Horizon Theatre Rep at Access Theatre Presents THE BALCONY, 5/16-6/2

In Horizon Theatre Rep's new production of "The Balcony," Jean Genet's erotic world of political intrigue and violent revolution is set in United Europe in search for a new identity. Directed by Rafael De Mussa, the production will take stage May 16 to June 2 at The Access Theatre, 380 Broadway in TriBeCa.

Inspired by recent events in the Eurozone, this interpretation takes us to a continent on the brink of chaos where authority figures struggle to keep their hold on power. Is their power reality or Illusion? Are we witnessing order or dissolution? The production has been created in anticipation of the upcoming elections to the European Parliament, which will be held in all member states of the European Union from May 22 to 25 (unless the Council acting unanimously decides to change the dates). It will be the eighth Europe-wide election to the European Parliament since the first direct elections in 1979.

On the set will be a TV set playing videos of current street scenes of the European monetary crisis. The trappings of power will be adapted from those of Genet's era to more contemporary references, since in our time, power is indicated by glamorous, high fashion style in the media. So the bordello is restyled as a snazzy hotel suite (surroundings fit for the head of the International Monetary Fund, or a New York governor for that matter). The masoleum scene is informed by the classiest funeral ever held for a head of state: JFK's. When Irma, the madam, transforms herself into a queen, there will be hints of the classic style of well-known contemporary English princesses. De Mussa says, "Our inspiration for The Balcony is the search for leadership in a globalized world which is itself searching for a new identity, and the trappings of politics and ambition. Who will lead Europe, and for that matter the USA, in the new century?"

The actors are Francesco Andolfi, Carlotta Brentan, Alison Paula Campbell, Rafael De Mussa, Carlo Giuliano,Matt Gottlieb, Shuhei Kinoshita, Ines Lucas, Jon Okabayashi, Jacopo Rampini, Kimmie Solomon, Maria Wolf and Zoe Watkins. Lighting design is by John Wilder, set design is by Joseph Kremer, sound design is by Jon Bremner and costume design isby Amanda Shafran.

Horizon Theatre Rep (http://www.htronline.org), led by Rafael De Mussa, endeavors to find a contemporary idiom to express early and mid-20th century ideas and to bridge the generation gap. It also strives to give emerging artists "the opportunity to take risks, to excel, and to make their mark." Its past productions include "Benito Cereno" by Robert Lowell, "The Misunderstanding" and "Caligula" by Camus, "Vassa Zheleznova" by Gorky, "Nights Of Wrath" by Armand Salacrou, "Powder Keg" by Dejan Dukovski, "Man Without Shadows" by Sartre, "In The Solitude Of Cotton Fields" by Bernard-Marie Koltès and "3XPirandello," three plays about betrayal by Luigi Pirandello.

Visit www.HTRonline.org for more information!

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