Venue Details

12 Star Starred
John Swayze Theatre
at The New School of Northern Virginia 9431 Silver King Court Fairfax, VA 22031
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3 events
1 review
1 stars
Casual dress, arrive early - open seating - although all seats have good view of stage, as the theater is small.
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12 events
5 reviews
5 stars
Look for the Hub Theatre Co. sign as the Swayze Theatre is not marked.
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Reviews & Ratings

"How I Paid for College"
17 ratings
4.6 average rating
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43 events
34 reviews
17 stars
attended Dec 23 2012

Tough to review as the acting/singing/staging was terrific but I took my 20 something year old sons to the show. Thought it would be the perfect holiday outing and they just didn't find the show as funny or interesting as I had hoped. Thought it...continued

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64 events
29 reviews
20 stars
attended Dec 23 2012

Great performance! Actor was superb. Don't agree with Post review that story was old and tired--just not so! Go and enjoy.

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33 events
23 reviews
11 stars
attended Dec 14 2012

This was a lighthearted storytelling of the efforts of one young man to follow his dream, rather than the more practical future most encourage. We enjoyed the performance, it was energetic and entertaining. Kudos to this actor, I can't imagine...continued

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More Information


Embezzlement…Forgery…Fraud…High School 

Broadway actor, Alex Brightman (Wicked, Glory Days) plays dozens of roles in this World Premiere tour-de-force monologue with songs, or a “monologsical,” based on Marc Acito’s award-winning novel, How I Paid for College. Directed by Helen Pafumi, the play tells the hilarious yet heartwarming tale of a talented but irresponsible teen actor who schemes to steal his tuition money when his wealthy father refuses to pay for acting school. 

Seventeen-year-old Edward Zanni, a feckless Ferris Bueller type, is Peter-Panning his way through life with his screwball theater friends. When his businessman father remarries and pulls the plug on Edward’s dreams, the aspiring thespian turns to a life of disorganized crime. 

Playwright Marc Acito returns to the Hub to adapt his popular novel fresh from winning the 2012 Charles McArthur Award for Outstanding New Play for his comedy Birds of a Feather, which had its World Premiere at The Hub last season. The Washington Post called Birds of a Feather “goofy, but serious…an allusive, wisecracking comedy.” Acito is also the co-book writer of the Broadway-bound musical Allegiance, starring Tony winner Lea Salonga andStar Trek legend George Takei, as well as the book writer of a musical adaptation of E. M. Forster’s A Room with a View, both at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego. 

Published in 2004, Acito’s novel How I Paid for College won the Ken Kesey Award for Fiction and was hailed as a New York Times “Editors’ Choice.” Translated into five languages the author can’t read, it paved the way for High School Musical and Glee, both of which are similar enough to be annoying to the author without being legally actionable. Inspired by his own misspent youth, Acito describes the story as “just true enough to be embarrassing to my family.” 

At its heart, How I Paid for College is about how far you are willing to go to make a dream come true. It’s a story for anyone who’s ever had a dream…and a scheme.