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The Production: Making their return from the adult professional theatre scene in New York, award winning Fun House Theatre and Film puts their pint size powerhouses back in action with a comedic offering going all the way back to the roots of what we now know as comedy as they mount an approachable and clever adaptation of the Commedia dell'arte classic, The Servant of Two Masters. Joining the shenanigans, Fun House's subsidiary company, The Basement, supplies some of the area's most acclaimed young adult actors to the production which blends conventional Commedia with improv, slapstick and quick witted dialogue to create a comedic offering fit for all ages. Well suited to lead this hilarity firmly grounded in theatrical history, dramaturg and comedy standout as a member of the wildly popular local improv legends, The Victimsand the artistic director of Alternative Comedy Theater, Kyle Eric Bradford directs this stylistic sampler running July 13-21 at the newly renovated Dv8 performance space (The old black box theater in Plano known for housing Fun House over the last 8 years).

The Play: Carlo Goldoni's The Servant of Two Masters is a foundational piece of Commedia dell'arte, an Italian theatrical form which flourished throughout Europe between the 16th-18th centuries. Commedia dell'arte included familiar plot lines, stock characters, pantomime and popular lazzis or comedic bits blended together with improvisation to tell various tales of lovers, old foolishly learned doctors, greedy men, brashly brave military officers and hapless servants as a commentary on society. Notably, it was one of the first theatrical forms featuring female actresses playing women, essential as a device for much of its humor. Commedia dell'arte troupes traveled around Europe usually numbering 10 or so actors, who, through various skills and the use of masks, took on the characters and needs of their performances. In Jeffrey Hatcher's adapation of The Servant of Two Masters modern meta-theatrics and mayhem abound as a troupe of traveling actors pull into town to mount the classic Goldoni story which is chock full of disguise, traps and tricks. The play within this play focusses on the lovers, Clarice and Silvio and the case of a deception perpetrated by the sly Beatrice Rasponi upon three men, Pantalone, Dr. Lombardi and Florindo. Caught in the middle of it all is the poor, dimwitted and hungry servant, Truffaldino. Staged simply, colorfully and with cartoonish styling and pace by director Kyle Eric Bradford, the production mixes classic Commedia dell'arte plot lines and elements with modern mainstays of comedy to create an incredibly approachable production that not only allows audiences to experience the roots of what we know as comedy, but to see how it has evolved into much of what we laugh at today. Crazy physical comedy, prop comedy, a bit of music, a bit of clowning and more combine in a presentation designed to keep the attention of young audience members while garnering laughs from the adults picking up on the language and commentary of the piece.

Production Details:

Carlo Goldoni's The Servant of Two Masters Translated and Adapted by Jeffrey Hatcher and Paolo Emilio Landi

Presented by Fun House Theatre and Film and The Basement

Produced by Bren Rapp and Jeff Swearingen

Directed by Kyle Eric Bradford

Assistant Direction by Doak Rapp

Show Dates and Times:

  • 7:30 Friday, July 13
  • 7:30 Saturday, July 14
  • 2:30 Sunday, July 15
  • 7:30 Friday, July 20
  • 2:30 Saturday, July 21
  • 7:30 Saturday, July 21

Suitable for All Ages

All performances take place at Dv8 Performance Space (formerly the Plano Children's Theatre Black Box)

1192 Greenway Drive, Plano, Texas 75075

Tickets are $12

On sale July 1 at or available at the door

Photo credit: Chuck Marcelo


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