Friday, June 29, 2007

Theatre: Pericles, Prince of Tyre

Thursday preview night at GA Shakespeare means Jenny and I get in the door without needing tickets. I didn't know anything about Pericles prior to sitting down to this.

What a weird show. Interesting story, but almost completely lacking in dramatic tension. Pericles is good from the start (in a fairy tale way--he's generous), and then bad things happen to him, and then all is restored. Hero's quest without any real work done on his part. Without any work ever needing to be done. His daughter saves herself (and this is interesting, but wasn't incredibly well-acted in this production). His wife serves the Goddess after she is brought back from death, and when Pericles honors the Goddess as he is told, she is returned to him.

I can understand why this one isn't wildly popular. In a way, ambiguity makes a story. Will he or won't he--the entire question behind Hamlet, behind Macbeth, behind Othello.

Still, the production had some really solid elements, the set being chief among them. Neat tricks: the storm at sea done with fabric, the hand-held light symbolizing resurrection, the pieces added to change settings. Very very pretty to look at. Worth seeing for that stuff, but I'm glad I didn't pay.

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