The Accidental Brecht-a-thon
Brecht's Mother Courage and Her Children and The Caucasian Chalk Circle
by William S. Kowinski
By sheer coincidence, the Humboldt State University campus hosted two productions of plays by Bertolt Brecht during the same fortnight, with two nights that both plays were staged simultaneously. In late February and early March, HSU may have briefly been the Brecht capital of the world.
But even though it was accidental, this local Brecht-a-thon was not eccentric. The unique ways Brecht’s plays address searing issues that are suddenly central to this moment is a chief reason several of them are being revisited on stages from Los Angeles to New York, where a new adaptation of Mother Courage and Her Children by playwright Tony Kushner will appear this summer, starring Meryl Streep.
This was one of the plays done locally, by the HSU Department of Theatre, Film and Dance. The other was The Caucasian Chalk Circle performed by the Young Actors Guild of the North Coast Preparatory and Performing Arts Academy.