Pin It

Weil Away 

Wednesday, May 14 2008
Comments
Eight months ago, Mark Weil, the director of Ilkhom Theatre, was murdered in the Uzbeki capital of Tashkent. Many believe that Weil was killed for ideological reasons — Ilkhom is the only non-state-sponsored theater company in Uzbekistan. Still, on the day after Weil's death, the company opened his final production as scheduled. Whether it was an act of devotion or subversion, these players take their craft very seriously. Ecstasy with the Pomegranate is one of Weil's final works. The three-hour dance-theater epic is based loosely on the life and art of painter Aleksandr Nikolaev, who was stationed in former Turkestan during the Communist revolution of 1917. Captivated by the bacha, an erotic folk dance performed in illicit teahouses by young men throughout Tashkent, he produced paintings that became a eulogy for the regional Islamic traditions, which did not survive the Soviet invasion. Historical facts and Nikolaev's artworks curl through Weil's play, interpreted by a teahouse proprietor, a closeted homosexual Russian officer, and a dancing girl, among others. Ecstasy may be a bit dense for casual theater-goers, but it is a rare look at a crossroads culture that is otherwise all but lost. Russian and Uzbeki dialogue is supertitled in English.
May 15-17, 8 p.m., 2008

About The Author

Silke Tudor

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Slideshows

  • Arcade Fire at Shoreline
    Arcade Fire opened their US tour at Shoreline Amphitheater to a full house who was there in support of their album "Reflector," which was released last fall. Dan Deacon opened the show to a happily surprised early audience and got the crowd actively dancing and warmed up. DEVO was originally on the bill to support Arcade Fire but a kayak accident last week had sidelined lead singer Mark Mothersbaugh and the duration of the west coast leg of the tour. Win Butler did a homage to DEVO by performing Uncontrollable Urge.
  • Comic Con 2014

    Comic book enthusiasts, Cosplayers, TV and movie fans, and celebrities descended to sunny San Diego for the annual gathering at Comic-Con International.

    Whether hitting up a panel to check out The Simpson's announcement of a cross over with Family Guy or Futurama. Or hearing a new movie with Sam Raimie based on a video game or accidentally rubbing shoulders with Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) in cosplay, being a cosplayer, San Diego Comic-Con is the place to be. Photographs by Christopher Victorio

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed