Tuesday, December 03, 2002

Enemy of the People

. . Enemy of the People . . . overheard an audience member leaving the theater . . . "What an important work. Every student of history, in fact, all of us should be here watching!" . . . the ideas came at us with breath-taking speed . . . each scene moved relentlessly as the actors shaped the characters around the face of political intrigue . . .
. . . the student actor created a Mayor revealing a depth of understanding the multifaceted aspects of the deceptive, deceitful & misguided leader in a performance well beyond her years . . . Dr. Stockman transformed from a determined visionary full of hope and conviction to a beaten victim wrestling with his own futile belief in truth & ended somewhat bravely though certainly not a heroic figure . . .

. . . the supporting cast delighted with clear, articulate portrayals . . . varying the shades of response to the 'truth' as the 'truth'/whose truth shifted beneath them like the sands of time . . .

. . . the stark and paradoxically colourful set provided a stimulating environment which burst to life at the exquisitely choreographed and wonderfully executed newspaper scene . . . the music haunted as the lighting seamlessly shifted from moment to moment . . . what was particularly remarkable, especially for those familiar with the Ibsen script of 1882, was not only how Charles Marowitz's adaption strengthened the core ideological questions with a montage of flashbacks but how the cast deconstructed the characters, switching gender and dividing voices generating fresh, new insights . . .

. . . so much was attempted in this production that the only failing was that it deserved to be seen more than once to be fully appreciated and/or fully grasped . . . the grandmother, the great matriarch, lurked sinisterly around the action never quite allowing herself to be pinned down . . . did she support the Doctor or was she just another of the selfish . . . representing only the past . . . the past desperately desiring to preserve a legacy . . . the weak weasel of moderation played impeccably by the chairman was balanced perfectly by his strident and aggressive cohort . . . she delivered her lines with passion and sincerity . . . Stockman's family was a tight unit that clearly displayed family values . . . the press played the duplicity of objectivity with skill and precision . . .

. . . all in all a fabulous evening . . . thank you students for sharing a classic . . . no, much more, thank you students for breathing life into a classic of world theater . . .