The Conference of the Birds

Oct. 23—Nov. 25 $30–$68
Folger Elizabethan Theatre
201 E. Capitol St. SE, Washington, DC
(202) 544-7077
The Conference of the Birds is a Sufi mystic’s meditation on the search for the divine, but if that sounds passive, the show is anything but. Built in part around tall tales of cruel kings and lovestruck princesses, it’s narrated by a wise hoopoe (played with notes of wonder and sadness by Patty Gallagher), who gathers a multitude of birds—from the timid sparrow to the proud falcon to the vainglorious peacock—and marshals them for an urgent journey. Led by director Aaron Posner and choreographer Erika Chong Shuch—working, presumably, in tight coordination with musician Tom Teasley, whose insinuating polyrhythms inform everything about the evening—the ensemble creates ravishing stage pictures: a sensuous duet for that passion-addled princess and the slave she’s mad for, wildly colorful swirls of avian chaos as the flock battles a windstorm, a sweeping gesture by an astrologer that dashes an entire cosmos to dust in an instant. (TG)

Upcoming at Folger Elizabethan Theatre

Browse controls

Browsing: all kinds of events - anytime - Folger Elizabethan Theatre
Nov. 13—Dec. 20
Folger Elizabethan Theatre -
201 E. Capitol St. SE
Friday, December 4 at 7:30 p.m.
The author of four acclaimed short story collections is honored with this award that honors writers who specialize in short fiction.
Folger Elizabethan Theatre -
201 E. Capitol St. SE
Monday, December 7 at 7:30 p.m.
The acclaimed poet, scholar, and classically trained actress reads at the Folger's annual celebration of Emily Dickinson's birthday.
Folger Elizabethan Theatre -
201 E. Capitol St. SE

Looking for more? Try broadening your search using the controls on the left.

Questions or comments? Write to

Submit events to our calendar for publication online and in print by emailing