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About this show

It is the last day in the life of Frank Norris, writer (not that OTHER writer Frank Norris, this is one you've never heard of, somewhat of a cross between Henry Miller and Norman Mailer). He appears to be in a prison cell, in some unnamed country, for some unnamed political crime - but as his mind is slipping in and out of reality as he faces his impending death, you'll forgive him if he is romanticizing his situation somewhat . . . especially as six figures from inside his head have appeared to variously tempt and torment him, forcing him to look back at his long, rich life to see how many things he has still left undone, and how many regrets he still has. This collection of alien figures, some frightening, some incredibly appealing (plus his real world doctor, who is trying to help him sort it all out), pull him in different directions as he tries to decide how to exit his life, either on his feet and fighting or sliding away into an ignorant oblivion. In this production of Richard Foreman's 1983 play George Bataille' s Bathrobe - the first fully-staged English language production, as it premiered in French in Paris, and last received a staged reading in 1998 - the abstract text, written by Foreman only as dialogue, with no characters or scene descriptions, is here transformed by designer/director Ian W. Hill into a fantasia on mortality and the choices we make in how to deal with it, either through trying to ignore the painful reality through a reliance on sensual pleasure and physical possessions, or standing up and facing the harsh truths about the things we have done or left undone that we can never make right. A life passing before a man's eyes is shown, with all its attendant humor, violence, tenderness, and tragedy, in a collection of scenes ranging in style from music hall to dance to melodrama to naturalism. George Bataille's Bathrobe is a collection of moments of one man's past life that might teach others how to live their future ones.

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