Theatre Mirror Reviews - "Eurydice"

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"What Happened in Boston, Willie"

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note: entire contents copyright 2008 by Larry Stark


"Eurydice"

by Sarah Ruhl
Directed by Rick Lombardo

Scenic Design by Janie E. Howland
Lighting Design by Deb Sullivan
Costume Design by Frances Nelson McSherry
Stage Manager Jennifer Braun

Father....................................Ken Baltin
Orpheus..............................Brian Bielawski
Eurydice................................Zillah Glory
Interesting Man/Lord of The Underworld...Brian Quint
Little Stone........................Whitney Sandford
Loud Stone................................Abby Spare
Big Stone............................Rebecca Stevens

"Did you like it? I didn't like it. I didn't Understand it! How can I review something I can't understand?"
"Look, I didn't understand it either ... and I Loved it!"

Maybe the New Repertory Theatre's production of Sarah Ruhl's "Eurydice" is a show designed to separate "mere reviewers" like me from "Serious Critics" like... well, never mind. Let's just say it didn't bother me when Brian Quint played The Lord of The Underworld swirling around the stage peddling a gaudily festooned tricycle. It didn't bother me when Eurydice at the end of a long descent arrived in an elevator that had a shower bouncing off her parasol. [Oh! A bath in the river Lethe washes all memories of life from the newly-dead, doesn't it!] I didn't much care that the story --- of Orpheus turning around on the way back and losing his beloved bride forever --- is a minor incident late in the long one-act play. [Doesn't everyone know That story already anyway?] After all, Sarah Ruhl's bouncily original play isn't titled "Orpheus", is it? No, fact is I thrilled to the young-love of Brian Bielawski and Zillah Glory (O. & E. natch), but it fascinated me that she was then reunited with her long-dead father (Ken Baltin who, I swear, tap-dances Barefoot!) in a somewhat appropriate finale. And Janie E. Howland's lushly sci-fi set is simply Scrumptious! No, I didn't understand it. I just loved it!

Here Orpheus always answers "Music" when asked "What are you thinking?" --- he IS the god of music after all. Here her father dances when he learns his daughter will be joining him in the realm of the dead, and he does indeed build her a house out of string. At two points --- one in mime, the other with her on his arm --- Baltin re-enacts the slow, happy march of a bride's father toward that "death" of their relationship which is handing her on to a husband. Here the stones that sang so sadly when Orpheus (brandishing a solid-body) came to bring her back to life, these stones are three slow-stepping children who make up a clear-eyed chorus. And the sci-fi globes dominating the bright set change their glowing colors to match moods. Zillah Glory --- in a polkadot bathing-suit or a Mrs. Kennedy pink summer formal or a red-red dance-dress is an electric Eurydice, always --- even in death --- bursting with joyous life.

This play isn't about plot, it isn't about story, it isn't designed to be Understood.
But I loved it...

Love,
===Anon.
( a k a larry stark)

"Eurydice" (14 September - 5 October)
NEW REPERTORY THEATRE
200 Dexter Avenue, WATERTOWN, MA
1 (617) 923-8487

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