Review: Variety With Death, Comedy And Strings

The key word to describe Theatre of the People’s latest offerings is 'variety.'

Event Information

Project Hh: The Hoosier Short-Play Showcase

Theatre of the People performs eight new original short plays interspersed with monologues.


Rose Firebay Theater

February, 2,3,4 & 5 at 7:30 pm and February 5 & 6 at 2:30 pm.

Tickets available at the door

The key word to describe Theatre of the People’s latest offerings is ‘variety.’

Project Hh is the Theatre’s “Hoosier Short-Play Showcase.” It is eight plays, interspersed with monologues.

The Themes

One theme that runs throughout the showcase is death and loss. Two plays deal with death, the anger and guilt of the living, and with loss and love. Two others revolve around talking down a person attempting suicide. One play follows the disturbing step by step descent of one character from comfortable affluence to naked poverty and; another follows the equally disturbing forward progress of mankind, from beating out rhythms with a stick to nuclear devastation.

Comedy is present, too, in three of the plays. One monologue takes a negative turn on Al Franken’s SNL conversations with his mirror. A silent scene involving characters in a study shows that actions can speak as loud as words. Finally, a law school-bound young man decides that his early fascination with Johnny Depp requires a detour.

Finales

The plays that serve as finales of the first and second acts of Theatre of the People’s Project Hh are a bit more challenging than the others. In Something Solid, Something Dead, actors with labels form a sort of assembly line, interrupting themselves from time to time with direct speeches to the audience. The overall effect is not entirely successful.

In High Strung, a young man is literally connected—with lengths of yarn—to friends, family, and responsibilities. The complex working-out of his system is quite interesting. Though it’s something of a one trick pony, I’d like to see it better worked out.

At the theater for you, I’m George Walker.

George Walker

George Walker was born in Winchester, Virginia, and raised in Owl’s Head, Maine, and Valhalla, New York. After graduating from the University of Michigan, he came to Bloomington in 1966 and completed an M.A.T. degree in English at Indiana University. George began announcing for WFIU in 1967. Currently, along with regularly hosting classical music shows, he interviews artists in a wide variety of areas and reviews plays and operas. He’s the proud father of grown sons Ben Walker (and his wife Elise Katzif Walker) and Aaron Walker. In his time away from WFIU, George enjoys an active life with wife Carolyn Lipson-Walker, singing, reading, exercising and playing guitar.

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