Shakespeare Theatre Company presents Man in a Case
The Shakespeare Theatre Company is proud to welcome Man in a Case to Washington, D.C. Interweaving video, music and dance, this production is adapted from two short stories of Anton Chekhov's and features celebrated performer Mikhail Baryshnikov and veteran members of Big Dance Theater Jess Barbagallo, Tymberly Canale, Chris Giarmo and Aaron Mattocks. Adapted and directed by the Obie Award-winning team Annie-B Parson and Paul Lazar/Big Dance Theater, Man in a Case runs from December 5-22, 2013 in the Lansburgh Theatre (450 7th Street, NW).
The production is based on Chekhov's brilliant tales of humor and despair, "About Love" and "Man in a Case." The stories are told through a late night chat between a pair of hunters. They first introduce Belikov, a professor of Greek and an unsociable man whose mannerisms display him as "encased," and his connection with an extroverted woman named Barbara. The play then seamlessly shifts to the contrasting "About Love" in which the protagonist gives up his love for a married woman. Creating a bridge between our time and that of these 19th-century alternative love stories, Man in a Case draws from surveillance footage and haunting dance pieces projected from stage to screen.
Man in a Case, commissioned and premiered by Hartford Stage in Connecticut earlier this year, is a collaboration between Big Dance Theater and Baryshnikov Productions in association with ArKtype / Thomas O. Kriegsmann. Critics hailed the production as "an intriguing, ultimately irresistible evening of live performance and mixed media" (The Examiner).
Annie-B Parson and Paul Lazar of Big Dance Theater bring their distinctive aesthetic to Man in a Case, combining dance, theatre, video and fourth-wall-breaking storytelling. Said The Hartford Courant "Those willing to let go of convention will be entranced in a quiet spell that honors Chekhov's simple and small tales of sweet/not-so-sweet absurdities of life, love and existence." Parson, as the choreographer, holds nothing back by magnifying every moment with the idiosyncratic movement for which Big Dance Theater is known.
This STC presentation marks Mikhail Baryshnikov's first appearance on the STC stage. Known world-wide for his virtuosic dancing since coming to the West, Baryshnikov broke the mold in classical ballet and forayed into American modern dance. From dance to film to stage, Baryshnikov is an ever consummate performer as exemplified in this multi-experimental work with Big Dance Theater.
"Man in a Case is a terrific example of what is happening in theatre all around the world right now, integrating performance, spoken word and mixed media," stated STC Artistic Director Michael Kahn. "I am a great admirer of Mikhail Baryshnikov and honored to have him grace the Lansburgh stage."
Man in a Case is part of the STC Presentation Series which brings the finest international productions to theatregoers in D.C. Next in the series will be the Kneehigh's U.K. production of Brief Encounter in March and April 2014.
Man in a Case is generously sponsored by Dr. Paul and Mrs. Rose Carter and WAMU 88.5 American University Radio.
To purchase tickets or to learn more, patrons can call the box office at 202.547.1122 or visit ShakespeareTheatre.org.