Ongoing, Ongoing

Absurd Person Singular

When: Fridays-Sundays. Continues through Nov. 23 2013

Would it really feel like the holidays without a heaping portion of malaise? Prolific British playwright Alan Ayckbourn offers plenty in this Yuletide yuk-fest, which stretches a comedy of manners to farcical extremes as it checks in on three married couples gathered on three successive Christmas Eves. Like distant relatives of Arrested Development’s Bluth family, the six characters struggle with their own warped personalities as well as the upheaval that social mobility brings — no matter which direction you’re moving on the ladder. The trick is to convey the undercurrents of sadness that make the gags both poignant and hilarious, and few are better prepared for the challenge than ACT1’s team of aces, under the guiding hand of veteran director Lane Wright.

Stephen Trageser

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