Last Chance Theater


Uncle Vanya--Anyone who has ever doubted that a Chekhov play can be a categorical hoot should rush to see “Uncle Vanya” at the Met. Originally done in workshop by the Classical Theatre Lab, this version of “Vanya,” which played a limited engagement at the Actors’ Gang earlier this year, is simple, streamlined and stripped of all but the most essential technical rudiments. In the context of this bare-bones, physical staging, director Bruce Katzman devotes his attention to pacing and nuance, bringing forth Chekhov’s evanescent humor with apparent effortlessness.... Katzman has assembled a near-perfect cast that attacks the play with both delicacy and vigor. An especially effective Orson Bean plays his buffoonish character cut and dried and close to the bone, and he is all the more hilarious for that.

F. Kathleen Foley

Ends Wednesday at the MET Theatre, 1089 N. Oxford Ave., L.A., (323) 957-1152.

Also closing this weekend:

He Hunts--Georges Feydeau’s sex farce, “Monsieur Chasse!,” translated and adapted by Philip Littell, ends Sunday at the Geffen Playhouse, 10886 Le Conte Ave., Westwood, (310) 208-5454.

The Wild Duck--This strange (but never tame) duck, which shows that Ibsen is strong enough to withstand eccentric creative choices, ends Sunday at A Noise Within, 234 S. Brand Blvd., Glendale, (818) 240-0910.


Body Blows--Performance artist Tim Miller’s new work, based on his book of the same name, ends Saturday at Highways Gallery and Performance Space, 1651 18th St., Santa Monica, (310) 315-1459.