Russian director Slava Stepnov, who staged a well-received version of Edward Albee’s Lolita a year ago, has returned to Off-Off-Broadway to stage a company-derived work based on Anton Chekhov’s Ivanov. To Kill Charlotte, about a man driven to a desperate act just to drive the mundane boredom out of his life, also includes one character -- the title character, in fact -- from Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard.
Ending its scheduled run May 14 at the Greenwich Village Center Theatre, Charlotte features music by George Dzodzuashvili and sets & costumes by Uta Bekaia.
Stepnov, a graduate of the Russian Academy of Theatre Art in Moscow, has directed 36 plays and musicals in eight major Russian cities during his 25-year career. He came to the United States in 1995 as a guest teacher and director at the Actor's Theatre of Louisville. Arriving in New York in 1997, he became one of the founding members of Steps Theatre Production Company and the International Theatre Workshop. His staging of Chekhov's The Seagull, was presented at the International Theatre Workshop last year.
Steps has company members from, among others, France, Israel, Peru, Bulgaria and Italy. The company believes in movement-driven theatre, with text seen as a layer over the characters’ concrete actions.
Billed as a “tragicomic fantasy,” To Kill Charlotte, which opened April 27, runs at the Greenwich Village Center, 219 Sullivan Street. For tickets ($12) and information call (212) 841-5454. -- By David Lefkowitz
and Becki Heller