Comedy/ 2 Characters, 1 Man, 1 Woman/ Full Length, Two Acts
Parsifal Samsondale, a middle-aged millionaire with suicidal tendencies, returns to his home town. At midnight, all his past loves eerily appear, through the body and voice of Madame Jo. Is she an authentic psychic medium — or a dangerous quack? Or perhaps an ordinary housewife who’ll stop at nothing to get her hands on Parsi’s wealth?
“Two extraordinarily dynamic actors in a play that’s hilariously funny, and ultimately very moving. Both realistic and surrealistic, with its detective story plot, in itself intriguing. I won’t give away the end.”
– International Herald Tribune
“The shattering encounter between a hypocritically well-behaved man and an outrageously improper lady, written with Alan Rossett’s invigorating sense of humor.”
– Paris Capital, April 1997
“A tasty comedy, brilliantly interpreted, transforming the Essaion Theatre into the salon of a seeress, meting out punishment and redemption. Scathing humor but also real humanity characterize this ‘parapsychological’ comedy.”
– Astro News, March 1997
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About the Playwright: “Cocteau meets Woody Allen” was film-director Jean Delannoy’s comment on Alan Rossett, the only American to have French language plays produced regularly in France . . . and to receive awards from the Centre National des Lettres. Born in Detroit, he began his career as an actor in New York, where he appeared for a season with the Living Theatre and also as James Earl Jones’ first Iago. Relocating in Paris, he wrote and directed an evocation of Montmartre Light and Shade with Charles Boyer. Then his comedy High Time went from London to Sydney to New York (at the Actors Studio) and wound up, translated, in a Parisian cafe theatre before transferring to La Bruyere, a Broadway category house.Rossett made the language cross-over into French with two plays set in restaurants which he staged in the midst of diners at a show biz hang-out, running 200 performances.
Many other productions followed of his French-language plays, including How It Happened, Cat As Cat Can, Love On Ice, Calamity Jane. Au Pair Girls premiered in Paris and was revived successfully at the Avignon Festival where it was nominated for a PIAF as comedy of the year.His French plays are published by Avant-Scene Theatre, Editions des quatre-vents, Editions Art et Comedie et Librairie Theatrale. He has adapted into English many of his own works as well as a series of plays by colleagues that have received grants from the Beaumarchais Association of the French Author’s Society. Rossett has done English versions as well of Alain Decaux’s historical pagaents (Chateau Blois Comes To Life and De Gaulle: the Man Who Said NO. As an actor, he has appeared in films of Marcel Carné, Woody Allen, and over 50 others.
Multiple Choice premiered at the Theatre Deque, Belfort, France, and subsequently tranferrred to the EssaÃ¯on ThÃ©Ã¢tre, Paris.