Make it a Raw Night with Bricolage's Hunter Gatherers

A dinner party that swiftly spirals out of control, Hunter Gatherers is not for the tame of heart.

 hunter gatherers

Tressa Glover and Jonathan Visser star in Peter Sinn Nachtrieb’s Hunter Gatherers, which opens tonight.

Photo by Rob Long, Clear Story Creative

 

The beautiful thing about theater companies like Bricolage Production Co. is their willingness to do work that would make other theaters shudder. Risky, bold, daring—even controversial—work has a home with companies like this one, where little is impossible and nothing is taboo.

The beautiful thing about Bricolage in particular is the talent and vision to succeed with such material, where many other companies would flounder.

It takes a special kind of theatrical madness to conquer a work like Peter Sinn Nachtrieb’s sizzling Hunter Gatherers. That most steadfast of settings—the dinner party—becomes the grounds for sex, violence, partial insanity, revelation and blood sacrifice of several varieties. It is, of course, a comedy. In a safer context, Hunter Gatherers would be a comedy of manners with subtle implication and unspoken desire hinting at human nature; from the mind of Nachtrieb, suggestion and innuendo are replaced with furious, almost primal abandon.

Which is a fancy way of saying that this is a fantastic show—probably the best I’ve seen in years here in Pittsburgh.

A quartet of high school buddies reunite for a yearly get-together at the home of the infinitely passionate Richard and the smiling, meek Pam, an odd couple seemingly held together by Richard’s insistence and little else. When their pals—free spirit Wendy and sad-sack doctor Tom—arrive, it takes little more than a glass of wine to bring things crashing down. Of course, a meek lamb named Carl has already met his match, but things were going swimmingly then.

The show is immaculately cast with born hunters Wendy and Richard expending superhuman energy and inconceivable mental gymnastics over their repressed counterparts. ‘Burgh newcomer Jonathan Visser turns Richard into a tribal whirlwind, hopping from one mad truth to another effortlessly and energetically. Tressa Glover’s tame Pam may be among the gatherers, but it’s really her show, and the other three are in a psychotic orbit around her at all times.

It goes without saying that Hunter Gatherers is not for the tame of heart (and especially not for children), but to truly take in this show, a bit more is required.

Before going to see Hunter Gatherers—and you absolutely must go—I need to strongly recommend that you eat first. Go to Hyde Park Steakhouse and order a huge portion of something rare. A T-bone, maybe. Just not lamb.

Walk over the bridge. Breathe the cool spring air. Take it all in. And when you feel you’re in tune with Pittsburgh, full and happy, it is now time to have a seat and watch this show.

Afterward, go around the corner to August Henry’s City Saloon and have a few drinks while discussing what just happened and what it meant, and how they manage to clean up all the lamb juice, blood and Chex Mix every night.

Director Jeffrey Carpenter and his crew have put together one of the must-see shows of this or any year, and it’s a calling card for Bricolage—a notice that they’ve firmly entered the discussion as one of the best companies in town.
 

Bricolage Theater, 937 Liberty Ave., downtown. Thursdays-Sundays, April 14-May 7. Thu., Fri., Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun, 7 p.m. No show Easter Sunday. 9 p.m. start on Fri., April 29. Not appropriate for younger audiences. $17-$40. Info: webbricolage.org

 

Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

The 412

Back From the Dead? Parkway Center Focus of New Development Talk

Back From the Dead? Parkway Center Focus of New Development Talk

Aside from a Giant Eagle, the mall has been empty for the past three years.
Great Catch: Easiest Way to Tasty Lenten Fish Frys

Great Catch: Easiest Way to Tasty Lenten Fish Frys

Looking for a delicious battered fish sandwich or golden-brown pierogies on Friday? Here’s a handy guide plus a few fun facts about our fascination with fish.
Sweetheart Ideas: How to Make the Most out of Valentine's Day

Sweetheart Ideas: How to Make the Most out of Valentine's Day

From a hotel “Love Lockdown,” to a museum breakfast in bed, to a rooftop singles event - there's plenty to eat, drink at do in Pittsburgh on this weekend for love.
Beer News: East End Brewing Moving to Bigger Space in Strip District

Beer News: East End Brewing Moving to Bigger Space in Strip District

The new space, called the East End Brewery Taproom, will offer lunch and dinner service, expanded hours and a place for customers to sit and enjoy a pint of beer from one of the brewery’s 12 taps.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

2016 Homes of the Year

2016 Homes of the Year

Our independent panel of judges recognizes three local, unique residences as our Homes of the Year in the categories of New Build, Renovation and Green.
Goin' to the Chapel – Or Not?

Goin' to the Chapel – Or Not?

With so many options in and around the city, every couple can find the special space that feels just right — whether they’re looking for nature, rustic charm, fairytale romance, stained-glass beauty, treasured religious ritual or classic tradition.
Underground Pittsburgh: Explore our City of Tunnels

Underground Pittsburgh: Explore our City of Tunnels

Delve below the surface to explore the underground areas that serve as vital pathways to our region.
Kitchen Roots: Ruta, Solomonov and Ehland

Kitchen Roots: Ruta, Solomonov and Ehland

Chefs who grew up in Pittsburgh are shaping the culinary scene in other cities across the country — and gaining national recognition in the process.
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags

Sign Up for the 412 e-Newsletter

 

Our new, daily e-newsletter is curated by the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine and is designed to give you the very best Pittsburgh has to offer -- delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign me up!
* Email
 First Name
 Last Name
  * = Required Field
 
Edit ModuleShow Tags

On the Blogs


Back From the Dead? Parkway Center Focus of New Development Talk

Back From the Dead? Parkway Center Focus of New Development Talk

Aside from a Giant Eagle, the mall has been empty for the past three years.

Comments


Pittsburgh, only cooler
PittGirl: Yikes! Imagine This Instead of a Fountain at the Point

PittGirl: Yikes! Imagine This Instead of a Fountain at the Point

City leaders considered many options for Pittsburgh's confluence including something that looked like it was designed by the Jetsons, or an absolutely bonkers, batpoop insane idea by the one and only Frank Lloyd Wright.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
Pittsburgh Chef Move: Lily Tran New Executive Chef of Soba

Pittsburgh Chef Move: Lily Tran New Executive Chef of Soba

Tran takes over big Burrito's Ellsworth Ave. restaurant from Dustin Gardner, who moves back to Casbah on Highland Ave.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
7 Best Restaurants for College Students in Pittsburgh

7 Best Restaurants for College Students in Pittsburgh

Easy access from universities, wallet-friendly prices and really good food make these our favorite choices for the university set.

Comments


End Your Work Day at Muddy Waters' Oyster Happy Hour

End Your Work Day at Muddy Waters' Oyster Happy Hour

Some of the best oysters available in Pittsburgh can be yours for a steal at the new East Liberty spot.

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Super Bowl Predictions: Can I Have That One Back?

Super Bowl Predictions: Can I Have That One Back?

Denver's upset win over Carolina -- predicted by hardly anyone (including yours truly) -- should be interpreted as good news for Steelers' fans.

Comments


Style. Design. Goods. Hide your credit card.
Shirts We Love For Valentine’s Day

Shirts We Love For Valentine’s Day

Let your heart do the talking with these fun sweaters from Rosewood Boutique.

Comments


Sean Collier's Popcorn for Dinner

The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
Leave Your Kids at Home and See 'Deadpool'

Leave Your Kids at Home and See 'Deadpool'

The R-rated superhero flick is foul-mouthed fun. Plus reviews of "How to Be Single," "Where to Invade Next" and more.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
This is How You Pop the Question: Four Fabulous Proposals

This is How You Pop the Question: Four Fabulous Proposals

On Day Four of our Week of Wedded Bliss, we said “yes!” to these four beautiful proposals from our Real Pittsburgh Weddings couples.

Comments


The latest tips and trends to refresh your home.
Say Hello (and Goodbye) to These Home & Lifestyle Shops

Say Hello (and Goodbye) to These Home & Lifestyle Shops

Divertido and Jack + Jules close in Lawrenceville, while the neighborhood welcomes Brambler Boutique. Plus, Splurge expands to a new location in Fox Chapel.

Comments


The hottest topics in higher education
Mock Crime Scene to be Held at Waynesburg University

Mock Crime Scene to be Held at Waynesburg University

The event is for high school students who are interested in criminal justice, law enforcement and forensic science.

Comments