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CLC Theater Department stages French tale

'Les Liaisons Dangereuses” steamy
French tale intrigue seductiwill be presented by the
College Lake County Theatre department Nov. 9-11 Grayslake.

"Les Liaisons Dangereuses,” the steamy French tale of intrigue and seduction, will be presented by the College of Lake County Theatre department Nov. 9-11 in Grayslake.

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Updated: January 7, 2013 1:45AM

GRAYSLAKE — “Les Liaisons Dangereuses,” the steamy French tale of intrigue and seduction, will be presented by the College of Lake County Theater Department Nov. 9-10 at 7:30 p.m.; Nov. 11 at 2 p.m.; and Nov. 15-Nov. 17 at 7:30 p.m. at 19351 W. Washington St.

In this adaptation of the scandalous 18th century French novel, two former lovers play a game that begins as an amorous amusement, but soon escalates into a brutal battle where love and sex become the weapons of war.

The play was written by Christopher Hampton, adapted from the novel by Choderlos de Laclos and is being directed by Craig Rich. Movie fans may recall the Oscar award-winning 1988 film, “Dangerous Liaisons,” which starred Glenn Close, John Malkovich, Michelle Pfeiffer, Swoosie Kurtz, Keanu Reeves and Uma Thurman.

Rich said the theater department tries to produce a classical or period show every year.

“I thought this would be a good opportunity for students to work with stylized mannerism and movement and to work in these amazing costumes from the opulent 18th century French time period leading up to the French Revolution,” he said

Adjunct theater faculty member Beth Levine Chaitman has designed the costumes, which are being made by hand in the CLC costume shop. “The women’s dresses and men’s costumes are very complex and ornate,” Rich said.

To get the female actors used to moving about wearing wide skirts (supported by frames called paniers) and restrictive corsets, they rehearse in period appropriate garments to help them understand how clothing affected posture and movement, he said.

“It was all about appearances and distinguishing the upper from the lower classes in that time period. Vanity is very important to these characters and that’s ultimately what destroys some of them,” Rich said. “The play is just as much about psychology as it is about the seduction.

“The characters seduce the audience into liking them. Then we realize they’re manipulating each other. There’s a lot of revenge going on, which starts as a game that later becomes something much more serious.”

“Les Liaisons Dangereuses” cast includes: Valmont, Jason Clark, Abraham Cervantes and Ashly Codd, all of Waukegan; Susan Love of Grayslake; Andy Montano of Mundelein; Shannon Day and Hannah Shepherd, both of Antioch; Anthony Maggioncalda of McHenry; Ashley Rodriguez of Hainesville; Barbara Harmon of Lake Villa; Savannah Thomas of Winthrop Harbor; and Rodrigo Arreola of Lake Bluff.

Tickets are $8 to $10 and there will a special of buy one, get one free Nov. 9 and Nov. 15. The play contains mature and sexual subject matter and is not appropriate for audiences under age 13.

For more information, call (847) 543-2567 or e-mail

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