This week I saw a preview of the Public Theatre’s In the Wake, by Lisa Kron. The story is highly political, starting after the election in 2000 and going through to after the election in 2004. I was particularly excited because Marin Ireland was starring as the conflicted and political protagonist Ellen. I first saw Marin Ireland in a play called Manuscript at the DR2 Theatre in 2005 and have followed her career ever since.
While the country is in their wake, Ellen is in a wake of her own while navigating her way through her long term relationship with her boyfriend, Danny, while maintaining a long distance [open] relationship with a woman in Boston, Amy. The play is overly verbose and tangents are numerous and often confusing. One of my favorite characters was Judy, one of Ellen’s relatives from a poor family who now works in third world countries and is fully jaded to the government system in America and makes no attempt to hide her opinion.
I liked the premise of the play and the cast was great all around, but the script needs a lot of work and a lot of trimming. Ellen’s monologues that divide the scenes served, in my opinion, no purpose and as previously stated, there is a lot of pointless ranting. The play currently clocks in at two hours and a forty minutes, but two hours would have been sufficient and I don’t think anything would have been lost.
If you like political plays and great acting, get yourself down to the Public before November 21st.
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