Grottesco's 12th Night
In Grottesco's 12th Night, the nation's oldest Lecoq based ensemble explores the gold mine of insight behind the scenes and between the words of Shakespeare's popular romantic tale. Grottesco's 12th Night delves into themes of marginalization and power, and celebrates the humor, humanity and wisdom of the serving class.
What happens to an "economic state" when the leaders succumb to decadence, supplanting their ability to maintain economic harmony? What happens to the people when that "state" fails? Who are the wealthy? Do they even exist without the working class? What are the steps of decline?
Shakespeare gives us the first one: there is no oil in the lamp at the lighthouse; a ship runs aground and the unraveling has begun. Is there salvation?
Grottesco plays are told in a collage of physical styles combined to create a one-of-a-kind theatrical experience. In Grottesco's 12th Night, a dark, reflective clowning similar to Samuel Beckett's characters is a foundational style. The play is peppered with dream sequences using puppetry and imagery inspired by Hieronymous Bosch, Domenico and Giambattista Tiepolo. Deep emotions are heightened with gestural dance. The wings are on stage. While Shakespeare's Duke pines with his head and heart, Grottesco's serving class creates a passionate spectacle, rocking the scenery and revealing love that is at once more earthy and more ethereal.
Grottesco's 12th Night deconstructs Shakespeare's famous romantic comedy, slicing scenes and subplots, constructing new ones and transforming this beloved piece into a social comedy and ultimately a comic tragedy – a nation house adrift on a sea of decadence.