(3 July 1883 – 3 June 1924)
Franz Kafka was born to middle class German-speaking Jewish parents in Prague, Bohemia (now part of the Czech Republic.)
K METAMORPHOSIS Closes Aurora Theatre Season
Closing Aurora Theatre Company's 19th season is the first professional American production of METAMORPHOSIS. Award-winning Bay Area director, performer, and playwright Mark Jackson returns to Aurora Theatre Company, where he helmed the company's acclaimed productions of Salome and Miss Julie, to put his own unique spin on this landmark work of existential literature. METAMORPHOSIS, featuring Alexander Crowther, Megan Trout, Allen McKelvey, Madeline H.D. Brown, and PatRick Jones, plays June 10 through July 17 at the Aurora Theatre in Berkeley. For tickets ($10-55) and information the public can call (510) 843-4822 or visit auroratheatre.org.
Embodying the isolation of Franz Kafka's unsparing tale, METAMORPHOSIS is a masterful mix of horror and absurdity, telling the story of a traveling salesman's bizarre transformation from man to man-sized insect. This powerful exploration of alienation, a terrifying, yet comic, adaptation of Kafka's classic 1915 novella by British director David Farr and Icelandic actor-director Gísli Örn Gardarsson of Iceland's Vesturport Theatre, was hailed as "a parable for our times" by The Daily Telegraph (UK). Performed in London's West End, Dublin, Australia, and Hong Kong, "It's the story of a very ordinary family where something awful happens," Farr says. "But there is a lot of laughter in among the awfulness."
Vesturport Theatre's 2006 stage adaptation of METAMORPHOSIS played at the Lyric Hammersmith in London; the Lyric Theatre Company toured the UK and premiered their version of the production at BAM in New York City as part of the Next Wave Festival in 2010, accompanied by a unique soundtrack by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis. Aurora Theatre Company's production will be the first production of Farr and Gardarsson's adaptation performed by a professional company and an American cast.
Award-winning director, performer, and playwright Mark Jackson returns to Aurora Theatre Company, where he helmed the company's lauded productions of Miss Julie and Salome, to direct METAMORPHOSIS. Jackson most recently directed The Companion Piece at Z Space; other directing credits include Shakespeare's Macbeth, The Forest War, The Death of Meyerhold, and his adaptations of Schiller's Mary Stuart and Goethe's Faust Pt1, all performed at Shotgun Players. Additional productions include Yes, Yes to Moscow at Deutsches Theater Berlin (Germany) and the San Francisco International Arts Festival, his original play American $uicide at Encore Theatre Company, and Bertolt Brecht's Caucasian Chalk Circle (American Conservatory Theater MFA Program). The Death of Meyerhold garnered a Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Original Script in 2003, which Jackson also received in 2002 for his original one-man show I Am Hamlet. He was the founding Artistic Director of Art Street Theatre (called "San Francisco's Best Experimental Theatre Company" by SF Weekly), for which he wrote and directed a number of plays, was a 2005 German Chancellor Fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, and a 2003 playwright in residence at the Djerassi Resident Artists Program. In 2007, Jackson was named the Bay Area's "Best Theatrical Auteur" by SF Weekly. Aurora Theatre Company will present the World Premiere of Salomania during the company's 20th anniversary season; the new play commission, written and directed by Jackson, was workshopped at Aurora during 2010