Corleone: The Shakespearean Godfather

David Mann's Corleone: The Shakespearean Godfather is a rare beast: an out-and-out gimmick executed with sufficient skill, humor, and grace to mark it as a genuinely excellent stand-alone experience. This unholy mixture of iambic pentameter with gangster drama first appeared as a one-hour one-act at the 2005 Minnesota Fringe. Since then, Mann has expanded it to a full show, packed with intrigue, action, and angst. On the surface this might seem like a parody or send-up, but the show works because Mann approaches both ends of his concept with rabid enthusiasm, affection, and respect. And he never loses sight of the salient fact: While Shakespeare, Puzo, and Coppola have their reverent adherents, all three start with a baseline of trying to be wildly entertaining. Mann and his cast ably carry on the tradition. (Image by Jim Clifford)
Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 4 p.m.; Mon., Nov. 30, 8 p.m. Starts: Nov. 20. Continues through Dec. 13, 2009

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