Ionesco’s The Bald Soprano and The Lesson – in English and FRENCH!
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“Brilliantly funny!” (Variety) An intimate evening of two hilarious yet thought-provoking plays, in English and in French (on separate nights, of course). “Magnificent!” raved the master himself. “Your fidelity to my original intent is incredible.” We couldn’t be more proud. Join us in the newly refurbished Artists’ Entrance Studio Upstairs for this “Wildly and sophisticatedly humorous” (Drama-Logue) evening of theatre. Santa Monica Playhouse introduced the works of the iconic playwright to Los Angeles when it first opened its doors, and now they’re back to commemorate the Playhouse’s 57th anniversary. The Bald Soprano, a hilarious comedy of mishaps and manners plays in tandem with The Lesson, a bizarre and darkly humorous indictment of language cum power cum bourgeois education. An extremely limited number of seats are available for each performance. Directed by Playhouse Artistic Director Chris DeCarlo with Associate Director Serena Dolinsky, featuring Actors’ Repertory Theatre members Dolinsky, Celeste Akiki and Elodie Cammarata, joined by guest artists Elyse Ashton, Tavis L. Baker, Nicola Bertram, Brad Griffith, David Mack, Anatole Odolant, with DeCarlo and Evelyn Rudie reprising roles they have performed in every Playhouse Ionesco production for over 40 years.
Ionesco’s works have a special resonance today in our wired and multi-layered society: the comedy and tragedy in our failed attempts to communicate are echoed in the playwright’s use of linguistic degeneration – perfectly represented by The Bald Soprano in which words devolve into nonsensical and cacophonous sounds and by The Lesson, where a professor and student play at wits, nonsense-phrases become the learned truth, and wrong and right are exactly the same. As Ionesco himself said, “Life is a grotesque practical joke constantly pulling away chairs from under man’s dignity and reason.” So hold on to your seats and get ready for a wild, wild ride.
English language performances: Fri, July 28; Sat, Aug 5; Fri, Aug 11; Sat, Aug 19; Fri, Aug 25. French language performances: Sat July 29; Fri Aug 4; Sat Aug 12; Fri Aug 18; Sat Aug 26.