The Quality of Life: Moving Drama of Life and Death From American Conservatory Theater
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The last date listed for The Quality of Life was Sunday November 23, 2008 / 2:00pm.
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Both charming and disturbing, The Suit combines a rich musical score with remarkably simple staging as it tells the story of a husband who doles out an unusual punishment to his cheating wife: He asks that she treat her lover's abandoned suit as a guest of honor in their home. Accompanying her wherever she goes, the suit becomes a whimsical yet cruel reminder of her infidelity. African melodies interweave with jazz standards to underscore this surprising, sharp-witted tale set in Apartheid-era Johannesburg, in a haunting production that integrates virtuosic musicians directly into the action. Learn More
Reviews & Ratings
Featured review from dance fan
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This is a play for smart, grown-ups. Ones who’ve experienced the full circle of love and loss, be it for a person, a house or (most relevant to this week in the Bay Area) a job or retirement nest egg.
The story could have easily devolved into a red state-blue state farce; however, Jane Anderson’s deft writing/directing and the chemistry of this ensemble prevents them from becoming caricatures.
The all-star cast dazzles. Laurie Metcalf steals the show as a hippy dippy, smart-mouthed sprite who flits around the outside of the yurt (incredible set design!) entertaining her cousins, comforting her husband, and alternatively stirring up the philosophical pot.
The first preview was more polished than any other Bay Area show I’ve seen this year. A little over two hours (with one intermission). Take your tissues and see it with your therapist or someone you love…it’s too intense for a first date.
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Finally a play in San francisco that causes you to examine the grief of death and realize that there is no one absolute best or correct way to grieve, but we must all arrive at our own equally valid path of dealing with this part of life.
Quotes & Highlights
“Anderson is blessed with an amazing, adventurous cast, willing to slide off slippery emotional slopes and round dangerous curves to get to the truth.” —Theatermania.com
A daring, star-studded cast explores hot-button issues of life and death in this riveting new tour-de-force, featuring Laurie Metcalf (Desperate Housewives, Roseanne_), JoBeth Williams (_Poltergeist, The Big Chill), Steven Culp (A.C.T.’s Blackbird), and two-time OBIE Award winner Dennis Boutsikaris. When a religious Midwestern couple, Bill and Dinah, visit free-spirited cousin Jeannette and her husband, Neil, in their Northern California home, both couples confront loss and survival in the face of explosive circumstance. An unforgettable, brave work of heart and humor by Emmy Award–winning playwright-director Jane Anderson, The Quality of Life was nominated for four 2007 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Awards and six 2008 LA Stage Alliance Ovation Awards.