Monday, February 04, 2008

New Review: Hunting and Gathering

My review of the new Brooke Berman play, produced at Primary Stages and written for Back Stage, can be found here.
This is, by the way, my 400th post.

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Nick said...

Looks more like a "non-review" to me. I couldn't find a single pull-quote in your "reaction." (smile face)

Sorry for dressing you in black on this, but who is qualified to judge what a blogger does or doesn't write about a theatre preview? When does a reaction become a review? When does a blogger become a reviewer? You are right that George's was a review and Adam's wasn't, but the line will not always be so clear cut.

Leonard Jacobs said...

The review is quite clear:

"All four characters in Brooke Berman's Hunting and Gathering yearn to be liked and loved. And in keeping with the current playwriting trend of abundant direct address, they tell us just enough about themselves to make us unsure if we do." -- that suggests problems with the play.

"Too often, especially early in the play, characters use turns of phrase that pop up on an LCD screen (set by David Korins), at which point they define the term — roommate, housesit, couch surf — directly for us. It's as if to ensure that we understand just what it means to be young, relatively poor, struggling, unfocused, and single in New York yet well beyond college. It's a gimmick that makes the characters funny enough to like, but, especially as Hunting and Gathering drags on, makes us want to tell all of them to please, please grow up." -- this is a direct criticism of the play.

"Still, the middle of this 90-minute one-act play, which is directed by Leigh Silverman, noticeably sags. You start succumbing to the same pall of aimlessness and lethargy suffered by the characters." -- this seems pretty direct.

It is not my job to provide pull quotes. It is my job to review the piece. I did. Thanks.