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“Farragut North” at Port City Playhouse

Review by Jordan Wright for Alexandria Times
October 2010

The cast of Farragut North - Port City Playhouse - photo credit to Jacqueline Mathis

The cast of Farragut North - Port City Playhouse - photo credit to Jacqueline Mathis

Port City Playhouse wrapped up its exciting run of Farragut North this Sunday. Unfortunately this new hire reviewer caught one of the final performances of this political thriller dripping with treachery, ambition and betrayal…though I can attest that the caliber of the production reflects what I have come to expect from this local theatre troupe.

The play, which should be required viewing for all would-be politicians and those of us fascinated by behind-the-scenes machinations, is a primer on power plays, dirty deal-brokering and well-orchestrated leaks. It is a reality not for the faint of heart, but well known to playwright, Beau Willimon, who worked as campaign aide for candidates, Hilary Clinton and Howard Dean.

During its run the stellar cast of Adam Downs, Shelagh Roberts, Dan Beck, Eric Harrison, Tabitha Rymal, Cal Whitehurst, Isidora Sasser and Bill Byrnes was augmented with cameo appearances by former Congressman Tom Davis, former US Senator from Alaska Mike Gravel, former Alexandria City Councilman Lonnie Rich and former candidate for Congress, Lisa Marie Cheney.

Scheduled for last Friday evening was Alexandria Mayor Bill Euille, who took the old backstage adage of “break a leg” too literally and had his own version of bad luck when he slipped at the King Street Metro station while racing to a meeting in DC.

Port City Playhouse boldly chose an exciting and challenging play and they did a bang-up job of handling its complexities. Farragut North, is such a compelling story that Warner Brothers has picked it up and it begins shooting in 2011 with Leonardo DiCaprio, George Clooney and Phillip Seymour Hoffman.

Port City Playhouse leaves the Lee Center for The Lab at Convergence, an experimental venue for the arts at 1819 North Quaker Lane, Alexandria, VA 22302, where all future performances will be held. Next up Rashomon, scheduled to open November 5th and run through the 20th.

For tickets and information visit

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