To say the least, he was an innovator in the theatre world. His name is mentioned among such historical figures as Ibsen and Ionesco. His theories of what theatre should be often preceded him - so much so, he at one point said "If the critics could only look at my theatre as the audience does, without starting out by stressing my theories, then they might well see theatre."
His name was Bertolt Brecht, also known as the creator of Epic Theatre. His work and himself are now being presented Off-Broadway in the Irondale Ensemble Project's Brecht on Brecht Nov. 29-Dec. 23 at the Theatre for a New City in downtown Manhattan.
Using his songs, poems and lesser-known writings, editor George Tabori and directors Jim Niesen and Jaques Levy have woven together a piece that "reawaken a specific understanding of his ideas, his poetry and his theatre," as Niesen stated in a release.
Featured in the cast are Christian Brandjes, Heidi K. Eklund, Carolyn Fischer, Michael-David Gordon, Terry Greiss, Jack Lush, Barbara Mackenzie-Wood, Sven Miller, and Patrena Murray. The production also features live music by the Walter Thompson Orchestra, choreography by Sarah Adams, scenic design by Ken Rothchild, lights by Randy Glickman, and costumes by Christianne Myers.
(Coincidentally, a tribute revue to Brecht’s most famous writing partner, Kurt Weill, ends this weekend in New York City. Berlin to Broadway with Kurt Weill closes at the Triad Dec. 3.) For tickets to Brecht on Brecht at the TNC, 155 First Ave., call (718) 488-9233. For more information on show at New City, visit the TNC Homepage.
— by Ernio Hernandez