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DC’s Arena Stage to produce play on Scalia

WASHINGTON — The drama of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia will reach the Washington theater stage with a new play premiering next year.

Arena Stage announced Wednesday that it will host the premiere of the new political drama “The Originalist” by Washington playwright John Strand in 2015 with a story about “one of America’s most brilliant and polarizing figures.” It follows a liberal law clerk from Harvard who finds Justice Scalia to be both infuriating and an unexpected mentor.

The play focuses in part on the Supreme Court’s decision last year striking down part of the Defense of Marriage Act to allow federal recognition of same-sex marriages. Justice Scalia was a leading voice of dissent in the case.

It’s rare for the theater to focus on the work of a sitting Supreme Court justice. The new play is scheduled to run in March and April of 2015.

Arena announced its full 2014-15 season, which includes five new plays, two musicals and a commission of 25 writers reflecting on the legacy of the Civil War. The centerpiece may be a revival of “Fiddler on the Roof” opening in October to celebrate the musical’s 50th anniversary.