Los Angeles/Tour Theater Feature: TARTUFFE (Actors’ Gang)

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by Tony Frankel on January 14, 2013

in Theater-Los Angeles,Tours


The Actors’ Gang, the critically acclaimed Los Angeles based ensemble theatre company, will present highly successful version of Moliere’s comic masterpiece, Tartuffe, for three shows only before it hits the road on its national tour. This fast-paced, outrageously funny, farcical romp is precisely the type of wonderfully inventive theater that would appear for a few days while on tour at a college campus, leaving patrons wishing that they had a company such as this at home. Well, Los Angeles does, but this Tartuffe, adapted by David Ball and directed by Jon Kellam, will only play Thursday, Friday and Saturday, January 17– 19, 2013 at its home at The Ivy Substation in Culver City

Tony Frankel’s Stage and Cinema Feature on The Actors’ Gang TARTUFFE at The Ivy Substation in Culver City and on TourOriginally produced by The Gang in 2005, Tartuffe was so successful it ran for over eight months. Of the new production, Jon Kellam notes, “Reinvestigating a great play from the deep breadth of our company production history has been a wonderful way to acknowledge our roots while investing in the artistic future of our company, by continuing to challenge and evolve our approach to training and performance.  And it is ridiculously fun.”

“Thirty one years ago we envisioned an ensemble-based theater company that would create new work and re-imagine the classics,” says Artistic Director Tim Robbins.  “Our ensemble still workshops every week in a style inspired by Le Coq and Arianne Mnouchkine. Tartuffe exemplifies a style of theater that is at the core of The Actors’ Gang aesthetic.”

Tony Frankel’s Stage and Cinema Feature on The Actors’ Gang TARTUFFE at The Ivy Substation in Culver City and on TourRailed against as a sacrilegious outrage by the Church, Moliere’s Tartuffe was banned from performance by Louis XIV in 1664. But the scintillating scandal of the censored play drew much public attention and it finally received its premiere in 1667, grossing unprecedented box office figures.  Still considered a comic masterpiece, it is regarded as one of the funniest plays ever written. Tartuffe, posing as a religious guru tricks his way into the household of the affluent merchant, Orgon. He is a sanctimonious and scheming con-man but appears pious and is therefore considered a good example for members of the family. However, through corruption and deceit the hypocrite and imposter, Tartuffe, schemes to seduce his benefactor’s wife, marry his daughter, and swindle all of his worldly possessions away.  The gullible Orgon fails to see his house guest for what he is and chaos ensues as Tartuffe employs unholy tactics in order to reach his goals.

Tony Frankel’s Stage and Cinema Feature on The Actors’ Gang TARTUFFE at The Ivy Substation in Culver City and on TourFor over 30 years, The Actors’ Gang has received critical acclaim for over 100 presenting relevant and vibrantly entertaining plays in in Los Angeles, in forty US states, and on five continents. The ensemble has included accomplished actors such as Helen Hunt, John Cusack, John C. Reilly, William H. Macy, Jack Black. The company has toured to the Edinburgh Festival and to New York’s Public Theater with Carnage, a Comedy and Embedded. In 2001 Bat Boy: a Musical won the Lucille Lortel and Outer Critics award for best new musical Off-Broadway. The company’s production of The Exonerated toured the US, and The Trial of The Catonsville Nine toured the US and Australia in 2009. George Orwell’s 1984 (directed by Tim Robbins) played record-breaking runs in Greece, Spain, Australia, China, and Mexico and just completed a tour of South America.

Coming up this season, The Gang will present an adaptation of Joseph Conrad’s classic novel, Heart of Darkness, Shakespeares’ Twelfth Night and Black Sail, White Sail by Helene Cixous, directed by Georges Bigot. The Ivy Substation is in downtown Culver City, which has been beautifully redeveloped over the last two decades, and there’s a swath of great places to eat near the theater.

The Actors’ Gang at The Ivy Substation in Culver City
Tim Robbins, Artistic Director
plays January 17-19, 2013 at 8pm
for tickets, call 310-838-4264 or visit http://www.theactorsgang.com

Tartuffe on national tour:
for tickets at Folsom, CA visit https://www.threestages.net/
for tickets at Notre Dame, IN visit http://performingarts.nd.edu/
for tickets at Tallahassee, FL visit http://www.sevendaysfestival.org/

{ 1 comment }

Diane Osier January 30, 2013 at 12:35 pm

How lucky we are in Folsom, California to have The Actor’s Gang, here live, in Moliere’s Tartuffe! Folsom will never be the same. 12 hours later and I am still energized by the laughter! A MUST SEE!

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