The set, by Patrick Lynch, is spare but full of allusions: large ivory-and-terracotta squares dominate the stage's back wall, floor, and short steps, suggestive of harlequin diamonds; the top part of the back wall has, in ascending order, hand-drawn crosses, counting symbols, and dollar signs. And front and center stands the requisite long table, whose top often serves as a soapbox in the first act and whose encompassing covering in the second act (the perfect hideout) leads to Tartuffe's unveiling. The colors are picked up by costume designer Marilyn Salvatore, with shades of ochre and gold for several of the main characters' costumes, accented with puffy sleeves, frilly fronts, lacy hems. Then there are bows on shoe buckles; Tartuffe's rosary-like beads, with dangling cross; and glorious wigs, curly, poofy, or piled high with birds and butterflies (Madame Pernelle).
The inventiveness of Gleadow's direction, so skillfully choreographed up and over the levels of stage and stairs, and the solid performances of his players make this a wonderfully rewarding and laugh-filled production.
, University of Rhode Island, Tom Gleadow, URI Theatre, More