Friday, August 21, 2009

POW! (Play Of The Week)

by William Nicholson

A painfully honest look at a marriage in crisis, this 2004 Tony nominee for Best Play focuses on Edward, a schoolteacher in his 50s, his wife Alice, also in her 50s, and their son, Jamie, 30.

Edward is one sort of stereotypical husband: taciturn to a fault and unable to comfortably express either what he feels or what he wants. The far more vocal Alice believes she has had to deal with Edward long enough; when she confronts him (not for the first time), secrets are revealed and people are hurt--including their son--in ways she could not have imagined.

"Retreat" is about love, hatred, betrayal, sacrifice and the role that each can play in a decades-long marriage once the near-inevitable ennui sets in. William Nicholson captures all the details of this profoundly troubled relationship, including all the little psychic stab wounds a husband and wife can inflict on one other. In the process, he gives actors a virtual smorgasbord of scenes and monologues to choose from.

Cast: 2 M, 1 W.

Scenes/Monologues: Monologues from both Edward and Alice. Great confrontation scenes between Edward and Alice... as well as scenes between each parent and Jamie.

Recommended by: Stu


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