A.R.T. to Offer Mamet Celebration, Sex, Satire, Romance, and Ducks

News   A.R.T. to Offer Mamet Celebration, Sex, Satire, Romance, and Ducks American Repertory Theatre in Cambridge, MA, will offer Sex, Satire, Romance, and Ducks: A David Mamet Celebration beginning May 9.
David Mamet
David Mamet Photo by Aubrey Reuben

The company — which produced the world premieres of Mamet's Oleanna, Cryptogram, The Old Neighborhood and Boston Marriage, will kick off its festival with Romance, "a courtroom farce that takes no prisoners in its quest for total political incorrectness," according to press notes.

Scott Zigler will direct Romance, which runs May 9-June 7 at the Loeb Drama Center. The cast will feature Remo Airaldi as the Defendant, Thomas Derrah as the Prosecutor, Will LeBow as the Judge, Jim True-Frost as the Defense Attorney, Doug Chapman as the Doctor, Carl Foreman as Bernard and Jim Senti as the Bailiff.

"It's hay fever season," according to A.R.T., "and in the courthouse a judge is popping antihistamines like candy. As a Mideast Peace Conference convenes nearby, an elusive court case is persistently interrupted by domestic squabbles, ethnic slur slinging, and a hallucinating judge. Lawyers and judges, Jews and Christians, homosexuals and chiropractors — no one gets off easy in Mamet's madcap skewering of the American legal system. The esteemed, noble practice of law degenerates into sheer comic chaos as Mamet ponders the most fundamental human question: Why can't we all just get along?"

A double bill of two of Mamet's early comedies — Sexual Perversity in Chicago and Duck Variations — will play June 11-28 at the Zero Arrow Club. Paul Stacey will direct the former and Marcus Stern the latter.

Sexual Perversity "examines relationships between young men and women. Danny and Deborah meet on the North Side of Chicago. Bernard teaches Danny the secrets to wooing women as Joan warns Deborah about the dangers of men. When Danny and Deborah move in together, their friends panic. Will the young couple survive? Or will their friends regain control?" Produced by the A.R.T. Institute, the cast includes Tim Elliot, Susannah Hoffman, Scott Lyman and Rebecca Whitehurst. Duck Variations concerns "George and Emil, two grey-haired friends sitting at a lakeshore bench watching ducks in the water. As they talk about nothing, they tell us just about everything about the value of friendship and the fear of being alone." A.R.T. Company actors Thomas Derrah and Will LeBow will star.

The A.R.T./MXAT Institute for Advanced Theatre Training contributes to the festival with Seriously Funny, an evening of short comedies not just by Mamet, but also by his friends and frequent collaborators Harold Pinter and Shel Silverstein. Funny, directed by Jim Frangione, will play the Zero Arrow Club May 29-June 6.

For ticket information visit www.amrep.org or call (617) 547-8300.

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A founder of the Atlantic Theater Company, David Mamet's principal works include The Duck Variations, Sexual Perversity in Chicago, American Buffalo, Glengarry Glen Ross (Pulitzer Prize), Boston Marriage, Edmond, Oleanna, Speed-the-Plow and The Cryptogram (Obie Award). He adapted The Voysey Inheritance for the Atlantic and was also represented on Broadway with the political comedy November.

Mamet was represented on Broadway earlier this season with revivals of American Buffalo and the much-in-the-news Speed-the-Plow.

His new play Race is due on Broadway next season.