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School of Theatre and Film MainStage presents outrageous, bawdy comedy

January 24, 2013

The MainStage Season of the ASU School of Theatre and Film in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts presents the Arizona premiere of "Fatboy," written by John Clancy and directed by Brian Foley, at the Paul V. Galvin Playhouse, ASU Tempe campus Feb. 1-9.

This outrageous play tells the story of Fatboy and Fudgie, a decadent, mutually-insulting and cursing couple exemplifying the stereotypical “ugly Americans.” Each has an insatiable appetite for money, sex, power, and more money. Anything standing in their way is likely to end up destroyed, or more likely, eaten. Fatboy wants it all, and he literally devours money, his crown and his furniture.

But the play is more than outrageous farce designed to shock. It is political satire that points an unfaltering lens at the greed in modern society, especially wealthy Western society. "Fatboy" is the Americanized version of Alfred Jarry's seminal play, "Ubu Roi," which started riots in the London theatre before being banned from the stage. "Fatboy" has played to sold-out houses around the world since it first opened in 2006.

“Audiences will experience a living Punch and Judy show, or in contemporary terms, a living, breathing episode of 'South Park',” said Foley, the play’s director. “There is at least one solid laugh on every page, and this gifted company of actors is finding ways to wring out even more comedy, and on occasion, pure raunch and rudeness.’’

Foley is a directing student in the ASU School of Theatre and Film Master’s of Fine Arts in Theatre program, which seeks to create theatre that resonates with audiences of the modern era. Foley’s 20-year performance background as a clown lends a special significance to this production. “Audiences will leave laughing, shocked and hopefully, offended by both the play and their own complicity in Western decadence,’’ he said. (This play contains explicit language, violence, and other material that may not be deemed appropriate for young audiences.)

"Fatboy" plays at Lyceum Theatre, 901. S. Forest Mall, ASU Tempe campus. Performances are at 7:30 and 2 p.m., Feb. 1-9. Tickets are $8-$16. Seniors, ASU faculty, staff and students receive special rates. Herberger Institute faculty, staff and students may attend for free but they must reserve tickets in advance. Special group rates are available. Contact the Herberger Institute box office, 480.965.6447 or the ASU School of Theatre and Film, 480.965.5337 or visit the ASU MainStage website.