Late Night Theatre series presents 'The Bald Soprano'

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Kevin C.K. Berg, (808) 956-2598
Publicity Director, Department of Theatre and Dance
Posted: Apr 14, 2015

The University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa’s Department of Theatre and Dance presents Eugene Ionesco’s “The Bald Soprano” as the final production of its 2014-2015 Late Night Theatre series.  The play will be directed by UHM MFA Candidate Soonsup Hong. 

Performances will take place at the Earle Ernst Lab Theatre on April 17, 18, 24 and 25 at 11 p.m., following the Mainstage concert “Dancing Off the Page."  

"The Bald Soprano" explores the futility and absurdity of life as well as the tragedy of miscommunication. The play takes place in the suburbs of London, as Mr. and Mrs. Smith, played by Erik Wagenman and Margot Fitzsimmons, are paid a social call by Mr. and Mrs. Martin, played by Michael “Donut” Donato and Sharon Garcia Doyle. Fitzsimmons and Garcia Doyle performed in the recent Prime Time production of “The Taming of the Shrew.” 

Although the play’s premise is simple, as it evolves, language is bent and stretched; characters say nonsensical things and behave in nonsensical ways.  The process, in repetition, is “life,” according to Ionesco.

For Ionesco, this feeling that life is absurd and that communication is impossible arose from the destruction and chaos he witnessed during and after World War II. Hong was inspired to direct this absurdist play by his status as a South Korean international student at UHM and by his experiences as a non-native English speaker. 

“Every day of my life is absurd,” says Hong with a laugh.  “I often feel like I am speaking and hearing nonsense!”  He hopes that his unique experiences will allow him to capture both the underlying loneliness of the play, but also allow people to chuckle at life’s ridiculousness.  Ionesco surely would have approved.

This classic play of absurdist theatre is in keeping with the mission of Late Night Theatre.  The program is entirely student-driven, with a focus on presenting new work and plays that are not usually performed in the UHM or Honolulu communities. 

Tickets for “The Bald Soprano” will go on sale at the box office one hour before show time each performance night.  Prices are $10 for general admission; $8 for UH faculty and staff, seniors, military, and non-UHM students; and $5 for students with a valid Spring 2015 UHM photo ID. For more information, please visit or call the theater at (808) 956-7655.  For disability access, please call the theater.