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Attleboro Community Theatre

Presents

 

PICASSO
at the
Lapin Agile

 

Cast Of Characters

Freddy - Adam Plourde
Gaston - Edmund Clavette
Germaine - Alison Messina
Albert Einstein - Dan Sulger
Suzanne - Jenniffer Vaughn
Sagot - Anthony Medeiros
Picasso - David DaCosta
Schmendiman - Scott Domenici
The Countess - Tina Kenney
A Female Admirer - Ashley Doiron

A Visitor - Luke Riskalla

 

Directed by Christopher M. Gaulin

Reviewed by Don Gillis, February 28, 2003

Winner of 1996 New York Outer Critics' Circle Awards for "Best Play" and "Best Playwright," PICASSO AT THE LAPIN AGILE is set in 1904 in a bohemian Paris bistro, the Lapin Agile. Steve Martin's play revolves around an imaginary meeting between a passionate Pablo Picasso (David DaCosta) and a fiery Albert Einstein (Dan Sulger). The two young men on the threshold of fame vie for the attentions of a young lady,  and for each others respect in a hilarious battle of ideas about painting, probability, lust, and the future of the world. One year later, Albert Einstein published the Special Theory of Relativity. Three years later, Pablo Picasso painted Les Demoiselles D'Avignon.

Then there is Freddy ( Adam Plourde)  who does a remarkable and believable portrayal of the  bistro owner/bartender, Germaine (Alisson Messina), the bar maid and femme fatale, Gaston (Edmund Clavette), the local peasant with a urinary problem, Sagot (Anthony Medeiros) the meretricious art dealer, sexy Suzanne (Jenniffer Vaughn), Picasso's latest conquest, the irrepressible Schmendiman (Scott Domenici), creator of an asbestos based concrete , The Countess (Tina Kenney), A Female Admirer (Ashley Doiron) and a surprise visitor from another time. (Luke Riskalla).

Director Christopher Gaulin has done a wonderful job with this play.  This is Christopher's directorial debut, and he has masterfully handled his casting and blocking.  His insight and resourceful experience as an accomplished actor has its marks on this production.  What a fine job - he has done a great job of not taking this play too seriously -- and yet, just seriously enough. And after all, isn't that what makes comedy work? 

The cast is very strong, not because they don't bathe (that's a French joke), but because their comic timing is so good. Though he bears no resemblance whatsoever to Picasso , David DaCosta does a fine job portraying the impassioned, roguish, self-inflated artist. Dan Sulger is a very ,very funny, young Einstein with his hair standing straight up. The two of them are the backbone of the show, and these two fine actors on stage together was a joy to behold!  Alisson Messina as Germaine possesses a unique European look and her acting was impeccable!  Jenniffer Vaughn as Suzanne, adds a unique presence to her character, and  Tina Kenney as the Countess adds a pleasant touch as does A Female Admirer, Ashley Doiron. But the fellow that is the comic is Scott Domenici as Charles Dabernow Schmendiman -- the big jerk that thinks he's a genius. In his brief cameo appearance, Scott all but chews up the scenery.  I had fun watching him. A brief cameo appearance by Luke Riskalla will delight you!

The play whizzes by at the speed of light, making us laugh all the while. Some of the laughs come from sophisticated philosophical meanings, while others are from basic pratfalls or the placement of four little words ("Thank you very much"). There's wit, there's mirth, there's merriment with a big dose of silliness thrown in to boot. Granted the supporting characters are not as engaging as the two main ones, but we're laughing.

So if you need to ruminate about the nature of time and space, art and ego, jerk and genius or you just need to get your mind off that pesky melanoma that's been bothering you lately -- head for the Lapin Agile. I guarantee it will shake your blues away.

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Don Gillis, Little Rhody Theater

 

Picasso at the Lapin Agile (March 1-2, 2003)
ATTLEBORO COMMUNITY THEATER
42 Union Street
Attleboro, MA
(508) 226-8100