Theatrikos Theatre Company presented God of Carnage in September 2014. Directed by Jan Rominger and starring Adrienne Bischoff, Becky Daggett, Mike Levin, and Joe Maniglia, the production was a big hit.
The 2009 Tony Award winner for Best Play is an explosive comedic drama exploring the dynamics of two couples who meet over drinks to discuss an episode of bullying perpetrated by the child of one set of beleaguered parents. As with her previous plays such as Art and Life X 3, Reza examines the explosive underbelly of a seemingly ‘civilized’ strata of modern society. “[A] streamlined anatomy of the human animal…delivers the cathartic release of watching other people’s marriages go boom. A study in the tension between civilized surface and savage instinct.”
From the nomination letter:
Having worked, and previously volunteered, with Theatrikos for many years, I have consistently been impressed at the quality of this community theatre’s productions. However, even after watching dozens of thought-provoking, hilarious, and well-acted shows here, I was completely blown away by every aspect of the recent production of Yasmina Reza’s “God of Carnage” in a manner that I had not experienced so far, neither here in Flagstaff nor anywhere else.
The director, longtime Theatrikos volunteer Jan Rominger, along with her assistant director, Angela Keith, artfully led a cast made up entirely of individuals who would place highly on any local theatre-lover’s shortlist of the best actors in our community: Becky Daggett, Joe Maniglia, Adrienne Bischoff, and Michael Levin. While Reza’s script is brilliantly written and really speaks for itself, it is a very difficult piece that in the wrong hands could risk coming across as either too tense and difficult to watch, or too farcical, and lose sight of the characters’ humanity. However, thanks to the artistic minds involved with this production, the show never lost sight of the playwright’s vision.
In addition to the stellar experience of watching the show, the reactions of the audience were a great joy in and of themselves. Here are just a few of the things patrons said when they went out of their way to communicate in writing their satisfaction with the show:
James Hasapis: “A wonderful production. If you haven’t seen it YOU. NEED.TO!”
Dr. Bjorn Krondorfer: “Witty, clever, thoughtful–a lot of laughter, but it was a laughter of recognition, making us see the more serious themes beyond the surface.”
Richard Gaughan: “The powerful script and the accomplished cast make this a story about human foibles, human triumphs, and human civilization… It’s a performance that will keep you engaged from the opening salvo to the explosive conclusion. Go see it!”