According to Lincoln Center's new LCT3 project at its slogan, it takes "New Audiences for New Artists." It also takes new critics, hence the establishment of Theater Talk's New Theater Corps in 2005, a way for up-and-coming theater writers and eager new theatergoers to get exposure to the ever-growing theater scene in New York City. Writers for the New Theater Corps are given the opportunity to immerse themselves in the off-off and off-Broadway theater scene, learning and giving back high-quality reviews at the same time. Driven by a passion and love of the arts, the New Theater Corps aims to identify, support, and grow the arts community, one show and one person at a time.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Vital Signs New Play Fest

Vital Theater presented its first week in a 3 week series featuring new plays. After this round, its clear that Vital Theater is living up to its promise of vitality. All these plays reflect deep issues that are real and full of vital emotion.

Sorrento, by Lucile LichtBlau opens the evening with death with a twist. We actually see the Mother, played byWendy Scharfman, on her death bed-no stage is more like it. She offers flamboyance and insight to what her three children are feeling as they come to terms with losing their mother. Most memorable was Jordana Oberman (Dorrie) for her honest and specific work as the daughter grieving the loss of her mother. Despite some bad blocking and awkward movements, the relationships in this family become clear. Perhaps the excessive movement distracted the audience and prevented us from seeing the full potential of these relationships.

Relationtrip, by Sharyn Rothstein, ended the evening in a profound way. As a couple and her sister embark on a train ride to a wedding, all hell breaks loose. The couple, played by Jason Updike and Zakiyyah Alexander, turn the tables on each other when they are faced with having to talk about love and relationships. As the two are unable to resolve the issue heartbreak is unavoidable and ends the journeys abruptly. The two maintain amazing connections, filled with real emotional needs and scars. Watching them unfold is a human experience that scares and comforts us as it hits close to home.

With 2 more weekends to go, I have no doubt that they will be enjoyable pieces of theater if not Vital ones.

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