Take a trip down 20th-century lane with Double Edge Theatre's "The Grand Parade." The theatrical performance depicts the major events of the 20th century through photography, film, dance, circus and even trapeze. The atomic bomb, Kennedy's assassination, the landing on the moon, Houdini's skillful escapes and more are recounted. The play was conceived by the theater's artistic director, Stacy Klein, who was inspired by the life and work of Russian artist Marc Chagall. Chagall was a pioneer of modernism and is known as one of the most successful artists of the last century.

"The Grand Parade" premieres at Arena Stage (1101 Sixth St. SW) and runs Feb. 6 to 10, but get a sneak peek of the costumes, music and more at the Phillips Collection at 6 p.m. Thursday as it hosts "Chagall as Theater Muse." Tickets are $20 or $8 for members at


It's like "American Idol" for the literary set. Or the most animated book club you've ever gone to. When four authors bring to life their words through lively performances, and a panel of three all-star judges spouts their opinions live in front of an audience, it can get raucous. In a Literary Death Match, two rounds of cuts result in a winner judged on literary merit, performance and "intangibles."

Making its Kennedy Center debut, the Death Match will star comedian Dan Wilbur, author of "How Not to Read"; poet and journalist Adele Hampton; comedian and author Adam Ruben, of "Surviving Your Stupid, Stupid Decision to Go to Grad School" and co-hosts the Discovery Channel's upcoming "You Have Been Warned"; and Carolyn Parkhurst, best-selling author of three novels including "The Dogs of Babel," soon to be a motion picture starring Steve Carell.

The free event at Kennedy Center's Millennium Stage (2700 F St. NW) has doors at 5:30 p.m. for the show at 6, then there will be after-drinks at 7. Find out more at