On January 29, the Prague Playhouse – a Prague-based theatre company that specializes in English-language productions is set to debut a brief run of the David Mamet play Glengarry Glen Ross. Dominik Jun caught up with the Playhouse’s artistic director Brian Caspe to find out more and began by asking him to tell us a little more about the Prague Playhouse:
“The Prague Playhouse was started in 2003. We started with a production of short plays by American authors called ‘An American Evening’ and we had been doing shorter plays up until last year and then we started to do a full season of longer plays. All of the plays that we do are ones that have been written in English.”
And what was your motivation for this? Was there an English-language audience in Prague to watch these kinds of plays?
“There are a few different kinds of audiences. Firstly there is the ex-pat audience – people that aren’t Czech speakers that maybe do not have the opportunity to go and see things in English. There was originally the backpacking crowd and the adventurer crowd, but now the ex-pats have changed much more towards the business crowd and we are also finding that there are a lot more Czechs that speak fluently enough to come to a play in English and not feel intimidated or lost.”
Are you also sourcing your actors from the ex-pat community here?
“Yes. Right now, we are. There is a small community of actors that we mostly use. I know that there are other similar theatres such as in Germany, where they do bring in some talent from outside, but we are not at that stage yet, so right now, we are using local actors.”
The play that you are about to start showing to the public is Glengarry Glen Ross, the David Mamet play, is that correct?
“Yes, it is a play that was written in the 1980s, and was then made into a film in the 1990s with some iconic actors and that is where I first came into contact with it. Since then, I have always been looking for an opportunity to mount a production, and right now, everything just sort of came together with the cast and the energy of our group and it has been a really exciting experience.”
And Glengarry Glen Ross is playing at Divadlo Inspirace in Prague from January 29 to February 7.
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