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L'Avant-Scène (formerly L'Atelier) performs 'Britannicus'

Thursday and Friday, Feb. 26-27, 2009, 8 p.m. · Sterling Morton Gallery, Princeton University Art Museum

L'Avant-Scène, Princeton's French theater workshop, will perform Jean Racine's "Britannicus" at 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday, Feb. 26-27, in the Sterling Morton Gallery of the Princeton University Art Museum. 

The group, formerly known as L'Atelier, was founded in 2001 by Florent Masse, a senior lecturer in the Department of French and Italian, who will direct the performance. This is the workshop's 14th full-length production in French, and the third of a complete set of plays by Racine. The show will feature advanced students.

The play tells the story of Britannicus, whose fiancée Junia is desired by his adoptive brother Nero. Nero has seized control over the Roman Empire, yet driven by competition in love and fear of being overthrown, he plots to assassinate Britannicus. Racine's play presents a meticulous examination of Nero's transition from a virtuous emperor to a monster driven by paranoia, corruption and depravity.

The performance is sponsored by the Department of French and Italian. Admission is free, but reservations are encouraged. To reserve seats, e-mail

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