Venus in Fur
|Written by||David Ives|
|Date premiered||January 13, 2010|
|Place premiered||Classic Stage Company
New York City
Venus in Fur opened off-Broadway at the Classic Stage Company on January 13, 2010. The play was originally set to close on February 21, 2010, and was extended to March 7, 2010. The cast featured Nina Arianda and Wes Bentley with direction by Walter Bobbie. The play relaunched the career of Wes Bentley.
The play opened on Broadway, produced by the Manhattan Theatre Club, at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre beginning in previews on October 13, 2011, and officially on November 8, 2011. Nina Arianda reprised her role as Vanda and Hugh Dancy replaced Wes Bentley, with Walter Bobbie directing. The production ended its limited engagement at the Friedman on December 18 and resumed performances at the Lyceum Theatre on February 7, 2012, in a limited engagement through June 17, 2012. The Broadway production received two Tony Award nominations, including for Best Play and Best Actress in a Play.
In 2013, the play saw its Australian premiere in a production by the Queensland Theatre Company in Brisbane with Libby Munro as Vanda and Todd MacDonald as Thomas. Dana Brooke as Vanda was declared one of the "Performances of the Year" by The Sacramento Bee in B Street Theatre's production in 2013.
Thomas Novachek is the writer-director of a new play opening in New York City, an adaptation of the 1870 novel Venus in Furs by Austrian author Leopold von Sacher-Masoch, which inspired the term Masochism. He is on the telephone lamenting the inadequacies of all the actresses who showed up that day to audition for the lead character, Wanda von Dunayev. Suddenly, at the last minute, a new actress, Vanda Jordan, bursts in, the exemplar of every fault he has decried: needy, crude, compliant, desperate. She convinces him to read through his play, she as Wanda and he as Severin von Kushemski. During this reading, Vanda shows astonishing insights into the novel and her character and the balance of power shifts as the actress establishes total dominance over the director, exactly as in the novel.
Awards and nominations
Nina Arianda won the Tony, the Clarence Derwent Award, Clive Barnes Award, and the Theatre World Award. She also received nominations for the 2010 Outer Critics Circle Award, Outstanding Actress in a Play, the 2010 Lucille Lortel Award, Outstanding Lead Actress, and the Drama League Award, Distinguished Performance. She won the 2011/12 Tony Award, Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play.
Other nominations were the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Director and Outstanding Costume Design (Anita Yavich), the Drama League Award for Distinguished Production of a Play, and the Tony Award for Best Play.
- Jones, Kenneth. "David Ives' Venus in Fur, With Bentley and Arianda, Begins World Premiere in NYC", Playbill, January 13, 2010
- Healy, Patrick. "Back From the Depths, Rebuilding a Career" The New York Times, February 7, 2010
- Healy, Patrick. "Run Extended for Venus in Fur", The New York Times, February 3, 2010
- Isherwood, Charles. "One Object of Desire, Delivered" The New York Times, January 28, 2010
- Haun, Harry. "Nina Arianda: A Star Is Born", Playbill, January 31, 2010
- Jones, Kenneth. "Venus in Fur, in a Commercial Mood, Resumes on Broadway Feb. 7", Playbill, February 7, 2012
- Itzkoff, Dave. "Nina Arianda to Dominate New Broadway Production of Venus in Fur", The New York Times, June 28, 2011
- Isherwood, Charles. "Theater Review. Venus in Fur", The New York Times, November 8, 2011
- "Venus in Fur a dominant piece of theatre" by Natalie Bochenski, Brisbane Times, 28 June 2013
- "Theater: The year in review in Sacramento" by Marcus Crowder, The Sacramento Bee, 27 December 2013
- Broadway review by Marilyn Stasio, Variety, 9 February 2012
- The character is named "Wanda von Dunajew" in the novel.
- The character is named "Severin von Kusiemski" in the novel.
- Gans, Andrew. "Outer Critics Circle Awards Noms Announced; 'Memphis', 'Royal Family' Top List", Playbill, April 26, 2010
- Jones, Kenneth. "Everyday Rapture, Glass Menagerie, The Pride Are Among Lortel Award Nominees", Playbill, April 1, 2010
- Jones, Kenneth and Hetrick, Adam. 2012 "Tony Awards Nominations Announced; Once Earns 11 Nominations", Playbill, May 1, 2012
- "Roman Polanski To Helm Screen Version Of Venus in Fur" by Mike Fleming Jr, Deadline, September 20, 2012
- "Mathieu Amalric Replaces Louis Garrel In Roman Polanski's Venus in Fur" by Kevin Jagernauth, The Playlist, January 17, 2013