The Birthday Party by Harold Pinter

By City Garage (other events)

19 Dates Through Jul 23, 2022

Stanley Webber, an out-of-work pianist apparently on the run, is the only guest in a shabby, seaside rooming house run by Meg and her husband Petey. Stanley, who’s been holed up there for the last year, seems to be having an affair with his landlady, while her husband acts oblivious or, more likely, indifferent. This placid banality is invaded by the appearance of two mysterious strangers, Goldberg and McCann who arrive looking for Stanley, supposedly on his birthday. Who are they and what has Stanley done? Convention is swiftly upended by chaos. They take control of the party and turn it into a grotesque comedy of paranoia and persecution. The Birthday Party was Pinter’s first full-length play and immediately established his trademark style—a “comedy of menace” in which what is not said is more dangerous than what is, opening the door to another world where familiar surfaces hide all the dark, and often poisonous, secrets we keep from ourselves.

“This production knocked it out of the park.”

                                                                                                                                                                                 --Night Tinted Glasses

“My friends, I urge you to see this challenging and inspiring performance of The Birthday Party by Harold Pinter. Superb acting and stage directing in an intimate space with only a few dozen seats. You can still buy tickets for this performance for the month of July. I hope you take the time to enjoy it.”

                                                                                                                                                                --Edward Goldman, Art Matters

“City Garage has revisited The Birthday Party in a splendid production that captures Pinter’s specialty as a playwright: grotesque naturalism wrapped around a core of menace and depravity…. superb acting and directing.”   --Total Theatre 

Top Ten, Recommended

"The Birthday Party was not intended to be a realistic depiction of everyday life among working class Brits; instead, it was meant to relay awareness of the dark oppressive forces that lie beneath the surface of daily living….Much of the humor and pure entertainment in this production is reflected around Flood’s utterly engaging persona, a beacon amidst the baleful shadows and apocalyptic themes…an adept, well-paced production…a tale of authoritarianism run amuck.” 

                                                                                                                                                                                            --Stage Raw

“The Birthday Party is open for a lot of interpretations for its real meanings. Even if one doesn’t win in this guessing game, the stage presentation at City Garage makes great theater as viewed on its intimate stage.”

                                                                                                                                                                     --Accessibility Live Onstage