Lexington Technology Center
April 11 – 27
8 p.m. & 7 p.m.
For its latest edgy production, Quantum applies its site-specific approach to a world premiere adaptation of Pantagleize. Written by avant-garde Belgian playwright Michel de Ghelderode (1898 – 1962) in 1929, the groundbreaking play explores themes of revolution, violence, morality, humanity, irrationality and more. Originally subtitled “A Farce to Make You Sad,” Pantagleize takes its moniker from the play’s lead character, a “half-philosopher, half-clown unwittingly involved with a cell of revolutionaries who take him for their leader,” who falls in love with a young female revolutionary. The play solidified de Ghelderode’s status as a pioneering figure who paved the way for modern avant garde writers in France, such as Jean Genet and Eugène Ionesco.
Pantagleize reunites playwright Jay Ball with director Jed Allen Harris, who worked on Quantum’s critically acclaimed production of Heiner Muller’s The Task in 2010. Putting a farcical Monty Python-esque twist on the dark comedic work, the production stars Tony Bingham, Weston Blakesley, Kimberly Parker Green, Lisa Ann Goldsmith, Alex Knell, Randy Kovitz, Max Pavel, Erika Strasburg, Sam Turich and Abdiel Vivancos. The play features vivid design by Tony Ferrieri, Susan Tsu, C. Todd Brown, Elizabeth Atkinson and Kevin Ramser. A mash-up of iconic artistic and revolutionary figures, Pantagleize freely adapts the original, referencing beat poet Allen Ginsberg, the Occupy movement and the Arab Spring.
Quantum sets Pantagleize in a URA-owned property located in North Point Breeze near the East End Food Co-op and Construction Junction. Described as “strange and Kafka-esque” and an “Escher-like block of defunct offices,” the complex houses bureaucratic operations such as the Allegheny County Call Center. Amidst an architecture that conveys elements of surveillance, anonymity and confinement, theater-goers will experience both public and private scenes, while attempting to “figure out who is doing what to whom on which side of a perfectly balanced, eternal conflict.”
Explore Pantagleize further during one of Quantum’s public programs, including Homewood and North Point Breeze Community Night, Ladies Night, Grapenuts Night, Quantum-on-the-Couch, a Post Show Discussion with the cast, and Social Q Happy Hour.