Davis Enterprise article on “Woyzeck”
February 25, 2015

Department of Theatre and Dance presents “Woyzeck”

UC Davis’ ‘Woyzeck’ features madness, murder

Special to The Enterprise
February 13, 2015

Neil LaBute’s intriguing adaptation of Georg Büchner’s “Woyzeck” will be presented by the UC Davis department of theater and dance Feb. 26-March 8 on the Main Stage of Wright Hall. “Woyzeck” is a theatrical examination of a young man who is abused by a power structure that dehumanizes him, driving him to madness and murder.

Director Bob McGrath — a three-time Obie Award winner for best direction, best production and sustained achievement — is the department’s Granada Artist-in-Residence, bringing his experience of direction in theater and opera with multi-media art forms to life. Included in McGrath’s directing credits are engagements at Lincoln Center, American Repertory Theatre and Carnegie Hall.

McGrath’s production of “Woyzeck” brings meticulously focused, multi-media constructs to the audience experience, plunging them into realms of the unconscious, with the hallucinatory realism through the use of contemporary technology. “Woyzeck” promises a unique theatrical experience unlike any other department production.

Neil LaBute, who has done the adaptation for this production, is a 2009 Tony Award nominee, filmmaker and playwright. LaBute’s adaptation of “Woyzeck” holds true to the original, but employs a number of adjustments embraced by contemporary audiences. LaBute, known for his dark humor and cynical characterizations, has been nominated for many awards, including the London Standard Theatre Award, and was the winner of the 2013 Equity Joseph Jefferson Award.

Highlighting the cinematic quality of “Woyzeck” is the haunting score by McGrath’s longtime collaborator, Pulitzer Prize winner David Lang. He was voted Musical America’s 2013 Composer of the Year and is a recipient of Carnegie Hall’s Debs Composer’s Chair for 2013-14. LaBute’s language, punctuated by Lang’s score, brings an incisive and organic excavation of Woyzeck’s shadowy underpinning that leaves no stone unturned.

“Woyzeck” will open Feb. 26 at 8 p.m. with additional performances Feb. 27 and 28 at 8 p.m., March 1 at 2 p.m., March 5-7 at 8 p.m. and March 8 at 2 p.m. For more information, go to or call 530-752-5863.

Tickets are $20 general admission and $15 for students (with a special ticket price of $10 for Thursday performances) and may be purchased by sending an email to or calling the box office at 530-752-7111. Tickets also will be sold at the box office of the Main Theatre in Wright Hall or at the door starting one hour prior to performance.

Due to mature themes, no one under the age of 18 will be admitted.



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