“It’s just a lot of fun,” said Alex Lavelle, director of “Picasso at the Lapin Agile.” “It gets into art and science and how those things will evolve through the century and how those things did evolve through the century. And it does it all in a way that’s very accessible and very quirky and very funny. They talk about Einstein’s Theory of Relativity, which he’s about to publish. They talk about Picasso looking for ideas that are coming, as he puts it, from the future — new ideas, ideas that aren’t some reaction to something old. ... And the way that conversation evolves is through the course of the play, they talk to each other about what they do.
“They start off [fairly] antagonistic toward each other, and over the course of the play, they come to see that really what they do is not so different. Both of them take an idea basically and then they make it beautiful and it really shows the similarity between those [men]. The other characters in the play kind of come in to show how the evolution of art and the evolution of science over the course of that century are going to start to drive society more than the whims of politicians and those in power. And this is set before either of them have done what they’re really famous for. Einstein hasn’t been published. Picasso hasn’t gone into his cubist phase yet.”
To be held at The Legion Theatre — 114 W. Main St. — the comedy will be presented May 31 and June 1, 7 and 8 at 8 p.m. and June 2 at 3 p.m. The nine-member cast will include Ian Gibson as Albert Einstein, John C. Walker as Pablo Picasso, David Pendergraft as Freddy, Donna Young as Germaine, Timothy Whalen as A visitor, Andrew Bearden as Charles Dabernow Schmendiman, Mark Jamerson as Sagot, Tiffiney Gambill as Suzanne/The Countess/A female admirer and John Katrek as Gaston.
“My character’s name is Sagot and he’s an art dealer that handles the art of Picasso and a few other French artists,” Jamerson said. “The thing I like best about my character is that he comes across as someone who knows it all when in reality he doesn’t really know anything. ... I get to come out saying, ‘I know this.’ Then by the time my lines end, I’m saying, ‘I don’t know why, I don’t know this and I don’t know that.’ It’s a good contrast in a character, [which] I enjoy.”
Tickets for “Picasso at the Lapin Agile” are $14 for general admission, $12 for flex pass holders and pre-paid groups of 10 or more people, and $10 for Pumphouse Players members. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.pumphouseplayers.com or call 770-387-2610.