It seemed eerie and yet fitting that as I was rushing to get to Ford’s Theatre I was delayed by a major traffic jam as the President was attending an event downtown. People were lining the streets to catch a glimpse of the man who counts Lincoln as a guide, and I was on the way to see a tech rehearsal of a musical on the Civil War, in the theater where Lincoln fell. Sometimes the line between the present and the past in this town gets blurred in a truly palpable way. It’s manifest in the remarkable renovation of this living museum.
Ford’s Theatre’s reopening season continues this month with “The Civil War,” a Tony-nominated musical opening tonight and in performance through May 24. I’m very impressed by the renovated space. Last time I saw a show in this theater it was a bit clunky, and that’s being charitable. Now they are up-to-date, with all new lighting, sound and visual equipment – it’s a bit snazzy actually! And those infamously uncomfortable seats and obstructed sightlines are a thing of the past. It looks to be an admirable job updating the theater while maintaining its historical and monumental status.
With all the tourists pouring into our city this week, I hope many of them take the chance to see the renovations and catch a show. “The Civil War” sounded quite rousing musically, a little bit bluesy, with some incredible vocalists, live musicians, and moving visuals. Get some important history mixed in with your cherry blossoms.
511 10th Street NW
between E and F Streets
“The Civil War” performs Tuesdays thru Sundays at 7:30pm, Saturdays and Sundays at 2:30pm, now thru May 24