Written by Paul Rudnick, Valhalla intertwines two stories: the life of Ludwig of Bavaria, the Mad King of the 1880s who was responsible for building a series of storybook castles inspired by Wagnerian operas, and the fictional adventures of James Avery, a wild Texas teenager of the 1940s. The play explores questions of beauty and madness, as both Ludwig and James pursue lives of operatic passion and come in contact with such diverse figures as the small town inhabitants of Dainsville, TX, most of the characters of Lohengrin, and Princess Sophie, the loneliest humpback in Europe. Valhalla is a comic epic, confronting the price to be paid for pursuing and, seemingly, attaining everything you could dream of.
"You can be sure that a winsomely wicked bon mot will fly by every minute or so."
-- NY Times
"Paul Rudnick's most ambitious and [...] his strongest work yet."
-- The New Republic
"a dizzy, brisk diptych that connects 19th-century Bavaria to 1940s Texas in a unified field theory of gayness."
-- Time Out
"a juggling act skillful enough to revive vaudeville."
-- Village Voice
"If, as Paul Rudnick contends, 'opera is music gone mad,' what's it called when a giddy profusion of one-liners achieves the lunatic rhythm of music?"
-- NY Newsday
"Quips fall with the regularity of autumn leaves."
-- Associated Press
Directed by David J. Miller and Rick Park