Jeff Smith 12:01 p.m., March 29
"Tell all the truth but tell it slant.../The Truth must dazzle gradually/Or every man be blind." In her tightly compressed poetry, which she called "letters to the world," Emily Dickinson darts through ideas, images, and feelings like a hummingbird. She takes profound stands against authority - the higher, the better - and aggressively forges her voice (also: the older you grow, the wiser she becomes; she has always been there ahead of you, wherever there is, all along). Lynx Performance Theater boasts a captivating performance. Rhianna Bashore gives Dickinson an entire zodiac of various "sides": impish, sensual, damaged, prophetic. Director Al Germani enriched the script with music and movement, which the supporting cast (Diana Sparta, Charlie Riendeau, Greg Wittman) execute deftly. The play, by William Roetzheim, almost undercuts itself, since the vehicle's so intrusive. A stereotypical playwright, blocked and drunk, dreams of Dickinson to come save his play. Throughout he tries to pin her down with such tidy labels (was she agoraphobic, lesbian, an "incest survivor"?) that you hope he never finishes his task. Using Dickinson's own words, playwright Roetzheim runs circles around these facile reductions. Emily Dickinson contained more "multitudes" than Whitman.
Worth a try.
When: Ongoing until Friday, August 7, 2009
- Sundays, 8pm
- Thursdays, 8pm
- Fridays, 8pm
- Saturdays, 8pm