God of Carnage

The play that the New York Post called “gleefully nasty fun” comes to the Alley Theatre. Yasmina Reza’s Tony Award-winning comedy God of Carnage starts with a pretty simple premise: Two boys have a fight in the schoolyard, during which one of them gets a few teeth knocked out. Rightfully concerned, the boys’ parents come together to discuss the situation. But very little actual discussing gets done. Instead, the situation quickly devolves into chaos and cruelty, name-calling and hysterics. And all that’s before they start drinking. (Because being drunk can only help the situation, right?)

Alliances change swiftly during the evening — one moment each husband and wife stand together, the next they viciously attack each other. Then it’s husband against husband, wife against wife. Before the evening’s done, every possible combination of the foursome has made, broken and remade alliances, double-crossing, saving and then abandoning each other with fervor.

If you think all this sounds a lot like Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, you’re right. The main differences are that Reza’s Carnage lacks the depth of desperation and grave consequences we see in Virginia Woolf. The jokes, however, are just as brittle. 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays; 8 p.m. Fridays; 2:30 and 8 p.m. Saturdays; and 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Sundays. Through January 30. 615 Texas. For information, call 713-220-5700 or visit www.alleytheatre.org. $21 to $70.

Click here to read our interview with God of Carnage director Wilson Milam.
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: Jan. 7. Continues through Jan. 30, 2011

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Olivia Flores Alvarez