Moli re's deliciously trifling comedy in a garden setting won the favor of the Sun King in 1661 and set his course to become the most-produced comic writer in the history of theatre. This neglected classic marked Moli re's first mingling of sparkling verse dialogue and dance numbers. While written for a courtly audience, the play dared to mock recognizable personalities and their obnoxious eccentricities. For modern audiences, the human foibles still look familiar and very funny. Desperately in love with the coquettish Orphise, Eraste tries to maintain his aristocratic composure as one obnoxious person after another interrupts his pursuit. Can he appreciate Lysandre's self-taught, self-proclaimed genius as a singer and dancer? Will he defy the king's ban on dueling to serve as second for a friend who took offense at another's unfortunate word choice? Can he follow the card player's compulsion to recount every move? Or the hunter's venting about horse and hounds? How can he politely put a stop to the scholar's torrent of verbiage? Or the financial wheeler-dealer's spiel? Will Orphise let him explain about the two women smothering him with their theorizing about lovers? In counterpoint to the swatting of pests, three dance interludes allow the company's creativity to go wild. And there's a fight scene. Of course, Eraste gets the girl in the end.
"Flashy, effervescent and downright fun ... It is such a joy to watch the ensemble bring tradition into the now. PESTS obviously has literary accessibility and near-perfect timing, but it also has guts, and in rhyming verse." -Lonita Cook, Black Bee Buzz
"Londr 's translation highlights the show's whimsy and the cast does an impressive job of handling Moli re's rhyming couplets." -Vivian Kane, Kansas City Studio
"Londr 's translation updates the dialogue, but like the original, it's in verse ... It is, to borrow a word from the production's description, a trifle. But a d licieux one." -Christine Pivovar, Kansas City Magazine
"Dr Felicia Londr 's translation is superb - wonderfully accessible while also lovingly devoted to Moli re's intentions. I have spent a quarter of a century working with classical texts and the most important thing to remember is that they were all new at one point. They were never intended to be revered at a distance by the viewer, but rather presented in a lively and engaging way. Our production embraces this fully by mixing our contemporary age with the classical style of Moli re's era. Audiences will delight in the witty banter of the text ..." -director Matt Schwader, interviewed by Emily Park, INKansasCity
"... a fantastic and lively adaptation which is even more thrilling and vibrant thanks to some of the best talent Kansas City has to offer. I think we're all ready for this rollicking, frolicking, romping good time " -Broadway World Kansas City