Saturday, February 09, 2008

Thicker Than Water 2008

This collection of one-acts seems to be happier treading water, letting its under-35 playwrights get their feet wet, than in diving into anything serious. Even the laughs go no deeper than the kiddie pool, and with the exception of Justin Deabler's uncomfortably exaggerated Red, Blue, and Purple, the evening seems squandered on incomplete and marginal new plays: seven plays that at best put the cute in dysfuncutetion (as with Amy Herzog's 508) and at worst, sing -- badly (Delaney Britt Brewer's hippie folk musical about familial reconciliation It'll Soon Be Here). I could mention that the direction is efficient, but that's the last thing you want to hear in a review focusing on new one-act plays. It's also not enough, as the actors so often fall back on overemoting when they run out of things to actually say. I've seen great stuff from Youngblood artists before, so maybe this is just their way of getting it out of their system, pissing, if you will, into a wide ocean of thick, middling water. But hey, would it be too much to ask for some waves?

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