Anton Chekov: One day I got shat on by a seagull. I f**king said “Stupid f**king bird” and murdered a gull in a play.
Aaron Posner: One day I was reading Chekov. I f**king decided to adapt “The Seagull” into a comedy where people would actually laugh and could use words that people couldn’t use on stage in a pre-George Carlin 1895. My life isn’t bound by tradition. I could change the names of the characters as you’ll see below.
Emma Arkadiana (Amy Pietz) is first and foremost a famous actress: One day I got old. I f**king hate anything that reveals my age. My life is so desperate. I could forgive my lover’s many infidelities as long as they are with talentless wanna-bes.
Conrad Arkadina (Will Bradley), the twenty-something son of famous actress Emma Arkadina, is the main character: One day I was too old for my wanna-be forever young mother. I f**king became an albatross dragging my mother into middle-age. My life is so depressing I could kill myself, twice.
Dr. Eugene Sorn (Aryle Gross), the older or younger brother of Emma Arkadina, is alone in life: One day, after years of basking in reflective adulation, I was too old to be Emma’s brother. I f**king no longer lived in her shadow but threatened to darken her days. My life is empty. I could fade into anonymity.
Doyle Trigorin (Matthew Floyd Miller) is talented enough to be a golden boy facing his mid-life crisis with assorted short-lived liaisons with young untalented ladies: My life is so boring I could use some melodrama and adulation-laced sex. One day I could no longer stand Nina’s clinging talentless body. I f**king needed to be with someone who actually understood artistry and was too old to leave me.
Nina Zachery (Zarah Mahler) the childhood friend and beloved of Conrad wants to be an actress like Emma: My life is messed up. I could act regretful if I could act at all. One day I ran away with the lover of my neighbor and had a baby who died prematurely. One day I will be too old to be eye candy on stage. I f**king made my unhappiness.
Mash Amberson (Charlotte Gulezian) works for the Arkadinas: My life is depressing I could dress in black every day because I’m in mourning for my life and it makes me look thinner. One day I could no longer wait for Conrad to return my love so I f**king settled for dependable Dev.
Dev Dylan (Adam Silver) longs for Mash’s love: My life is so humble, I could eat pie. One day I got married to the one I loved. I f**king am the only one with a happy ending.
One day I went to the Theatre@Boston Court to see “Stupid F**king Bird,” an adaptation of Anton Chekov’s curious comedy “The Seagull.” I f**king finally laughed out loud and found the comedy in this classic, that now includes references to Cirque du Soleil and smoothies. This is in large part due to Michael Michetti’s crisp direction. In comedy, timing is everything and this ensemble cast gets is right with every nod, wink, stare and pregnant pause. Posner’s adaptation doesn’t just tweak by adding in some modern day references and plenty of swear words and punch up the sexual content with full frontal nudity–male and female, it also breaks the fourth wall and plunges into the potentially dangerous territory of asking for audience commentary, taking time for small impromptu, unscripted conversations.
Stephanie Kerley Schwartz’s scenic design seems to be themed on rectangles, with the backdrop a grid of rectangles and rectangular boxes used as platforms. Yet the grid becomes a screen for Sean Cawelti’s projection designs and the boxes also hold surprises revealed in the second act.
One day, Boston Court and Circle X Theatre Company decided to collaborate on a production, “Stupid F**king Bird.” I f**king declare this a must-see production for all those who love Anton Chekov but are open to new artistic forms and for all those who can laugh at the pretensions of artists and the ironies of life. Who better to skewer actors and the vagaries and venomous pretensions of creative people, than those who know it all too well? My life is sort of better now that I found the comedy in “The Seagull” via Posner’s witty though curse-word laden adaptation. I couldn’t encourage you more to see this production before it ends on 27 July 2014, at the Theatre @ Boston Court, 70 N. Mentor Ave, Pasadena. Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m. and Sundays 2 p.m.