February 11, 2011 - March 6, 2011
The Balcony is set in an exclusive brothel at the center of a revolution that threatens the established regime. Irma, the madam, oversees a collection of patrons acting out archetypes of power in society, including a bishop, a judge and a general. One of the prostitutes, Chantal, has escaped the brothel and has become a symbol to the people, an embodiment of the revolution. As the situation outside becomes more volatile, a plan is formulated to re-establish the status quo using the trappings of authority from the brothel's studios. The patrons' fantasies are fulfilled as they appear in public, posing as the figures of authority while the revolution threatens to overwhelm them.
When originally produced, The Balcony turned censors on their ears and was subsequently banned and even threatened with a police-organized riot in Paris in 1958. In subsequent decades, however, the play has amassed a rich production history, attracting such notable directors as Peter Brook, Roger Blin and JoAnne Akalaitis. Josh Cragun is excited to present nimbus' edgy new interpretation of this challenging work. "For years I have been wanting to tackle this script, and when we were looking at our new, raw, industrial space, this play seemed like it had been written to launch it. It felt like it was written yesterday, like it demanded to be performed today."
Media Coverage of The Balcony:
- Star Tribune: Whips and Wigs, by Claude Peck