Cx & Company, formerly known as Negative Antelope, presents A Heiner Muller Program, an evening of two rarely produced plays by German playwright Heiner Muller. Cradeaux Alexander directs.
Medeamaterial is Muller's deconstruction of the classic Medea story adapted into a 20-minute monologue delivered by Medea. It is a scathing indictment on the corruption of power and ambition, as Jason abandons Medea for the king's daughter to further his position in the monarchy, leaving Medea absolutely alone, scorned and stateless. In a torrent of rage and anguish, she gets back at Jason by killing his new bride-to-be and destroying her and Jason's children. A remarkable and unforgettable tale of the ultimate woman scorned. Medea is played by a male actor, taking to the extreme Medea's proclamation "I want to rip mankind apart in two and live within the empty
middle, I no woman and no man."
Quartet is based on Choderlos de Laclos's novel "Les Liaison Dangereuses" ("Dangerous Liaisons"), which consists of the fictional correspondence between a Marquise de Merteuil and a Vicomte de Valmont who discuss their amorous, often sadistic fantasies and indulge themselves in the scheming seduction of an innocent virgin and a virtuous spouse. Muller's version is a highly theatrical interplay between Valmont and the Marquise, overtly sensual and decadent, in which the two characters intermittently switch their roles and sexes. They deal with the desperation of the world in an amused and
detached vacuum where their role-playing games create a philosophy of transcendence. Originally written for two actors, Cx & Company has expanded the cast to four players, creating a true "quartet."
The program takes us on a journey of evolution that begins with barbarism and ends in sophisticated liberation. It's a prime example of the themes Cx & Company are interested in exploring, from the Androgynous character of Muller's Medea and the gender-play between the Marquise and Valmont, to the struggle for meaning within a landscape of seeming indifference.