Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Plays I Want to See - Dec. 2018

Again, I was asked about what plays I'd like to see produced here in Los Angeles that I have not. Sooo...

The Duchess of Malfi, by John Webster, is probably the best-known Jacobean Tragedy (although one might make the argument Shakespeare's Hamlet deserves that title).  It has all the wonderfully macabre ingredients including extreme duplicity, sexual perversion, madness real and/or feigned, a huge body count at the end.  More to the point, it is a portrait of a world without either loyalty or compassion, where preening greedy cowards rule and corrupt all they touch.  One might well view this as especially topical at the moment.  The tale focuses on a young widow who has fallen in love with a gentleman who serves her--over the objections of her twin brother the Duke and their elder brother the (very) corrupt Cardinal.  At the center of the play lies Bosolo, a brilliant but cynical rogue who would in truth rather be honest and honorable.  Yet he is the one who actually commits the crimes commanded by the brothers.  Haven't seen a production of this play for years and years and years.

Let the Right One In, by Matt Thorne, based on the novel by Jan Alvide Linqvist.  Widely regarded as the best vampire tale since Anne Rice's first novel, LTROI has been adapted into two films and two stage plays.  The English language one premiered at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, then did a run in London before landing in New York.  It tells of Oscar, an unhappy (and very angry) bullied little boy who finds one night another twelve year old has moved next door--a girl name Eli.  But Eli is not a girl.  She's a vampire, lonely beyond words.  A strange, touching love story full of horror and hope in equal measure.  Would adore seeing this play in person.

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