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  The Elder Statesman at Undercroft Theatre

The Elder Statesman

Undercroft Theatre
900 Massachusetts Ave. NW Washington

The Stage Guild has produced every play by Eliot except this, his final one, the overwhelming winner in our audience poll this past Spring. An acclaimed and respected politician prepares to retire in the glow of fame, until a barely-remembered friend from his youth turns up with uncomfortable truths. Scandal and disgrace may await a man who expected honors and comfort. But does the end of a life of lies bring tragedy, or relief?

Presented by Washington Stage Guild

Thru - May 19, 2013

Thursdays: 7:30pm
Fridays: 8:00pm
Saturdays: 2:30pm & 8:00pm
Sundays: 2:30pm

Price: $40 - $50

Running Time: 2 hours, 20 minutes with 1 intermission

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  The Elder Statesman Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Washington Post - Somewhat Recommended

"...In his staging, Largess has mixed success airing the mothballs out of Eliot's 1959 piece. When it works, "The Elder Statesman" becomes a "Downton Abbey"-ish guilty pleasure, albeit a more spiritual and chaste one. The dialogue sounds natural, if archaic. When the show falters, mustiness and verse-iness overtake it."
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Jane Horwitz

City Paper - Recommended

"...There is, though, sparkling banter along the way, in verse that's light, conversational, and often-as when rest-home matron Lynn Steinmetz positively bellows "peace and quiet is our raison d'etre"-pretty funny in Bill Largess' nimble mounting."
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Bob Mondello

DC Metro Theater Arts - Recommended

"...Those who flee their past will always lose the race because their past failures will always be waiting at the finish line to greet them. A poignant T.S. Elliot quote wound up in his play The Elder Statesman, which is currently being revived upon the stage of Washington Stage Guild. Directed by Bill Largess, this classic drawing room style drama/comedy follows a man who has attempted to flee his past by changing his name. Of course nothing in T. S. Elliot's world is ever quite so simple. The ghosts of his past haunt him, but especially when they start appearing as real live people with whom he must interact. A bit on the dry side for a proper drawing room comedy, there are deep-seeded life lessons woven subtly into the text of the play, definitely an evening of pondering what's been seen by the end of the performance."
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Amanda Gunther

MD Theatre Guide - Highly Recommended

"...The cast is rounded out by Kevin Hasser as the fiance and wayward son Michael Avolio who both put in solid performances, as well in a production so good you'd wish there was more Eliot they could put on."
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Roger Catlin

DCTheatreScene - Recommended

For all the imposing bang of Thomas Stearns Eliot’s blasts of modern poetry (The Wasteland, Four Quartets), his “drawing-room” plays, while also flush with important, complex ideas, tend to the whimper.
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Roy Maurer

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