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November 13, 2012 > Theatre: 'The Good Person of Setzuan'

Theatre: 'The Good Person of Setzuan'

Submitted By Diane Daniel

Corey Fischer, an actor and writer, will guest direct the Cal State East Bay Theatre and Dance Department's first production of the academic year, "The Good Person of Setzuan." Fischer, who is co-founder of the Jewish Theatre San Francisco -- first known as 'A Traveling Jewish Theatre' -- refers to the show as "one of the world's most popular plays for almost 70 years."

Written by Tony Kurshner and adapted from the play by Bertolt Brecht, the piece tells a story of three rag-tag gods who come to Earth to learn if a thoroughly good person can survive - or even exist - on the troubled planet. "Full of comedy, music and vivid characters, 'The Good Person of Setzuan,' is that rare theatrical experience that erases the boundaries between high and low art," said Fischer. "Brecht was, of course, a poet, a philosopher. But, above all, he was a brilliant entertainer."

The director has told his cast that for him; the "spine" of "Good Person" is the telling of a fable, using all the elements of theater: character, action, direct address, song, dance, physical humor; by an ensemble of actors. Unlike conventional fables, however, this one has a moral lesson.

This is Fisher's second time at CSUEB. He performed his one-man show, "Sometimes We Need a Story More Than Food," at the university in 2007 as part of the Jewish Culture and History Series of the College of Letters, Arts, and Social Sciences.

Thomas Hird, professor and chair of the Theatre and Dance Department, said: "Our department and the campus are lucky to have Corey Fischer directing this quarter. Fischer has been creating and performing theatre for over 40 years, largely in the Bay Area. His work has been recognized for its excellence by audiences, critics, and publishers, as well as the Kennedy Center Fund for New American Plays."

Robert Hurwitt, senior drama critic for the San Francisco Chronicle, wrote that Fischer is "one of the Bay Area's acting treasurers."

He also is a published writer of fiction and non-fiction, a teacher of improvisation and theatre-making, and a creative consultant/coach for individuals and organizations.

Rhoda Kaufman, professor of theatre and dance at Cal State East Bay, observed that an ensemble show, such as Good Person "is best when created through collaboration - hallmarks of Fischer's work."

Tickets are priced from $5 to $15 and may be purchased online at
The Theatre and Dance Department may be contacted for further information at (510) 885-3118.
CSUEB welcomes persons with disabilities and will provide reasonable accommodation upon request. Please notify event sponsor in advance at (510) 885-3118 if accommodation is needed.

The Good Person of Setzuan
Nov 16 - 18
8 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m.
Cal State East Bay
University Theatre
25800 Carlos Bee Blvd., Hayward
(510) 885-3118
Tickets: $5 - $15

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