It's curious that Curio Theatre wasn't too intimidated by the Wilma Theater's 2008 production of Sarah Ruhl's Eurydice to produce it itself. That earlier version, with its Barrymore-winning original music, sun-bleached set, and stylized direction, set a standard that this small, new-ish, low-budget West Philly company would have a rough time matching.
Even curiouser? Curio's production, under the direction of Liz Carlson, gets at the heart of Ruhl's work, humanizing it, bringing its tragic elements to the fore, and making the Wilma's production seem downright aloof. Part of that warmth may emerge naturally from the play's casting. Curio artistic director Paul Kuhn, who plays dear, departed Father to Tessa Kuhn's Eurydice, also happens to be her real-life father. But the younger Kuhn, still in high school, radiates an innocence that renders Eurydice's naive decisions an outgrowth of her lack of experience, rather than those of a mature woman willfully ignoring her instincts.