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Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo

Nobody told the title character in Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo that you never, never bite the hand that feeds you. So he learns the hard way — from a tightly wired marine in occupied Iraq. Pity the tiger? In Rajiv Joseph's darkly humorous drama, the quick-witted predator will haunt the suffering, war-torn city, a marine who is armed with a gold-plated gun, and quite possibly those seated at Carolina Actors Studio Theatre. The larger lesson the tiger learns, as he is suddenly uncaged, causes him to ask biting questions about the horrific deeds of men — and the God who stands aloof from it all. It's another daring undertaking for CAST, since Joseph's assault on humanity's dismantling of Baghdad, a place that once defined civilization, requires a half-dozen Iraqi characters, including a couple speaking Arabic.

— Perry Tannenbaum

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