A scientist and an artist walk into a bar… this is the set-up for Steve Martin’s play, Picasso at the Lapin Agile—in production March 25-April 3 at The ArtsCenter. It just so happens that the scientist in question is Albert Einstein and the artist is Pablo Picasso.
In Martin’s scenario, the year is 1904, and Einstein is on the brink of publishing his break-through work, the Special Theory of Relativity while Picasso is about to begin painting his masterpiece, Les Demoiselles d’ Avignon. A magical re-invention of a coincidental meeting between Picasso and Einstein takes place in Montmartre at the Lapin Agile, complete with a motley bunch of boozers, losers, wannabe lovers, and intriguing visitors. Picasso and Einstein argue, compare and debate the arts and sciences as complimentary forms of expression and comprehension. The entire group gets in on the action, debating philosophy, politics and the relations between men and women.
Martin has said of his own script, “Focusing on Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity and Picasso’s…Demoiselles d’ Avignon, the play attempts to explain, in a lighthearted way, the similarity of the creative process involved in great leaps of imagination in art and science.”
The production is directed by Artistic Director of ArtsCenter Stage Jeri Lynn Schulke with Music Design by Jil Christensen; Costume Design by Sachi Denison; Painting Design by Adam Graetz; Stage Management by Shaun Jamieson; Lighting Design by Lawruh Lindsey; Property Design by Devra Thomas; and Scenery Design by Neil Williamson.
“The production features a magical melding of space and time (in line with Einstein’s theory) with the script leading the way…building upon this, the scenery, lighting and music bring the world of the play out into the world of the audience,’ says Artistic Director, Jeri Lynn Schulke.
In the world presented by Picasso at the Lapin Agile, the world is ripe for artistic and scientific reinvention: the dawn of the Twentieth Century. In the end, all agree that the creative act is nothing short of beautiful.
Schulke continues, “It seems appropriate to reexamine Martin’s play during a time when our own world is at the dawn of the 21st Century and ripe for reinvention.”
ArtsCenter Stage’s production features original music by composer and musician, Jil Christianson. With original twists and classic accordion influences, Jil will play music reminiscent of Parisian cafes and bohemian haunts.
The cast showcases artists from all over the Triangle and Triad areas: Jeff Aguiar (Sagot), Sarah Donnell (Suzanne, The Countess, Female Admirer), Aaron Dunlap (Albert Einstein), Nick Karner (Charles Dabernow Schmendiman), Dan Oliver (Freddy), Lucius Robinson (A Visitor) Adam Sampieri (Pablo Picasso), Jenny Wales (Germaine) and Jon Wilner (Gaston).
The production is directed by the Artistic Director of ArtsCenter Stage Jeri Lynn Schulke with Music Design by Jil Christensen; Costume Design by Sachi Denison; Painting Design by Adam Graetz; Stage Management by Shaun Jamieson; Lighting Design by Lawruh Lindsey; Property Design by Devra Thomas; and Scenery Design by Neil Williamson.