(GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass.) – On Thursday, October 6. the Mahaiwe (at 7 p.m.) and The Clark (at 2 p.m.) will present London’s National Theatre: Live in HD production of Arnold Wesker‘s The Kitchen, a black comedy set in a 1950s London restaurant, screened live from the from the Olivier Theatre in London. Wesker’s play premiered at the Royal Court in 1959 and has since been performed in over 30 countries. The Kitchen, where the cooks and waitstaff do battle, flirt, and work together behind the scenes, is a blackly funny and furious examination of life lived at breakneck speed, when work threatens to define who we are.
Set in the basement kitchen of a large restaurant, thirty chefs, waitresses, and kitchen porters from across Europe – English, Irish, German, Jewish – argue and flirt as they slowly begin the day preparing to serve lunch. The central story tells of a frustrated love affair between a high-spirited, young, German chef, Peter, and a married English waitress, Monique.
Wesker’s mother, Leah Perlmutter, was a cook. His inspiration for The Kitchen, the first of his 44 plays to be produced, came when he was working at the Bell Hotel in Norwich, where he also met his future wife, Dusty. A musical version of The Kitchen had its world premiere in Tokyo in August 2000.
Running time is 2 hours 30 mins (including interval).