The show will be part two of the troupe's artistic mounting of the sprawling, seldom-seen classic. The first part, called These Very Serious Jokes, premiered in January 2004. Target Margin's artistic director David Herskovits directs, per usual.
Sinister, snake-voiced actor David Greenspan played Mephisto to Will Badgett's Faustus in part one of playwright Douglas Langworthy's new adaptation. Greenspan returns for part two, with George Hannah stepping in as Faust and Eunice Wong playing Gretchen.
Also in the cast are Nicole Halmos, Wayne Alon Scott and Kendra Ware. Lighting design is by Lenore Doxsee, costume design by Kaye Voyce, scenic design by Carol Bailey and Susan Barras, and sound design by John Collins.
The earlier These Very Serious Jokes represented roughly 2,600 lines of Goethe's 12,000-line play. Herskovits gives the work a primitive theatricality. The drama was depicted as being performed by a ragtag German theatre group, complete with producer and resident playwright. The resulting performance had the intended feel of a dress rehearsal, with actors openly signalling for sound cues and interrupting each other with calls of "That line's been cut." Simple paper drops, cloth curtains and crude props (Greenspan's Mephisto wore a headband of red horns; God donned a very fake white beard) crowded the cluttered and colorful stage, on which a stage manager performed her duties in clear sight.Jokes ended with Faust's first encounter with Gretchen.
The third and final installment of Target Margin's Faust project will occur during the fall and winter of 2005-06. Target Margin plans to perform all three parts of its "Faust" adaptation in a marathon production at the end of its 2006 season. Tickets are $20 and can be reserved by calling (212) 358-3657 or online at www.TargetMargin.org.