Two children engage in an “altercation.” Someone gets hit with a stick. It’s time for the parents to discuss, and how do they handle it? This is the premise for the Wilde Coward Company’s latest theatrical production, Yasmina Reza’s vicious comedy, God of Carnage. A Broadway darling, God of Carnage skewers the polite society we’ve all bought into and boils four people down to their basest forms. The image of the perfect PTA meeting and well-mannered play dates becomes a broiling onslaught of marriage issues and childish shenanigans.
“We’re supposed to be the adults in this situation,” says Sara Humbert, one of the actresses who portray a parent in question. “We’re supposed to be civil, and we just become a mess.” The two sets of parents soon devolve into squabbling children themselves.
“Loyalties become mixed,” adds director Dr. Julie Schmitt, “the couples break away from each other and it becomes women versus men, three against one, and so forth.”
And at the root of it is the question of how far does politeness go? How long can our characters keep up the façade of prim and proper members of society as they decide how to handle their rambunctious children? The answer is: not long.
Rehearsals have been a challenging experiment as the four leads try to find the humor and darkness of their comedy. One of the actors, David Lowe, has children very similar in age to the kids talked about in the show and he can commiserate with our beleaguered parents.
“I’ve met plenty of people like these characters,” says Lowe. “They all put on a good face, but deep down they’re furious or flippant or just a ball of raw emotions.”
Do we ever rise above our rudimentary nature? Can we get past being the spoiled princess, the bully, the know-it- all, or any other of those first personalities children give a try? Wilde Coward Company’s God of Carnage is going to take a shot at answering those questions in the most ridiculous way possible.
WCC’s production of God of Carnage goes up July 15 th and runs for two weekends. Fridays and Saturdays (July 15, 16, 22, 23) at 7PM, and Sundays (July 17 & 24) at 2PM. Tickets are $15 adults, $12 students and can be purchased at wildecoward.com/tickets. Some language may not be suitable for younger audiences. They are located in beautiful Venetian Bay off of SR 44 (424 Luna Bella Ln, Suite 120, New Smyrna). Please contact WCC at firstname.lastname@example.org or 386-227- 7444 for questions.