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UGA Theatre presents world-premiere of three medieval farces

Alan Flurry

Beginning March 19, UGA Theatre presents Peas, Patelin and Purgation: Three Farcical Arts of the Deal, featuring a world-premiere translation directed by associate professor in the theatre and film studies department Marla Carlson:

A down-on-his-luck lawyer sets off an endless chain of deceit that backfires on him. A young husband turns a messy accident to his advantage. A foolish man attempts to sell a sack of peas, hampered by the worst memory ever. Featuring three comedic stories of negotiations gone awry, Peas, Patelin and Purgation presents a modern twist on the time-honored tradition of medieval farces. 

Characterized by quick, witty banter, physical comedy and misogynistic undertones, farcical theatre of the 15th and 16th century conventionally relied on an all-male casts to convey its narratives. As director of UGA Theatre’s production of Peas, Patelin and Purgation, Carlson has inverted this paradigm by casting all females in her production.

UGA’s production of the third play “Farce of the Peas,” is an historic event. The play, recently discovered in a manuscript containing 74 plays from the city of Rouen, has not been performed in close to 500 years. Ario Longtin, an associate professor of French at the University of Western Ontario, is spearheading an effort to translate the plays for the first time into English. Longtin invited Carlson to co-translate the play to bring out its full comic potential and make it come alive for 21st-century audiences.

An extraordinary blending of artistry and scholarship that is indicative of the theatre program's faculty, students and broader ethos. Congratulations on all the preparations and good luck in the production run. Tickets.

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