Friday, September 25, 2009

Play of the Week: The Coming World

Christopher Shin's drama explores how we communicate with each other; what we say, what we do, and what we don't say or do. Set against the backdrop of the early 2000's, the characters are struggling with new changes in technology: debit cards, DVD's and the Internet are changing the way we look at the world and the way we communicate with each other.

The most interesting aspect of the play is the casting. Two actors play three roles. The woman plays the same character throughout, so the story is seen through her eyes. But the real catalyst to the action are the two characters played by the man. He plays identical twins. One who is down on his luck, often unemployed, frequently on drugs, and ends up robbing the Blockbuster Video where the woman works. The other is a clean-cut, computer software programmer who has covered himself in home-made tattoos. The brothers couldn't be more opposite.

As the characters struggle to reach out and connect to one another, we are constantly reminded of their isolation. The play is set on a deserted New England beach that the playwright very specifically asked by represented only though a bare stage with minimal lights and no sound effects. The play becomes an intense character study that will give any seasoned actor and actress the challenge of really flexing his and her acting muscles.

September 26 Birthdays: T.S. Elliot (1888-1965) & Georgre Gershwin (1898-1937)

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