The Hershey Theatre, conceived in 1933 by noted philanthropist and chocolatier Milton S. Hershey, stands as an opulent tribute to the performing arts. Taking architectural cues from Saint Mark’s Basilica in Venice, the foyer’s towering arches gleam with golden paint and crystal chandeliers. The blue-and-gold mosaic that leads to the main seating area is the masterwork of two German artists who spent two years on its construction. Once inside the theater, audiences might think they’ve stepped onto the streets of Venice thanks to the atmospheric ceiling, stonework facades, and gondoliers paddling them to their seats. ####Bethel Woods Center for the Arts Music has permeated the 800 manicured acres where the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts has stood since 1969, when farmer Max Yasgur agreed to let love, peace, and harmony grow wild at the very first Woodstock festival. These days, the renowned outdoor venue and cultural center continues to attract the biggest acts in music to its pavilion stage. The open-air design ensures ample ventilation on the natural sloping lawn, and a roof protects up to 15,000 fans from inclement weather and the prying eyes of Cessna pilots.
Dance Place first leapt onto the scene more than three decades ago as an educational and performing arts company that toured local schools. In the years since, it has grown into a multi-faceted operation and source of both entertainment and instruction.
Every weekend, Dance Place dazzles crowds with performances in modern dance, African Dance, performance art, and spoken word. Rather than hiring a sketch artist to doodle each dance step into a flipbook, spectators can learn the moves they see on stage by enrolling in one of Dance Place's programs, or by dropping into an adult or children's class. Dance Place has remained true to its roots through its continued support of local schools, and to this day organizes family-friendly performances, workshops, and school assemblies.
Converted from a historic 1930s art-deco theater, the modern iteration of the Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse is a combination restaurant, movie theater, and performance space. Besides screening blockbusters, the venue also hosts regular comedy shows featuring standups who have shared their skills on The Tonight Show, David Letterman, and Conan O'Brien. Between laughs, audience members can take bites from a complete menu or sips of selections from a full-service bar.
As their motto goes, "It's all about the music." Eschewing props, costumes, and staging for a focus on the sounds of voices and instruments, the Washington Concert Opera seeks to thrill audiences with performances by some of the profession's leading lights. Their stripped-down approach allows the company to focus on rarely produced works, from little-known Rossinis to classic Puccini B-sides.
The young Italian tenor trio Il Volo impresses audiences with pitch-leaping vocal performances rich in three-part harmonies. Performing renditions of classic Italian songs as well as material penned by contemporary songwriters, the teenage opera singers showcase budding international appeal and the promise of a bright future that consists of crooning crowds and autographing customs slips at airports. Opening act Ethan Bortnick, a 10-year-old piano prodigy known as the youngest entertainer to headline his own concert tour and attempt to purchase a monster truck, starts out the night with original piano compositions as well as recognizable classics.
Formed in the glory days of heavy metal, Queensrÿche rocks audiences with songs that reveal the fierce polish of 30 years of evolving artistry. The band's distinctive mix of prog rock, metal, and subliminal messaging rocketed their Empire album up the charts, launching hits such as "Silent Lucidity," "Jet City Woman," and "Best I Can." Normally reserved only for members of Queensrÿche's fan club, a backstage meet-and-greet lets a small group of the devoted make personal connections with the four lords of loudness, shaking their lightning-fast hands and comparing headbanging techniques. With experience opening for Nickelback and Staind, opening band The Fifth's wailing guitars rally fist pumps and head thrashes as raging as a riverbed full of angry bulls.