Venus in Fur

Rationality might be a guiding principle in respectable society, but history has repeatedly shown that high-minded virtues seldom subdue deep-seated vices. A scan of our cultural landscape will yield no shortage of salacious details pulled from the locked bedrooms of otherwise conventional personalities. Austrian author Leopold von Sacher-Masoch defined one such compulsion with his 1870 novella Venus in Furs, which delved into the sadomasochistic mindset of a man seeking sexual gratification through being degraded by the woman of his desire. Social mores have changed since the publication of Sacher-Masoch's work, but kinks remain the same, as evidenced by playwright David Ives's contemporary work, Venus in Fur. Depicted with comic audacity, Venus in Fur finds a self-assured NYC stage director struggling to cast an actress for a planned adaption of the source work. When a seemingly frazzled actress arrives late for her audition, the director is prepared to dismiss her out of hand, but something about her commanding vitality compels him to reconsider ... and makes him ponder submitting entirely to her will. Presented by Jungle Theater, Ives's journey into the psyche of desire is led by two of the Twin Cities' most charismatic talents, Anna Sundberg and Peter Christian Hansen. With direction by Joel Sass, Venus in Fur is an enticing proposition even for the stuffiest of intellectuals. Go on and buy a ticket. You know you want to. (Photo by Drew Tampe)
Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m.; Tuesdays-Thursdays, Sundays, 7:30 p.m. Starts: Feb. 1. Continues through March 10, 2013

 
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