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Theater preview: ‘God of Carnage’ shows that behaving well gets you nowhere

MIDDLEBURY — Middlebury Actors Workshop will present Yasmina Reza’s 2009 Tony Award-winning play, “God of Carnage,” Thursday-Sunday, June 27-30, at Town Hall Theater in Middlebury. This fast-paced, wicked little comedy of manners takes on parenthood, civilization and the hypocrisy we all indulge in when defending our own.
?With elements of subtle social satire and broad comedy, this play will resonate with just about everyone. Two couples get together to resolve a playground altercation between their sons. Despite their best intentions, tensions emerge, fault lines open, and the gloves come off with hilarious results.  ?
Reza’s play, in a translation by Christopher Hampton, is among the most successful comedies to come along in recent years. After a long run on Broadway starring James Gandolfini, it has been made into a film and produced in theaters all over the country.
The New York Times says “A study in the tension between civilized surface and savage instinct, this play is itself a satisfyingly primitive entertainment.”
Now in its 13th season, MAW is Town Hall Theater’s resident professional theater ensemble, known for its ambitious, hilarious and thought-provoking work. Guest Director Tara Lee Downs heads a stellar cast that includes MAW regulars Karen Lefkoe and Harry McEnerny as well as MAW newcomers Ben Ash and Chris Caswell, both well-known actors in the Burlington theater scene.
Show times are Thursday through Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 7 p.m., with a Saturday matinee at 2 p.m. For tickets and information contact the THT Box Office at 802 382-9222, www.townhalltheater.org, or in person, Monday-Saturday, noon-5 p.m.
After its Middlebury run, the show heads down to The Paramount Theatre in Rutland for performances on July 10 and 11. Tickets and information for the Paramount performances are available at 802-775-0903 or www.paramountvt.org.

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