Picasso at the Lapin Agile
through March 24, 2019
Steve Martin wrote this play and it is sooooo Steve Martin in so many respects. The Au Lapin Agile was a real bistro in the Montmartre area of Paris; and in the days when Montmartre was a colony of now famous artists, it was a hangout for artists as well as musicians, students and a variety of weirdos. Of course these days it is more like Yuppieville, but still loaded with tourists who go to visit Sacré Cœur and then stroll down the rue Lepic past the galleries and souvenir shops to the Moulin Rouge.
As the show opens we find Einstein (Grant Carden) coming into the bistro where he decides to await a lady friend who is to meet him elsewhere. Only Einstein can really understand his own reasoning. Bartender, Freddy (Aaron Sherry) serves him up, and at the same time tries to deal with his wife and the joint’s waitress Germaine (Jamie Goss). A local ne’er do well sot named Gaston (Doug Isbecque) watches and joins in except when his over active bladder seems to interfere.
Picasso’s art dealer, Sagot (Gregory Nassif St.John) shows up for a dink and he and Einstein start to criticize the sheepish landscape that Freddy has hung on the back wall of the bar area. Enter Picasso (Daniel Cutts) who also needs a drink and the discussion seems to turn from art to sex; especially after sexy Suzanne (Jessie Kuipers) drops by. In real life Pablo was a bit of a womanizer and had relations with a good number of ladies. You’ll also meet Charles Schmendiman (Colton Combs) who is a real schmendrick and Steve Martin named him accordingly; pun intended. Cat Rondeau appears as a countess. And you shall get to meet one unnamed visitor (Briana Murray). Who that might be becomes quite obvious, but I shall not spoil the pleasure of discovery for those who have yet to see the play.
For if it is said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then pleasure is in the mind and heart of the attendee; and it is an evening of really fine performance by a dedicated cast directed by Scott King on a really good set by Tanya Moore. The theatre is easy to get to, with free parking, good view from any seat and even home baked goodies at intermission. More info at LionheartTheatre.org
And, if you wish to visit Au Lapin Agile, which dates from the 1860s, they are still in business at 22 rue des Saules, as a cabaret.