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31/34 Strike Me Down with a Play

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I knew I had been putting this off, but I didn’t realize it had been about EIGHT WEEKS since I posted last. Whoops! Time flies when you’re busy rehearsing and performing.

Paradise Lost, by Clifford Odets

I will more than sheepishly admit that despite my love of Odets’s language reading this play just took it out of me. I did finally finish it, but I had to put the Odets collection down to be picked up at a later date. I can’t even give a good synopsis or minute critique, because I just couldn’t pay attention while reading it. To top it off, it was really long, which just made reading the next play in the book too daunting without at least a short break.

Blasted, Cleansed, Phaedra’s Love, Skin (screenplay), by Sarah Kane

Phew! If you don’t know who Sarah Kane is, you probably need to look her up before you even read this brief piece on her work. First of all, let me say I am really glad I purchased this complete works. Although I’m pretty sure someone will begin my psych eval when I say this, her work is right up my alley, because of it’s experimental and edgey (UNDERSTATEMENT!) nature. That said, holy cow!! It was like reading the really horrific scenes in American Psycho, by Brett Easton Ellis. Brilliant writing and totally sick. You get sucked in and made terribly ill all at once. I would love to see a production, but am not sure I would ever have the mental stability to be involved in one. Also, nothing you could even begin to touch for audition material, as far as I can tell. It’s way too violent of content. I plan to finish reading this with Crave and Psychosis 4:48. I’m really looking forward to both, but they have no traditional plot of character definition, so I’m trying to find a time when I can sit down and be VERY focused on the stage picture in my head in hopes I can make sense out of those two works without seeing them.

I’m still a little behind, but I’ve got a bunch of fresh new plays to read and I think I’m going to blast through several more this week. Strategic reading. I’m also ready to write about everything else I’ve been avoiding (I mean everything, here) in these last weeks of performance. Woo hoo!

I do want to take a moment to “notice” something. While I don’t have a large readership, I am regularly surprised by the number and diversity of people who are actually reading this blog. I don’t think anyone really reads this particular section. I’m gonna keep writing it, all the same. Maybe I’ll think of some brilliant way to present these little minute critiques, but until then, sometimes you just gotta put keep turning the wheel. If there is one thing I hope people do get out of reading this section it is that this is the oft-overlooked side of that whole theatre career thing. While I love to read, it is work to get these plays read each week and my reviews are short because the last thing I want to do is write a full-length review every week on top of everything else. But it’s still super important and I still need (and frankly want) to do it, because it’s worthwhile to what I am doing across this blog. I hope whoever reads this can find a little golden nugget here.

Much love.


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