WRITTEN BY Marivaux
DIRECTED BY Matthew Jocelyn
TRANSLATED BY Nicolas Billon
APR 16 - MAY 12 -
It is such a pleasure to share the seductively elegant, brilliantly comic world of playwright Marivauxwith Canadian Stage audiences," said director Matthew Jocelyn. "This play is timeless because it explores what we will do to attain love and deals with the versatility and instability of the human spirit and the human heart."
The Game of Love and Chance follows Silvia (Trish Lindström) whose aristocratic father, Monsieur Orgon (William Webster), has arranged for her to marry a nobleman named Dorante (Harry Judge). Skeptical about love and marriage, and having never met Dorante, Silvia decides to trade places with her maid, Lisette (Gemma James-Smith), to get a sense of his true self. Her father agrees to play along but doesn't tell her that Dorante has the same idea and plans to meet Silvia disguised as his servant, Arlequino (Gil Garratt). Monsieur Orgon tells his son Mario (Zach Fraser) of the plan and they both delight in the ensuing hilarity. An abstract, mirrored set designed by Anick La Bissonnière enhances the illusions created by each of the characters, and magnifies the farce and confusion surrounding love, identity and intentions.
Marivaux's Le jeu de l'amour et du hasard (The Game of Love and Chance) was first performed close to 300 years ago in Paris. It was originally written for the troupe of Italian actors known as "les comédiens-italiens", whose theatrical tradition was based largely on commedia dell'arte techniques of Italy in the 17th century. Jocelyn's contemporary retelling of this builds on the gymnastic and exceptionally theatrical performance style of this group of actors, peppered with comedic moments highlighted through the witty banter and emotion of the text and Billon's translation.