Faust Things First

Bilingual, time-jumping, and polycultural, John Jesurun scrambles Goethe's mythic egghead


LYSISTRATA
October 6-10
City Center, 135 West 55th Street, 212.581.1212

The National Theater of Greece returns to City Center with this staging of Aristophanes' indestructible anti-war comedy in which women teach men the hard way (no booty!) about the foolishness of military adventurism. Performed in modern Greek, with English supertitles.

The devil made him do it: Ari Brickman as Faust
photo: José Jorge Carreón
The devil made him do it: Ari Brickman as Faust


GOOD SAMARITANS
October 6-24
St. Ann's Warehouse, 38 Water Street, Brooklyn, 718.254.8779

Richard Maxwell's back with a new play, and this time it's a love story between a rehabilitation counselor and a "blind hedonist." In addition to a few new amorous songs by the droll downtown author, expect the usual deadpan delivery of dialogue that captures only too well our fumbling stabs at communication.


HECUBA
October 7-30
The Culture Project, 45 Bleecker Street, 212.253.9983

One of the fall season's many excursions into ancient Greek wisdom on the widespread moral disintegration of war, this Euripides revival affords a rare opportunity to encounter voice and acting guru Kristin Linklater onstage.


EYES OF THE HEART
October 11-30
Intar 53, 508 West 53rd Street, 212.244.0447

The National Asian-American Theatre Company presents Catherine Filloux's new drama (inspired by interviews the playwright conducted) about a Cambodian woman suffering from psychosomatic blindness linked to the witnessing of Khmer Rouge atrocities.


PEOPLE ARE WRONG!
Previews begin October 13
Vineyard Theatre, 108 East 15th Street, 212.353.3366

A co-production between the Vineyard and Target Margin, this new rock musical, directed by David Herskovits and featuring singer-songwriter John Flansburgh, has an old-fashioned premise: A New York couple experiences culture shock after moving to the country.


THE GOOD BODY
October 22-January 16
Booth Theatre, 222 West 45th Street, 212.239.6200

Vagina Monologues creator Eve Ensler riffs on the not necessarily genital aspects of the female figure (subject matter apparently runs the gamut from Botox to burkas), in a solo performance piece that marks Ensler's Broadway debut.


4:48 PSYCHOSIS
October 26-31
St. Ann's Warehouse, 38 Water Street, Brooklyn, 718.254.8779

The final play of the British playwright Sarah Kane, who committed suicide in 1999, makes its U.S. premiere, in this acclaimed Royal Court production.


THE PLAYBOY OF THE WESTERN WORLD
October 26-31
NYU's Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, 566 LaGuardia Place, 212.992.8484

Saints be praised: The Abbey arrives from Dublin for a week-long run of Synge's comic masterpiece, with artistic director Ben Barnes directing the theater's mellifluous acting company.


HELL MEETS HENRY HALFWAY
November 3-21
Ohio Theatre, 66 Wooster Street, 212.966.4844

Pig Iron, Philadelphia's intrepid movement-theater troupe, derives inspiration from Polish author Witold Gombrowicz's novel Possessed, a feverish tale involving a mad prince trapped in a tower, an alchemist obsessed with body fluids, and a tennis player who's merging identities with her coach.


DEATH AND THE PLOUGHMAN
November 3-December 12
Classic Stage Company, 136 East 13th Street, 212.677.4210

Obie-winning director Anne Bogart and her adventurous SITI company go on an imagistic journey via Johann van Saaz's tale of a plowman who accosts Death for needlessly taking his wife.


NORA (A DOLL'S HOUSE)
November 9-13
BAM Harvey Theater, 651 Fulton Street, 718.636.4100

The much admired German auteur Thomas Ostermeier directs Anne Tismer in the title role of this 21st-century version of Ibsen's A Doll House. A production from Berlin's estimable Schaubühne theater.


THE BALTIMORE WALTZ
November 16-January 9
Peter Norton Space, Signature Theater, 555 West 42nd Street, 212.244.7529

Signature's much anticipated Paula Vogel season includes the playwright's 1992 Obie-winning drama, inspired by her relationship with her brother, who died from AIDS in 1988. Groundbreaking in its day, comically buoyant, and still heartbreaking.


A NUMBER
Previews begin November 16, opens December 7
New York Theatre Workshop, 79 East 4th Street, 212.460.5475

Sam Shepard, who stars in this new play by Caryl Churchill, has compared the work to Waiting for Godot. Need we say more?


THE CHAIRS
December 1-4
BAM Harvey Theater, 651 Fulton Street, 718.636.4100

Director David Gordon shares the stage with his wife Valda Setterfield in Ionesco's death-haunted comedy of an elderly couple approaching their mutual end. Jennifer Tipton's lighting, Michael Gordon's score, and our own Michael Feingold's new translation conspire in the absurd ebullience.


FRANKENSTEIN
December 9-January 8
Soho Rep, 46 Walker Street, 212.868.7444

The Flying Machine deploys its signature multimedia storytelling to Mary Shelley's classic in a production that could mark the birth of 21st-century gothic.

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