Sunday, July 22, 2007

Timon of Athens

IMG_5773_1Saw Timon of Athens at Bard on the Beach today. I'd never read it before but I enjoyed it a lot. In it Timon, a wealthy and benevolent man, overextends himself by giving too generously to the numerous people who he considers to be his friends. When he suddenly finds himself penniless, he asks for help from these people only to find that they will give none.

It's not really a new story. It happens in everyday life, too. Are people friends with you or are they friends with your money? Timon's biggest fault is that even when it becomes obvious who his real friends are, he's still unable or unwilling to recognize it.

One thing I thought really worked for the play was that the people doing the music and sound effects were in plain view, behind the stage. It sounded more real than the canned sounds they usually have at the plays and it was another interesting thing to look at. And because the music was live, there was a lot more of it, along with song and dance, which made for a better use of the space, I think.

And use of the space was another thing I liked. The stage was set up like a giant table, with chairs along the edges, and the audience sat on either side. Other than the chairs, there were no props, which was good, because it put the onus on the actors to move and use the space creatively.

One thing I didn't like about the stage was that in the first half the actors used the chairs as steps onto the table, but in the second half the chairs had been removed, and so the actors had to climb or shimmy onto the stage, which seemed a little awkward.

Another thing I'm not all that happy about is that the Bard on the Beach concession doesn't seem to offer juice berries any more, stocking licorice allsorts instead. And, well, I like licorice allsorts and have been known to run over to see my grandma to eat her stash, but no one else I know likes them, so I certainly can't buy them to share, can I? I know I'm being petty, but still.

But, as long as they continue to stock caramel almond crunch ice cream bars, I will continue to sign up for all the plays each season. In the intermission we asked mom to give us money to buy some, and she called me a wretched knave. I laughed and called her my most beauteous and kind mother.

How do I end this post?

This is the end of act one.