A Staged Reading of a Farce
by: Carl Sternheim adapted by Steve Martin
Directed by: Mark Zweifach
Produced by: Debbie David
This farce, written in 1910 by Carl Sternheim, opens with Theo Maske, an egotistical, puritanical bureaucrat, who berates his wife, Louise, for allowing her underpants to fall to the ground at a parade for the king.
Theo fears the potential scandal will ruin him financially, socially and politically, and becomes distracted. Meanwhile, his household is invaded by a series of potential boarders who, having observed the parade, come to seduce his wife.
Filled with off-the-wall humor, clever wordplay, and masterful banter, the play maintains its relevance a century later.
The original production was banned by the German government, not just for its suggestive setup, but for its biting satire about the country’s bourgeoisie.
“Martin's adaptation is as relevant today as Sternheim's play was a century ago,” said Director Mark Zweifach. “As a society, we still struggle with the issues of fame, conformity, and reputation.
We are still burdened by stereotypical gender roles as well as actively trying to make sense of sexuality in our modern world.”