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The Bald Soprano & Other Plays: The Bald Soprano, The Lesson, Jack or The Submission, The Chairs

The Bald Soprano & Other Plays: The Bald Soprano, The Lesson, Jack or The Submission, The Chairs
Your Price: $21.75 CDN
Author: Eugene Ionesco
Translated by: Donald M. Allen
Publisher: Grove Press
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 160
Pub. Date: 1958
ISBN-10: 0802130798
ISBN-13: 9780802130792

About the Plays:

The Bald Soprano is a full-length comedy by Eugene Ionesco. The play focuses on the middle class and their lack of communication, illustrating how words themselves can become meaningless

The Bald Soprano throws together a cast of characters including the quintessential British middle-class family the Smiths, their guests the Martins, their maid Mary, and a fire chief determined to extinguish all fires — including their hearths. It's an archetypical absurdist tale and Ionesco displays his profound take on the problems inherent in modern communication.

The leading figure of absurdist theater and one of the great innovators of the modern stage, Eugene Ionesco did not write his first play, The Bald Soprano, until 1950. He went on to become an internationally renowned master of modern drama, famous for the comic proportions and bizarre effects that allow his work to be simultaneously hilarious, tragic, and profound. As Eugene Ionesco has said, "Theater is not literature…. It is simply what cannot be expressed by any other means."

Cast: 3 women, 3 men

The plays in this collection also include The Lesson (A professor becomes increasingly frustrated with his young, female pupil), Jack or The Submission, and The Chairs (An eccentric old couple entertains and provides chairs for a growing number of invisible guests).

What people say:

"The Bald Soprano is explosively, liberatingly funny … a loony parody with a climax which is an orgy of non-sequiturs." — The Observer

"Startling and often brilliant. The lack of spiritual content in our civilization has been the major outcry of European drama since Isben. Ionesco has carried this idea to the climactic point of savage caricature." — Harold Clurman, influential and respected American theatre director and drama critic

About the Playwright:

Eugène Ionesco (1909-1994) was an internationally renowned French playwright who profoundly altered the face of modern drama. Known mainly as the father of the Theater of the Absurd, he wrote the genre's best-known work, The Rhinoceros. The son of a French mother and Romanian father, he spent his early childhood in Paris. He returned to Romania until 1938, when he returned to France on a graduate scholarship. Eventually, he became a French citizen. He wrote more than twenty plays, including The Bald Soprano, The Lesson, The Chairs, and Exit the King, as well as stories, memoirs, and theoretical essays, and was elected a member of the French Academy.

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