Why, That's Ridiculous!

It wasn’t that Charles Ludlam didn’t understand Shakespeare or Wuthering Heights; it’s just that he found the whole world of Victorian and Gothic literature a tad too pretentious for his tastes. So he threw in a few dirty jokes, a whole lot of cross-dressing, and a werewolf.

Ludlam, known and adored for his contributions in a genre that came to be called “Theatre of the Ridiculous,” wrote 29 plays in his lifetime (including Turds in Hell and Eunuchs of the Forbidden City) but the most enduring was The Mystery of Irma Vep. In it, a character named Lord Edgar goes back to his ancestral home in England with his new wife, Lady Enid. He’s not quite over his first wife, though, and when an obsessive vampire, a ghostly housekeeper, a mummy, and yes, a werewolf enter the mix, things get weird -- in a Monty Python sort of way.

Watch the Sol Theatre’s rendition of the Ludlam’s masterpiece – which stars two actors playing all eight characters in quick-change succession -- between Thursday, February 16 (opening night) and March 12. Admission costs $20, $25 on Saturdays. Tonight’s show is at 8 p.m. The theatre is located at 1140 N. Flagler Dr., Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-525-6555, or visit www.soltheatre.com.
Thursdays-Sundays. Starts: Feb. 16. Continues through March 12

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Deirdra Funcheon