Pablo Picasso had a reputation as a womanizer, but A Picasso, making its regional premiere here, imagines the legendary artist meeting the one woman who perhaps can resist his charms. Stages Repertory Theatre's Producing Artistic Director Kenn McLaughlin says the play "chronicles a fascinating mystery that is layered with passion, sex, art and politics. It's a dark cat-and-mouse game with surprises at every turn, and that makes it both entertaining and revealing." The two-character play is set in a storage vault in 1941 Paris. An art expert for the Third Reich, Miss Fischer (Carolyn Johnson), has asked the great artist (James Belcher) to authenticate three of his works - for the singular purpose of publicly destroying them. Based on real events (Picasso was questioned by the Nazis several times during WWII), the reimagined A Picasso shows the artist at his most clever and most powerless, alternately losing ground to the young woman's authority and then spinning circles around her with lines such as, "As a child, I drew like Raphael. It took me the rest of my life to draw like a child." The two ensnare each other with exchanges like, "Could you copy the Mona Lisa?" "Yes, but you'd never recognize her." 7: 30 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 3 p.m. Sundays. Through February 21. 3201 Allen Parkway. For information, call 713-527-0123 or visit www.stagestheatre.com. $20 to $36.
Wednesdays-Sundays. Starts: Jan. 29. Continues through Feb. 21, 2010