HARVEY is live on stage at ZACH May 15-June 16, 2013!
In this Pulitzer Prize-winning comedy “Austin’s favorite actor” (The Austin Chronicle), Martin Burke stars as Elwood P. Dowd, a happy-go-lucky chap with a kind word for everyone he meets, especially his invisible best friend, a six-foot tall rabbit named “Harvey.” When Elwood’s social-climbing sister, played by Lauren Lane, decides to have him committed, this delightful play embarks on a madcap discovery that is by turns hilarious and endearing.
Photos below are from ZACH’s production and by photographer Kirk Tuck. Please feel free to share these photos, but remember to credit Kirk Tuck wherever they appear.
In this Pulitzer Prize-winning comedy “Austin’s favorite actor” (The Austin Chronicle), Martin Burke stars as Elwood P. Dowd, a happy-go-lucky chap with a kind word for everyone he meets, especially his invisible best friend, a six-foot tall rabbit named “Harvey.” When Elwood’s social-climbing sister, played by Lauren Lane, decides to have him committed, this delightful play embarks on a madcap discovery that is by turns hilarious and endearing. Maybe our dreams are more important than we ever imagined.
An all-star Austin cast of Lauren Lane, Thomas Ward, Eugene Lee and Angela Rawna, from Friday Night Lights fame, stars in the outrageous Tony-winning “Best Comedy” God of Carnage.
This outrageously funny play took Broadway by storm and is by far the most popular new play in the country. So popular, in fact, that controversial director Roman Polanski is releasing a film version called Carnagein January with Oscar winners Jody Foster and Christopher Waltz, who are joined by the ineffably funny John C. Reilly and Kate Winslet.
Carnage opened the 2011 New York Film Festival and was met with rave reviews. The Hollywood Reporter says it “fully delivers the laughs and savagery of the stage piece,” the Telegraph agrees, calling it “giddily enjoyable,” and The Playlist boasts that it’s “very, very funny.”
But before the film Carnage is released nationally, Austin has a chance to catch the original script live on stage at ZACH. If you think the Polanski film is getting good reviews, the stage version is now the third-longest-running play of the 2000s. From coast to coast critics agree – LA Times wrote that the play is a “chomping treat” and “riveting,” and The New York Times made it a critics’ pick, saying it “delivers the cathartic release of watching other people’s marriages go boom” and is “savagely primitive entertainment with an intellectual veneer.”
The story of two couples meeting to sort out a playground skirmish between their two boys, God of Carnage erupts into hilarity when coffee is replaced with rum and the gloves come off for an all-out throw-down between some of the finest actors in Austin.
Lauren Lane, playing Veronica Novak, delivers a performance that’s one of her best on any stage, says ZACH’s Producing Artistic Director Dave Steakley, and her counterpart Angela Rawna, as Annette Raleigh, makes a 180 departure from the wayward, drug-addicted character she played in NBC’s Friday Night Lights to an over-the-top hilarious character with impeccable comedic timing and line-after-line of laughs that left preview audiences on the edge of their seats.
The men, too, hold their own in this laugh-fest. Thomas Ward, who co-wrote and starred in the film Sironia, which premiered at the Austin Film Festival and won the “Audience Favorite” award, plays Lauren Lane’s husband Michael Novak. And Eugene Lee, from Suzan-Lori Parks’ The Book of Grace at ZACH, plays opposite Angela Rawna as Alan Raleigh.
Directed by Matt Lenz, returning to Austin after previous ZACH credits of Aida, Love! Valor! Compassion! and Dirty Blonde, just came off several Broadway directing credits as associate director of Catch Me If You Can and Hairspray and resident director for the Broadway and national tours of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. Lenz notes: “I am so pleased to be back in the director’s seat at ZACH. God of Carnageis one of those new plays that I just couldn’t wait to sink my teeth into. It is brimming with raw human emotion, wonderfully idiosyncratic – but true – characters and an engaging dialogue that will extend long after the play is over. I always relish the opportunity to help orchestrate a superb group of actors in some deliciously bad behavior surrounding a contemporary conflict that resonates like this one does. This one feels a bit like being the mediator at a World Wide Wresting event!”
“Never underestimate the pleasure of watching really good actors behaving terribly, ripping the stuffing out of one another, tearing up the scenery, stomping on their own vanity and having the time of their lives!” – The New York Times
GOD OF CARNAGE is live at ZACH Theatre, starring Lauren Lane, Thomas Ward, Eugene Lee and Angela Rawna from NBC’s “Friday Night Lights.” Below are production photos from the show by ZACH photographer Kirk Tuck. Feel free to repost these photos, but please credit Kirk Tuck wherever they appear.
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1/2 cup flour
1 1/4 cups milk
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 cups cherries, pitted
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a blender, mix the milk, sugar, eggs, vanilla, salt and flour. Pour a 1/4-inch layer of the batter in a lightly buttered 7 or 8 cup baking dish. Place in the oven until a film of batter sets in the pan. Remove from the heat and spread the cherries over the batter. Sprinkle on 1/3-cup sugar, then pour on the rest of the batter. Bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes to an hour. The clafouti is done when puffed and brown and a knife plunged in the center comes out clean. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve warm.
“We haven’t offered you anything, coffee, tea, is there any of that clafouti left, Ronnie? It’s an extraordinary clafouti!”
– Michael Novak
Clafouti is a traditional French peasant dessert – the ratatouille of the pastry world, a French version of the American apple pie. It’s cheap and simple to make. Lately, the offices at ZACH Theatre have been filled with the home-baked smell of pastry, which is a significant stage prop for the Tony-winning “Best Comedy” GOD OF CARNAGE (performances begin tonight.) It’s been a deliciousentréeto the holiday season.
A COMEDY OF BAD MANNERS
GOD OF CARNAGE was written by French playwright Yasmina Reza (author of ZACH’s comedic hit ART.) It debuted in London’s West End where the story was set in Paris. Reza collaborated with translator Christopher Hampton when the show moved to Broadway in 2009, Americanizing the play and its characters and the result was an instant award-winning comedy hit!
In this hilarious story of a playground skirmish turning into outrageously funny argument between otherwise well-behaved adults, little details in the GOD OF CARNAGE – like clafouti – tell a lot about the characters in the play.
The choice of clafouti in the original French text satirizes some remarkable things about characters Veronica and Michael Novak (played by Lauren Lane of TV’s “The Nanny” and Thomas Ward.)
Veronica’s clafouti recipe comes from Michael’s mother. Because clafouti is a classic peasant dish, the idea the playwright may be conveying is that Michael himself is lower class. This certainly explains his hilariously appropriate proclamation that he is a “Neanderthal.”
The use of clafouti also gives us some insight into Michael’s wife Veronica. She has taken the original recipe and enhanced it by mixing it with apples and pears instead of cherries and giving it a gingerbread base – much the same way she’s taken Michael, a simple man, and enhanced him by making him act like a sophisticated, liberal socialite.
The gloves all come off at ZACH Theatre starting next Wednesday. The GOD OF CARNAGE Champagne Opening is this Saturday, December 3, so get ready to laugh out loud as you see really good Austin actors behaving terribly!
For tickets, contact ZACH’s box office at 512-476-0541 x1. Visit www.zachtheatre.org for more information and behind-the-scenes video, photos and insider information.
There’s a little Thanksgiving in Santaland …
The first act of David Sedaris’ THE SANTALAND DIARIES, opening this Friday, contains several hilarious vignettes from some of the best and most revered writers in the country.
One of the favorites is a monologue by Sarah Vowell called “The First Thanksgiving.” Performed by actress Meredith McCall, who put the ‘drowsy’ in THE DROWSY CHAPERONE last summer. It’s the story of a young woman who moved to New York. When her parents come to visit for the first time hilarious family antics ensue. Funny, touching and poignant, it’s an annual favorite with ZACH audiences, and perfect for your holiday guests this Thanksgiving weekend.
The Tony Award-Winning “Best Comedy” Opens at ZACH Tues., Nov. 29th
Actress Lauren Lane stars in the uproarious new comedy GOD OF CARNAGE — Tony Award-winner of Best Comedy and the most popular play in the country this season — making its Austin premiere on Tues., Nov. 29th on ZACH’s intimate Kleberg Stage.
Winner of “Best Actress” by the Austin Critics’ Table and B. Iden Payne Award, many know Lauren Lane from her hilarious role as C.C. Babcock in the long-running hit television comedy “The Nanny.” Lauren has most recently graced ZACH stages in the wildly popular stage comedy August: Osage County and the Texas premiere of Steven Dietz’s play Becky’s New Car. A master of comedy, this is her most anticipated role yet.
GOD OF CARNAGE is the humorous story of two sets of parents coming together to discuss their children’s play date gone awry. But it’s more than that, as The New York Times notes, GOD OF CARNAGE is your chance to watch “really good actors behaving terribly, ripping the stuffing out of one another, tearing up the scenery, stomping on their own vanity and having the time of their lives!”
For the Holidays -
Give the Gift of Live Austin Theatre!
Why not share your love of ZACH Theatre with your family and friends?
Gift certificates can be used toward subscriptions, on single ticket purchases, or for drinks and merchandise at the theatre.
Available in any amount you choose, gift certificates can be picked up at ZACH’s box office or mailed to you or the recipient.
In the play, Lauren plays Veronica Novak – a caring earth mother type who turns into a wild-woman warrior after her son gets the wrong end of the stick in a playground skirmish. A writer, Veronica is always right. Playwright Yasmina Reza — award-winning writer of ZACH’s comedic sensation Art — has said, “Veronica is the character we all would like to be. She’s the one who cares deeply about the adults children are going to grow up to be. The only reason she is becoming insufferable is that she’s making a big effort to turn this into something positive, and she’s not listened to.”
Veronica scoffs in the play, “Behaving well gets you nowhere. Courtesy is a waste of time, it weakens you and undermines you.” She admits she is humorless.
Watch the gloves come off starting Tuesday, November 29th at ZACH, and get ready for a laugh-out-loud night at the theatre with what The New York Times calls “a cathartic release of watching other people’s marriages go boom … as rum replaces coffee and outer garments are removed, sides of combat blur.”
Satire, comedy, parents behaving badly: GOD OF CARNAGE is a fabulous way to kick off your ha-ha-holidays. ZACH’s Champagne Opening performance and post-show reception is Saturday, December 3.
Martin Burke in ZACH's THE DROWSY CHAPERONE, photo by Kirk Tuck
The best and brightest in Austin arts critics presents the Austin Critics Table Awards each year. Now, in its 19th year, awards were presented last night by local arts critics to recognize the most exceptional achievements in dance, classical music, the visual arts and theatre — for a period covering May 2010 through April 2011.
This year’s committee was composed of the Austin American-Statesman’s Michael Barnes (arts), Cate Blouke (theatre), Claire Canavan (theatre), Luke Quinton (classical music/visual arts), Claire Spera (dance), and Jeanne Claire van Ryzin (arts) and TheAustin Chronicle’s Elizabeth Cobbe (theatre), Jonelle Seitz (dance), Avimaan Syam (theatre) and the Chronicle’s Robert Faires (arts).
Barbara Chisholm as Molly Ivins in RED HOT PATRIOT: THE KICK-ASS WIT OF MOLLY IVINS, Photo by Kirk Tuck
ZACH Theatre and its actors were presented with several awards at the informal ceremony at Cap City Comedy Club last night, including:
Lauren Lane as Barbara Fordham from AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY, Photo by Kirk R. Tuck www.kirktuck.com
“I’m running things now!”
- BARBARA FORDHAM
The oldest daughter of the Weston Family. Mother of Jean and wife of Bill, though they are currently separated. Barbara is a college professor in Boulder, Colorado. A control freak who knows a thing or two about breaking plates.
Opening March 31, 2011 at ZACH Theatre
This scathingly hilarious tragicomedy of cataclysmic proportions is one bitch of a family reunion!
When Dad unexpectedly vanishes into a sweltering Oklahoma summer night, the rest of the Weston clan rushes home to figure out what the hell happened. No easy feat with their serpent-tongued matriarch whose prolific pill-popping only sharpens her vitriolic outbursts.
And if mama ain’t happy … she’ll make sure you’re worse! Perfectly subversive, this entertaining turbo-charged saga shocks with each new diabolically funny bombshell that’s dropped.
Buy tickets online or call ZACH’s Box Office at (512) 476-0541, x1 – Open Monday-Saturday, 12 noon-7pm.