Thursday, April 24, 2014


Ulysses & Emma together after 20 years
Theatre Exile, located at 1340 S 13th Street, is presenting the Philadelphia Premiere of Sharr White’s Annapurna through May 11.   Annapurna takes its name both from the intriguing mountain chain that Ulysses, played by Pearce Bunting, can observe from his trailer window and from the epic poem he has written to his ex-wife whom he hasn’t seen in 20 years.  Catherine Slusar portrays Emma, Ulysses’ ex-wife. It is difficult to determine which one of them is more surprised when she appears unannounced at his doorstep with several pieces of luggage. He, because she reappears after having walked out on him 20 years ago, or she, because he is nude, except for an apron, and is living in almost total squalor in a beaten-down trailer.  What ensues is a tribute not only to Sharr White’s flawless writing but also to the superb performances of Barrymore Award winning actors Bunting and Slusar. The play is not without humor.  There are chuckles throughout, but this is by no means a comedy.   Emma cautiously investigates the foundations upon which her life with Ulysses had been based before she was forced to leave him.   With delicate precision Ulysses morphs from a craggy, self-absorbed hermit to a man more attuned to others’ reality. The production is greatly enhanced by the original music provided by sound designer Daniel Perelstein who works in conjunction with set and lighting designer Thom Weaver to provide prominent breaks in the dialogue with blackouts and music intervals. Sometimes it is tough to let go.  Come see this engaging production which will have you involved in grappling discussions the entire ride home from the theatre.  For more information or tickets call 215-218-4022 or visit online at                  


  1. Just saw the play this evening. Outstanding acting. Wonderful intensity. The two actors are on the stage for 90 minutes without break. Their moments of intimacy and silence are fascinating to watch.