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Big Love

August 21st, 2009 No comments

Full nudity, raving lunatics throwing themselves about, violence blood and murder! What more could you possibly desire? Big Love at convergence is mayhem, a theatrical free for all: part Greek tragedy (which it was) part Grand Guignol and part battle of the sexes.

Based on Aeschylus’ The Suppliant Woman, Charles Mee updates the ancient play to make it a little timelier and Clyde Simon, director, does the rest, adding his unique penchant for comic timing and three-dimensional sense of theater. This sense is perhaps best demonstrated by the spontaneous musical interlude during which the grooms perform a combination rap number and Tom Waits extravaganza—utilizing metal pails, stomping feet, and other make shift instruments.

Liz Conway is great as Lydia, who ultimately betrays her sister’s compact of nuptial slaughter because she truly (accidentally) falls in love with Nikos (Scott Gorbach). Bobby Williams plays a wonderfully remote Piero; Laurel Johnson does an excellent job as the often confused and bubble-headed Olympia; Tony Thai provides much needed light-hearted relief as the gay mediator between the sexes; and, as always, one cannot miss the performance of Lucy Bredeson-Smith as Bella.

The rants and diatribes from each sex are often too long and border on cliché and tedium. But the glorious absurdity of the play is a strength, as is the hard-chiseled difference between the sexes.

The play is worth seeing if you can manage to get in, as I think its on its way to selling out.

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