Metro Weekly

A Clockwork Orange at Scena

A Clockwork Orange

Robert MacNamara has wanted to stage A Clockwork Orange essentially from the moment he co-founded his stalwart theater company Scena — the same year Burgess published his theatrical adaptation of his original novel — in 1987. After decades of waiting in the wilderness, MacNamara’s determination has paid off in a gung-ho production that enhances your impression of the story. The play is every bit as confusing and troubling as Stanley Kubrick’s incendiary film — but it also has a clearer resolution. Kubrick based his film on the published American version of Burgess’s original story, which inexplicably lopped off the final chapter, in which the story’s anti-hero, Alex, sees the errors of his violent ways and verily, of his own free will, works to reform himself. Without this resolution, the film leaves one feeling a bit hopeless about society’s malcontents — and about government. By contrast, the play helps one keep some sense of faith in humanity and authority. To Nov. 18. The H Street Playhouse, 1365 H St. NE. Tickets are $25 to $30. Call 703-683-2824 or visit

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Randy Shulman is Metro Weekly's Publisher and Editor-in-Chief. He can be reached at