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Searching for truth ‘Within’

JOYCE RUDOLPH

Artistic directors of A Noise Within see a parallel between

themselves and the quest the company is on to fund a new building and

the characters in their new season. All are in fierce pursuit of

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truth and fueled by a daring spirit.

All the plays surround the notion of characters learning the truth

about themselves, said husband and wife Geoff Elliott and Julia

Rodriguez Elliott. Thus, the season has been titled “Truth and Dare.”

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There is no fixed formula for choosing plays each season, Geoff

Elliott said.

“Sometimes there is one play that is a cornerstone, sometimes a

group of plays reveal themselves and fall in our laps as we discussed

the season,” he said. “That’s what happened this time.”

The season opens with Shakespeare’s “Coriolanus” on Sept. 26. The

rest of the season offerings are Moliere’s “The Miser,” Arthur

Miller’s “The Price,” “A Wilde Holiday” with tales written by Oscar

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Wilde, Euripides’ “Electra,” Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night,” and

Thornton Wilder’s “The Matchmaker.”

All the main characters experience a kind of baptism by fire. Some

survive the test. Others are destroyed by it. But in the end, all

become more fully realized human beings.

Bred for violent combat, Coriolanus braces to become Rome’s

greatest warrior. Among the battles he faces is one with a dominating

mother. But by finally using honesty as his defense, he discovers his

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real self.

“Coriolanus is filled with destructive pride, but through the

play, he becomes conscious of it,” Elliott said. “You can say the

same about Horace Vandergelder in ‘Matchmaker.’ ”

“And, in ‘The Price,’ these people ultimately dare to see the

truth in themselves,” Rodriguez Elliott said. “Part of that ties into

what we are going to do with our new building venture -- it seems

like the journey we’re going through is marrying us in some way.”

The company is concentrating over the next two to three years on

fund-raising to move to a permanent new facility on a city-owned lot

in downtown Glendale. Supporters are coordinating a campaign to raise

the $4.5 million needed for the building.

“It’s all part of the journey and exploration,” she said.

The couple is enthusiastic about the rest of the season,

especially being able to produce “The Price,” which is rarely seen.

“It’s so underappreciated,” he said. “But it’s an extraordinary

piece of literature. Miller takes a small cast of four people and

plumbs the depths of what it is to be human, to be in a relationship

and this is a play a great deal of which is about relationships.”

Returning as its regular holiday production is “A Wilde Holiday.”

It is a concert reading of Oscar Wilde’s tales “The Selfish Giant,”

“The Happy Prince” and “The Star Child,” interspersed with the poetry

by Lewis Carroll and Christina Rossetti and others and backed with

original music by Laura Karpman.

“It’s been very successful, and for the audience that has not seen

it yet, it’s such a departure from the typical fare like ‘A Christmas

Carol,’ but has so much of that holiday spirit people seem to respond

to it,” she said.


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