Tag Archives: Lisner Auditorium

Spring into Summer with a New Selection of Family Entertainment

There’s a whole new crop of live entertainment for kids coming to area performing arts venues this spring and summer. Catch some of these performances as soon as this week or save your seats for shows opening at later dates. Here are details on all of them, with most descriptions straight from the websites.

Joanie Leeds & The Nightlights
Where: Kennedy Center Millennium Stage
When: May 7 at 6pm
Tickets: FREE!
Join the artist of the 2010 Parents’ Choice® Gold Award-winning album, I’m a Rock Star, as she celebrate the releae of her new album, What a Zoo!, with a performance on the Kennedy Center’s Milliennum Stage. Joanie Leeds and her band, The Nightlights, will make their Washington, DC, debut with a FREE rocking family show. If you haven’t heard Joanie’s music, go take a listen on her website—it’s easy to see why her poppy sound and fun lyrics strike a chord with kids. The concert is part of The Kennedy Center’s daily Free Performance series.

Various Performances for Children
Where: Discovery Theater
When: Ongoing
Tickets: $3 – $6
From plays based on ancient fables to unique dance performances to magic shows to animal encounters, Discovery Theater entertains audiences with a variety of productions for all ages. Most performances take place at the Smithsonian’s Ripley Center. See the complete schedule of shows on the theater’s website.

NSO Teddy Bear Concert: Bears, Bears Everywhere
Where: Kennedy Center
When: May 7-8
Tickets: $18
It’s a big bear world out there, and every sort of bear has its own look and growl. This Teddy Bear Concert takes a peek at these adorable creatures and the sounds of their homelands–music that is as unique as they are. NSO musicians on violin, bassoon, and, percussion assemble a wild combination of instruments in order to create music from around the world. Children will also be introduced to an out-of-this-world instrument, the Theremin, which is used to create the crazy sounds in a lot of classic films. Recommended for ages 3-5. Ge there early for “musical playtime”—starting a half-hour before each Teddy Bear Concert, there are music and movement activities designed especially for small children.

George and Martha – Tons of Fun
Where: Imagination Stage
When: Through May 29
Tickets: $11 – $22
The two endearing hippos from the James Marshall picture books stomp onto stage in this warm and funny musical adaptation. George and Martha are best friends. They play music together and share meals, presents, picnics, and exciting adventures like flying a balloon. Sometimes they have differences as all friends do. But it cannot last. Like all good friends George and Martha just can’t stay angry for long! This simple story says much about our relationships at any age. Geared for our youngest theatre-goers but enjoyable for all, this new musical by Joan Cushing sparkles with clever lyrics and laughter. Enjoyed by ages 3 and up.

Liberty Smith
Where: Ford’s Theatre
When: Through May 21
Tickets: $39 – $55
Ford’s Theatre presents the world premiere of Liberty Smith, a madcap musical romp through Revolutionary America. A childhood friend of George Washington, apprentice to Benjamin Franklin and linked to Paul Revere’s remarkable ride, the elusive Liberty Smith weaves his way through familiar tales of a young nation. Rife with melody and blazing with adventure, Liberty Smith recalls the lush heyday of the American musical. Experience the birth of America through the eyes of our forgotten founding father: Liberty Smith.

The Day John Henry Came to School
Where: Imagination Stage
When: Through May 29
Tickets: $11 – $22
Johnny is way into video games and not especially motivated at school. Imagine his surprise one night when there’s a loud knock at the door and his ancestor John Henry bursts into his bedroom, wielding a 12 lb hammer and insisting that he will visit Johnny’s class the next day for “Show & Tell.” At first unimpressed by John Henry’s tragic tale about his race with the steam engine, the kids in Johnny’s class come to appreciate the importance of his ultimate sacrifice. Recommended for ages 7 and up.

A Year with Frog and Toad
Where: Adventure Theatre
When: May 10 – June 5
Tickets: $15
Arnold Lobel’s well-loved characters hop from the page to the stage in Robert and Willie Reale’s musical. It follows two great friends, the cheerful and popular Frog and the rather grumpy Toad through four fun-filled seasons. Waking from hibernation in the spring, they proceed to plant gardens, swim, rake leaves and go sledding, learning life lessons along the way, including a most important one about friendship and rejoicing in the attributes that make each of us different and special. Recommended for ages 4 and up.

Imagination Movers
Where: Lisner Auditorium
When: May 12
Tickets: $32 or $112 for the Mini-movers package (Groupon has a deal thru 5/1 – see below)
Disney’s Emmy Award-winning Imagination Movers come to Lisner as part of their “In a Big Warehouse” concert tour. The wildly popular New Orleans-based rock band for kids of all ages will play their most popular songs and bring the magic of the Imagination Movers television series’ Idea Warehouse to life. Concertgoers can expect special appearances from Nina, Warehouse Mouse and other characters from the TV series. Get 50% off tickets through Groupon, but buy them soon, as the deal only lasts through May 1.

Peter and the Wolf
Where: Alden Theatre
When: May 14
Tickets: $12, $8/McLean residents

This is an adaptation of the traditional Russian folktale set to music by Sergei Prokofiev. While providing a charming introduction to the world of music and musical instruments, this enchanting tale is all about the adventure of growing up. Danger becomes reality and creative innovation becomes essential as young Peter meets the challenge of survival in the outside world.  Recommended for ages 5 and up.

NSO Family Concert: Beethoven Lives Upstairs
Where: Kennedy Center
When: May 15
Tickets: $15-18
What to do about the loud neighbor upstairs? When Ludwig van Beethoven moves into his family’s Vienna boarding house, young Christoph begins writing letters to his uncle about the “madman” living above him. Through a touching correspondence dramatically underscored with more than twenty-five excerpts from the composer’s most beautiful works, Christoph comes to understand the genius of Beethoven, the beauty of his music, and the torment of his deafness. Part history, part drama, all fun, this is an excellent introduction to the master’s music, including the Moonlight Sonata, Für Elise, and the great Fifth and Ninth Symphonies. Recommended for age 5 and up. Get to the show an hour early for the Musical 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.

Drumming with Dishes
Where: Art on the Horizon at Landmark Mall
When: May 18 – June 5
Tickets: $8 or $25 for a Family 4-Pack
Join an adventurous toddler as she introduces her imaginary friend to a very special kitchen, where instead of food, they’ll cook up beautiful music. This gentle, whimsical adventure celebrates turning the ordinary into the extraordinary, as you never know just what will become a musical instrument next. Pasta box shakers and dishes drumming away with spoons are just some of the friendly surprises that encourage a child’s sense of play. And as our heroine empowers her timid friend to create music, we discover just what wonders can be accomplished when we all work together. This world-premiere production is a 30-minute interactive, non-verbal show, which features two adult actors and a musician. Geared towards children ages 2-5.

NSO Kinderkonzert: Got Rhythm?
Where: Kennedy Center
When: May 15
Tickets: $18
Rhythm is everywhere: it flavors our lives and lives within music. Join Glenn Donnellan, Richard Barber, Edward Cabarga, Adel Sanchez, and Joe Connell for vivid selections by Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Rossini, and more. Recommended for ages 4 and up. Free musical instrument “Petting Zoo” one hour prior to each performance. Get to the show an hour early for the Musical Instrument “Petting Zoo,” where young concertgoers can get up close and hands-on with the instruments they’ll see played on the stage in the Kennedy Center Atrium.

Jack & the Bean-Stalk
Where:  1st Stage Theater
When:    May 15-June 19
Tickets: $15
Enjoy a hilarious, laugh-out-loud, brand-new adaptation of the classic fairy tale, “Jack and the Bean-Stalk.” This play is a fun-for-the-whole-family, comic rollercoaster ride of quirky characters, including an irreverent Cow, a crafty, bean-peddling Stranger, and a saucy Hen What Lays the Golden Eggs. Aimed at younger audiences, but with lots of laughs built in for adults, it’s a perfect fit for families who want to share the joy of live-performance theater. Special “Family Night Out” performances on Saturdays, June 4 and 18 at 6pm.

Click, Clack, Moo
Where:  Alden Theatre
When:    June 5
Tickets: $12, $8/McLean residents
“Cows that type? Hens on strike! Whoever heard of such a thing?!” Farmer Brown cries. When his grandaughter Jenny comes to visit, Farmer Brown declares a “tech-free zone”. This hilariously “mooooo-ving” new musical is about negotiation and compromise. Recommended for ages 4 and up.

The Great Dinosaur Mystery
Where: The Puppet Co. Playhouse
When: June 9 – July 17
Tickets: $10
DinoRock Productions returns to the Puppet Co. Playhouse with this story is set in the basement of the Natural History Museum. Dr. Vander Plastercaster is about to give the audience a behind-the-scenes tour of a new dinosaur exhibit when she finds a mysterious box. Enter Detective Joe Kafootsie, Special Forces: Strange Phenomena Detail. He’s found a giant shoe and thinks it might belong to a dinosaur! Suddenly dinosaurs begin appearing with messages from a mysterious character named Tootsie. Who is Tootsie? What do the messages mean? What’s going on? It’s all part of the great, great, great, great Great Dinosaur Mystery! Recommended for ages 4 and up.

The Wind in the Willows
Where: Imagination Stage
When: June 22 – August 15
Tickets: $10 – $22
Go on a wild ride with Mr. Toad! It’s early in the twentieth century, and Mr. Toad embraces the motor car with reckless abandon. When it is clear that he is on a road to disaster, Toad’s friends Mole, Ratty and Mr. Badger decide to intervene. Can they save Toad from himself? In an adventure with police chases, prison breaks and bandits, Mr. Toad learns the true meaning of friendship. This musical event is faithful to the classic, enchanting novel. Recommended for ages 4 and up.

Children’s Theater in the Woods
Where: Wolf Trap
When: June 28 – August 13
Tickets: $8 for a day pass – two shows in one
With 70 performances from late June through early August, Children’s Theatre-in-the-Woods presents family-friendly shows at 10am and 11:15am on Tuesdays through Saturdays. Amidst 117 rolling wooded acres and nestled in a shady grove, the stage is set for lively adventures in music, dance, storytelling, puppetry, and theater. All performances are recommended for children between Kindergarten and 6th grade. The full schedule of shows in available of the Wolf Trap website.

PLAY! A Video Game Symphony
Where: Wolf Trap
When: July 8, 8:30pm
Tickets: $20 – $52
Award-winning music from Super Mario Brothers, World of Warcraft, Final Fantasy, the Legend of Zelda, Halo, Battlefield 1942, and many more. Outstanding visuals on huge screens in-house and on the lawn highlight memorable moments from these blockbuster video games.


Filed under All ages, DC, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Music, Theatre