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The Pillowman

Martin McDonagh’s 2003 play The Pillowman is indeed grim material. In an unnamed totalitarian state, a writer of gruesome short stories — they contain graphic descriptions of child torture and murder — is interrogated by two policemen for his implication in a series of actual killings. Turns out the writer has a haunted past, and he goes to extreme lengths to protect his legacy as a writer.

The play’s ambiguous setting also makes it versatile, and Houston’s Midnight Theatre Company has embraced the opportunity for some unconventional casting, particularly actress Jasmine D.S. Torres as the cold-as-ice cop Tupolski. It will certainly add an interesting dynamic to McDonagh’s incendiary script, which to our knowledge is largely an all-boy affair, even though it’s been performed in several languages (Jeff Goldblum played Tupolski on Broadway in 2005). We can’t help but get a Law and Order: SVU vibe from Midnight’s choice here, and that’s a good thing. 8 p.m. May 27 and 28 and June 2 through 4, 3 p.m. May 29. Midtown Arts Center, 3414 La Branch. For information, call 832-794-1973 or visit $12 to $15.
Fridays, Saturdays. Starts: May 27. Continues through June 4, 2011


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