Big, Bad Wolf Trap Brings Music to the Vienna Masses

Wolf Trap

Splendor in the grass: A view from the lawn that envelopes the Filene Center, Wolf Trap’s main venue. Covered seating is available closer to the stage. (@jbtaylor via Flickr)

There is undoubtedly a lot of intergenerational debate about what constitutes a good band. The father may like Led Zeppelin; the son, Death Cab for Cutie; the mom may favor the Beatles; the daughter, Arcade Fire.

It could go on forever, this fighting over the ears and hearts of the listener via the radio dial. “Are we there yet?” “Shut up, back there!” “Mom, tell Steven to stop hitting me?!”

Oh, the fun of familial relations.

But guess what? There’s one band that everyone can love, and they’ve got a kitschy ’60s TV show to convince you: The Monkees.

The faux simians recently performed at the venerable Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts in Vienna.

[ Related: Vienna Combines the Comfort of Suburbia With the Charm of a Small Town ]

Sure, the Monkees began life as a prefab cash-in on the popularity of the Beatles, but as television shows go, it was one of the funnier ones I’ve seen. “The Monkees” was true slapstick and featured solid performances, particularly by the multitalented Micky Dolenz, who looks so goofy that he’s probably funny even when he’s not trying to be.

Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts
1645 Trap Rd.
Vienna, VA 22182

And yes, while they didn’t play their instruments at first (or weren’t allowed to on recordings at least; they did sing all their tunes), they did later on and managed a pretty good job of creating both pure and avant-pop; they even wrote some good songs themselves.

Check out this bio from, or better yet, pick up this two-CD set from Rhino: “The Best of the Monkees.”

But back to Wolf Trap…

Most people have likely heard of Wolf Trap, a public/private partnership between the foundation itself and the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service. It’s much more than a concert venue, though.

Billing itself as “America’s National Park for the Performing Arts,” Wolf Trap does indeed offer two ways to view a concert or theatrical production, at both the indoor/outdoor Filene Center, which seats 6,800 patrons, and the smaller Barns, two adjacent 18th-century barns that were taken from their home in upstate New York and rebuilt at Wolf Trap; the Barns seat 382 people.

[ Related: Strathmore Offers the Arts in Full for North Bethesda Renters ]

Wolf Trap also offers educational opportunities for all ages, whether you’re a young shaver or adult, a neophyte or someone well-versed in your particular art. Types of classes include dance, African drumming, guitar, piano and voice lessons. The tots get less demanding (but probably more fun) classes of their own.

Music to the Vienna Masses

Apartment renters in Vienna and surrounding environs sure have a lot to be thankful for, not the least of which includes this national treasure.

Come on out one weekend and share a fun day with family listening to some great music. If you decide not to, we’ll send you on the Last Train to Clarksville sans return ticket!

Feel free to check out apartment listings in the area on Apartment Showcase. 

Scott D

Scott D

Scott is a local writer and has been with the Apartment Showcase blog since its inception in 2010.

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