Poet and dramatist Derek Walcott may be taking his lumps on Broadway as The Capeman ends its embattled run, but he's not disappearing from the theatrical landscape. Maryland's Round House Theatre is staging his 1977 satire, Pantomime, opening Mar. 16 after beginning previews Mar. 11.
Pantomime looks at a white master and black servant living together in a guest house on the island of Tobago. Said director Scott Reese, "In Pantomime we have two men alone on an island struggling valiantly to understand each other. It's only when they stop denying what they have in common that they begin to celebrate their differences."
Notable in Caribbean-born Walcott's work is his use of native speech rhythms, alongside drumming, ritual, music and myth, according to "The Back Stage Theatre Guide." Previous plays include Ti-Jean and his Brothers, Beef, No Chicken and Steel. Walcott received a Nobel Prize for Literature for his poetry.
Starring in Pantomime are Doug Brown and Michael Tolaydo. Designing the show are Neil McFadden (sound), Rosemary Pardee (costumes), Jos. B. Musumeci Jr. (set) and Ayun Fedorcha (lighting).
Now in its 20th season, Round House Theatre offers a mix of contemporary and classical plays, as well as shows geared towards education and outreach. Jerry Whiddon serves as producing artistic director. For tickets ($20-$27) and information on Pantomime at the Round House Theatre, 12210 Bushey Drive in Silver Spring through Apr. 5, call (301) 933-1644.