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Terrorist or eccentric? Ovation play explores America’s insecurities

Georgann Wallace as Luella and Brandon Lancaster as Zamir
Georgann Wallace as Luella and Brandon Lancaster as Zamir

SACRAMENTO — The Sacramento premiere of “Why Torture is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them” by the American playwright known for works of outrageous and often absurd comedy, Christopher Durang, will open June 15 at the Three Penny Theatre; Penny Kline will direct.

Durang turns political humor upside down with this raucous and provocative satire about America’s growing homeland “insecurity.” “Why Torture is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them” tells the story of a young woman suddenly in crisis: Is her new husband, whom she married when drunk, a terrorist? Or just crazy? Or both? Is her father’s hobby of butterfly collecting really a cover for his involvement in a shadow government? Why does her mother enjoy going to the theatre so much? Does she seek mental escape, or is she insane? Honing in on our private terrors both at home and abroad, Durang oddly relieves our fears in this black comedy for an era of yellow, orange and red alerts.

This seven-cast play stars Sacramento’s finest comedic actors: Amber Marsh as Felicity; Brandon Lancaster as the charismatic yet mysterious Zamir (a terrorist or not); Georgann Wallace as Zamir’s mother-in-law Luella, a sweet and dazed/befuddled (Mrs. Ratzywatzy); Janet Motenko as the outrageously hilarious spy Hildegarde (code name Scooby-Doo of the shadow government), Philip Pittman (Luella’s husband) an opinionated oddball eccentric, Jawara Duncan as Reverend Mike, a minister who directs porno films; and Brent Dirksen as Voice, Narrator, Maitre d’ and Looney Tunes.

The play includes profanity, violence and adult situations; it’s recommended for mature audiences.

“Why Torture is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them” opens Saturday, June 15, and continues though July 7 on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Ovation Stage’s Three Penny Theatre is located at, 1723 25th St. in Sacramento. Tickets are $15 for senior/student/SARTA, $18 general admission. For tickets and more information visit ovationstage.com or call the box office at (916) 448-0312.

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Posted by on May 8 2013.
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