Amy Guay

<i>For Akheem</i> Presents Black Lives Just As They Are

For Akheem Presents Black Lives Just As They Are


17-year-old Daje “Boonie” Shelton is a “bad kid.” Marked as such early on—a burden that, to hear her tell it, primed others to expect less of her in a depressingly predictable cycle—Daje is expelled from her public high school and ordered to attend Innovative Concept Academy, a court-supervised school that offers “delinquent teens” a chance…

Concert Review: Tank and The Bangas, July 21, Songbyrd Music House

Concert Review: Tank and The Bangas, July 21, Songbyrd Music House


The must-watch video that won Tank and The Bangas NPR’s 2017 Tiny Desk Contest offers just a fraction of the contagious energy they brought to their concert at Adams Morgan’s Songbyrd Record Cafe and Music House on July 21. And considering how irresistibly joyful the video is, that’s saying something. With front woman Tarriona “Tank”…

Born from Quirky Comedy, <i>Brigsby Bear</i> is Warm and Fuzzy

Born from Quirky Comedy, Brigsby Bear is Warm and Fuzzy


Brigsby Bear Adventures — an off-kilter mishmash of Teletubbies and Barney — is such a constant in the life of 25-year-old James (Kyle Mooney) it borders on a religion. Day after day, James plops down in front of his old fashioned TV and absorbs the show’s peculiar aphorisms as the titular animatronic bear solves math…

Rage and Empathy in <i>I, Daniel Blake</i>

Rage and Empathy in I, Daniel Blake


Daniel Blake (Dave Johns), the titular character of Ken Loach’s new film on working class Britons, is the salt of the earth. A 59-year old widower, Dan lives in a blue-collar Newcastle housing complex, trades good-natured barbs with his young neighbor, China (Kema Sikazwe), and supports himself with a career in carpentry. Well, he did…

Saying Goodbye to a Room of Our Own

Saying Goodbye to a Room of Our Own


I wasn’t too sure about her in the beginning. We met through CHARMS, its shadowy algorithm connecting us amidst a sea of freshmen girls who counted Parks and Recreation among their favorite TV shows. After some tentative, anonymous chatting, we graduated to Facebook, our social media lives ripe for stalking. When I showed my parents…

<i>Fun Home</i> Remembers the Joy and Pain of Looking Back

Fun Home Remembers the Joy and Pain of Looking Back


I had my qualms about Fun Home. The national touring production of the five-time Tony winning musical was coming to D.C.’s National Theatre and my expectations were stratospheric despite my best attempts to temper them, which means disappointment was almost inevitable. Even with the Tony’s stamp of approval—its 2015 haul includes Best Musical, Best Score,…

Arena Stage’s <i>A Raisin in the Sun</i> Captivates All Around

Arena Stage’s A Raisin in the Sun Captivates All Around


There is a dangerous magic about theatre-in-the-round—and a heightened sense of communal experience. At Arena Stage’s 2017 production of Lorraine Hansberry’s 1959 play A Raisin in the Sun, the actors are totally exposed on the square of stage that becomes the Younger household, surrounded on all four sides by the audience. And while it can…

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