I’d been meaning to see one of the productions staged by Mosaic Theater Company ever since the 2015 announcement that they would take up residence at the Atlas Performing Arts Center (1333 H Street). So when they recently invited me to a performance of their latest show (with complementary tickets) I was thrilled to attend. The company is currently presenting the romantic comedy “When January Feels Like Summer.” You can catch it through Sunday, June 12th, and I highly recommend doing so.
Mosaic is well known for confronting difficult subjects, and the company’s works often focus heavily on social justice themes as reflected in the personal lives of the plays’ characters. They launched this past season with a play set in the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide and other productions dealt with gun violence in Chicago and the plight of refugees.
“January” also confronts heady issues, including a transgender Indian American character’s decision to live life as a woman. But the central theme is love, both of self and of others. Five characters from differing backgrounds traverse New York City seeking release from the pain of their past and finding hope in new beginnings. A garbage man, two Burger King employees, a woman who manages a bodega, and her former accountant turned matchmaker sibling all seek to transcend the constraints that have held them back, and in the New York of the play, tingled with magic realism, that is imminently possible.
At times “January” treads dangerous ground, threatening to veer towards darker outcomes, but this is a romantic comedy, and Hindu god Ganesha (known as a remover of obstacles and a god of beginnings) seems to lend his blessings so that audiences can rest assured that all will end well.
Performances run Wednesday through Sunday through June 12th. Tickets are $15-60 with discounts for students/patrons under 30 years of age, seniors, military/first responders, and neighbors who live or work in NE or SE D.C. (Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday nights). Mosaic also offers group discounts for parties of ten or more, and $25 rush tickets (subject to availability) for seats that remain available 30 minutes prior to curtain. If you're looking to make it a habit you can take advantage of the neighbor discount for their subscription packages.