THE UNDERPANTS, a 1920 German farce written by Carl Sternheim and adapted by the one and only Steve Martin, opens November 16 at Town Players of Newtown.
First performed off-Broadway at the Classic Stage Co. in March 2002, THE UNDERPANTS portrays petty German bureaucrat Theo Maske’s unusual problem: his pretty wife’s underwear fell down in the middle of town as the King was going by in a local parade. His initial shock turns into concern about both his personal and professional reputation, and Theo (Tim Huebenthal, Southbury) predicts that dire consequences will follow, lecturing wife Louise (Liesbet Higham, New Haven) about her indiscretion. Little does he know that some of his calamitous predictions are about to take place right under his nose.
Theo is also unaware that his own chaste behavior in and out of the bedroom is frustrating his wife to no end. Nosy spinster neighbor Gertrude (Jennifer Gantwerker, Ridgefield) has a plan to spice up Louise’s love life. Will Gertrude’s plan succeed? Or will Theo manage to keep his lovely little wife under wraps? These are just a few surprises waiting in THE UNDERPANTS.
The rest of the talented cast includes Jeffry Bukowski (Shelton), Lester Colodny (Fairfield), Nick Kaye (Bethel) and Stephen Saxton (Ridgefield).
Of writing this adaptation, Steve Martin says, “Sternheim’s play is ribald, satirical, self-referential and quirky. I hope I have retained those elements and assured my place in heaven – I mean, served the playwright’s intentions.”
According to director David Bass of Danbury, “THE UNDERPANTS is one of the funniest plays I’ve read in years. The hardest part about directing this show has been keeping the actors from laughing at the many absurd lines and situations crafted by that master of comedy, Steve Martin.”
In addition to director Bass, the production crew includes producer Pam Meister Jones of Newtown, assistant to the director Marla Manning of Easton, stage manager Claudia Toth of Newtown, costume designer Barbara Norman (Brookfield), lighting designer Jose Helu of Ridgefield and light booth operator Sydney Chiarito of Newtown.
THE UNDERPANTS runs November 16 – December 8. Curtain times are 8 PM Fridays and Saturdays, with 2 PM matinees on November 25 and December 2. Please note that November 16 and December 7 are sold-out benefit performances. Tickets are $20; $15 for matinee performances. (Please note that this production contains adult themes and language and may not be suitable for children under 12.)
Reservations may be made by calling the box office at 203-270-9144 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.