This week I fulfilled a year-long dream. Ladies and gentlemen, I went to Roller Derby. After the fab movie with Drew Barrymore and Ellen Page, and a weird one person play about the sport at the Victoria Fringe Festival in Canada, I was absolutely ready to be dazzled with an array of crazy outfits and make-up, witty names, and a high-adrenaline vibe. Alas, as with many things, reality did not reflect the promise of Hollywood. The outfits were essentially a generic sports type uniform, with one woman adding fishnets. There was almost no music, and they were playing in a little space in a big hall, which made for a quiet ambience, despite the impressively large audience. And despite all the explanations in the program, it was pretty hard to follow what was happening. Of course there was some charm: a bake sale, a craft table, some silly mascots... so far, so hipster chic. That part was very like something I went to that was put on by art students in New Cross in London. The mythology overamped my expectations. In reality, roller derby felt like a sport that's a lot more fun for the participants than for the spectators. That's perfectly valid, of course. I don't really like watching sports and, despite my hopes to the contrary, hey, roller derby seems primarily to be a sport. So while I was delighted to be there, given I don't fancy my chances on roller skates, it's probably going to be a one-off experience for me. I really love their DC Rollergirls logo though...
In terms of theatre and the like, we went to see Of Mice and Men at the Sidney Harman Hall, as part of National Theatre Live. The production was good: you never seem to get anything but absolutely top quality theatre at these events. We also ventured to H Street (will you be impressed if I tell you we walked all the way from Georgetown!) to see Tim Lee, Scientist-turned-Comedian at the Atlas. He was funny, though a bit patronizing in his zeal to explain science through drunkenness as though we were perhaps a frat boy audience, and irrelevant in his random chat about how his wife just had a baby. And I didn't take kindly to this LA man's Georgetown jibes. But we had fun. Hooray for science comedy.
The coolest-sounding things in DC this week
Tue 3rd Feb - Head over the the Folger Elizabethan Theatre for an intersection of verse and drama, British style.
Wed 4th Feb - Perfect Liars Club is tonight and it's going to be awesome. It's sold out but there are a limited number of tickets available on the door from 6pm, so go try your luck!
Thu 5th Feb - Tickets for March's Perfect Liars Club go on sale at 1pm. In the evening, check out the Phillips After 5. It's all about lights. They promise games and music. Also the Capital Irish Film Festival opens tonight and runs all weekend.
Fri 6th and Sat 7th Feb - Yet again quietly excelling itself with the coolest happenings in town, I couldn't be more excited about the promise of Manual Cinema at Artisphere. Puppets, silhouettes, live music... this visiting company from Chicago are possibly going to deliver something special.
Sat 7th and Sun 8th - Don't miss the Capital Irish Film Festival. Insatiable for shorts? Check them out at 1pm both days. The AFI's Great Movie Romances also starts, AND Leading Ladies of Hollywood's Golden Age for a whole several months of delightful weekends. I recommend pairing this with Jackie's brunch on a Sunday, or Sidebar cocktails of an evening...
Mon 9th Feb - I'm really excited to be starting a free class about making my own cellphone documentary. Have you checked out the available all-free classes on Knowledge Commons? Do it.