The American Century Theatre will present Terrence McNally's early play And Things That Go Bump In the Night at VA's The Gunston Arts Center, Jan. 6-Feb. 6, 1999.
In Bump in the Night, a monstrous mother lives in a basement bomb shelter with her equally unappealing children -- they along with "fa" and "grandfa" all sit and wait for nuclear war to destroy the world. While waiting, they amuse themselves (a la Godot) by luring in strangers and torturing them. One youth is enticed into homosexual acts with the son -- with the son driving the youth to insanity by showing him pictures of what they had just done.
The play was critically panned during its 1965 Broadway run, with a strange twist. Rather than close the production after the first day, the producers decided to let the show continue its run with all seats selling for one dollar. After a few days, the extremely low-priced Broadway show was selling out. The producers proved a point - audiences would go see a show even with terrible reviews, if the show was (for that time) competitively priced with movies. They proved that point for only 16 performances however, and took a huge financial hit.
And Thing That Go Bump in the Night by Terrence McNally plays at The Gunston Arts Center's Theatre Two, Jan. 6 - Feb. 6, 1999. For tickets ($20) or more information, call (703) 553-8782.
-- By Sean McGrath