There's Big Love in Berkeley: Charles L. Mee's Humana hit opens its San Francisco run April 25 at Berkeley Repertory Theatre. Performances began April 20 for a run through June 10. Big Love's original director, Les Waters, returns to direct the show in the Bay Area.
Mee's Humana Festival 2000 hit, Big Love, is a reinterpretation of Aeschylus' The Suppliant Women played out on a wrestling mat. In this story of the battle of the sexes, fifty women are engaged to fifty brothers without their consent. They run away to Italy, but when finally tracked down by the grooms, each vows to give a wedding night their husbands will never forget.
The brides and suitors are Carole Baeumler (Lydia), Aimee Guillot (Olympia), Karenjune Sanchez (Thyona), J. Matthew Jenkins (Oed), Bruce McKenzie (Nikos) and Mark Zeisler (Constantine). Also in the cast are J. Michael Flynn (Piero/Leo), Lauren Klein (Bella/Eleanor), Tony Speciale (Guiliano), Jennifer Elder-Chace, Mary E. Hodges, Ken O'Brien and Joshua Tussin.
Designing the show are Annie Smart (sets), James Schuette (costumes), Robert Wierzel (lights) and Matthew Mezick (sound). Elisa Guthertz is the stage manager.
Big Love at Berkeley Rep opens April 25 on the Thrust Stage, where it will run through June 10. Berkeley Repertory Theatre is located at 2025 Addison Street. For tickets ($15.99-$51), call (510) 845-4700. Berkeley Rep is on the web at http://www.berkeleyrep.org. -- By Christine Ehren