Reviews

Evoking Shakespeare

To start with, the prelude.  The actors, consistent with Shakespearean practices, get into their costumes on stage thirty minutes before curtain.  Mark Rylance, whose genius I will never understand, alternates between chatting with audience members who sit onstage, performing vocal exercises, and staring, eyes dilated, at some unremarkable point on the floor: at these moments, […]

Read more
Reviews

On a Dark, Dark Road in a Dark, Dark State

John Grisham’s South is an ethically uncomplicated place.  Racist hicks rape ten-year-old Black girls.  Idealistic lawyers, with rolled up sleeves and toothpicks planted firmly in their mouths, mosey into empty courtrooms—perhaps to spend a private moment with the smell of justice.  And fathers whose daughters have been harmed know the meaning of Ecclesiastes 3:1: “To […]

Read more
Reviews

Keeping Chekhov’s Cherry

Chekhov is one of the most difficult modern playwrights to stage.  His writing, like Tennessee Williams’, is incredibly flat on the page–lines like “It’s just six years ago father died, and only a month later our baby brother Grisha drown in the river” read as painfully expository–and thus an incredible burden is placed on his […]

Read more