A case of mistaken identity leads to classic laughs in ‘The Government Inspector,’ Nov. 16-20 at UCSB.

A case of mistaken identity leads to classic laughs in ‘The Government Inspector,’ Nov. 16-20 at UCSB. (Courtesy photo)

The next installment of the UCSB Department of Theater/Dance’s 2022-23 season will be “The Government Inspector” at the Hatlen Theater, Nov. 16-20. The show is adapted by Jeffrey Hatcher from the original by Nikolai Gogol, and directed by Michael Bernard.

In a small Russian town, the locals discover an undercover government inspector is surprising them with a visit, and in an unfortunate case of mistaken identity, the town spirals into widespread panic and desperate greed.

A hilarious presentation, guided by a clever script, Bernard combines classic and contemporary comedic elements that the audience should find both relevant and relatable.

“I am working to find honesty in the absurdity of this play,” said UCSB faculty member Bernard, who came to Santa Barbara after 10 years as associate artistic director for the 52nd Street Project in New York City. He has since acted in Santa Barbara and abroad with Lit Moon Theater Company, Elements Theater Collective, and SBCC

“I hope audiences will be able to connect with the farcical, slapstick, and wildly satirical play, frothing with contemporary-feeling characters, musical interludes, and witty dialogue that deftly captures the realities of self-serving politicians.”

Performaces are at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 16-19, and 2 p.m. Nov. 19-20. For tickets and more information, visit theaterdance.ucsb.edu, or call the box office, 805-893-2064.

Pre-sale tickets are $13 for student/faculty/staff/senior; $17 general admission. Day-of tickets are $15 student/faculty/staff/senior; $19 general admission.

Note: This production of “The Government Inspector” includes simulated gunshots, and mentions of suicide.

Health protocols for 2022-23 events will be determined in conjunction with evolving state, local and university guidelines, and are subject to change. Please check the Theater/Dance website for details and updates closer to the date of the event.