Atlantic's Double Bill of Ionesco Plays Opens Sept. 19

Atlantic Theater Company's double bill of works by absurdist playwright Eugene Ionesco, in new translations by Tina Howe, opens Sept. 19 with a company that includes Steven Skybell, Jan Maxwell, Seana Kofoed, Michael Countryman and more.

The cast of The Lesson at Atlantic Theatre Company
The cast of The Lesson at Atlantic Theatre Company (Photo by Carol Rosegg)

Carl Forsman, known for his work with the Keen Company, directs the one-acts The Bald Soprano and The Lesson, considered masterworks from the French-Romanian playwright. Tina Howe is known for her Coastal Disturbances, Painting Churches and Pride's Crossing.


Billed as "a comic masterpiece," The Bald Soprano "celebrates the verbal mayhem that erupts when proper English people lose their ability to communicate." The Atlantic Theater staging will feature John Ellison Conlee, Michael Countryman, Seana Kofoed, Maggie Lacey, Jan Maxwell and Robert Stanton.

In The Lesson, "a professor tries to teach his student the basics of arithmetic and philology, but things go terribly wrong as his pronouncements escalate into inspired gibberish."

It will feature Maggie Kiley, Christa Scott-Reed and Steven Skybell.

Designers are Loy Arcenas (scenic), Theresa Squire (costume), Josh Bradford (lighting) and Obediah Eaves (sound).

Ionesco (1909-1994) wrote over 20 plays including The Chairs (1952) which received an acclaimed revival on Broadway in 1998, Rhinoceros (1959), The Killer (1958), Exit the King (1962), A Stroll in the Air (1963) and Hunger and Thirst (1964).

Previews at the Atlantic's Off-Broadway home at 336 W. 20th Street, between Eighth and Ninth Avenues, began Sept. 1.

Tickets are $50. Call Tele-Charge at (212) 239-6200 or visit .

The cast of <i>The Bald Soprano</i> at Atlantic Theatre Company
The cast of The Bald Soprano at Atlantic Theatre Company (Photo by Carol Rosegg)