To see, or not to see? That is the question.
Lumina Studio Theater will present a re-imagining of Shakespeare’s “lost play,” “Cardenio” at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Round House Theatre, 8641 Colesville Road, Silver Spring. For centuries the play’s storied history has captured the imagination of scholars. Referred to in multiple documents, but having not survived, the play was believed to be written by William Shakespeare and fellow playwright John Fletcher and performed in court in the early 1600s. Inspired by a character in Miguel de Cervantes’ iconic “Don Quixote,” the piece disappeared until 1727, when it resurfaced, readapted by Shakespeare scholar Lewis Theobald, who — claiming to have obtained a manuscript handed down through three generations — had restaged the work as “Double Falsehood.” In 2010, the play was published by Arden Shakespeare, citing significant Shakespearean DNA, and almost a year later was presented by the Royal Shakespeare Company using its original title. Kelly Newman O’Connor and John O’Connor direct the U.S. premiere of the Royal Shakespeare Company version. Tickets are $15 for adults, $8 for students younger than 18 and seniors. For more information, visit www.luminastudio.org.
Meanwhile, in Prince George’s County, The Rude Mechanicals — a nonprofit community theater troupe based in Laurel and known primarily for its adaptations of the Bard — will share the works of an entirely different scribe, when it presents Eve Ensler’s “The Vagina Monologues” at the Greenbelt Arts Center. Show times are 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday to Feb. 8 and 2 p.m. Feb. 2 for the Obie Award-winning play, a celebration and exploration of female sexuality of all forms. Tickets are $17 for general admission, $14 for students, seniors and military. For more information, visit www.greenbeltartscenter.org.
The American Shakespeare Center returns to the Alden Theatre in McLean, Va., for an Avon double-header, when it presents “The Merry Wives of Windsor” and “Othello” on Saturday. Recreating an authentic Shakespearean experience, as audiences would have enjoyed in the 16th century, guests are invited to sit on stage and even interact with performers. Comedic knight Falstaff from “The Merry Wives of Windsor” kicks things off at 2 p.m., followed by “Othello’s” tale of jealousy and betrayal at 8 p.m. Live music begins a half hour prior to curtain. For ticketing information, visit www.aldentheatre.org.