small d, Big J

What Steven desJardins is interested in.
Sunday, July 27, 2003
I planned to write about how I went to see Strangers on a Train last night at the Silver Theatre, followed by a Q&A with Patricia Hitchcock, who had a small part in the movie. I got to the theater not quite an hour before the movie was scheduled to start, planning to get a little something to eat first in the café, and found it was sold out. So instead I'll talk about the play I saw Wednesday night, a punk rock version of Titus Andronicus, and which I mentioned in my last post.

The band was called The Dead Sons of Titus, which seemed inappropriate, since there were only three of them. The style of music was basically limited to "loud", although towards the end there was one song that was in the style of "medium loud". I myself being more towards the Shakespeare than the punk rock end of the spectrum may have missed some of the nuances. Indeed, speaking as one with an utterly uneducated ear, I cannot categorically say that there were no nuances.

My initial impression was that this was basically a one-joke show (if you've read the title, you know the joke), and while mildly amusing, it was going to be a long two hours. But after a while the show grew on me, and there were a couple of very amusing bit, like Lavinia's Ballad, during which I couldn't stop laughing. (This was after they cut out her tongue. Vowel sounds, mostly.) I also liked the part where Lucius lunged at Saturninus and accidentally killed the guitar player. Aaron had suitable gravity, imbuing his villain's part with dignity. Tamara, the Goth Queen (it's as if Shakespeare expected them to make a punk rock musical out of it), was hot. Saturninus was sleazy. The show balanced seriousness with slapstick in much the same way that the original balanced drama with absurd excess. It wasn't a great show, but I'm glad I went.


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