Wednesday, April 29, 2009

A famous hypocrite comes to Carmichael

Rodger Hoopman, Richanne Baldridge
Chautauqua Playhouse photo
The 17th century’s Moliere is France’s most enduring comedy playwright. And his play “Tartuffe,” a.k.a. “The Hypocrite,” is probably his most popular play. Tartuffe is a pious fraud, faking religiosity to bamboozle a house run by suckers. And we get loads of laughs as we see how he works his spell and finally gets his comeuppance.

The version now at Carmichael’s Chautauqua Playhouse was commissioned 30 years ago by Rodger Hoopman, Chautauqua’s artistic director, and adds contemporary gags to liven up the action, though they take away from some of the play’s dark side. Yet the script still follows the plot closely.

“Tartuffe” continues through May 3 at the Chautauqua Playhouse, 5325 Engle Road at the La Sierra Community Center in Carmichael. Performances are Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Admission is $17 general and $15 for students, seniors, children and SARTA members. Call (916) 489-7529 (PLAY). See also

For a detailed review of “Tartuffe” see this week’s Village Life of El Dorado Hills or go to

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