eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of The Clean House. If I met you at—say—a party—and you said, I am from a small village in Brazil, and my parents were comedians, I would say: that’s very interesting. Charles tells Lane that Ana is his Bashert (soul mate) and that, according to Jewish law (although neither he nor Lane is Jewish), this means that their marriage is dissolved. THE CLEAN HOUSE by Sarah Ruhl In an imperfect world, the best solution is to laugh. I wear black because I am in mourning. Matilde manages to convince Lane to visit Ana in a medical capacity. —Sarah Ruhl and her plays remind us to be ten once more and play, to wonder if stones have thoughts as in Eurydice, if cell phones are portals to the afterlife as in Dead Man’s Cell Phone, and if jokes in other languages were funny enough to kill you as in The Clean House. I was like: clean my house! Right before Matilde's departure, she sees Lane's imagined idea of Charles and his lover. The play was a finalist for the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.[15][16]. She tries to tell Lane a joke, but as it is in Portuguese, Lane can't understand it. Matilde and Ana converse in Portuguese and Spanish on Ana's balcony, eating apples and throwing them into the 'sea,' which also happens to be Lane's living room. She does not know if her husband is sleeping with a prostitute because she does not smell his dirty underwear. "[14] At the end of 2006, Entertainment Weekly magazine named the New York production one of the top ten theatrical attractions of the year. Ana and Matilde bond immediately. I love dust. Ruhl’s The Clean House is honestly one of my favorite pieces of contemporary theatre. This funky comedy comfortably resides at B Street Theatre, home of eccentric new works. I’ve always wondered how one hospital can be more important than another hospital. If you do not clean: how do you know if you’ve made any progress in life? item 6 The Clean House by Ruhl, Sarah (Paperback) - The Clean House by Ruhl, Sarah (Paperback) $14.95 +$3.99 shipping. Ana, a woman who is older than Lane*. It is here that Charles returns with his tree. Her stage directions are also great, something that Ruhl is famous for. Then I remove the dust. We can tell she is telling a joke even though we might not understand the language. The man's function is to fall in … Both actors revived these roles for Northampton and UK tour, directed by John Dove. Award winning playwright Sarah Ruhl reminds us what’s important in life, and that humor and beauty still enchant in the most unlikely places. All of these things, she fails to know. Virginia says a prayer over the body. I understand that you have a life, an emotional life—and that you are also my cleaning lady. THE CLEAN HOUSE was produced at the Goodman Theatre (Robert Falls, Artistic Director; Roche Schulfer, Executive Director) in Chicago on May 9, 2006. Among her most popular plays are Eurydice (2003), The Clean House (2004), and In the Next Room (or the Vibrator Play) (2009). I know when there is dust on the mirror. Ana and Charles fight over her going back to the hospital. He did not marry until he was sixty-three because he did not want to marry a woman who was not funny. And she wouldn’t! It is a romantic comedy about a Brazilian cleaning woman, named Matilde, who wants to become a comedian. Their suspicions are confirmed when Lane tells them that Charles has left her for an older woman named Ana, a patient of his who had breast cancer and is now recovering from a mastectomy. If it were not for dust I think I would die.  And—in the meantime—I’ve been cleaning my house! Matilde gets out silver polish and begins polishing. Soon, Matilde arrives back at Lane's home with news that Ana's cancer has come back and that she refuses to go to a hospital. You know—jokes. It makes me--uncomfortable. Ana and Matilde are agents of change, and after encountering them Lane and Virginia will never be the same. You sound like a very interesting woman. The Clean House - PDA Presentation 1. She wears white. Page 1 of 9     Hilton Als, in The New Yorker, wrote of the "lazy romanticism about the proletariat, for whom she seems to have no real feeling at all. And I don’t want an interesting person to clean my house. [7] Directed by Bill Rauch, the cast featured Blair Brown (Lane), Jill Clayburgh (Virginia), John Dossett (Charles/Mathilde's father), Concetta Tomei (Ana/Mathilde's mother), and Vanessa Aspillaga (Mathilde).[6][8]. She exits. Matilde finally comes back to tell the audience, this time in English, about how her parents, both wonderful comedians, recently died. In his review of The Clean House, by Sarah Ruhl, Hilton Als argues that Sarah Ruhl is being ignorant in her portrayal of Matilde, the maid in The Clean House. Would you please clean the bathroom when you get a chance?Â. The Theatre Sarnia production won the Western Ontario Drama League (WODL) Festival as Best Production. The play was a finalist for the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. She does not know how long it takes the dust to accumulate under her bed. This book contains four plays by the talented Sarah Ruhl. She has a refined sense of deadpan. The Clean House is a play by Sarah Ruhl, which premiered in 2004 at Yale Repertory Theatre, was produced Off-Broadway in 2006, and has since been produced in many theaters. Download for offline reading, highlight, bookmark or take notes while you read The Clean House and Other Plays. I want you to do all the things I want you to do without my having to tell you. Places to put dead bodies. Conflict and comedy weave a whimsical tale about cleaning, relationships and finding the perfect apple. I was a student. Everyone in this play should be able to tell a really good joke. They are places for human waste. A serious career-oriented doctor, Lane, has hired a quirky Brazilian maid. Virginia, Lane’s sister, a woman in her late fifties. Matilde, a brazilian woman, wants to be a comedian and moves to the US after her parents die. This allowed them to compete at the provincial level, where they won "Outstanding Festival Production" at the Theatre Ontario Festival (2015). Matilde comes out first, telling an elaborate joke in Portuguese, without translation. While Lane is at work, Virginia comes to visit Matilde, having heard about her depression. Winner of the 2003-2004 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize Winner, and 2005 Pulitzer Prize in Drama Finalist. Then my parents died, making me the first funniest. The Clean Housewas Sarah Ruhl’s first play to garner significant national attention. Matilde—what did you do in your country before you came to the United States? He used to say: your mother—and he would take a long pause— (Matilde takes a long pause)—is funnier than I am. Amazon.com The Drama Bookshop Samuel French. The blue background you see is a close-up of a tile from a production of Eurydice at Second Stage, VIRGINIA: Matilde is looking out the window. A doctor does not say: Nurse—would you polish the silver, please. LANE: They argued, they said she choked on her own spit, but they don’t really know. A white living room. Matilde, Lane’s cleaning lady, a woman in her late twenties. Read this book using Google Play Books app on your PC, android, iOS devices. MATILDE: The play was produced at the Crucible Theatre, Sheffield, England in April 2006, (European Premiere) and at Northampton's Royal & Derngate theatres in February 2008 and then on a UK tour. My mother was old for a mother. And while I can't say Theatre Memphis' production of Sarah Ruhl's The Clean House "kills," exactly, it may stab you in the heart repeatedly with a scalpel. My sister has given up the privilege of cleaning her own house. Virginia then enters to tell the two that Charles and Ana are at the door. We took her to the hospital and I had her medicated and she Still Wouldn’t Clean. Available for purchase and/or licensing at: The play was a finalist for the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. "[13] Other publications, such as The Village Voice and The New Yorker[14] were more critical, writing about the play's style and its treatment of Matilde. The play's action happens among the women. I really enjoyed Clean House! It would kill her, she said, to have to spend her days laughing at jokes that were not funny.Â. by Sarah Ruhl. I studied humor. When my mother died laughing, my father shot himself. Other international productions include: The Marlowe Theatre in Canterbury (2008); the Espace Libre theatre (Montreal) in French (2008); Circa Theatre, Wellington, New Zealand (2009). Don’t misunderstand me—I’m an educated woman. It was produced at California Repertory Company (2015) in Long Beach, California. And so I came here, to clean this house. My cleaning lady—from Brazil—decided that she was depressed one day and stopped cleaning my house. They dance. He said he would wait until he met his match in wit.Â, And then one day he met my mother. I’ve never had a live-in maid. by Sarah Ruhl Romantic Comedy – The whimsical tale of a Brazilian maid who would rather be a comedian. Sarah Ruhl's The Clean House is on its way to becoming one of America's most produced plays this season -- in addition to this fall's expected Broadway engagement at … My sister is a wonderful person. The play premiered Off-Broadway at Lincoln Center's Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater on October 29, 2006 in a limited run to January 28, 2007. The only problem is that the maid, Matilde, hates to clean. People who give up the privilege of cleaning their own houses—they’re insane people.Â. Once connected, though, you commune warmly with her funny and compassionate sense of life's metamorphosing rewards and punishments. She wears black.  She is Brazilian. We touched briefly on Ruhl in my Theatre class and for a class or two in my playwriting class. The Clean House by Sarah Ruhl. The act ends with Charles calling to Lane from offstage. The dust always makes progress. at the Goodman Theatre from April to June 2006;[4] the Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Washington, D.C. from July 11 to August 14, 2005,[5][6] the Barksdale Theatre in Richmond, Virginia (2008) and Portland Stage Company, Portland, Oregon (2009). Sarah Ruhl received the prestigious Susan Smith Blackburn Prize in 2004 for her play The Clean House, which has been produced at Yale Repertory Theatre in New Haven, Wilma Theatre in Philadelphia, South Coast Repertory Theatre in Costa Mesa, and Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company in Washington, DC. Sarah Ruhl 2003-2004 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize Winner, 2005 Pulitzer Prize in Drama Finalist. Listen. They are dancing. The play is a whimsical romantic comedy centered on Matilde, a Brazilian cleaning woman who would rather be a comedienne. The play has been produced in many regional theaters, such as at the South Coast Repertory in its West Coast premiere from January 29, 2005 to February 27;[3] But if I were to die at any moment during the day, no one would have to clean my kitchen. It is about a husband who is a doctor and falls in love with his patient. Portland Stage Company presents The Clean House by Sarah Ruhl, September 24 - October 13, 2019. Is there anything more fulfilling than finally getting your house truly, deeply clean? The last line of the play is Matilde's as she tells the audience: "I think heaven is a sea of untranslatable jokes, except everyone is laughing. In the first Act, Charles plays Matilde’s father.  *Ana is named as sixty-seven within the dialogue. Sarah Ruhl (born January 24, 1974) is an American playwright, professor, and essayist. A compassionate surgeon. MATILDE: Matilde ends the play imagining her mother laughing as she gave birth to her. The Sheffield production featured Patricia Hodge (Lane) and Eleanor Bron (Ana/Mathilde's mother). Winner of the 2004 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize and a Pulitzer finalist, The Clean House reminds us that there is humor and beauty to be found in life’s most unlikely messes. A full list of Sarah Ruhl's plays. The story of my parents is this. LANE: Matilde watches. MATILDE: The next morning, she tells Ana her perfect joke. Clean House is the first and my favorite. Matilde explains that she doesn't like to clean and Virginia offers to clean the house for her every day before Lane comes home from the hospital. Something deeply personal—she has given up. The Clean House By Sarah Ruhl 2. Lane watches her for a moment, then exits. Charles wants her to fight her cancer more aggressively, with Ana refusing to subject herself to more hospitals. The Clean House won the 2004 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize,[1] awarded annually to the best English-language play written by a woman. MATILDE: Matilde, now being fought over by the two women, decides to split her time between both of their houses. She is Argentinean.  I’m sorry, but I did not go to medical school to clean my own house. My favorite character is Lane. Three characters address the audience. What is it about? They laugh until laughing makes them kiss. I don’t like to order people around. A metaphysical Connecticut. The director, Joanne Gordon, noted that Ruhl "...presents a female perspective with wit, with humor, with subtlety, and the element which I enjoy so much about her work... it possess that kind of Latin magic - realism."[9]. Matilde, Lane’s cleaning lady, a woman in her late twenties.She wears black. She refused many proposals. Meanwhile, back at Lane's house, she and her sister fight, with Lane taking out her frustration over the situation on Virginia's obsessive cleaning. The 2005/2006 Season production of Sarah Ruhl’s The Clean House, directed by Jessica Thebus, at Goodman Theatre in Chicago, Illinois. The Clean House. A romantic comedy about loss, love, change and redemption, The Clean House is both whimsical and touching. Paperback (New Edition) $ 10.95. While at Ana's home, Lane examines Ana with an air of coldness before breaking down and yelling at her for making Charles love her in a way he never loved Lane. The doctors couldn’t explain it. A balcony. Have you ever heard the expression ‘I almost died laughing?’ Well that’s what she did. It was said that my father was the funniest man in his village. In the first Act she plays Matilde’s mother. He asks her to wait as he learns to fly a plane himself. $20.00. Lane meets him at the door, where she lets him know what happened and forgives him. That is progress. Ana, after learning Matilde was just fired by Lane, offers for Matilde to come and clean their house. That’s very interesting. And—in the meantime—I’ve been cleaning my house! Nurse—would you polish the silver, please. My parents were the funniest people in Brazil And then they died. He specifically says that in her portrayal of a latina Woman, who is supposed to be Brazilian, she does it as a stereotypical latina woman. They are not the best dancers in the world. MATILDE: «     Ana and Charles transform back into her parents and there is a moment of completion between the three of them. A serious career-oriented doctor, Lane, has hired a quirky Brazilian maid. I’m being serious too. She’s a doctor. Matilde sobs, and upon hearing the noise, Lane and Virginia come back into the room. As Matilde whispers in Ana's ear, beautiful music plays over the audience and Ana laughs until she dies in Matilde's arms. Peter Marks, reviewing the 2005 Woolly Mammoth Theatre (Washington, DC) production, wrote: "As with most original voices, it takes a while to tune into Ruhl's wavelength. Not knowing what to do with herself, Matilde came to America to clean this house. Lane and Matilde are still trying to work out their situation, especially since Lane feels uncomfortable having to order Matilde around and Matilde does not seem to be cleaning. I just want my house—cleaned. Matilde reluctantly agrees. And the jokes would really work better in English. I don’t—always--understand the arts. The Clean House is a play by Sarah Ruhl, which premiered in 2004 at Yale Repertory Theatre, was produced Off-Broadway in 2006, and has since been produced in many theaters. They laugh until laughing makes them kiss. "[11], Charles Isherwood of The New York Times wrote that the play is "...a gorgeous production that fully taps its tart humor, theatrical audacity and emotional richness... Sociology is just one small thread in the multihued tapestry of “The Clean House,” a play that keeps revealing surprising insights, whimsical images and layers of rich feeling as it goes along."[12]. See all … Charles performs surgery on Ana and then they act out the scene where they meet for the first time and fall in love in a matter of moments. She tells them that Charles, frantic for his lover's health, has gone to Alaska to cut down a Yew tree, which supposedly has healing powers. Enjoy the videos and music you love, upload original content, and share it all with friends, family, and the world on YouTube. A romantic comedy about loss, love, change and redemption, The Clean House is both whimsical and touching. Sarah Ruhl received the prestigious Susan Smith Blackburn Prize in 2004 for her play "The Clean House," which has been produced at Yale Repertory Theatre in New Haven, Wilma Theatre in Philadelphia, South Coast Repertory Theatre in Costa Mesa, and Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company in Washington, DC. She was laughing at one of my father’s jokes. The Clean House 94. by Sarah Ruhl. Most of all, it has tremendous compassion....It’s her skill at weaving together the jagged edges of conflicting lives — finding common ground between neurotic sisters, rivals for the same man or just people with discordant attitudes to life — that makes Ruhl’s play as rewarding humanistically as it is theatrically. Lane allows Ana to move in with her while Charles is away. A joke he took one year to make up, for the anniversary of their marriage. Sarah Ruhl's "The Clean House" is a rich, ruminative work about the big themes of love, life and death from a young playwright with an original and audacious voice. ... Sarah Ruhl reimagines the classic ... Quickview. There was no one left to laugh at my jokes, so I left. That just popped out! MATILDE: Eurydice. She has been the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship and the PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation for Theater Award for a distinguished American playwright in mid-career. You’re right. MATILDE: I was the third funniest person in my family. Charles, Ana, and Matilde leave to go apple picking. Complete summary of Sarah Ruhl's The Clean House. As time passes, Charles sends a telegram, telling Ana that he has found a tree, but cannot get it onto a plane. If there were no dust to clean then there would be so much leisure time and so much thinking time and I would have to do something besides thinking and that thing might be to slit my wrists. My cleaning lady—from Brazil—decided that she was depressed one day and stopped cleaning my house. Ruhl's writing is easy to follow, and I love the simplicity of her writing. She is Brazilian. Always Ready With a Joke, if Not a Feather Duster", "John Patrick Shanley's 'Doubt' Wins 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Drama", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=The_Clean_House&oldid=980245363, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 25 September 2020, at 12:09. She tries to laugh, but just ends up crying. Free shipping. Or, a house that is not far from the city and not far from the sea. White couch, white vase, white lamp, white rug. I like the simplicity of the comedy … Posted by marlenaeckel December 25, 2019 March 13, 2020 Posted in Comedy, Medium, Men, Monologue, Short, Women Tags: Monologue, Monologues, Theatre. Dramatic Comedy / 5m, 2f / Unit Set In Eurydice, Sarah Ruhl reimagines the classic myth of Orpheus through the eyes of its heroine. This is difficult for me. Lane fires Matilde. Lane, taking her aggression out on Ana, argues that she relies on Matilde and couldn't bear to part with her. Lane doesn't know how to react, though she is clearly upset and bitter about the turn of events. It was directed by Samuel West. Nurse: polish the silver. I loved the show so much I suggested one of the monologues to one of my actress friends. For the television show, see, "Ruhl Rules as World Premiere Comedy 'Clean House' Opens at Yale Rep, Sept. 23", "Ruhl's Popular The Clean House Opens Oct. 30 at Lincoln Center Theater", "Theater Review. Matilde tells a long joke in Portuguese to the audience. And I have met you in the context of my house, where I have hired you to clean. It had its debut in 2004, at the Yale Repertory Theatre and was staged Off-Broadway in 2006. The two women share a moment, and Lane manages to forgive Ana. Â. Even when they made love they laughed like hyenas. We have never been apart since the day we met, because I always wanted to know the next joke.Â, My mother and father did not look into each other’s eyes. ». This article is about the play. Matilde. We may never know because The Clean House is a side-splitting comedy about a cleaning lady who’d rather perfect her stand-up routine than clean the house. It was awarded the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize in 2004, was a 2005 Pulitzer Prize finalist, and has been produced at major theatres nationwide. Lane deduces that Virginia has been cleaning the house instead of Matilde. At an important hospital. And yet thanks to the alchemical imagination of Sarah Ruhl, the gifted author of “The Clean House,” this strange grab bag of ideas and images, … Playwright Sarah Ruhl constructs The Clean House in an intriguing way. They laughed like hyenas. They kiss until kissing makes them laugh. [10], It has received positive reviews from some critics: David Rooney, the Variety reviewer wrote: "This funny, tender play has screwy poetry and penetrating wisdom, oddball humor, deadpan soap, operatic arias, fantasy, spirituality and a soaring sense of romance. The Clean House and Other Plays - Ebook written by Sarah Ruhl. No, it’s just that—I don’t like giving orders in my own home. The Clean House is a play by Sarah Ruhl. Instead, she longs to be a comedienne. Do you tell the nurses at the hospital what to do? The second act begins with Ana, a free-spirited Argentine, and Charles, who are the same actors who have been playing Matilde's parents during act 1. This number may be changed from production to production if need be. Two of her plays have been finalists for the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and she received a nomination for Tony Award for Be… I’m not a morbid person. She finishes the joke. We took her to the hospital and I had her medicated and she Still Wouldn’t Clean. The play was a finalist for the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. She is followed by Virginia, Lane's older sister, a housewife, who argues that people who do not clean their own homes are insane. They kiss until kissing makes them laugh.Â. He is child like underneath his white coat. “The Clean House” was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in 2005 and is one of Sarah Ruhl’s most beloved plays. Charles, Lane’s husband, a man in his fifties. This is how I imagine my parents. Next Lane, a doctor in her 50s, explains that Matilde, her Brazilian maid, is depressed and has been failing to clean her house and so she had her medicated. item 7 Clean House, The, Like New Used, Free shipping in the US - Clean House, The, Like New Used, Free shipping in the US. The play then deposits the characters back to where act 1 ended, as Ana and Charles are let into the house awkwardly. Ana's condition, however, quickly worsens, and unwilling to have cancer beat her, she asks Matilde to kill her with a joke. LANE: She is impossibly charismatic. ", The Clean House had its world premiere at the Yale Repertory Theatre, Connecticut, from September 17 to October 9, 2004, directed by Bill Rauch.[1][2]. CHARACTERS: Lane, a doctor, a woman in her early fifties.She wears white. While standing alone on Ana's balcony, Matilde discovers her 'perfect joke' and realizes that it did not kill her after all. Sarah Ruhl, the author of “Eurydice” and “The Clean House.” Credit... Fred R. Conrad/The New York Times  Lane, a doctor, a woman in her early fifties. My mother died last year. Lane enters. A romantic comedy about loss, love, change and redemption, The Clean House is both whimsical and touching. Matilde and Virginia discover panties in Lane's laundry that look too sexy for her and begin suspecting her husband Charles, also a doctor, is cheating on her. Sarah Ruhl’s The Clean House feels like it’s been thoroughly scrubbed of human ambiguity. directed by Les Waters and designed by Scott Bradley. Matilde watches as the two react to Ana's illness in their separate ways. LANE: He hands her the tree as he goes to approach the body. Matilde has come full circle with her parents, from death back to birth, finding finality and closure in the moment. To be childish, to be childlike — to be ten! LANE: The play is a whimsical romantic comedy centered on Matilde, a Brazilian cleaning woman who would rather be a comedienne. June 28 – October 22, 2018. 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