My fellow Americans, today is a new dawn in this great country of ours. We, who have given rise to theater greats like Eugene O’Neill, Lorraine Hansberry, and Tennessee Williams, know how truly blessed we are to see live performances. But American stagecraft is at a critical juncture. Could a contemporary hit play take on a more profound topic—like, perhaps, our dim political language? Find out at Woolly Mammoth Theatre’s premiere of The Totalitarians, Peter Sinn Nachtrieb’s play about a political speechwriter whose signature phrase, “freedom from fear,” might just be ambiguous enough to fill voters with hope. Read more >>> The play runs June 2 to 29 at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, 641 D St. NW. $35–$77.50. (202) 393-3939. Kurzius)


Stop by Mockingbird Hill from 5 to 7 p.m. tonight for $5 pours of fino sherry from Tio Pepe. The sherry and ham bar has specials all week, including a five-course sherry pairing dinner, a charity happy hour with a punk DJ on Thursday, and punch specials. Get more details here.  Mockingbird Hill, 1843 7th St. NW. (202) 316-9396. (Jessica Sidman)


Singer-songwriter Patty Griffin performs at the Lincoln Theatre with forceful Oklahoma vocalist Parker Milsap. 6:30 p.m. at 1215 U St. NW. $55.

Fifty-seven years after the original production of West Side Story debuted at the National Theatre, the current tour of the musical stops there for six days. 7:30 p.m. at 1321 Pennsylvania Ave. NW. $48–$128.

Jazz singer Jamie Cullum plays 9:30 Club with songwriter Margaret Valentine. 7 p.m. at 815 V St. NW. $40.

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