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When: Fridays-Sundays. Continues through Aug. 18 2013

Nikolai Gogol's unfinished 1842 novel follows the nefarious Chichikov as he tours Russia buying up deeds of dead serfs. The befuddlement of local landowners and the suspicions of various authorities provide comedy and suspense, but Gogol's heart is in creating precise, telling portraits of his fellow countrymen—Pushkin said of the book, "Gogol invents nothing; it is the simple truth, the terrible truth." Adapter-director Andy Monson invents a lot: in the confused world of his 75-minute Spartan Theatre production, troikas, serfs, and silver rubles exist alongside Google Maps, Twitter, and Edward Snowden. The superimposition of imperial Russian and contemporary American manners might have been fruitful if Monson's cast developed characters deeper than two dimensions. —Justin Hayford

Price: $16

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