Le Théâtre du Grand Guignol translates literally into "big puppet show." Horror isn't the first genre that comes to mind when thinking of puppets, but gore and taboo are specialties of Le Théâtre du Grand Guignol. The theater, located in Paris' racy Pigalle district, was known for its encounters with the law, having been shut down by police censors for such atrocities as portraying prostitutes and vagrants on stage. From 1898 to 1914, director Max Maurey measured the success of a Grand Guignol play by the number of audience members who fainted.
How will Santa Fe Playhouse measure its success?
Santa Fe Playhouse (142 East DeVargas, Santa Fe) presents its last weekend of Grand Guignol: The French Theatre of Horror, four one-acts from Le Théâtre du Grand Guignol soaked in blood, slathered in sex and covered in controversy. Grand Guignol runs Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 30 to Nov. 1, at 8 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 2, at 2 p.m. Halloween night features a special gala with live music, dancing, food and a costume contest. Tickets for the gala are $25; Saturday and Sunday performances are $15 general and $12 students/seniors; and Thursday night is pay-what-you-wish. Call the box office at (505) 988-4262 for info and reservations.