by Lauren Gunderson
directed by Bill English
with Susi Damilano, Sherman Howard and Stacy Ross
Art. Betrayal. Defiance.
Bauer is the imagined confrontation between famed modernist painter Rudolf Bauer, his wife Louise, and Hilla Rebay, Bauer's longtime lover. Delving into the now near-forgotten feud between Bauer, his benefactor Solomon Guggenheim, and Rebay, the woman who introduced them, Bauer throws into relief an unresolved art controversy.
With his life's work procured by the Guggenheim Foundation, Bauer believed that the museum in New York was being built to house his creations. However, the Guggenheim opened without a single Bauer on display. What happened to his paintings? Was this the perceived betrayal that caused Bauer to set down his brushes and never paint again?
Celebrated playwright Lauren Gunderson, winner of this year's Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award and a Susan Smith Blackburn Prize finalist, tackles this scandalous story of the controversial artist whom the Nazis once jailed for "degenerate art", and who is considered by many art historians and critics to have had a major impact on modern artists like Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning.
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"breathtaking, uplifting & heartbreaking - exquisitely sharp!" -David Finkle, Huffington Post
"Lauren Gunderson's sketches bauer's story clearly and compellingly." - Time Out New York
"clever, smart and entertaining!" - A Seat on the Aisle
"emotionally vibrant layered performances!" - Curtain Up
"fireworks and scandal! the theatrical equivalent of a page-turner!" - Lighting and Sound America
"outstanding performances!" -Stage and Cinema
"beautifully crafted by lauren gunderson!" - Theater Pizzazz
"solidly constructed!" - The New York Times
"pure scenic magic!" -San Francisco Examiner
"an exquisite exploration of the fickleness of history - 'bauer' sizzles!" -San Jose Mercury News
"Susi Damilano is an exemplar of loving patience! stacy ross gives a powerful performance of unforgettable ferocity!" -The Bay Area Reporter