Moliere's classic satire, Tartuffe, restaged in the 1950's North Carolina, will conclude San Francisco's American Conservatory Theatre 1998-99 season. Previews for the production, helmed by Charles Randolph-Wright, began June 17, for an official run June 23 - July 18.
Randolph-Wright, director of A.C.T.'s Insurrection: Holding History last season, has moved the piece to Durham, North Carolina, in the 1950's. There, a wealthy black family is duped by a Tartuffe - which in this production is a blend of charismatic biblethumper, clever con artist, and seductive bad boy, creating an African-American context with the classic play. Rather than changing the actual lines of the play, the production will utilize Richard Wilbur's 1965 translation.
Moliere's Tartuffe premiered in 1664, before the court of Louis XIV at Versailles, where it was attacked as an offense to religion and the good people of France. The play revolves around Tartuffe, a cunning man who professes a puritanical kind of piety, while actually conning a rich family.
Returning to A.C.T.'s Geary stage will be five members of the Insurrection cast, Steven Anthony Jones, Gregory Wallace, Anika Noni Rose, Shona Tucker, and L. Peter Callender. Other cast members include: Darryl Theirse, Tom Blair, Rudy Guerrero, Roxanne Raja, Fannie Lee Lowe, Nicole E. Lewis and Lloyd C. Porter.
For tickets ($11-$55) or more information, call (415) 749-2228.