Curio Theatre Company brings audiences into a modern look at one of history’s most controversial figures. David Adjmi’s Marie Antoinette kicks off 2018 for the West Philadelphia theatre. This contemporary take on the infamous French Queen runs February 14-March 10. Directed by Brenna Geffers, this engaging story of excess, artifice, and revolution opens Friday, February 16 at 8 p.m.
In Adjmi’s contemporary take on the young famed queen of France, Marie is a frivolous, extravagant prisoner of circumstance. She is a confection created by a society that values extravagance and artifice. As the revolution brews and the people of France sour to the excess and artifice that define her life, they prepare to place her head firmly on the chopping block. In this dark and humorous tale, Marie consorts with kings, lovers, and the occasional sheep, while the chants of “Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité!” filling the streets grow ever louder. Marie Antoinette holds a mirror up to our contemporary society that might just be entertaining itself to death.
Brenna Geffers makes her Curio Theatre Company directorial debut. Jennifer Sumerfield is Marie Antoinette with Curio Company member Brian McCann as King Louis XVI. The ensemble, who portray several people who circle around them includes: Company Member Rich Bradford, Jessica Delcanton, Twoey Truong, and Liam Mulshine.
“It is funny and dangerous and nimble. It is absolutely about right now. I have found myself thinking a lot about the French Revolution in the past year. I am sure I am not the only one’; the inequality of wealth is a huge issue right now. I have also been questioning a lot of my own preconceptions about the complicity of wealthy white women in the power structures they operate in. What kind of pity or unearned empathy does our society extend to them?,” said Geffers. “Looking at voting patterns of white women in the last year has made me realize how wrong so many of my assumptions have been. I often hear the question ‘why would these women vote against their own self-interests?’ and I wonder – are they actually? Or rather, are they actually voting to protect privilege. Marie Antionette can be a fascinating lens to look at this question through. What kind of culpability are we willing to assign privileged women? How dangerous are princesses? What would Melania and Ivanka do?”
Most performances are Thursday-Saturday at 8 p.m. Industry Night is Monday, February 19 at 8 p.m. All performances are held at Curio’s home in the Calvary Center for Culture and Community at 4740 Baltimore Ave. Tickets cost $15-$30 and are available online www.curioutheatre.org or by phone at 215-921-8243.