This review has come late, and for that I do apologize. Sex & Love in the Modern Age is the latest exploration at ZJU of a given theme, in word (including both song and poem) as well as movement, including dance. It consists of a ten member troupe acting out a series of vignettes.
So what we experience is a kind of odyssey, an exploration of so many pitfalls and nuances of simple (and not nearly so so simple) human connection. Yes, the meeting of the two rare individuals in a crowd not staring into their iPhones. Yes, the fear of intimacy amid temptations of availability. Humor from the potential perverts might find in the internet here. A dash of lesbian bondage there. An almost surreal but potentially just real example of parents giving the "talk" to their gay son on prom night.
And if this sounds like the theatrical equivalent of paint-by-the-numbers, then I've given the wrong impression. Instead we get a kind of variety show which achieves more than mere entertainment. While exploring the pitfalls and even some dangers of human connection, the performers actually make one. With the audience. The show doesn't simply come up with one funny skit after another (for one thing, they aren't all funny--some even are a tiny bit heart-breaking). It hits the chord of deja vu. These are our hopes as well, and our fears.
|Photo Credit: Sebastian Munoz|
For the record, plenty of Zombie Joe regulars can be seen, including Nicole A. Craig, Jennifer Novak Chun (she of the cello), David Wyn Harris, Ian Heath (not naked once for a change) and Roger K. Weiss. Others in the cast are Lee Quarrie, John Santo, Jacquie Waldman and Julian Zambrano. I mention Callie Williams last simply because I want to praise her pipes--strong singers have their own special magic, like extremely fine dancers, and she is one.
Sex & Love in the Modern Age plays at ZJU 4850 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood, CA 91601 (just south of the NoHo sign, north of Camarillo) Fridays and Saturdays at 8:30pm until March 26. Unless there is an extension. I hope there is.