The Imaginary Invalid
Feb. 16-26, 2012
Directed by Heather E. Hamilton
Scene Design by Naoko Ishizuka
Costume Design by David McCarl
Lighting Design by Steven Smith
Sound Design by George Grubb
Toinette (Sara Pillatzki-Warzeha, left) isn't so sure that Ardin (Reggie D. Haney)
is sincere in what he's telling his daughter, Angelique (Morgan LeClaire).
Ardin's wife, Beline (Morgan Mallory) plays on his emotions while Bonnefoi
(Zach Bolland) feels out of place.
Thomas (Carter Allen, center), hopes to win the hand of Angelique (Morgan LeClaire), though he's
the only one who hopes so. Looking on are (left to right): Ardin (Reginald D. Haney), Toinette
(Sara Pillatzki-Warzeha), Cleante (Ben Stasny) and Thomas's father, Dr. Defois (Joey West).
Dr. Defois (Joey West) treats Ardin with an injection.
Left: Ardin's other daughter, Louise (Annie Dosch), plays hide-and-seek;
right: Cleante (Ben Stasny) and Angelique (Morgan LeClaire) express their love for each other.
Beralde (Jason Garton) tries to soothe Ardin.
Fluerante (Andrew Harrison) provides an enema for Ardin.
Dr. Purjon (Jake McInerney, center) taunts Ardin with a medical
prescription. Watching are Toinette and Fluerante.
Photos by Mike Lagerquist
Reginald D. Haney and Morgan Mallory talk about The Imaginary Invalid (youtube video)
Molière is the stage name of Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, one of the most important dramatists in French history.
His plays have been delighting and intriguing audiences since they were first performed in seventeenth-century
France, at which time they pleased King Louis XIV and changed the face of French comic drama. A subtle
and profound satirist, actor, philosopher and master of character, Molière combined all of these elements into
his plays, drawing heavily from tradition but also incorporating his own unique insights. Skillfully combining his
acting and writing skills, he was also an incisive social critic, ridiculing institutions from organized religion to medicine,
and poking fun at the Parisian bourgeoisie (the middle class made up of prosperous tradesmen).
Le Malade imaginaire (The Imaginary Invalid) was Molière’s final play, first performed in February 1673 in Paris. A
satire of the medical profession and a comedy-ballet, or a comedy combined with song and dance, the play contains
a good deal of farce and was written to amuse King Louis XIV. It is also a superb character study of a hypochondriac,
or a patient obsessed with being ill, and it contains a brilliant social and political commentary on Paris in the 1670s. Many
critics have even found a subtle but powerful philosophical strain in the work, and it is an excellent example of the
stylized comedy-ballet popular in Louis XIV’s courtly theater. Molière himself played the main role of the hypochondriac
Argan, and famously coughed up blood during his fourth performance, dying later that evening in what came to be known
as a bitter irony, given the play’s subject of imaginary illness.