The first production in the new Joan & Edgar Booth Theatre at Boston University takes a piercing look at the fallibility of humanity in the face of authoritarianism.
The School of Theatre at Boston University College of Fine Arts will open the Joan & Edgar Booth Theatre with Eugène Ionesco’s Rhinoceros in February. Tickets are now on sale for the first production in the new Booth Theatre.
Rhinoceros is an absurdist commentary on the human condition, a staple of every theatre classroom and of 20th century drama. A small town is besieged by one roaring citizen who transforms into a rhinoceros and proceeds to trample on the social order. As more citizens are transformed, the trampling becomes overwhelming. One sane man remains unable to change his form and identity.
“Ionesco’s Rhinoceros is a masterpiece of the absurdist mode, written in response to the ‘normalization’ of the rise of fascism in Europe in the 1930s,” says director Clay Hopper. “Its satirical and farcical take on the process of decline in civil society feels uniquely positioned to comment on the times we are currently living through. With the constant attacks on democratic norms, the seemingly endless barrage of things that were once considered outrageous and are now simply de riguer, and even the politicization of objective truth itself, our present time more than ever needs to hear the case that the play makes for resistance, and for finding one’s humanity, even in the face of overwhelming cultural forces designed to upend our sense of what’s rational, logical and normal.”
School of Theatre Director Jim Petosa is thrilled to open the doors of the remarkable new space with three shows this spring. “The inaugural semester of our new Booth Theatre contains three productions that speak with power around themes of authoritarianism, conformity, and obsession. Rhinoceros, The Journey, and Anouilh’s Antigone are a triptych of theatrical explorations that will introduce the BU community to the wonderful new laboratory that is its Booth Theatre!”
The 250-seat Joan & Edgar Booth Theatre, designed by internationally-recognized Elkus | Manfredi Architects, is located at the heart of BU’s Charles River campus. The facilities of the Booth Theatre and adjoining Design & Production Center creates a 21st century learning environment to educate the next generation of artists and engage audiences in an immersive experience. The purposeful, flexible design of the Booth Theatre allows for the nearly boundless evolution of performances and a deep engagement with audiences.
Tickets are available at www.bu.edu/cfa/season.
- $15 General Admission
- $10 BU Alumni
- $7.50 with CFA Membership
- $7.50 for Brookline residents
- Free with BU ID, at the door, day of performance, subject to availability
RHINOCEROS February 21-25
Wednesday, Feb 21, 7:30pm • Thursday, Feb 22, 7:30pm • Friday, Feb 23, 8pm (Talk-Back) • Saturday, Feb 24, 8pm • Sunday, Feb 25, 2pm
By Eugène Ionesco • Translated by Martin Crimp • Directed by Clay Hopper
The sublime is confused with the ridiculous in this savage commentary on the human condition, a staple of every theatre classroom and of 20th century drama. A small town is besieged by one roaring citizen who becomes a rhinoceros and proceeds to trample on the social order. As more citizens are transformed into rhinoceroses, the trampling becomes overwhelming, and more and more citizens become rhinoceroses. One sane man, Berenger, remains unable to change his form and identity. Joan & Edgar Booth Theatre, 820 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston.
Learn more at bu.edu/cfa/booth.