Need a sort of theatrical palate cleanser after all of the drama — the real-life kind — of the just-completed holiday season? Las Vegas Little Theatre may have just the thing in the form of "Bedroom Farce," a comedy by Alan Ayckbourn that opens today at the company’s Mainstage theater.
"Bedroom Farce," which premiered in 1975, follows three couples who are experiencing an array of relationship-related woes that are unraveled, or not, over the course of an evening and sequentially in three bedrooms.
And, the play’s title notwithstanding, "Bedroom Farce" is not, technically speaking, a farce. Rather, says director Rob Kastil, Ayckbourn came up with the title first and then wrote the play, employing the designation as a sort of ironic in-joke.
Ayckbourn also has noted that the comedy involves all of the activities couples might do in bedrooms except actual copulation, adding, tongue presumably in cheek, that he believed that isn’t practiced much in British bedrooms, anyway.
Kastil says that, while some of Ayckbourn’s plays don’t translate particularly well to American audiences, this one does thanks to its somewhat skewed humor.
"His plays all have to do with humorous relationships, but there’s always kind of a slightly dark side to them in comedy, which kind of appeals to me," he says.
"A lot of Americans think that he writes more to, like, the British class system, and some of his early plays do. This one really doesn’t have to do with the class system.
"It’s (in) kind of a dark vein, and it’s also very human, too," Kastil adds, with characters audiences easily can relate to and who are "fun to listen to. He writes great characters and characters that are fun."
Walter Niejadlik, president of Las Vegas Little Theatre, says the play’s tone also meshes well with the tenor of the post-Yuletide season.
"I think people like something a little lighter after the holidays," he says, noting, too, that Las Vegas audiences "seem to enjoy British farce."
Ayckbourn "has really played well with our audiences," Kastil agrees. "We’ve done a couple of his shows before … that went over quite well."
Maybe, Kastil jokes, it’s just because "Americans seem to like silly British people."
Contact reporter John Przybys at jprzybys@ reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0280.Preview
8 p.m. today, Saturday, Thursday; 2 p.m. Sunday (through Jan. 30)
Las Vegas Little Theatre Mainstage, 3920 Schiff Drive