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BAROCOCO is a collaboratively devised ensemble work in which Happenstance Theater portrays oblivious entitlement on the brink of extinction. This timely reflection on history is a physical comedy dive into the late Baroque and flaunts 18th century finery, wigs, panniers, gestural styling, elaborate ornamentation and the excesses of Rococo.

The characters navigate dangerous curves of manners and the Age of Enlightenment from the exquisite to the revolting. Happenstance has great fun puncturing one percent pomposity and presents the poignant possibility of change.

Featuring Gwen Grastorf, Caleb Jaster, Mark Jaster, Sabrina Mandell, Sarah Olmsted Thomas and Alex Vernon.

"Pantomime and awkward silences are emphasized more than dialogue, and to great comedic effect""...outrageous feats of physical comedy""There is plenty of delicious humor to chew on""an often absurd comedy of manners, “Barococo” has fun and laughs..."

- NY Times

"...it’s a tasty little eat-the-rich hors d’oeuvre."

- TimeOut NY


 

"Depending on your background, you might connect Barococo, as I did, with the likes of Marat/Sade (especially the conceit about its being performed by the inmates of a mental asylum), Luis Buñuel's film The Exterminating Angel, or Tom Stoppard's surrealistic comedy After Magritte. To be sure, that's heady company to keep, but in addition to the quality of the perfectly timed performances, this is what sold me on this lovely little gift of entertainment."

                                         - Talkin' Broadway

"Directed with panache by the company’s co-Artistic Directors Mark Jaster and Sabrina Selma Mandell, the impeccably researched and performed pièce de resistance captures the late Baroque era of the Rococo, known for its hedonistic extravagance, indulgent frivolity, and decadent superficiality of the nobility, largely paid for by the taxation of the peasants – until it wasn’t. All of the light-hearted excess, and underlying apprehension of what’s to come, are displayed by the outstanding ensemble of six, with authentic demeanors and activities, precise movements, and artistic stylings that provide a perfect parody of the period and look like the pleasure-loving paintings of Watteau, Fragonard, Boucher, Vigée-Le Brun, and their contemporaries come to life – until their patrons were either guillotined or exiled."

                                                                                              - DC Metro Theater Arts NYC