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Summer theater a delightful presentation

PSST presents Kill, One For the Road, and 4-H Club, July 18,19,20,25,26,27.

The Project for Student Summer Theater (PSST) EXPLAIN WHO THEY AREpresented a night of drama in July. The three shows made for a well spent summer evening. All were well performed, and all blended well with each other. However, because they were separate plays with separate casts and directors, they deserve separate treatment.

Kill, written by Kevin Cunningham '84 and directed by Michael Guennette '82, was a modern drama about the relationship between a couple whom we know only as "He" and "She." Unfortunately, this was all I could gather about the play. If there was deeper meaning in what the characters said, then it was deeper than I cared to dig on a summer evening.

The author appears to have neglected placing any action into the script. Even though he is trying to depict a confrontational relationship between two people he must provide a reason for the confrontation. The characters seem to become all huffed-up about a torn stocking, however a torn stocking isn't enough to carry the play for more than five minutes.

It was well done, though it is hard to say how well done it was. A poorly-done performance might have as much meaning because of the script's limitations. Then again, maybe a better performance would have made the action of the play stand out more. In any case, Marc DiNardo G and Marcy Wong '85 seemed to have done a good job. Keeping awake on stage says something to their benefit.-reb

This play left me very confused and somewhat bored. About half-way through I began to occupy my spare time (the pauses between dialogue were dreadfully long) trying to figure out why the play was called "Kill." I still haven't come up with a reason.

* * *

One for the Road, written by Harold Pinter give background on Pinter -ktsand directed by Charlie Grimes '85, is a nightmarish-fantasy taking place sometime in the (hopefully) distant future. Pinter gives a view of the horror inflicted upon a little boy's family because he spit upon the soldiers of the ruling government.

Nicholas, played by Brian Pierce, does a superb job of representing the cool, collected and evilly demented demeanor of the government representative. His partaking of scotch while his armies are "cleaning up the world" suggested a basic hypocrisy of the people in power.

David Brackman '83 kept the audience constantly aware of his injuries as Victor, the little boy's father. Julie Theriot '88 performs the parts of Gila, the little boy's mother, as well as of Nicky, the little boy, equally well. Her ability to separate the characters is fantastic. It would have been extremely difficult to tell that the parts were being played by the same actress/actor without the aid of a program (and the scenes come right after each other).

* * *

4-H Club, written by Sam Shepard and directed by Joshua Lubarr '86, takes place in the very messy apartment of three young men with active imaginations. The play has a bitter-sweet sense to it. While one cannot help being taken up in the hilariously fantastic dreams of these men, one also realizes the great things that they could have been but, because of a lack of ability to translate their dreams into reality, could not become.

Because of its energy this play was a fantastic choice for this PSST mid-summer performance. Jay Slagle '85, David Altshuler '86, and Wayne Heller '86 perform well together as the strange trio of John, Bob, and Joe. They seem to make themselves right at home in the mess of cans, bottles and paper that litters the stage (representing the kitchen of their apartment).

The slapstick parts of the play blended perfectly into the moments of dead silence (waiting for imaginary mice to show themselves). So many of these movements appear to have been well-choreographed and well-practiced that I can only begin to imagine the hours of work that went into a first-class performance.

* * *

Although the set was obviously low-budget, it fitted into the action of each play well. Scene changes went smoothly and there was nothing missing on the technical end. Congratulations to all the students who did their part to keep MIT alive during the summer.

I would like to reprint a paragraph from the program which also is a congratulation to those people who have the presence of mind to see the need for on-campus summer theater even if they are never able to see an actual production themselves.

" This production is funded in part by The Council for the Arts at MIT, along with the generous support of the Office of the President, the Office of the Dean of Student Affairs, the Provost's Office, and the School of Humanities."

Ronald E. Becker->