A THOUSAND WORDS - Alex Waterhouse-Hayward's blog on pictures, plants, politics and whatever else is on his mind.




 

Intimate Apparel - Roumanians, Italians & Tears
Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Jonathon Young of the Tribe of Ephraim

Last night’s opening performance of Lynn Nottage’s Intimate Apparel (directed by John Cooper) the Arts Club Theatre Company’s Granville Island Stage had a first act that was ripe with humour. It was the second act with its bleak finish that sent Rosemary and I home a bit on the depressed side but still with the feeling that the evening had been one to savour in spite of the tears.

The revelation to me was the absolutely riveting performance of Marci T. House’s Esther. House was stark in looks and she gave me the impression she had been formerly living in the 19th century and had simply hopped on H.G.’s machine to travel to our times to audition for the part.

The other startling one was how Daren Herbert (George, Esther’s long-distance paramour) shifted, dramatically, from sweet in the first act to a deadening cold manipulator in the second. He was scary. Two women next to me commented after the play was over, " He was disgusting."

On a more positive note it was startling, also, to observe Lesley Uwen play a genteel but firm owner of a pension for single black women. She hit a just right note between that firmness and empathy for the girls she coddled and protected. Startling for me as I have seen the hilarious (and never until now that ever so slightly sedate) Uwen in many a Leakey Heaven Circus production and I believe she may have even played St. Joseph in one of them.


Anna Cummer cries
In that first act the sweet and gentle Daren Herbert stands on stage left. Rosemary and I were very close to him on stage left. As Herbert described the death of a water boy in his digging that canal in Panama I clearly saw tears falls like rapids from his eyes. I have always marveled at an actor’s ability to do just that. As the lights turned on after that first act I spied Vancouver actor Marco Soriano so I went up to him and asked him (this a rough version of what we talked about as I did not tape him!)

Me - Marco can you cry on demand?
Marco - No, I f----- can’t. But I can cry as an actor if I am emotionally involved in my part.
Me - You could not have then played George in this play.
Marco - Of course not, I’m Italian not black.
Me – But Daren Herbert played an Italian haberdasher in the Patrick Street production of Light in the Piazza back in September.
Marco – I am glad that they were able to find an Italian black man for the part!

Listening to Jonathon Young play a Roumanian Jew cloth salesman (Mr. Marks) was astounding. He was ample proof that the distinguished anthropologist and semiotician Willoughby Blew’s theory that remnants of the lost tribe of Ephraim managed to settle in New Dublin, Ontario in the beginnings of the 19th century is a definite possibility.


Lesley Ewen
Watching Anna Cummer (Mrs. VanBuren), Marci T. House and Marsha Regis (Mayme with no hint of an auntie in her performance) was breathtaking even though I wasn’t wearing one of Alison Green’s lovely Corsets. Of Marsha Regis I may add that I was hopefully anticipating a wardrobe malfunction but that was not to be.

Marco Soriano - The Italian


One of Alison Green's corsets




     

Previous Posts
Undead, Undead , Undead - Alas!

Degas, Sandrine Cassini & Newton & Leibniz's Asymp...

A Book By Its Cover

An Unromantic Interpretation Of A Woman In Bed

Brother Alex Gets A Haircut

A Spiritual Retreat With the Brothers of Holy Cros...

Meredith Kalaman - Dancer/Choreographer

A Gloomy Sunny Day In Punta Del Este, Uruguay

The Perfect Square

A Dominatrix Smiles



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9/18/16 - 9/25/16

9/25/16 - 10/2/16

10/2/16 - 10/9/16

10/9/16 - 10/16/16

10/16/16 - 10/23/16

10/23/16 - 10/30/16

10/30/16 - 11/6/16

11/6/16 - 11/13/16

11/13/16 - 11/20/16

11/20/16 - 11/27/16

11/27/16 - 12/4/16

12/4/16 - 12/11/16

12/11/16 - 12/18/16

12/18/16 - 12/25/16

12/25/16 - 1/1/17

1/1/17 - 1/8/17

1/8/17 - 1/15/17

1/15/17 - 1/22/17

1/22/17 - 1/29/17

1/29/17 - 2/5/17

2/5/17 - 2/12/17

2/12/17 - 2/19/17

2/19/17 - 2/26/17

2/26/17 - 3/5/17

3/5/17 - 3/12/17

3/12/17 - 3/19/17

3/19/17 - 3/26/17

3/26/17 - 4/2/17

4/2/17 - 4/9/17

4/9/17 - 4/16/17

4/16/17 - 4/23/17

4/23/17 - 4/30/17

4/30/17 - 5/7/17

5/7/17 - 5/14/17

5/14/17 - 5/21/17

5/21/17 - 5/28/17