Synetic Theater’s online offerings
Now is the April of our discontent, and while Synetic Theater can’t ease the pain and frustration caused by the coronavirus pandemic, Arlington’s physical theater troupe can offer top-quality distractions. Richard 3.0 and Hansel & Gretel are the first two Synetic shows available for online streaming. The theater is best known for its so-called “silent Shakespeare” productions told through movement and music, as well as family-friendly adaptations of classics that sometimes include dialogue. Richard 3.0 and Hansel & Gretel are prime examples of both genres, says Synetic managing director Jason Najjoum. After discontinuing rehearsals for Life is a Dream on March 13—and paying theater artists for all the work they’d done so far—Synetic staffers reviewed their HD archival films from the past five years. Because the theater uses predominantly non-union actors, Synetic has more flexibility than other theaters to post footage online, and plans to offer streaming productions on a rotating, pay-what-you-can basis. “We’ve gotten just as many $50 donations as we have $5,” Najjoum said, adding that performers and creative artists will each receive a share of the streaming revenue. Dance-based fitness classes have also long been part of Synetic’s programming. Hyper-flexible company member Alex Mills now teaches those on Zoom twice a week. Get ready to pick up one of Hansel & Gretel’s breadcrumbs, bend, and snap. Richard 3.0 and Hansel & Gretel are available for online streaming through April 12 at synetictheater.org. $5–$50. —Rebecca J. Ritzel
A Tribute in Silver
Visual shorthand for the United States military usually includes camouflage uniforms, news footage of overseas combat, colorful ribbon racks adorning high-ranking officials, and views of The Pentagon. Silver doesn’t come up as much, although the precious metal has played a long and critical role in the nation’s armed forces. Silver is the key component in commemorative objects, in historic battlefield instruments, and several pieces of personal memorabilia. The National Museum of the Marine Corps near Quantico, Virginia, has over 900 silver objects in its Cultural and Material History collection. But with its doors shuttered, the museum is working innovatively to ensure silver isn’t forgotten. To that end, it launched an online silver exhibit, A Tribute in Silver, featuring 14 of the collection’s artifacts. These pieces mostly come from the 20th century, as silver was particularly popular with the Marine Corps between 1900 and 1960. You can learn more about “Wings of Love,” a type of sterling silver pin given to a lover—the specific pin in the virtual collection comes from Philip Churchman Winkler, who served during World War II. You can also browse images of a silver-plated B-flat cornet. (For those who aren’t music buffs, a cornet is a brass instrument that closely represents a trumpet). This one isn’t just any cornet: It was gifted to George C. Wynkoop III by famous military march composer John Philip Sousa. If you get hooked by the 14 online artifacts, you’ll have almost 900 more to look forward to when the museum reopens. You can view A Tribute in Silver online atvirtualusmcmuseum.com. Free. —Sarah Smith
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