Venus. The greatest highlight of the weekend.

I watched the last show of Venus; the play brought by The Actors Workshop Beirut and directed by a brilliant man called Jacques Maroun. This is Maroun’s third play after Reasons to be Pretty and Ka3eb 3aleh.


Venus stars Rita Hayek and Badih Bou Charkra, and Sunday was its 64th show – a great run!

I only wish that I have watched it before so that I can drag you all and force you to watch it. Then, you would refer to this play as the best 2 hours of your life; okay fine your week.

In case you missed it, I have top lined the best moments for me.

  1. Rita Hayek. I am starting with the best thing about the play. And it wouldn’t be enough to dedicate 10 bullet points to explain how good this actress is. Breathtaking honestly. Pretty, genuine, multi-talented, charismatic and under-celebrated. By far the best in town.


  1. Okay now that I have relaxed and can move on from Rita. I absolutely loved the stage and the set-up. And how the accessories keep coming into the scenes without you noticing their source and without any of the actors leaving stage for a second.
  1. How you don’t want it to end. And 2 hours pass so fast. You want to watch it over and over again. You keep hoping the end was only an intermission.
  1. How you watch an hour and a half of the play, and think that Rita is so much better than Badih. Compared to her, he seems okay. And then right there towards the last half an hour when you least expect it, he proves to you why he was chosen for this part and how amazing he is. Because 1 min was enough to turn everything around.

  1. How this play explains to you more about S&M than an entire trilogy of Fifty Shades books, and is much more believable and better to watch than the movie. You get a deeper look into the thought process of sado/mazo, not that you need that for education per se. But you don’t mind listening to it explained that is.


  1. How Rita moves from one character to another without you even noticing; and then a third layer of characters towards the end. She jumps from one personality to the other like working a seesaw and takes you on an amazing journey.
  1. Rita’s annoying high pitched voice she uses for her first character, along with that chewing gum. Such a small detail that says so much.
  1. The script. And that hilarious sense of humor. The stage was filled with laughter almost all throughout the play.


  1. A play that includes a lot of sexual and erotic implications but doesn’t annoy you. Pleasant on the eye and the ear. People should learn from this. We see worse pornography on our local televisions everyday; and it would only be a talk show.
  1. The corset that Rita had for most of the play, and that leather skirt. Oh and those boots. Basically everything that Rita had on.
  1. That epic scene where Rita embodies Aphrodite and transforms Badih into a little sub. It gives you chills.



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