• Elizabeth E. Tavares deposited The Comedy of Errors (review) on MLA Commons 3 days ago

    Director Sean Graney’s work can typically be categorized as either ex- plicitly experimental or engaging with the tradition of adaptation. These aesthetic trajectories merged in the Court Theatre’s The Comedy of Errors, a meaty 90-minute production focused on skirting buffoonery in order to find translatable humor within William Shakespeare’s farcical language. As Graney stated during a post-performance discussion, “I wanted the play to feel funny in new ways,” which is an often-difficult task given the play’s archaic humor. Indeed, Errors has a performance history marked by the inability to reconcile its absurd elements, on which the plot and play depend, with contemporary tastes. Graney addressed this problem by focusing on issues of identity confusion and the farce tradition. The result was a pliant dark comedy anchored by bodily representations of humor and highlighting the problem of Renaissance comedic anachronisms.