friendship
 
 
Home / Events / Theater / Venus in Fur

Venus in Fur

REBECCA JACOBSON
7:30 pm Tuesdays-Saturdays and most Sundays, 2 pm Saturdays-Sundays, noon Thursdays through March 10., Tuesday February 12 | $25-$54.
Gerding Theater
128 NW 11th Ave.
 
Fifty Shades of Grey reduced sadomasochism to handcuffs and spanking. Venus in Fur—while not devoid of dog collars and riding crops—throws into question such simple ideas of control and compliance. In David Ives’ work, in a jagged but entertaining Portland Center Stage production directed by Nancy Keystone, the relationship between domination and submission is an erotic power play that revels in its ambiguous stakes. Thomas (David Barlow) is a playwright-director who has adapted Leopold von Sacher-Masoch’s 1870 novella about a man who dreams of being enslaved by a woman, and as Venus in Fur begins he’s just endured a disastrous string of auditions. But as he calls his fiancee to snivel about those 35 inept actresses, into the dingy rehearsal room blows Vanda (Ginny Myers Lee), swearing about the perverts on the subway. Vanda may have come dressed in spike heels and leather bustier (which she’ll later unzip with a very funny “Geronimo!”), but on first glance she’s not so different from the 35 previous ninnies. That quickly changes, though, as she cajoles Thomas into letting her audition. Lee, with impressive control, transitions between more than two roles: In addition to modern-day Vanda, a ditzy motor mouth, and 19th-century Vanda, a haughty aristocrat, there’s another Vanda who cites Greek mythology and dips into startling psychosexual insights. Lee flings herself into these rapidly shifting guises, and she’s hilarious to boot—in the show’s comedic highlight, Vanda improvises a scene as a German-accented Venus, whispering “I’ll be back” as if she’s Schwarzenegger. Opposite this swirling tempest, Barlow falters. As his character is alternately flattered and berated, Barlow’s default response is to widen his eyes and gape at Vanda like a startled puppy. Best, perhaps, to turn attention to Ives’ sizzling script, a fiercer whip than E.L. James could ever hope to crack.

Where: Gerding Theater
Phone: 445-3700
Address: 128 NW 11th Ave.
Website: pcs.org

 
 
Other events in Theater

Enter the Night

Sunday, Jan 25, 2015

Maria Irene Fornes has written more than 40 plays—she’s currently 84 and suffering from Alzheimer’s disease—but the Cuban-born playwright is rarely produced outside avant-garde circles. Por ...

7:30 pm Thursdays-Sundays through Feb. 8 | $15-$40
Shaking the Tree 823 SE Grant Ave. Portland Web | Map

The Snowstorm

Sunday, Jan 25, 2015
The Snowstorm begins with an intense concert. Sitting at a piano in the darkened theater, Eric Nordin looks calm and serene, but that belies the torrent of sound he’s producing. As the final, ...
7:30 pm Thursdays-Saturdays and 2 pm Sundays through Feb. 7 | $15-$25
CoHo Theater 2257 NW Raleigh St. Portland Web | Map

"Mom?" A Comedy of Mourners

Sunday, Jan 25, 2015

New ensemble Box of Clowns presents a slapstick- and acrobatics-filled clown show about three siblings wrestling with their memories of their mother.

9:30 pm Fridays; 7 pm Saturdays and 8 pm Sundays through Feb. 1 | $10-$12
Also At Gerding Theater

Threesome

Sunday, Jan 25, 2015

In a stab at healing their troubled relationship, an Egyptian-American couple invites a stranger into the sheets for a threesome. The sexy times don't go quite as planned, and things quickly move f ...

7:30 pm Tuesdays-Sundays (excluding Feb. 8, 22 and 24 and March 3 and 8); 2 pm select Saturdays-Sundays; noon select Thursdays. Through March 8 | $20-$55
Gerding Theater 128 NW 11th Ave. Web | Map

Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

Sunday, Jan 25, 2015
Christopher Durang has likened his latest play, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, to Chekhov put through a comic blender. It’s a comparison that puts me in mind of those Will It Blend?< ...
7:30 pm Tuesdays-Saturdays; 2 pm select Saturdays and Sundays; noon select Thursdays. Through Feb. 8 | $20-$69
Gerding Theater 128 NW 11th Ave. Web | Map

Word.Voice.

Sunday, Jan 25, 2015

A free showcase of short performances—spoken-word pieces, one-acts, character sketches—presented by at-risk youth who've participated in workshops with PlayWrite.

7 pm Sunday, Jan. 25 | Free
Gerding Theater 128 NW 11th Ave. Web | Map
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
comments powered by Disqus
 

Web Design for magazines

Close
Close
Close