But then, I decided to ask him. The key to what makes it all work, it turns out, is the quality of the adaptation by a very brilliant playwright in his own right.
He's turned a play that was good and fun and transformed into something that will be absolutely hilarious, Thompson says of Ives. And he's done that by really mining the compulsive liar in action: The character just can't stop lying and making up stories. He also stays true to classical verse and introduces all the anachronistic references and words, and that has a startlingly funny effect on you. I think it's great to start with a farce, and it's great that this one is such a wonderful hybrid of contemporary and classical elements. What's really fun about it is that when the lights come up, people think it's a French comedy set in the seventeenth century. But ten minutes later, they realize that it isnt that at all. A strong and very funny cast, Thompson adds, seals the deal: We will fail unless people laugh their hearts out.
Prepare to split your sides: The story of a man who, well, can't stop lying, The Liar continues daily except Mondays through October 16 in the Space Theatre at the Denver Performing Arts Complex. Admission ranges from $35 to $57; go to www.denvercenter.org or call 303-893-4100.
Fridays, 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays, 1:30 & 7:30 p.m.; Sundays, 1:30 p.m.; Tuesdays-Thursdays, 6:30 p.m. Starts: Sept. 16. Continues through Oct. 16, 2011