It’s in Queens
#InTheLoop | Titan Theatre Company presents the French comedy ‘Tartuffe’ in Queens until Oct. 27
It’s hard to spell and ever harder to pronounce, but it’s a total pleasure to watch…A knee-slapping, side-splitting pleasure.
Titan Theatre Company will offer “(All Female) Tartuffe” 10 times at Queens Theatre from Friday, Oct. 11, to Sunday, Oct. 27.
First produced by controversial French playwright Molière in 1664, this comedy explores deception, hypocrisy, and false morality in a way that is oh-so-current in modern times. The main character, who is also the comedy’s namesake, pretends to be a God-fearing, law-abiding do-gooder as he tries to swindle a family’s fortune. The gullible Orgon and his mother, Madame Pernelle, believe that Tartuffe is only interested in their salvation. However, the others in the household can smell a rat.
Hilarity ensues as relatives, friends, and servants try to expose Tartuffe, and he responds with more deception, demonstrating the truth in Sir Walter Scott’s quote: “Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.” The excitement builds as the audience wonders if the truth about Tartuffe will ever come to light…and if Orgon will believe it when he sees it. Then─Boom!─the audience is hit with a surprise twist at the end.
Tickets are $20. Showtimes are Oct. 11, 7:30 pm; Oct. 12, 7:30 pm; Oct. 13, 4 pm; Oct. 18, 7:30 pm; Oct. 19, 7:30 pm; Oct. 20, 4 pm; Oct. 24, 7:30 pm; Oct. 25, 7:30 pm; Oct. 26, 7:30 pm; and Oct. 27, 4 pm.
Queens Theatre is located at 14 United Nations Ave. S. inside Flushing Meadows Corona Park. There’s a free parking lot nearby.
Molière, who was born Jean-Baptiste Poquelin in Paris in 1622, came under considerable fire for this play. The French Roman Catholic Church and other groups were offended by the negative portrayal of a religious man and upper-class society. In fact, the Archbishop of Paris threatened excommunication to anybody who performed, read, or watched the play. Molière was threatened with excommunication, too, but he was probably saved by King Louis XIV, who liked the work.
“(All Female) Tartuffe” kicks off Titan’s 11th season and its sixth year as artist-in-residence at Queens Theatre. Long-time Titan actress Laura Menzie plays the lead role. She shares the stage with other Titan veterans, including Laura Frye (Elmire), Alyssa Van Gorder (Cleante), Wesley Cady (Dorine), Annalisa Loeffler (Orgon), Psacoya Guinn (Marianne), and Analiese Puzon (Mr. Loyal). The all-female cast also features Titan newcomers Julia Klinestiver (Valere), Dominique Rose (Damis), Gracen Barth (Officer), and Rachel Davenport (Madame Pernelle).
“I am floored by the talent we have in the room on this show,” said Titan Artistic Director Lenny Banovez. “The stuff that this fabulous cast is coming up with….well let’s just say it’s criminal the amount of fun we are having. I cannot wait for audiences to see this production.”
Banovez is the director with help from Marcus D. Johnson. Here’s the rest of the crew: Scenic Design by Natalie Taylor Hart; Lighting Design by Nils Fritjofson; Sound Design by Banovez and Tamir Eplan-Franklin; Costume Design by Anthony Paul-Cavaretta and Tracie Van Law; and Scenic Charge and Props Design by Puzon. David Jackson is the Production Stage Manager.
Next up, the troupe will present “A Christmas Carol” at Queens Theatre in December.
Images: Titan Theatre Company