I’ve long differentiated actors from performers.
WHAAAAAAAAT THEEEEEEE FUUUUUUUUUCK?!?!?!?!
Given the relatively newfound popularity of 90-minute plays, double-bills of one-acts have largely gone out of style. What hasn’t faded over hundreds of years of theatre history are works that mix farce and slapstick, with a plethora of self-aware winking thrown in.
The Elevator Repair Service’s take on Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure theatrically literalizes textual fidelity.
In The Play Company’s site-specific production of Amir Nizar Zuabi’s’ Oh My Sweet Land, the thematically-resonant specifics of the site(s) contribute more to the play’s intended effect than the actual text.
Roundabout Underground’s production of Jiréh Breon Holder’s Too Heavy for Your Pocket is perfectly fine, but its across-the-board traditionalism runs contrary to the type of work ideally presented at the Roundabout Theatre Company’s black box space, especially in relation to what normally occupies this venerable institution’s other venues.
If In the Blood – the other half of Suzan-Lori Parks’ Scarlet Letter-reduxes The Red Letter Plays, currently receiving sterling revivals courtesy of the Signature Theatre – targets modern-day judgements rooted in lingering puritanical influences on American society, Fucking A delves into contemporary taboos that conform to the United States’ long puritanical lineage.
For students forced in high school to read Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, this seminal novel about the restrictive confines of puritanical American society ultimately constitutes their least favorite assignment on the curriculum. Despite the salacious nature of a story that revolves around infidelity, Hawthorne’s archaically flowery language and snail-like pace usually bores even the most sex-obsessed, hormone-addled adolescents.
I love finding old theatres hidden amongst the concrete buildings – and often in them, usually down dusty hallways and up gorgeous flights of stairs (or vice versa) – that comprise the jungle of New York City.
My main problem with criticism today, both formal and informal, can be summarized in the phrase: “the selfish audience.”