Wednesday, May 24, 2017
 
search SGN
Wednesday, May 24, 2017
click to go to click to visit advertiser's website


 

 

Speakeasy Speed Test

Cost of the
War in Iraq
(JavaScript Error)
 
 
click to go to advertisers website
 
American Pilot shocks and awes at Theater Schmeater
American Pilot shocks and awes at Theater Schmeater
by Miryam Gordon - SGN A&E Writer

AMERICAN PILOT
BY DAVID GREIG
DIRECTED BY DAVID GASSNER
STARRING JOSE AMADOR,
PAUL CUSTODIO, RYAN HIGGINS,
CHRIS MACDONALD,
CAROLYN MARIE MONROE,
LORI STEIN, DANIEL WOOD
THEATER SCHMEATER
THROUGH MAY 24


There is a lot political about this play. Not surprising from the title. A little bit surprising is that David Greig is Scottish, writing about an American who crash lands into a "small foreign country." But the focus of the play turns out to be the country people and their reactions to the American.

The American (Daniel Wood) is pretty stereotypical, saying pretty much all the things you'd expect an American pilot to say. He expects to be rescued any time, he wants to make a phone call, he threatens the might of the American military and he promises American bounty if he's saved. Wood still gives a strong, believable presence to the role, and portrays much pain and anguish with a broken leg and various injuries.

The pilot is rescued by a farmer (Jose Amador) and taken home to the family. We meet the wife (Lori Stein) and the 16-year-old daughter (Carolyn Marie Monroe), before the Captain - of an unnamed region (Chris MacDonald) - comes and decides that the American should be a prisoner. The Captain brings a translator (Ryan Higgins) with him, who actually doesn't speak English all that well, which causes some complications.

These characters are the ones to watch, essentially, with their varied emotions to the icon of America that the pilot becomes for them. The daughter, masterfully played in all her adolescent glory by Monroe, is totally enamored of everything American. She thinks the pilot "glows." Stein as the mother is quietly believable and suspicious of this development. Amador is a man stuck trying to do the right thing and being totally baffled as to what exactly "right" is.

The town manager, a trader (Paul Custodio), is a wheeler-dealer always trying to find "the margin." If "the margin" calls for double-crossing, that's what's called for. Oh, well. He has to make a decision to stick with the Captain or make contact with the rescuers.

The Captain and translator are angry men who want power in a powerless world. They seem to stand for Greig's assessment of what makes these small countrymen fight so hard against too-large odds. They make the decision that the American is worth money dead, so they figure out how to take maximum advantage, for themselves, of his death.

There are several wonderful gimmicks that make this play sing. The main one is that everyone in the play speaks English to everyone else. But the conceit is that they are speaking their own language to each other and it's not English. It becomes crystal clear when the American is spoken to in broken English and that they don't understand everything he says back to them. Another gimmick that reveals more inner understanding is the periodic monologue of individual characters, who step to the front of the stage and tell the audience directly, in the form of a narrative, what they thought and felt.

Every actor in this production holds his or her part to great effect. There are no weak players here. This great ensemble is supported by terrific scenic elements, from the sound effects of Larry Ryan to the set design by Michael Mowery to the lighting by Laura Gay. It all makes for provoking material, thinking about America's place in the world, and foreign perceptions. The ending is powerful. Throughout the piece, you never quite know what will happen. There is much you can anticipate, but nothing you know for certain. If you like this kind of subject, don't miss this production.

For more information, go to www.schmeater.org or call 206-324-5801. Comments on reviews go to sgncritic@gmail.com.

click to visit advertiser's website

click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
Seattle Gay Blog post your own information on
the Seattle Gay Blog


: http://sgn.org/rss.xml | what is RSS?
copyright Seattle Gay News - DigitalTeamWorks 2007

USA Gay News American News American Gay News USA American Gay News United States American Lesbian News USA American Lesbian News United States USA News