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Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: French-inspired farce ‘The Cure for Love’ opening in Menasha

Critic At Large

Attic Chamber Theatre, Inc.

Playwright Jay Berkow at a production of his play in Chicago in 2018. (Western Michigan University Theatre)

MENASHA, Wis. (WFRV)

Attic Chamber Theatre, Inc. will open its 70th anniversary season with six performances of a Wisconsin premiere, “The Cure for Love,” a saucy French farce.

Performances are at 7 p.m. Jan. 14-18 and 2 p.m. Jan. 19 in Lucia Baehman Theatre in the Communication Arts Center of the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, Fox Cities Campus. Info: attictheatreinc.com.

The playwright is Jay Berkow, Western Michigan University director of music theater performance.

Directing is Berray Billington, president of Attic Chamber Theatre, Inc..

In the cast are Brandon Allen, Nancy Ernst, Robert Ernst, Glen Kellerman, Jr., Allison Klinker, Marie Reichard and Rachel Sandlin.

Berkow has turned an Alexandre Dumas novel, “Fernande: The Story of a Courtesan,” into “a funny farce that winks modernly at the audience.”

As the troupe says, the play is “a little naughty, little salty, sexy French farce.
At the beginning, young Maurice is raving over a woman who spurned his love and “tore my soul to shreds!” He ends up rolling around in a gilded wheelchair, pathetically sick with love.

“He’s French, disgustingly rich and has no occupation. What else is he to do but obsess about love?”

2004. He is the co-author and director/choreographer of the Off-Broadway hit “Jolson & CO.,” which ran for two seasons in New York and has received regional productions across the United States and as a United Kingdom national tour.

“The Cure for Love” was featured at the Barter Theatre as part of its 75th anniversary season and in the Western Michigan University 2012 season.

Berkow has worked with Terrence McNally, John Kander and Fred Ebb as the director of the Off-Broadway revival of “The Rink” and directed the Off-Broadway productions of “Red Hot Mama” and “The Lady in Penthouse B.”

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