Must-See Theatre: “God of Carnage”

Acclaimed French playwright Yasmina Reza’s 2006 effort, “God of Carnage,” is now at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre through July 19, 2009. The Broadway premier stars Jeff Daniels, Hope Davis, James Gandolfini, and Marcia Gay Harden as two couples who meet to discuss a violent incident involving their young sons. Reza, best known for her 1995 Tony Award-winning work “Art,” often dismantles bourgeois politesse to expose the baser underpinnings, and the “God of Carnage” fits neatly into the master grid of her oeuvre. In the spirit of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” as the meeting wears on,  formalities and conventions disintegrate, allegiances are tested, and brutality, both psychological and physical, ensues.  The pace–and the damage–moves at a brisk clip in this 90-minute production, which early reviews have rated favorably. “Never underestimate the pleasure of watching really good actors behaving terribly,” says The New York Times’ chief theatre critic, Ben Brantley. According to the official “God of Carnage” website, the schadenfreude can be yours starting at only $66.50 per seat.

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