See the Art of Sucess today at 2PM and 8PM
Arts Runoff is a Middblog series of performance reviews, originally written by JP Allen ’11. Ele Woods ’11.5 is going to take over the series for now!
Summary: A look at censorship, sexuality and artistry with a rock n’ roll feel. Nick Dear writes a smart and bawdy comedy that follows what happens when a famous— if not somewhat pedestrian— artist, William Hogarth, captures the portrait of a murderess in her last few days on earth. Hogarth’s series of paintings “A Harlot’s Progress” forces a discussion of government benefaction vs. creative liberty and the artist’s duty to society vs. his backer. Feminism, or rather, what it means to be various kinds of a man’s whore in 1730’s London, is also discussed. Poop jokes, dick jokes and the audience eating out (of) Lindsey Messmore’s hand.
Good: It was historically interesting and politically relevant. It was raunchy and it was wild. Many of the actors seemed like they were having a fun time onstage. Christo Grabowski was great, as always. His accent was clear and consistent and he performed his role with poise and humor. Max Hoffman, despite being such a young actor, has good timing, a strong stage presence and a comforting ease with his character. Izzy Shill, so beautifully transformed, was extremely convincing and did a great job in the kind of part we theater go-ers don’t often get to see her play. She made big choices for her role and the results were impressive. The costumes were beautiful and appropriately extravagant. The makeup was awesome. Jule Emerson, Marcia Provoncha, Hannah Rommer, and student seamstresses had a scandalously fun reinterpretation of the 18th century. Richard Romagnoli and the faculty design team have some great technical surprises up their sleeves that I don’t want to spoil, but will leave you hanging on the edge of your seat.
Bad: The top of the show seemed to lack a little energy and I wished more of the actors had been having more fun with such an awesome play. One doesn’t often get to romp around in bustiers and tight riding pants. Some could have afforded to take a few more risks. I found most of the accents difficult to understand. I know that accents as a rule can be hard, but many actors were lacking diction and volume. I mean, British actors can still understand each other through their accents right?
Broad: There were big risks taken by the director and the playwright that were dropped by some of the cast. However, the confidence and kink that seasoned theater majors Lindsey Messmore and Grabowksi brought to their one scene together, alone, made the play worth watching. It was enjoyable and it wasn’t too long of a show. I laughed and I cringed, but not as much as I should have or wanted to.
Contextual Rating: There are two more shows today! If you already have something planned this afternoon/ evening…
…do it, and see this show if you can.
…put it off and see ART OF SUCCESS
…skip it. SEE THIS SHOW
Playing at Seeler Studio Theatre in the CFA 2:00PM and 8:00PM today. Tickets are $6 for students. If they are sold out, the Seeler Theater holds enough seats to let in a few people off the wait list, so get there a half hour early to try to get in.