Reviewed by Caitlin Fahey
From the moment the young Amy Patrice Golden enters from the back of the intimate Red Room to her final words, the audience is wholly enticed by The Scandal. In this one-woman show by Kristen Kosmas, Pink (Golden) unravels the stories of a myriad of characters, including Pink's mother, Hope; father, Seven; best friend, the bed-hopping Gogo; mysterious-stranger-turned boyfriend Radio; and the other townspeople in a tiny, quiet, desert town. Ms. Golden’s performance, directed by Courtney Sale, allows the complex Pink to be both witty and sad, neurotic and logical, loopy and insightful. She tells the stories of her father's suicide, her mother's obsession with furniture, and her own childhood traumas with childlike naiveté. She is wide-eyed and passionate, and yet, the scandal in question stems from her own violent rage.
Many factors suggest that "the scandal" will be Pink's suicide: the bright red dress designed by Peggy Vivino, Pink's admission that she always planned to die by drowning at the age of thirty-three. James Carney's stark set, consisting only of two hanging frames and a wooden piano adds to the timelessness of the story, and Pink seems to be trapped in limbo, reliving the events that pushed her to do what she eventually did. However, the ending is deeper than that, divulging not only Pink’s fate, but also that of all the characters.
Ms. Kosmas's script is beautifully literary, and poetic at times. The focus is drawn to relationships between opposites, such as the virginal Pink versus the overtly-sexual Gogo and the use of elements fire and water as tools for destruction. . The lack of technology in the piece allows Pink to develop a relationship with the environment and to take careful notice of even the most minute details. More importantly, it allows her to remember them. Though The Scandal is a one-woman-show, Ms. Golden's execution allows the secondary characters to come to life in this gripping piece. Anyone who has ever been pushed to the edge, who has loved a person despite his or her eccentric tendencies, or who has been both terrified and elated to fall in love will identify with and applaud Ms. Kosmas's look at life.
THE SCANDAL (75 minutes, no intermission.)
The Red Room (85 East 4th Street)
Tickets $18, $15 for students and seniors
Through December 20, Thursday-Saturday at 8 p.m.; Sunday at 3 p.m.
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.