Inside D.C. entertainment

Young people: The Kennedy Center understands you

March 9, 2011 - 06:00 AM
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'Young people like the Roots and John Legend, right?' says an old person, somewhere.

The Kennedy Center announced its 2011-2012 schedule yesterday, which includes some programming specifically designed to appeal to the 18-30 demographic. The Millennial Project, part of the Rubenstein Arts Access Program created by a gift from Kennedy Center chair David M. Rubenstein, was created to attract youngsters with performances from OK Go and Nellie McKay.

But as is often the case with this sort of youth-driven campaign (see James Franco and Anne Hathaway at the Oscars, any commercial for Totino’s Pizza Rolls), some of the programming seems to be merely older people’s interpretations of what they think young people should like — mixed with typical old-fogey fare. Maura Judkis and I offer some suggestions for the Kennedy Center if it really wants to make a splash with the young’uns.

 

The Kennedy Center thinks young people like: The Roots and John Legend
Young people actually like: The Roots and anyone other than John Legend. Preferably Jimmy Fallon, or even Odd Future, but definitely not John Legend.

The Kennedy Center hopes young people will like: The Addams Family  musical
Young people actually like: The Spider-Man musical, especially when gruesome, traumatic injuries are involved.

The Kennedy Center knows young people probably don't like: Come Fly Away, a Frank Sinatra dance revue.
Young people actually like: American Idiot, Green Day's Broadway musical. It begins touring in the fall.

The Kennedy Center hopes young people will like: Wayne Brady covering Sammy Davis Jr. and Sam Cooke
Young people actually like: Wayne Brady choking a bitch.

The Kennedy Center hopes young people will like: Seeing a glamorous blonde film actress on stage: Cate Blanchett!
Young people actually like: Gwenyth Paltrow, the lanky blonde crossover du jour. She's on Glee! She sings with muppets!

The Kennedy Center thinks young people like: OK Go live shows (the band will play Millennium Stage in June)
Young people actually like: OK Go videos--particularly the one with the doggies.

The Kennedy Center knows young people probably don't like:A play about Ann Richards, "mother, grandmother, Governor of Texas."
Young people actually like: Well, they'd be into it if Betty White were starring, probably.

The Kennedy Center thinks young people like:
Hip-hop violinist Miri Ben-Ari
Young people actually like: With another hip-hop violin event coming next April, who can choose?

The Kennedy Center thinks young people like: Holograms!
Young people actually like: Holograms. CNN thinks so, too! Is Will.i.am in this show?

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