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The female side of funny

Can women be funny as men? Three female Twin Cities actors will take the stage at Theatre L'Homme Dieu next week to prove that indeed they are. It all started when Daleko Arts, a theater group from New Prague, was trying to decide how to put its ...

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"The Complete Works of Shakespeare [Abridged]," is being performed by three female actors from July 31-Aug. 5 at Theatre L'Homme Dieu. (Contributed)

Can women be funny as men?

Three female Twin Cities actors will take the stage at Theatre L'Homme Dieu next week to prove that indeed they are.

It all started when Daleko Arts, a theater group from New Prague, was trying to decide how to put its own spin on "The Complete Works of William Shakespeare [abridged]."

"Obviously the show's been done a lot all over the place and it was originally done by three men," said artistic director Ben Thietje. "We are blessed to have a bunch of really funny women in our company. At that time we were hearing that sort of debate going around, which is ridiculous, can women be funny? We know a ton of funny women, they're right here in our company.

"So we said let's do this to show women can be as funny or funnier than the guys."

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Theatre L'Homme Dieu Executive Director Nicole Mulder visited New Prague to preview the show. Her verdict?

"I laughed so hard my face hurt. That's true," she said. "These three actors, they leave it all on the stage. They take risks that you don't typically see actors doing. It's physical comedy."

"The Complete Works" hits the highlights of Shakespeare's entire body of work, from "Romeo and Juliet" to "A Midsummer Night's Dream," mixing comedies and tragedies into a decidedly comic mixture.

"If you like Shakespeare, you'll love it. If you don't like Shakespeare, you'll love it," Mulder promised. "It's not limited to English majors."

So far, Daleko Arts has performed "The Complete Works" in its 78-seat theater. That's a small space for such a boisterous play, Thietje said, and he's looking forward to staging it in Theatre L'Homme Dieu's much-larger, 272-seat space.

"Our three women will definitely be able to fill that space," he said. "They have a lot of energy."

Daleko Arts, founded in 2013, is no stranger to Theatre L'Homme Dieu. Most recently, it brought "Urinetown" to Alexandria. Prior to that, it did "Little Shop of Horrors," "Rancho Mirage," and "The Philadelphia Story."

If you go

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WHAT: "The Complete Works of William Shakespeare [Abridged]"

WHERE: Theatre L'Homme Dieu, 1875 County Road 120, Alexandria

WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 31-Saturday, Aug. 4 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 5

ACTORS: Amanda White, cofounder of Daleko Arts, teaches theater at Normandale Community College; Christine Karki, Daleko Arts company member, directs theater at Totino Grace High School; Rita Boersma, improv performer in Twin Cities and artistic director of Huge Improv Theatre

Related Topics: THEATER
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A new episode is released every Tuesday and Thursday, giving readers a brief look at the stories found in Wednesday's and Friday's papers.
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Organizers hope to make this an annual event.
A new episode is released every Tuesday and Thursday, giving readers a brief look at the stories found in Wednesday's and Friday's papers.