Attended the opening preview of Washington Ballet's Don Quixote at Kennedy Center Wednesday night and what a revelation! When company director Septime Webre told us before the show that he was VERY excited to have Viengsay Valdes of the Ballet Nacional de Cuba dancing the part of Kitri/Dulcinea, he wasn't kidding. She soared and twirled through the show alongside Jonathan Jordan's Basilio, to ovation after ovation. (Personally, I'm a Sancho Panza fan, but here he was just a supporting player.) How she spun on one leg so long and gorgeously I'll never know. I'm not a dance critic so I can't wait to see the review in tomorrow's Washington Post. But this was an exciting event to be at. It continues through the weekend with two performances Saturday and Sunday. But Valdes will only be dancing Saturday night.
I'm a little behind on movies but did enjoy The Informant (3.5 RED DOTS), Matt Damon's break from the exciting Bourne movies. (I think a fourth one is in the works.) It reminded me some of Shattered Glass, but a little lighter. Marvin Hamlisch's music is sensational as always. Has anyone ever seen him in person? He'll be doing one of these cool (and inexpensive) retrospectives at the Kennedy Center Nov. 16 and I will definitely go. I saw him once at an Olssons Books about 10 years ago with an autobiography he wrote. There were about 20 people, the interviewer, Hamlisch and a piano. OMG! He's so nice and modest. He started playing his songs for us, the theme from The Sting, The Way We Were, A Chorus Line, and stuff from further back. I'll never forget it. I should see if I still have the book. Anyway, Soderbergh gets back to some of his cute ways and further away from the Che Guevara stuff in the Informant. It's clever and surprising, not great but good entertainment.
Come meet us (a group from Bike and Brunch) at Theater J in the DC Jewish Community Center on 16th and Q next Wednesday, Oct. 21, for a PWYC preview of Lost in Yonkers. Holly Twyford and Tana Hinken reunite after last year's amazing Road to Mecca at Studio. Jerry Whiddon directs. We also last saw him at Studio last year in Blackbird, that exciting two-person play about the reuniting of a man and woman after he had molested her years before. So this should be first-class stuff at Theater J.
On Thursday, my friend Rob and I usher for opening night of Folger's Much Ado About Nothing. I really enjoy their theater offerings, so I'm looking forward to it and will let you know!
My friend Cinthia of The Culture Club is starting to get very excited over Fotoweek, Nov. 7-14. And who can blame her. We will have numerous postings for that in the next few weeks. She's got some fun meetups coming up including a free screening of the Chilean film The Maid on Nov. 5 at E Street. It got a very good review in today's New York Times.
Okay, let's post this and then I'll do a calendar to follow.