Mister Eclectic (howeird) wrote,
Mister Eclectic

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Tired, But Ambulatory

Last night I went to see Lysistrata at City Lights in San Jose because long-time heart throb Heidi Kobara is in it, as well as Molly Thornton, who will be playing the leading lady (Aldonza/Dulcinea) in Man of La Mancha with me. howbearca, who is directing La Mancha, was manning the concession stand, nice to see him there. Turns out he knows Heidi too. The small world story of the night is the way I met Heidi is she was the girlfriend of my best friend bigcatroary when they were doing The Mikado together. I had originally met him when we did A Funny Thing Happened on the Way To The Forum together in Hayward in 1982. Also in the Hayward show was Michael Johnson, who is vocal director and playing Sancho in La Mancha.

I won't do a detailed review of the show because it is just too bizarre. If you have never read or seen Lysistratra, this is not the production to get your first impression.
Lysistrata is a comedy written in Greek by Aristophanes around 400 BC, in which a woman named Lysistrata leads all the women of Athens to protest the war with Sparta by withholding sexual favors. She enlists the women of all the Greek city-states. In a move to speed the peace plans along, the women also seize the treasury. Not difficult to do, because all the strong young men are at war, and the only defense are old farts. There is a lot of innuendo as the soldiers come home on leave to wives who won't leave the Temple of Athena. There are many English translations of this play, and it is traditional for the adapters to throw in dick jokes of their own, both verbal and in costuming. The women win out, the Athenian and Spartan men make peace, and a big celebration ensues.

The director adapted this production from a couple of the less orthodox translations, adding a lines, songs and choreography of his own. As far as content goes, this production is as far from the original as one can get without completely losing the message of the original.

The cast is excellent. The material isn't.

If you do know the show, it's worth seeing the same way slash is worth reading. YMMV.

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