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What Is the Story of The Lady From Dubuque?
The Lady From Dubuque takes place in the home of Sam and Jo, a couple hosting a late-night party for their friends. Despite Jo’s terminal illness, which hinders her physical movement, she participates actively in the party conversation, making sarcastic and biting remarks to her alarmed friends. The next morning, Sam awakes to find Elizabeth (a mysterious older woman) and her companion in his living room. Elizabeth claims she is Jo’s mother, but Sam has never seen her before. As Elizabeth’s calming presence soothes the dying Jo, Sam struggles to find out the truth about who she is and why she has arrived at his home.
There’s great pleasure in watching good friends have at one another, Albee-style, and Mr. Esbjornson and his cast let us savor the acid in their exchanges.Review by Ben Brantley from The New York Times
[David Esbjornson] clearly gets the playwright's merciless intelligence and his wild, unexpectedly compassionate heart. The cast has a fine way with curdled civility on designer John Arnone's airy sweep of suburban domesticity.Review by Linda Winer from Newsday
What Is The Lady From Dubuque Like?
Set in a beautifully appointed living room, Edward Albee’s drama is an intense play about a husband who must face the impending death of his wife. Although this beautifully acted ensemble drama (featuring Tony winner Jane Alexander as the mysterious "lady") contains some darkly humorous moments, the overall subject matter is heavy and emotional. In The Lady From Dubuque, Jo and Sam grapple with the unknown, ultimately realizing that they are both alone in their pain. Or are they?
Is The Lady From Dubuque Good for Kids?
No. The Lady From Dubuque contains onstage violence, coarse language and adult subject matter. Although older teens may enjoy the production, read the play with them first to make sure they understand its emotional context and Albee's biting language.