Theatre Mirror Reviews - "The Momentum Truck"

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"What Happened in Boston, Willie"

Reviews of Current Productions

note: entire contents copyright 2010 by Larry Stark


"A Tempest"

by William Shakespeare
Directed by Sean Eastman

Prospero..........................Sean Eastman
Caliban...........................Scott Sweatt
Ferdinand......................Samson Kohanski
Sebastian/Trinculo...Jonathan Michael Anderson
Miranda........................Veronica Barron
Ariel................................Erin Cole
Antonio/Stephano...................John Greene
Alonso............................Malik Rumeau

"Jabberwocky"

Choreography by Malik Rumeau
Original Music by Samson Kohanski

"The Leader"

by Eugene Ionesco
Directed by Sean Eastman

The Leader...Jonathan Michael Anderson
The Girl Admirer.......Veronica Barron
The Girl Friend..............Erin Cole
The Admirer................John Greene

Truck conceived & Built by Sean Eastman
General Manager Scott Sweatt
Sound Design/Development & Marketing by Samson Kohanski
Founding Player Juni Ng
Stage Manager Christine Williamson

If Andrea Shea's pieces for WBUR impelled you to take in the few outdoor performances of the MOMENTUM THEATRE TROUPE (and if you didn't read or hear them, click here) you know that it's a good idea to get there early. Their creation of "theater in a truck" is much more an experience than a a set of well-performed plays. There's first the unfolding of a several-level stage out of the side of their big white diesel-truck, setting out a couple of speakers for music and sound, placing Stage-Manager Christine Williamson's console out front controlling lights and sound, and the set-up of their "attire-ing room" --- a small blue tent backstage. Then it's On With The Shows!

Their version of "The Tempest" begins when Artistic Director Sean Eastman as Prospero, in flowing cape and cowl over a tempest of dark curls, sweeps his magic staff across the stage summoning sharp cracks of thunder while storm-tossed seamen stumble and shout atop the rig's head. Prospero and nimble Erin Cole as Ariel confer upon a kind of conning-tower, before he descends to the inner-stage to tell his daughter Miranda (Veronica Barron) how they came to an island inhabited only by Scott Sweatt's Caliban --- a grumpy animal covered in clay like a living gargoyle.

Prospero's old enemies Sebastian & Antonio (Jonathan Michael Anderson & John Green) as well as his new friends King Alonso (Malik Rumeau) and Prince Ferdinand (Samson Kohanski) think themselves wrecked on the isle. While Anderson and Green double as the drunkards Trinculo and Stephano, and plot with Caliban to kill Prospero and rule his island, Ferdinand finds love at first sight of Miranda, and as all reconcile in forgiveness even cramped Caliban stretches at last to full height reaching to attain grace.

then it's time to fold up their stage, pack everything back inside, and roll on to new pastures, with three car-loads of actors following their truck.

The night I caught them (Monday, 22 June) cool breezes blew past a half-moon in the blue and cloudy sky, but the night before predictions of a real tempest caused cancellation. As sunlight faded a row of small footlights brightened the stage, and as I looked around there were over a hundred people scattered about on the grass of Sennott Park --- a big percentage of them intrigued, respectful kids under four foot tall.

They'll play again tonight in Sennott Park (corner of Broadway and Norfolk, behind Central Square), then back to Cornish New Hampshire, and in a jagged line across to California before expecting to arrive again home in New Hampshire early August.

Starting a bit after six, the truck was ready to roll again by nine --- and The Momentum Theatre Troupe was given one bright star to wish on as they drove away.

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

21 & 22 June
"Jabberwocky"
"The Leader"
"The Tempest"
MOMENTUM THEATRE TROUPE
@ Sennott Press Park, Broadway & Norfolk Street, CAMBRIDGE MA
1(781)891-5600

THE THEATER MIRROR, New England's LIVE Theater Guide

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