Helen Hayes Awards
TheatreWashington announced most of the 36th annual Helen Hayes Awards via nine Zoom calls between Aug. 31 and Sept. 11. Videos of the announcements in each category can be viewed on the organization’s YouTube channel. On Friday, Sept. 25, at 7 p.m., actors Felicia Curry and Naomi Jacobson will co-host a virtual ceremony with additional award announcements and special guest appearances. Admission is free. Also during this period, donations are being solicited for the Taking Care COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund.
Twins Jazz to Close
Ethiopian immigrants Kelly and Maze Tesfaye announced in an Aug. 27 statement that they have closed Twins Jazz Club, located at 1344 U St. NW, “owing to the harsh economic circumstances brought on by the ongoing pandemic.” The statement continues: “We are taking this time to reimagine how we can continue to serve the DC jazz community in a new and innovative way that provides musicians with a platform to perform and continues the legacy that Twins Jazz has established in Washington, DC over the past three decades.”
Planet Word to Open
Aiming “to inspire a love of language in all its forms,” the Planet Word museum will open on Oct. 22 at the northeast corner of Franklin Park, with free timed-entry passes available on the museum’s website. Housed in the 1869 Franklin School, a National Historic Landmark designed by Adolf Cluss, the museum will feature immersive displays including a 22-foot-high word wall and a magical library. Planet Word’s founder and CEO is philanthropist and former reading teacher Ann B. Friedman, wife of author and New York Times columnist Tom Friedman.
New STC Associate Directors
Shakespeare Theatre Company has named Whitney White, director of STC’s production of James Baldwin’s “The Amen Corner,” and Soyica Colbert, the production’s dramaturg, as associate directors of the company. White, current holder of the Susan Stroman Directing Award, has a B.A. from Northwestern and an M.F.A. from Brown. Georgetown alum Colbert, whose Ph.D. is from Rutgers, is vice dean of faculty and Idol Family Professor at GU’s College of Arts and Sciences. Among her current projects is a biography of playwright Lorraine Hansberry.