Garson Kanin's The Good Soup Served by TACT in Concert Performance Jan. 24-26

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24 Jan 2004

TACT (The Actors Company Theatre), the Manhattan troupe that presents scripts in unique concert productions, stages The Good Soup, Garson Kanin's adaptation of the French farce by Felicien Marceau, Jan. 24-26.

This is the first time this work has been performed in New York since the 1960 Broadway production in which Kanin directed his wife Ruth Gordon in the leading role. The French title is La Bonne Soupe.

Performances play at the company's home, Florence Gould Hall at the French Institute Alliance Français, 55 East 59th Street (between Madison and Park), 7:30 PM Jan. 24, 2 PM Jan. 25 and 7:30 PM Jan. 26.

TACT's show are presented as concert readings, with actors largely performing face-front in a highly theatrical conceit, with costume and lighting design and original music.

TACT's co-artistic directors are Scott Alan Evans, Simon Jones and Cynthia Harris. The TACT mission is "presenting neglected or rarely produced plays with literary merit."



The Good Soup is the story of Marie-Paul, a woman of a certain age "whom we first encounter around the roulette wheel of a Monte Carlo casino as she recounts her long, illustrious (if slightly immoral) career," according to production notes. "As she reminisces, she quite literally brings her past to life as a younger Marie-Paul appears. The audience joins the older woman in watching her evolution from poor shop girl to courtesan, to prosperous business woman, to 'respectable' wife. A steady stream of lovers, husbands and dupes who foot the bill help create the obstacles for her desires. And what does she desire? Love? Sex? Money? No. Just the most elusive jackpot: The Good Soup!" The Good Soup is directed by Kyle Fabel with a cast that includes Sean Arbuckle, Nora Chester, Francesca Di Mauro, Delphi Harrington, Kelly Hutchinson, Joel Jones, Simon Jones, Jack Koenig, Darrie Lawrence, Greg McFadden, Margaret Nichols, James Prendergast, Kimber Riddle, Gregory Salata and Scott Schafer.

The production team includes Mary Louise Geiger (lighting design), David Toser (costume design) and Marcus Paus (composer).

TACT was founded by professional actors in 1992. According to its mission statement, "Our 'Concert Performance' form of presentation allows us to re-focus the emphasis of the drama away from spectacle and production values and back to the words and the actor — creating theatre in its purest form."

The remainder of TACT's 11th season includes The Chalk Garden by Edith Bagnold (March 13-15) and a rare new work, The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire Project by Christopher Piehler, created in collaboration with members of the TACT company (May 7 -28), at The Beckett Theatre on Theatre Row.

Tickets are $20. For information, call (212) 307-4100. Tickets can also be purchased at the Florence Gould Hall/French Institute Alliance Français box office. For more information on TACT, visit www.TACTnyc.org.