Turns out February is a bit of a quiet month for theater, as many groups in the area use this short month as a time for preparation rather than presentation. All that to say, I’ve planned out your next few weeks for you. Since there isn’t much to do, you’ve no excuse to not check out at least one of these productions around the area.
It’s Black History Month, so your first show should be “The Sign in Sidney Brustein’s Window” by Lorraine Hansberry, directed by Ryan Guzzo Purcell. Presented by Intiman Theater and The Williams Project, this little-known play by the writer of “A Raisin in the Sun” feels like it could be about 2020 Seattle, despite being set in Greenwich Village in 1964. The play asks Sidney himself, and the audience, how much are you willing to sacrifice for your ideals? Is a sign in the window enough? On the play’s site, director Purcell is quoted as saying, “This is a play about intersectionality and identity politics before either had a name.” Don’t miss this impactful show at the Erickson Theatre from Feb. 7 to 25.
By my way of thinking, maybe the most exciting show in Seattle this month is Seda Iranian Theatre Ensemble and Macha Theatre Works’ co-production of “The Forgotten History of Mastaneh,” written and directed by Dr. Naghmeh Samini, a huge voice in Iranian theater. Performed in Persian with English subtitles, “The Forgotten History” is just that: the story of young women after Iran’s revolution, whose voices were taken from them. Buy tickets soon, as this show only runs one weekend: Feb. 10 to 12.
The next weekend, get over to Issaquah to enjoy “Miss Step,” a new musical by Kit Yan and Melissa Li set in the ’80s about family dynamics and competitive aerobics — something for everyone! Village Theater puts on short runs of new musicals through its program Beta Productions, giving playwrights a chance to stage something without fully staging it. It’s like our own off-Broadway! “Miss Step” takes the stage Feb. 11 through 19.
Now, finally, a bit of a choose-your-own-adventure. For the last weekend in February, do you want:
(1) A sweet romantic comedy? If so, go to Burien for “On the Market” by Jason Odell Williams and directed by Rochelle Flynn and Maggie Larrick, Feb. 8 through Mar. 5.
(2) To take a quick jaunt across the pond — and maybe solve a murder? Book-It Theatre presents “The Murder of Roger Ackroyd,” based on Agatha Christie’s famous mystery novel, Feb. 8 to Mar. 5. The classic text is sure to take some new twists.
(3) To continue honoring Black History Month? Fremont Abbey Arts Center is hosting Harmonic Rhythm’s “BLK HISTORY BLK LOVE” on Feb. 24. Local artists and singers will present poetry, music and rhythm, hosted by Seattle-area poet and author Jamaar Smiley.
Whichever choice you make, you’re still supporting Seattle-area artists, so you’re on the right path.
Read more of the Feb. 1-7, 2023 issue.