stranded in the Sahara Desert. A small boy from another planet arrives and begins to share his stories about his adventures through the galaxy and his relationship with a special flower. By learning that “one sees well only with the heart,” the aviator comes to a new understanding of how to laugh, cry, and love again. This beloved French classic comes to life in an adaptation filled with enchanting music and heartfelt lyrics, with sophisticated appeal to all ages.

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Filed under All ages, DC, Educational, Free, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Music, Seasonal, Spring, Theatre, Virginia, Weekdays, Weekend

Hot Tickets for Live Entertainment Through Winter

Catch 101 Dalmations at Imagination Stage through January 4

Catch 101 Dalmations at Imagination Stage through January 4



As the mercury drops, keep the kids warm and entertained at a show! Holiday productions, puppet theater, dramatic and comical plays, live music, basketball thrills, ice dancing, and more fantastic experiences are coming to venues all around the area. Here’s where you can see them, listed in order of opening date. And if you know of a great production that you don’t see here, feel free to mention it in the comments.

Holiday Shows
Where: Local theatres
When: Throughout the holiday season
Tickets: Varies by production

From seasonal traditions to special performances, there are numerous shows that will entertain and capture the holiday spirit on stages around the area. The KFDC 2014 Holiday Guide includes a comprehensive list of them.

101 Dalmations
Where: Imagination Stage
When: Through January 11
Tickets: $17-30

When Mr. and Mrs. Dearly welcome a new litter of Dalmatians to their 1950s London home, Cruella de-Vil is quick to plot their kidnap. Loving puppy parents Pongo and Missis discover their location, and set out on a harrowing adventure through the countryside to rescue their puppies. With the help of several friendly dogs along the way, the family reunites on Christmas Day, and Cruella is defeated. But will the Dearlys take in all 101 dalmatians? Recommended for ages 4-10.

Tiny Tim’s A Christmas Carol
Where: Adventure Theatre
When: Through January 1
Tickets: $19

Tiny Tim longs to have his father home on Christmas day, but mean old Mr. Scrooge won’t give Bob Crachit the day off! There must be a way to change Scrooge’s mind – perhaps a ghost or two will set Scrooge right. Can this clever boy and his best friend Charlotte save Christmas and change the heart of the meanest man in town? This exciting world premiere story of a father and son is adapted by Broadway’s Tony-winning Ken Ludwig (Twas the Night Before Christmas) and his very own son, Jack. Get ready for the wildest ride you’ve ever had at Christmas!

Wake Up, Brother Bear
Where: Imagination Stage
When: Through November 30
Tickets: $12

This audience-favorite show is back from hibernation! Watch as Brother and Sister Bear experience a full year of glorious seasons. Together we see a waterfall melt, meet a butterfly, chase an elusive fish, and skate on an icy pond. Children are invited to join the action with a small bag of props that help create magical moments. Recommended for ages 1-5

The Gift of Nothing
Where: Kennedy Center
When: Through December 28
Tickets: $20

Today is a very, very merry special day! Mooch, a charming and curious cat, wants to get the purr-fect holiday gift for his best friend Earl, a loveable pup. But Earl already seems to have all he needs: a bowl, a bed, and a squeaky chew toy. So what do you get someone who has everything? Well, nothing, of course! Based on characters in the beloved internationally syndicated comic strip MUTTS, this world premiere musical adaptation of Patrick McDonnell’s The Gift of Nothing follows Mooch’s frantic and hilarious search to find Earl absolutely nothing–which always turns out to be something! Join the delightful duo, along with their owners Millie and Ozzie, cantankerous Frank, adorable Doozy, and an onstage pianist for this festive and heartwarming adventure. Recommended for ages 4 and up.

The Nutcracker
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: November 28 – December 30
Tickets: $10

The Puppet Co.’s annual holiday treat! The Nutcracker is the festive story of Clara-Marie’s favorite toy and their adventures together in the land of the Sugarplum Fairy. Music from Tchaikovsky’s famous ballet blends with marionettes and costume characters to create this unique production. Don’t miss it! Recommended for children in Kindergarten and up.

Boogie Babes
Where: Union Market, Eastern Market, & The Atlas
When: Wednesdays, Thursdays, & Fridays, 10:30am
Tickets: $5/child, free for sibling 6 months and under

Little ones can boogie along with their favorite local musicians at Union Market on Wednesdays, in Eastern Market’s North Hall every Thursday, AND at The Atlas Performing Arts Center on Fridays. Go for the show, then grab lunch in the Markets or hit one of the many eateries on the H Street Corridor.

Millennium Stage
Where: Kennedy Center
When: Ongoing daily, 6pm
Admission: Free

The Kennedy Center presents these free, no-tickets-required performances every day at 6pm, and the public is welcome to enjoy them. The acts span the genres — you can see everything from contemporary dance to folk music to puppetry to comedy shows to opera scenes. Millennium Stage showcases everyone from local youth choirs to internationally known bands (They Might Be Giants performed there a few years ago). This is a great series to keep in mind for whenever you’re looking for some free, easy entertainment.

Tot Rock
Where: Jammin’ Java
When: Ongoing
Tickets: $5/weekdays, $10/weekends

Tot Rock is Jammin’ Java’s super-popular kids music concert series, providing wholesome family entertainment at one of the DC Metro area’s finest music clubs. Local acts perform every Thursday and Friday, and touring performers drop by on many weekends. Check the calendar often to see when your favorite act is performing, and for other calendar updates.

Saturday Morning at the National
Where: National Theatre
When: Through December 13
Tickets: Free

The free theatre program runs on select Saturdays with performances at 9:30am and 11:30am. Musicals, plays, storytelling, and comedy shows are all part of the live entertainment line-up. See the complete schedule of performances here. Tickets are distributed day of performances on a first-come, first-served basis. Everyone must be in line to receive a ticket.

Tiny Tots
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: Most Wednesdays, Saturdays, & Sundays at 10am
Tickets: $5

The series presents puppet shows designed for the youngest theater patrons (ages 0-4). They are shorter, the lights stay on, and the doors stay open. They have an arsenal of shows that they switch up every performance, so be sure to check the schedule to see what’s playing when you go.

Fiddler on the Roof
Where: Arena Stage
When: Through January 4
Tickets: Start at $50

Celebrate the 50th anniversary of an American classic! More than just a poor milkman, Tevye is a humble Jewish father who finds his devotion to God severely tested by his headstrong daughters, who want to be their own matchmakers, and the increasingly ruthless government forcing him from his land. With a jubilant and masterful score including “If I Were a Rich Man;” “Sunrise, Sunset;” “Matchmaker, Matchmaker” and “Tradition,” Tony nominee Jonathan Hadary makes his Arena debut as Tevye in this celebration of family, community and life’s unexpected miracles, large and small.

Seasons of Light
Where: Discovery Theater
When: December 1-19
Tickets: $3-8


Joy, warmth, and community illuminate seasonal holiday celebrations the world over. Back for its 16th season, this signature Discovery Theater show celebrates the history and customs of Ramadan, Devali, Sankta Lucia, Chanukah, Los Posados, Kwanzaa, Christmas, and the First Nations’ tradition of the Winter Solstice in an interactive event that bridges communities and cultures. This show sells out early, so don’t wait to get your tickets! Recommended for ages 5-10.

Snow Day
Where: Workhouse Arts Center
When: December 3-14
Tickets:$8

One cold December morning, a young girl named Skip wakes up to find the entire neighborhood covered in a thick, dazzling blanket of white snow. A playful (if not a little mischievous) winter elf takes her on an adventure – showing her just how magical snow can be! Join Skip as she experiences all the excitement, joy, and wonder of her very first snow day. This nonverbal world premiere production features live music and lots of wintertime fun, just in time for the holiday season.

Beauty and the Beast
Where: Synetic Theatre
When: December 3 – January 11
Tickets: $20-95

In this brand-new adaptation, produced by Paata Tsikurishivili, directed by Company Member Ben Cunis and adapted by Ben and Peter Cunis (The Three Musketeers, Genesis Reboot), Synetic draws on the darkness and sensuality of the original French fairy tale to create a passionate and inspiring Gothic romance. Synetic’s athletic actors and innovative theatrical effects will transform this classic story into a visual dream full of wonder, mystery, and redemption. This production will be a primarily movement-based piece with some dialogue. This performance will be family-friendly with some scarier moments. Recommended for children 7 & up.

Disney Junior Live! Pirate & Princess Adventure: Jake & Sofia Live
Where: The Lyric in Baltimore
When: December 5-6
Tickets: $25-95 (look for a deal here)

Grab your tiaras and doubloons and join us for Disney Junior Live On Tour! Pirate & Princess Adventure. Mickey and Minnie are taking their seats too at this never-before-seen live show featuring your favorite characters from Disney Junior’s hit series, Sofia the First and Jake and the Never Land Pirates. Get swept up in the excitement as Sofia and her family prepare for a royal celebration that helps us all learn the true meaning of being a princess with a special appearance by Cinderella. Then it’s off to Never Land where Jake and his swashbuckling friends Izzy and Cubby, with a little help from Peter Pan, battle Captain Hook to unlock treasure hidden inside a mysterious volcano. It’s danger and dueling on the high seas as Jake discovers what it takes to be a true hero. Filled with new music, amazing effects, thrilling action and endless surprises, your family will sing, shout, and soar into the action when Disney Junior Live On Tour! Pirate & Princess Adventure sails into your town.

Sesame Street Live: Make a New Friend
Where: Patriot Center
When: December 12-14
Tickets: $18-30 (look for a deal here)

Chamki is from far away and she’s visiting Sesame Street for just one day! Grover has a long to-do list for his friend, from kayaking to hot yoga, but Chamki is busy enjoying cookies with Cookie Monster, singing with Abby Cadabby, and doing ‘The Elmo Slide.’ Will an appearance from Super Grover get Chamki’s attention? Join the fun and make a memory with your friends and family! No matter where you’re from or where you’ve been, everyone is special – so join in! Elmo, Grover, Abby Cadabby, and their Sesame Street friends welcome Chamki, Grover’s friend from India, to Sesame Street. Together, they explore the universal fun of friendship and celebrate cultural similarities, from singing and dancing, to sharing cookies!

The Tempest Family Week
Where: Sydney Harmon Hall
When: December 12-21
Tickets: Varies by event/performance

If you want to introduce your kids to the work of The Bard, this is a perfect time to do so. From December 12 through 22, during the five-week run of The Tempest, Shakespeare Theatre Company will be hosting a variety of programs and performances geared especially to young theatre-goers. This post has a schedule of ways you and your kids can participate.

Beauty and the Beast
Where: Warner Theatre
When: January 6-11
Tickets: $47-143

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast smash Broadway hit brings to life the classic story of Belle, a young woman in a provincial town, and the Beast, who is really a young prince trapped in a spell placed by an enchantress. If the Beast can learn to love and be loved, the curse will end and he will be transformed to his former self. But time is running out. If the Beast does not learn his lesson soon, he and his household will be doomed for all eternity. Purchase tickets through TicketMaster here.

Cinderella
Where: Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre
When: January 9-18
Tickets: $12/adult, $10/child (look for a deal here)

A young girl, nicknamed Cinderella by her cruel stepsisters, dreams of leaving her work behind and becoming a princess in this classic musical. When the royal family throws a ball, she finally gets her chance… if she can be home before midnight! With a little bit of magical assistance from her fairy godmother, Cinderella just might win the heart of her very own Prince Charming. This timeless fairytale is recommended for ages 4 and up.

Circus!
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: January 16 – February 15
Tickets: $10

In grand circus tradition, the “Grandest Show on Strings” features a collection of clowns, death-defying acrobats, and an amazing menagerie of fauna from the farthest reaches of the globe. Many of the acts were built more than 50 years ago by Christopher’s parents for “Len Piper’s International Marionette Circus.” Recommended for pre-K and up.

Mockingbird
Where: Kennedy Center
When: January 17 – February 1
Tickets: $20

Caitlin’s world has always been black and white. As an 11-year-old on the autism spectrum, she used to rely on her older brother to help make sense of things beyond dictionaries, schedules, and the facial expressions chart at school. But now that he’s gone, she’s all on her own. With the support of her advisor, father, and a new reading buddy, Caitlin begins to understand how to get close to people again, embrace the “messiness” of emotions, and use her burgeoning artistic talents to move on. Hailed as “extraordinary… [a] moving and insightful masterpiece” by Publishers Weekly, Kathryn Erskine’s 2010 National Book Award–winning young adult novel has been adapted for the stage by Julie Jensen, a recipient of the Kennedy Center Award for New American Plays. Directed by Tracy Callahan, this moving, vibrant, and surprisingly humorous world premiere play shows how the perseverance of one girl can change a community–and how black and white can always be complemented by a kaleidoscope of colors. Recommended for age 10 and up.

Jammin’ at the Smithsonian: Karen K & the Jitterbugs
Where: Discovery Theater
When: January 23
Tickets: $3-8

BUG OUT with Karen K & the Jitterbugs! Known for their upbeat, catchy, genre-swirling tunes that parents enjoy as much as their kids, Karen K & her Jitterbugs keep hands clapping and feet jumping at their rockin’, crowd-engaging shows performed across the country. The scene is set in Karen K’s Bug Out, the fort in her back yard where she seeks adventures and makes music with her imaginary friends, the Jitterbugs.

Monster Jam
Where: Verizon Center
When: January 24-25
Tickets:

The world’s largest and most famous monster truck tour featuring the biggest names in monster trucks will thunder its way into the Verizon Center in January. Grave Digger, Backwards Bob, Aftershock, Krazy Train, Crushstation and Stinger are among the vehicular beasts you’ll see tearing up the indoor terrain this year.

Petite Rouge a Cajun Red Riding Hood
Where: Adventure Theatre
When: January 30 – March 8
Tickets: $19

Take a toe-tapping trip to the bayou in this family-friendly, Zydeco-driven musical soaked in N’awlins hot sauce! Based on the classic fairy tale and adapted from the book by Mike Artell and Jim Harris, a red-hooded duckling named Petite Rouge and her sidekick cat lead the Big Bad Gator on a wild “duck” chase through New Orleans and Mardi Gras. Will they make it to Grandmere’s house with a basket full of Cajun goodies? Recommended for ages 4 and up.

Lions of Industry, Mothers of Invention
Where: Discovery Theater
When: February 5-6 & 10-12
Tickets: $3-8

Beauty magnate Madame C.J. Walker, agricultural chemist and “peanut man” George Washington Carver, education giant Booker T. Washington, and even cranky chef George Crum, who accidentally created the potato chip, all take center stage in this vibrant living-history production. Discovery Theater’s original interactive play honors the creativity and genius of African American entrepreneurs and inventors and inspires the achiever in all of us. Recommended for ages 8 and up.

NSO Teddy Bear Concert: Two Divas and a Bear!
Where: Kennedy Center
When: February 7
Tickets:

What happens when you bring together a concert violinist, an opera singer, and everyone’s favorite stuffed animal? You get Two Divas and a Bear! Join NSO violinist Marissa Regni and soprano Kari Paludan as they explore the human voice. As it turns out, the violin has a voice, too! As you listen to Schubert’s The Trout, Rachmaninoff’s Vocalise, and Rossini’s Two Cats, you’ll discover that the strings of the violin are very similar to our very own vocal cords. Recommended for ages 3 to 5, kids can bring their favorite stuffed animal to these interactive programs and have their teddy bear friend join in all the fun! The show lasts approximately 45 minutes, but go early for “Musical Playtime.” Starting 45 minutes before each Teddy Bear Concert, enjoy music and movement activities especially designed for small children.

Imago Theatre: Frogz
Where: Strathmore
When: February 22
Tickets: $25-38

The spellbinding Imago Theatre thrilled Strathmore audiences in 2011 with the “Felliniesque mayhem” (Variety) of its brilliant physical comedy and stunning stagecraft. The company returns with its best-known show, Frogz— a double hit on Broadway in two smash engagements at the New Victory Theatre. Enjoy “familyfriendly entertainment” that’s “lively, inventive, mysterious, thrilling, truly goofy fun” (Boston Globe)!

Black Violin
Where: BlackRock Center for the Arts
When: February 8
Tickets: $26

Virtuoso violinists Kev Marcus and Will B are Black Violin—a dynamic duo of high-energy, classically trained musicians renowned for their ability to meld highbrow and pop culture into a single genre-busting act. Their electrifying style mines the synergy among classical, jazz, blues, R&B and hip-hop. Whether you lean toward Bach or Beyoncé, Black Violin is sure to enthrall… and rock the house.

Disney on Ice: Worlds of Fantasy
Where: Verizon Center
When: February 11-16
Tickets: On sale December 29

Experience a magical Disney fantasy live on ice! Rev up for non-stop fun with four of your favorite Disney stories at Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Fantasy Presented by Stonyfield YoKids Organic Yogurt. Thrill to high-speed stunts as Lightning McQueen, Mater and the crew of Disney•Pixar’s Cars race across the ice like you’ve never seen before! Dive into The Little Mermaid’s enchanting undersea kingdom and enter the mystical world of Pixie Hollow with Tinker Bell and the Disney Fairies as they reveal the magic that lies within! The toys are back in town with heroic action when Buzz Lightyear, Woody, Jessie and the Toy Story gang escape from the rambunctious tots of Sunnyside Daycare and race for home, in their most daring adventure ever! From wheels to waves, playtime to pixie dust, your family’s favorite Disney moments come to life in Worlds of Fantasy.

Jack’s Tale: A Mythic Mountain Musical Adventure
Where: Kennedy Center
When: February 14-15
Tickets: $20

“Pretty is as pretty does,” says young Jack–and that’s just the kind of spunky no-nonsense outlook that sets him apart from his older brothers. So when Old King threatens to kick their mama off her mountaintop farm, fearless Jack sets out on a fantastic journey to talk some sense into the unruly ruler and settle up the deed! Along the way, Blue-Beard Giant and other intriguing characters equip him with a magic gunnysack, a fortune-telling pickle jar, and an enchanted axe. Can Jack chop down Old King’s hackberry tree and win his daughter’s hand in marriage? Or will he lose his head to Raggedy Bones just trying? Bringing together actors with a live, onstage bluegrass band the show taps into the old-time Appalachian “Jack Legends” from the Scots-Irish tradition. Interweaving a clever story with the region’s toe-tapping musical traditions, this warm and delightfully authentic world premiere production is as sweet, dark, and rich as the soil from which it sprang. Recommended for ages 8 and up.

NSO Family Concert: Casey at the Bat
Where: Kennedy Center
When: February 14-15
Tickets: $20

The NSO gears up for Spring Training with this fun program inspired by America’s favorite pastime. Wear your team’s jersey for this thrilling music program about teamwork. The highlight of the concert is a beguiling baseball composition set to the famous poem Casey at the Bat. Also on the program is the zany and virtuosic 4-violin version of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” performed by NSO violinists. Don’t miss an exciting day of sports-themed music, jersey-wearing musicians and conductors, and more! Go early for a Musical Instrument “Petting Zoo” in the lobbies of Opera House and stay after to ask questions and hear engaging stories in an up-close-and-personal talk with the concert artists. Recommended for age 5 and up.

Alladin
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: February 19 – March 16
Tickets: $10

From ancient Persia comes this lavish and entrancing tale, true to the original “One Thousand and One Arabian Nights,” full of genies, wizards, magic caves, exotic princesses, and an elephant! Half life-size rod puppets and exciting special effects make this production exciting and exotic theater. Recommended for K – Grade 6.

Outside the Bachx
Where: Kennedy Center
When: February 20 – March 1
Tickets: $20

Wonder what Beethoven and beatboxing would sound like together? How about a rap-off with Rachmaninoff? Or Debussy on a drum machine? Well, get ready for classical music and hip-hop to collide in full force with the world premiere of Outside the Bachx! Following their white-hot moves in last season’s family production of Fresh Noise: A Mashup of Youth Voices–Game On!, Rokafella, Kwikstep, and the rest of the crew are back with a funky twist on everyone’s favorite “old-school” composers. Recommended for ages 8 and up.

Jammin’ at the Smithsonian: Bari Koral Family Rock Band
Where: Discovery Theatre
When: March 13
Tickets: $3-8

Bari’s show features a creative blend of music and movement that get kids on their feet for plenty of fun! Jam to pop-friendly tunes about disappearing cupcakes, a runaway gingerbread man, and a soaring rocket ship from a performer the New York Post calls “the Sheryl Crow for kids.”

Harlem Globetrotters 2015 “Washington Generals’ Revenge” Tour
Where: Patriot Center & Verizon Center
When: March 13-14
Tickets: $16-150 (look for a deal here)

The world famous Harlem Globetrotters, featuring some of the greatest athletes and entertainers on the planet, are bringing their unrivaled family show to the DC area! The Globetrotters will face a great challenge this year, as the infamous Washington Generals are more determined than ever to match the franchise’s historic last victory over the Globetrotters nearly a half century ago. It has been five years since the Globetrotters and Generals have faced off, as the Generals have been searching far and wide for the best players to retool their roster and have been preparing for one thing: victory over the Globetrotters.

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Stay Entertained Through Spring

Imagination Stage presents "Inside Out" through April 6

Imagination Stage presents “Inside Out” through April 6



Warmer weather, cherry blossoms, and extra daylight aren’t the only things to look forward to this spring. Along with the seasonal delights, there’s also a whole new crop of live entertainment coming to local venues. Here’s what you can see on stages over the upcoming months. Tickets are on sale for all shows.

Inside Out
Where: Imagination Stage
When: Through April 6
Tickets: $10-12, $5/children under 1 on laps

It’s bedtime in Inside Out, but instead of getting ready for bed, two children use their imaginations to turn their room into a wonderland of mess. While playing dress-up, a glove becomes a dancing fish, a shirt becomes a fantastical creature, and a sock dance rocks the closet. This interactive show includes a free play session, encouraging audience members to use their own creativity with some of the items from the show.  Recommended for ages 1-5

Sleeping Beauty
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: February 13 – March 23
Tickets: $10

Yet another elegant production created by the Puppet Co., “Sleeping Beauty” combines romance and adventure in a story of fairies, frogs, kings and queens, and of course, a sleeping princess and the gallant prince destined to find her. Told with rod puppets and wonderful special effects, the show is a real treat for princesses and princes, big and small! Recommended for PreK – Grade 4.

Tiny Tots
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: Most Wednesdays, Saturdays, & Sundays at 10am
Tickets: $5

The series presents puppet shows designed for the youngest theater patrons (ages 0-4). They are shorter, the lights stay on, and the doors stay open. They have an arsenal of shows that they switch up every performance, so check the schedule to see what’s playing when you plan to go.

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
Where: Ford’s Theatre
When: Through May 17
Tickets: Start at $18

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee follows six awkward adolescents through their daunting and hilarious championship quest. As they navigate the tournament’s pressures, the eccentric coterie finds a new sense of belonging.  Along the way, they learn that there is more to life than winning a trophy. This charming coming-of-age tale also invites four volunteers from the audience to participate in each performance, ensuring new and unexpected comedy every night. Peter Flynn (1776) returns to direct this heartwarmingly quirky Tony-winning musical comedy. Recommended for ages 12 and up.

Tot Rock
Where: Jammin’ Java
When: Ongoing
Tickets: $5/weekdays, $10/weekends

Tot Rock is Jammin’ Java’s super-popular kids music concert series, providing wholesome family entertainment at one of the DC Metro area’s finest music clubs. Local acts perform every Thursday and Friday, and touring performers drop by on many weekends. Check the calendar often to see when your favorite act is performing.

Anne of Green Gables
Where: Aldersgate Church Community Theater
When: March 21, 8pm
Tickets: $15/adult, $12/youth & seniors

Anne, a young orphan is sent to Prince Edward Island after a childhood spent in strangers’ homes and orphanages. Marilla and Matthew Cuthbert, siblings in their fifties and sixties, had decided to adopt a boy from the orphanage to help Matthew run their farm. They live at Green Gables, their Avonlea farmhouse on Prince Edward Island. Through a misunderstanding, the orphanage sends Anne Shirley. As a child of imagination, Anne takes much joy in life and adapts quickly, thriving in the close-knit farming village. Her talkativeness initially drives the prim, duty-driven Marilla to distraction, although Matthew falls for her charm immediately. Anne says that they are ‘kindred spirits’.

Reptiles Alive: Live Animal Show
Where: Old Town Theatre
When: March 22
Tickets: $9

This wildly entertaining educational animal show is fun for the whole family! See snakes, crocodiles, and more, and learn loads of fascinating reptile facts.

Scooby-Doo Live!: Musical Mysteries
Where: Warner Theatre
When: March 26
Tickets: $27-46

In this exciting new musical theatre show, Scooby-Doo and the Mystery Inc. Gang have been called upon to help solve an epic mystery. A trouble-making ghost is haunting a local theatre and Shaggy, Fred, Daphne, Velma, and Scooby-Doo are on their way in the Mystery Machine to help solve it!

Hansel & Gretel
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: March 27 – April 27
Tickets: $10

Humperdink’s children’s opera, full of magic, music and dazzling special effects. The puppets, lights, music and effects, are all operated by Christopher Piper, who also performs all the live vocal characterizations.  The production has long been a favorite of children and their parents, and is an excellent introduction to musical story for children. Recommended for children in K – 6th Grade.

World Stages: The Adventures of Robin Hood
Where: Kennedy Center
When: March 28 – April 6
Tickets: $20

He robs the rich and gives to the poor. He sneaks around Sherwood Forest with his band of merry men. And his spiffy green tights are all the rage in medieval fashion! Last seen at the Kennedy Center with their wacky spin on Jason and the Argonauts using action figures, Scotland’s acclaimed theater company Visible Fictions returns with this inventive and humorous adaptation of the folk legend Robin Hood. From our valiant hero and his sidekick Little John, to Friar Tuck and Maid Marian, to the Sheriff of Nottingham hot on their heels, two actors take on multiple roles in a madcap production where nothing is as it appears. Look out mean greedy folks–your piggy banks may never be safe again! Recommended for ages 8 and up.

Ballet Hispanico Family Matinee
Where: BlackRock Center for the Arts
When: March 30
Tickets: $14-32

Celebrating 43 years of dance and culture and led by Artistic Director Eduardo Vilaro and founded by National Medal of the Arts recipient, Tina Ramirez, Ballet Hispanico’s work fuses Latin dance with classical and contemporary techniques to create a new style of concert dance in which theatricality and passion propel every move. Choreographers represent a multitude of nationalities including Venezuela, Cuba, Trinidad, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Spain, Brazil, Argentina and Colombia. The Company has offered over 3,350 performances to an audience of over 3 million, throughout 11 countries, on 3 continents. This family matinee is suitable for all ages and especially beneficial for dance students!

The Jungle Book
Where: Adventure Theatre
When: April 4 – May 26
Tickets: $19

Based on the adventures collected by Rudyard Kipling. Orphaned in the jungle as an infant and adopted by a wolf pack, young Mowgli the man-cub is taught the Laws of the Jungle by Baloo, the bear, and Bagheera, the panther. As Mowgli discovers himself and his place as a human, the jungle’s greatest menace, the Bengal Tiger Shere Khan, prepares to finish the kill he abandoned years ago. With a multi-ethnic cast and crew creating a vibrant India-inspired jungle, this production showcases the best of D.C. area talent.

Once on this Island
Where: Olney Theatre
When: April 9 – May 4
Tickets: $31-43

From the Tony Award©-winning creators of Ragtime and Seussical comes a glorious, Caribbean-infused family musical of enormous heart and magical wisdom. In almost non-stop song and dance, Once on this Island, follows the story’s young heroine, Ti Moune, on her quest to prove love is more powerful than the forces of prejudice, hatred and death. Full of capricious gods, island magic, and joyous dance numbers, Olney’s production is directed by Alan Muraoka, proprietor of Sesame Street’s Hooper’s Store since 1997.  Recommended for ages 5 and up.

Cinderella: The Remix
Where: Imagination Stage
When: April 9 – May 26
Tickets: $10 and up

Don’t expect any glass slippers in this remixed version of a popular fairy tale. Instead, get ready to be immersed into the world of Hip-Hop Hollywood, where being a DJ is a dream come true – especially for a girl. Directed and written by Psalmayene 24 (Psalm) with hip-hop beats by Nick Hernandez, Cinderella: the Remix is the final production of The Hip-Hop Children’s Trilogy and teaches an extraordinary lesson in girl power. Recommended for ages 5-10.

Jammin’ at the Smithsonian: Gustafer Yellowgold
Where: Discovery Theater
When: April 10-11
Tickets: $3-6

Get ready for sunny, funny Gustafer! In a show that the New York Times describes as “a cross between Yellow Submarine and Dr. Seuss,” meet the cute cartoon alien who landed on earth from his home on the sun. Gustafer Yellowgolds’s adventures as an explorer in a slightly psychedelic version of the Minnesota woods are brought to life by singer-songwriter-illustrator Morgan Taylor in a bubbly mix of music, animation, and storytelling.

TreeHouse Shakers-Hatched
Where: BlackRock Center for the Arts
When: April 12, 10am & 1pm
Tickets: $14

BlackRock’s first-ever show for very young children, is performed through movement, music, handcrafted puppets, and very little human dialogue. Set on a family farm, a newborn chick emerges from her shell at sunrise to a strange and busy world. Audience members interact and play with the characters on stage; they give the chicks their feed, milk bottles to the lamb and are licked by the cow. A beautiful introduction to theater, Hatched will charm and engage babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers. 

One Mic: Fresh Noise: A Mashup of Youth Voices–Game On!
Where: Kennedy Center
When: April 12-13
Tickets: $20

Eighth grader Ella Jackson just can’t win. At school, she’s harassed by bullies. At home, her mother’s on her case. All she wants to do is hang out and play video games. One day, when Ella says five magic words–“this game is my LIFE!”–her secret wish comes true, and she ends up inside the game! With just 45 minutes to clear three new levels, Ella must move quickly or be stuck in the game forever. She soon learns that virtual reality is no match for real life, while discovering some of her hidden talents along the way. Middle school students in Washington, D.C., have helped create this world premiere hip-hop theater work using their growing understanding of hip-hop culture and personal connections to the art form. Their imaginative stories and characters now come to life on stage through talented adult performers and hip-hop artists, including special guest appearances by DJ Reborn, Rokafella & Kwikstep, and DC Youth Poets.

Peter Pan
Where: Kennedy Center
When: April 16-27
Tickets: $25-125

Take a high-flying adventure to Neverland with the The Washington Ballet’s NEW Production of Septime Webre’s dazzling Peter Pan. A swashbuckling coming of age tale that pits Peter and the Lost Boys against Captain Hook and his outrageous band of pirates, this whimsical adventure is told through vibrant dance. Peter Pan is a story about growing up that never seems to grow old.

The Odyssey
Where: Olney Theatre
When: April 25
Tickets: $10/member, $15/non-members

Victorious on his departure from Troy, Odysseus heads home, embarking on a ten-year voyage that will test his wits and perseverance far more than war-time duty ever did. Upon his ultimate arrival, Odysseus learns that home is far different than what he expected; and that his greatest battle has yet to be fought. Recommended for ages 8 and up.

Me and My Shadow
Where: Kennedy Center
When: April 26-27
Tickets: $20

Shadows–they’re mysterious, they’re goofy, and they can do some pretty remarkable things. That’s exactly why children love to play with them! But making friends with your shadow can be tricky. There are things to sort out, frustrations to overcome, adventures to be had, and laughter to be shared. Presented in the form of a visual poem, this new show from Australia’s renowned Patch Theatre Company (2012’s Emily Loves to Bounce) uses a combination of light and shadow, paper and water, fantastical imagery, and intriguing sounds to reveal the perplexities and pleasures of friendship. Australia’s Db Review calls Me and My Shadow “a feast for the eyes that reaches straight, crystal clear to the hearts of all ages!” Recommended for ages 8 and up.

Shisa Dogs and Taiko Drums: A Japanese Journey
Where: Natural History Museum
When: May 1
Tickets: $3-8

Nothing is more exciting than the sound of a big Japanese drum. And a huge, purple dancing lion-dog is a must for every festival. Musicians and colorfully costumed dancers from the Chin Hamaya Daiko Culture Center use drums, chant, song, and dance to sweep you into the spirit of celebrations from Japan’s Ryukyu Islands. Presented by Discovery Theatre, the show is recommended for ages 5 and up.

Dali Quartet – Latin Fiesta Family Concert
Where: BlackRock Center for the Arts
When: May 3
Tickets: $14

Hello, Dalí! The Dalí Quartet is today’s freshest voice in Classical and Latin-American music. Their popular Latin Fiesta Family Concert features an interactive program that takes the whole family on a journey of different rhythms and melodies including Argentinean Tangos, Cuban Boleros, Caribbean Rumbas, and Venezuelan Joropos and ensures dancing in the aisles. Audiences learn various rhythmic patterns, dance steps and the origin of many of these genres and how they relate to and influence Western classical music. Dali’s inspiring and fun presentations make chamber music accessible and fun for the whole family.

NSO Kinderclassics: Bears, Bear, Everywhere!
Where: Kennedy Center
When: May 3
Tickets: $20

Back by popular demand and all grown up from a Teddy Bear Concert! It’s a big bear world out there, and every sort of bear has its own look and growl. This concert takes a peek at these adorable creatures and the sounds of their homelands–music that’s as unique as they are. With NSO musicians Elisabeth Adkins and Paula Akbar, violins; Lewis Lipnick, bassoon and contrabassoon; guest percussionist Joseph Connell; and storyteller Lynn-Jane Foreman, this performance assembles a wild combination of instruments to create music from around the world. Children will also be introduced to the theremin, an instrument used to create the crazy sounds in a lot of classic films. Get there early for the Musical Instrument “Petting Zoo.” Starting one hour before each Kinderkonzert, this hands-on activity in the Kennedy Center Hall of States gives children a chance to get up close with the instruments they’ll see played on stage–from violins and trumpets to oboes and flutes. Recommended for ages 4 and up.

Tigers, Dragons, and Other Wise Tails
Where: Discovery Theater
When: May 6-9 & May 13-16
Tickets: $3-8

This delightful Discovery Theater original reimagines folk tales from Asia with a modern touch and plenty of fresh fun. The Tiger, the Thief, and the Dried Persimmon (Korea) puts a new spin on mistaken identity with a very silly tiger, a babysitting grandma, and dried fruit. The Boy and the Fly (Vietnam) is a sweetly silly slapstick romp with a little lesson thrown in. The Wise Mole (Japan) updates an ancient story of young love, complete with cell phones and iPods. The mythic Four Dragon Rivers of China features beautiful flying dragon puppets. Recommended for ages 5-10.

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It’s Showtime all Winter Long

See "Aquarium" at Imagination Stage through January 26 or at the Atlas from January 28 - February 2

See “Aquarium” at Imagination Stage through Jan 26 or at the Atlas from Jan 28 – Feb 2



Get out of the cold and into the theatre, concert hall, or arena — our local live entertainment venues are presenting a dynamic lineup of shows all winter long! Here’s where you can see them, listed in order of opening date. And if you know of a great production that you don’t see here, feel free to mention it in the comments.

The Little Mermaid, Jr.
Where: Thomas Jefferson Community Theater
When: Through January 19
Tickets: $12/adult, $10/child

Encore Stage and Studio’s newest “theatre by kids for kids” splashes into the classic story of Ariel, the mermaid princess, who wishes to live in the world above rather than the ocean floor. To explore life on land, Ariel disobeys her father, King Triton, and makes a deal with the evil sea witch Ursula. Ransoming her singing voice, she must convince Prince Eric that she is indeed the girl who rescued him or risk losing her voice forever. Recommended for ages 4 and up.

Aquarium
Where: Imagination Stage
When: Through January 26
Tickets: $10-12

The Bethesda theater has brought back its popular production for its youngest patrons. With gentle music, beautiful puppets, and props, friends Jack and Calypso lead children and caregivers to a magical, interactive world where giant jellyfish fly through the air, sheep graze in the grass, and lemons become the sun in a “let’s pretend” sky. Appropriate for children ages 1-5.

Grey Seal Puppets on Parade
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: January 16
Tickets: $4

Enjoy this hilarious parade of adorable puppets featuring Mr.  Crabcake and Humpty Dumpty as host Stubbs McGee brings you laughs and limericks. Recommended for grades pre-K-2. Publick Playhouse is located at 5445 Landover Road in Cheverly, Md.

Tales of Beatrix Potter
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: January 17 – February 9
Admission: $10

Applause Unlimited of Richmond, VA is back at the Playhouse, and presenting three of Potter’s favorites, “Two Bad Mice,” “Jemima Puddle-Duck,” and “Jeremy Fisher,”  Christopher Hudert tells the stories, which come to life through the everyday activities of a young girl as she dreams and plays alone in her room. Recommended for PreK – Grade 4.

Tiny Tots
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: Most Wednesdays, Saturdays, & Sundays at 10am
Tickets: $5

The series presents puppet shows designed for the youngest theater patrons (ages 0-4). They are shorter, the lights stay on, and the doors stay open. They have an arsenal of shows that they switch up every performance, so check the schedule to see what’s playing when you plan to go.

Miss Nelson is Missing
Where: Adventure Theatre
When: January 17 – March 9
Tickets: $19 (look for a discount on the opening night show here)

Miss Nelson’s class is the worst!  Spitballs flying and paper airplanes sailing across the room send the gentle, long-suffering teacher over the edge.  Surprise…Miss Nelson turns up missing, only to be replaced by Viola Swamp, a petrifying substitute teacher.  Will the students of Room 207 ever get Miss Nelson back? Recommended for ages 5 and up.

Mouse in the House
Where: Theatre on the Run
When: January 18
Tickets: (look for a discount here)

Adapted from the book The Mouse of Amherst by Elizabeth Spires, this dance performance tells the story of an unlikely friendship between a lively mouse and reclusive 19th-century poet Emily Dickinson, with video backdrop animation by Bryan Leister. The mouse’s life changes forever when a gust of wind blows one of Emily’s poems her way. Moved by Emily’s evocative words that capture her own feelings, the mouse becomes determined to be a poet herself. Young audience members learn that everyone can write about their feelings and that even a common mouse is capable of creating beautiful poetry.

NSO Ensemble Concert: Connections: Music Matters
Where: Kennedy Center
When: January 19
Tickets: $20 (look for half-price tickets here)

What do earthquakes, sports cars, and memories have in common? Did you immediately say “music”? If you didn’t, you’ll want to come to this new multimedia program to find out what’s going on in research labs around the world. Cellist Yvonne Caruthers is joined by three of her NSO colleagues to take you deep into the world of music and illustrate why music matters–and how it makes you smarter! Recommended for ages 9 and up.

Tot Rock
Where: Jammin’ Java
When: Ongoing
Tickets: $5/weekdays, $10/weekends

Tot Rock is Jammin’ Java’s super-popular kids music concert series, providing wholesome family entertainment at one of the DC Metro area’s finest music clubs. Local acts perform every Thursday and Friday, and touring performers drop by on many weekends. Check the calendar often to see when your favorite act is performing.

Gold
Where: Kennedy Center
When: January 24-25
Tickets: $20 (look for half-price tickets here)

Canada’s Cas Public dance ensemble uses everyday sounds and objects in to explore the joy, humor, and mischief of childhood–all performed to Canadian pianist Glenn Gould’s famous recording of Johann Sebastian Bach’s Goldberg Variations. Recommended for ages 8 and up.

Monster Jam
Where: Verizon Center
When: January 24-25
Tickets: $10-65 (look for a discount here)

The world’s largest and most famous monster truck tour featuring the biggest names in monster trucks will thunder its way into the Verizon Center this month. Grave Digger, Bounty Hunter, Team Survivor, Crushstation and Illuminator are among the vehicular beasts you’ll see tearing up the indoor terrain this year.

Penelope’s Pesky Pen
Where: Theatre on the Run
When: January 25-26
Tickets: $10-15 (look for a discount here)

This lighthearted musical dance performance tells the story of a magical pen with a mind of its own. Inspired by a children’s book by Frank Dormer, the 30-minute performance finds Aunt Pearl and young Penelope setting off on a fun adventure, as they try to figure out what to do with such an amazing and interesting writing instrument. Penelope’s Pesky Pen is the latest all-new children’s production from the multi-award-winning talents at the Jane Franklin Dance Company.

The Amazing Magic of Louis
Where: Old Town Theater
When: January 25, 11am
Tickets: $10

Enjoy a morning of Family-Friendly Magic by Louis the Magician : Nickelodeon’s Award Winner for Best Entertainer in Washington, DC. The Old Town Theater is located at 815-1/2 King Street in Alexandria.

Peter and the Starcatcher
Where: Kennedy Center
When: January 28 – February 16
Tickets: $55-135 (look for a discount here)

A most magical evening of madcap fun, Peter and the Starcatcher is a hilarious romp through the Neverland you never knew! This swashbuckling prequel to Peter Pan will have you hooked from the moment you let your imagination take flight. Peter and the Starcatcher is the innovative and imaginative musical play based on the best-selling novel by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. A company of twelve actors plays more than a hundred unforgettable characters, all on a journey to answer the century-old question: How did Peter Pan become The Boy Who Never Grew Up? This epic origin story of one of popular culture’s most enduring and beloved characters proves that your imagination is the most captivating place in the world. Suitable for younger audiences, but most enjoyable for ages 10 and up

Aquarium
Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center
When: January 28 – February 2
Tickets: $8

The production from Imagination Stage returns to the Atlas stage for a weeklong run. Young audiences will enter a world where giant jellyfish fly through the air, sheep graze in the grass, and lemons create the sun in a “let’s pretend” sky.

Archimedes & the Power of Math
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: January 28, 10:15am & 12pm
Tickets: $6

The ancient world’s greatest mathematician is brought to life in this entertaining performance that shows kids that math is cool, fun, and powerful.  With audience participation and fun factoids (Archimedes held of the Roman Army for 3 years using nothing but math) kids will come away inspired and ready to learn math.  Recommended for grades 3-5. Publick Playhouse is located at 5445 Landover Road in Cheverly, Md.

Dream Carver
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: January 31, 10:15 & 12pm & February 1, 11am
Tickets: $6

Mateo is a young Mexican boy whose father has taught him traditional wood carving.  But when Mateo has an inspiring dream of colorful singing animals, he wants to carve new things in new ways.  This bilingual musical explores creativity, generational differences, and the importance of following your dreams.  Recommended for grades K-6. Publick Playhouse is located at 5445 Landover Road in Cheverly, Md.

STOMP
Where: National Theatre
When: February 4-9
Tickets: Start at $40

The unique combination of percussion, movement and visual comedy, STOMP has created its own inimitable, contemporary form of rhythmic expression: both household and industrial objects find new life as musical instruments in the hands of an idiosyncratic band of body percussionists. It is a journey through sound, a celebration of the everyday and a comic interplay of characters wordlessly communicating through dance and drum. Synchronized stiff-bristle brooms become a sweeping orchestra, eight Zippo lighters flip open and closed to create a fiery fugue; wooden poles thump and clack in a rhythmic explosion. STOMP uses everything but conventional percussion instruments – dustbins, tea chests, radiator hoses, boots, hub caps – to fill the stage with a compelling and unique act that is often imitated but never duplicated.

Lions of Industry, Mothers of Invention
Where: Discovery Theater
When: February 4-6
Tickets: $3-8

Discovery Theater’s original interactive play honors the creativity and genius of African American entrepreneurs and inventors including beauty-product magnate Madame C.J. Walker; agricultural chemist and “peanut man” George Washington Carver; education giant Booker T. Washington; and George Crum, the cranky chef who accidentally created the potato chip. The production inspires the dreamer and achiever in all of us.

Rumplestiltskin
Where: Imagination Stage
When: February 5 – March 16
Tickets: $10-25

“This is a story that’s old as old, of how a girl turned straw into gold.” When a poor miller brags that his daughter has a talent for spinning straw into gold, a greedy and zany king commands her to make gold for his coffers. Unable to perform this feat, the miller’s daughter enlists the help of a rotten riddling fairy named Rumpelstiltskin…but his price for helping is high. Will she be able to solve Rumpelstiltskin’s mystery in time to save her family? Best for Ages 5-10.

Raisin’ Cane: A Harlem Renaissance Odyssey
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: February 7, 10:15am & 12pm
Tickets: $6

Celebrate Black History Month and the renaissance of artistic expression in post-World War I Harlem in this production that weaves poetry, fiction, art and music and creates a multi-media window into a critical point in cultural history. Recommended for all ages. Publick Playhouse is located at 5445 Landover Road in Cheverly, Md.

Orphie and the Book of Heroes
Where: Kennedy Center
When: February 8-23
Tickets: $20 (look for a discount here

Spunky and curious Orphie, a young girl in Ancient Greece, sets out to save storyteller Homer and his Book of Heroes in this humorous world premiere musical–a quest that takes her from the heights of Mt. Olympus to the depths of the underworld. Recommended for ages 9 and up.

Songs of Freedom
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: February 11, 10:15am & 12pm
Tickets: $6
Experience Black History through the music of our past. Spirituals that carried secret messages, the blues of Beale Street, and the anthems of the Civil Rights Movement spanned both centuries and continents and made a lasting impact on our culture today.  Hear the songs and the stories behind them in this energetic and entertaining performance. Recommended for grades 3 and up. Publick Playhouse is located at 5445 Landover Road in Cheverly, Md.

Disney on Ice: 100 Years of Magic
Where: Verizon Center
When: February 12-17
Tickets: $20-80 (look for a discount here)

Join the celebration as more than 60 of Disney’s unforgettable characters from 18 beloved stories come to life in Disney On Ice celebrates 100 Years of Magic coming to Barclays Center January 22 through January 26. You’ll be captivated by the one and only Mickey Mouse, the irresistible Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Donald Duck, Jiminy Cricket, Pinocchio, and many Disney Princesses. Be thrilled by exciting moments from The Lion King, Mulan and Disney/Pixar’s Finding Nemo, The Incredibles and Toy Story films; in a skating spectacular you’ll remember forever!

Under the Canopy
Where: The Athenaeum & The Atlas Performing Arts Center
When: February 12 – 23 & February 28 – March 8
Tickets: $5

Arts on the Horizon’s World Premiere show wants you to imagine a theatrical world designed especially for babies and young toddlers to explore – a world inspired by the wonders of the rainforest! That’s what’s in store for the very youngest audiences and their caregivers when the innovative, nonverbal style of Arts on the Horizon targets their littlest fans. Best for children ages 2 and under (and their 3-4 year old pals).  The show will be performed at The Athenaeum in Alexandria February 12-13, then as part of the INTERSECTIONS Festival at The Atlas Performing Arts Center February 28 – March 8.

Sleeping Beauty
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: February 13 – March 23
Tickets: $10

Yet another elegant production created by the Puppet Co., “Sleeping Beauty” combines romance and adventure in a story of fairies, frogs, kings and queens, and of course, a sleeping princess and the gallant prince destined to find her. Told with rod puppets and wonderful special effects, the show is a real treat for princesses and princes, big and small! Recommended for PreK- Grade 4

Bessie and Bill – Black Wings in Flight
Where: Discovery Theater
When: February 19-21 & 25-26
Tickets $3-8:

Daredevil Bessie Coleman barnstormed the country as the first licensed African American woman pilot. Inspired by her grit and perseverance, Bill Powell became a pilot and trained the famous Tuskegee Airmen of World War II. Meet these spunky pioneers of the air in a powerful show that speaks to even the youngest dreamer.

William’s Adventure in Black History
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: February 19, 10:15am & 12pm
Tickets: $6

Enjoy this brisk panorama of 400 years of Black History in America, and meet some of the remarkable people who shaped our country.  Audience members join historical figures onstage and experience important events and decisions as they travel into space with Mae Jemison and encourage Rosa Parks to stay in her seat. Recommended for grades pre K – 5. Publick Playhouse is located at 5445 Landover Road in Cheverly, Md.

NSO Family Concert: Peter and the Wolf
Where: Kennedy Center
When: February 23
Tickets: $15-18

Prokofiev’s timeless musical tale of boy vs. wolf comes roaring to life with the NSO and a vaudeville-inspired performance by actor Michael Boudewyns from theater ensemble Really Inventive Stuff. Recommended for ages 5 and up. Go early for an Instrument Petting Zoo, where young concertgoers can get up close and hands-on with the instruments they’ll see played on the stage–from violins, trumpets, and oboes to trombones and percussion–in the Kennedy Center Atrium.

Mammoth Follies& Dinosaur Friends
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: February 25, 10:15am & 12pm
Tickets: $6

Explore the wonders of evolution and learn the facts and myths about the great age of dinosaurs as host Willie Mammoth takes you through a musical revue of songs, jokes, and dance, performed by Smiley the Saber-Toothed Tiger, Bessie the lovable 27-foot long Apatosaurus, Terry the Pterodactyl, and many more lovable dino-puppets. Recommended for grades 2-5. Publick Playhouse is located at 5445 Landover Road in Cheverly, Md.

All the Way Live! with Paige Hernandez and Baye Harrell
Where: Discovery Theater
When: February 27-28
Tickets: $3-8

Rising hip-hop star Paige Hernandez and master beat-box artist Baye Harrell can make anything—from the alphabet to folktales—come to life with a simple beat, a rhythm, and a rhyme. They’ll collaborate on the spot to create some incredible remixes that unfold through dance, poetry, rap, and tracks by DJ Nick Tha 1da in this production created just for Discovery Theater. Recommended for ages 5-12.

Sunjata Kamalenya
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: February 28, 12pm & March 1, 11am
Tickets: $10

Thirteenth century Mali comes to life as both actors and audience tell the story of Sunjata Keita, a young boy who is destined to save his people.  Traditional music, costumes, and scenery create a fascinating world where this timeless tale of personal struggle, family love, and community is depicted.  Recommended for grades 6 and up. Publick Playhouse is located at 5445 Landover Road in Cheverly, Md.

Cashore Marionettes
Where: BlackRock Center for the Arts
When: March 1
Tickets: $14

This puppet company, acclaimed for their artistry, grace and refinement brings two shows to BlackRock. Both are a series of vignettes set to music by such composers as Vivaldi, Strauss and Beethoven. “Simple Gifts,” at 1:00, is shorter and light-hearted with subjects that engage a family audience. “Life in Motion,” at 8:00, is longer and has more varying tones and themes appropriate for a wider range of ages. Following the 1:00 show, the puppeteers will demonstrate how the marionettes work. Following the 8:00 show, enjoy a Q&A with the puppeteers.

NSO Teddy Bear Concert: Imagination Duo
Where: Kennedy Center
When: March 8-9
Tickets: $20

Join husband-and-wife violin duo–Glenn Donnellan of the NSO and Jan Chong–as they use stories, sound effects, children’s songs, and gems from the classical repertoire to make your imagination come alive!Kids can bring their favorite stuffed animal to these interactive programs and have their teddy bear friend join in all the fun! Lasting approximately 45 minutes, they’re perfect for even the youngest music lovers in your family. Go early for “Musical Playtime” – starting 45 minutes before each Teddy Bear Concert, enjoy music and movement activities especially designed for small children. Recommended for ages 3 to 5.

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
Where: Ford’s Theatre
When: March 14 – May 17
Tickets: Start at $18

Six pubescent students navigate their county’s spelling tournament with anxiety, angst and determination. As the competitors progress with the help of definitions, mnemonic devises and toe-tapping tricks, they discover a new sense of belonging and learn that there is more to life than winning a trophy. This charming coming-of-age tale also invites four volunteers from the audience to participate in each performance, ensuring new and unexpected comedy every night.

Harlem Globetrotters 2014 “Fans Rule” World Tour
Where: Verizon Center
When: March 15
Tickets: $16-150 (look for a discount here)

The world famous Harlem Globetrotters have been thrilling families and millions of fans for 88 years, all the while innovating the game in exciting new ways. Last year, the Globetrotters did something unparalleled in the history of sports and entertainment, letting fans vote on new rules to be used in actual games. It was so much fun, they are doing it again, and there are cool new rules to choose from on this one!

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