If you’re not sure what’s going on in Charles Mee‘s Bobrauschenbergamerica, you’re probably not alone. The play, whose title references Neo-Dadaist American painter and sculptor Robert Rauschenber, is directed by Thom Finley ’14 and opens tonight in the PW Downspace. It is whimsical, wacky, and at times, bordering on nonsensical. Which is precisely the point.
The show’s eccentric nature is clear before actors even take the stage. The set, designed by Sam Keamy-Minor ’16, resembles an explosion of an all-American house. Symbols of domestic, small-town American life are strung from the ceiling, creating a web of dust pans, dollhouses, badminton racquets, toy cars, and rolling pins. Slides projected onto hanging white boards give the space a museum-like feel.
Bobrauschenbergamerica is held up by a committed and ceaselessly energetic ensemble cast. Much of the time the members of the show appear onstage all at once, feeling less like a group of individuals and more like a well-oiled machine. The nontraditional narrative structure, which consists of a series of loosely connected vignettes, synchronized dance numbers, audio clips, monologues and wordless sequences, is deliberately vague, demanding audience members’ active intellectual engagement. The dance numbers are just riotously funny, although there is something frightening in the moments of synchronization, something abnormally homogenous.
“I don’t really have a worldview. Well, actually, my worldview is that the world is a pile of shit.”
That’s definitely the idea you get as you walk into the Upspace for The Pillowman, which opens tonight at 8 p.m. and runs through Monday. With a dark, minimalist set and eerie dolls hanging on the wall, averting their gaze from the audience, this dystopian world director Andrew Ganem ’16 has created is unsettling before the actors even take the stage.
Yet, it is the cast, as they vacillate abruptly between riotous dark comedy and engrossing drama, that truly brings the text of Martin McDonagh’s terrifyingly brilliant three-act play from 2003 about a writer, Katurian Katurian (Alex Ostroff ’14), accused of carrying out the murders of three children exactly like they take place in his short stories, to life.
First, there’s Tupolski and Ariel, played by Sam Rubinek ’17 and Keston McMillan ’17, the abusive and deliciously sadistic policemen. As they nonsensically question Katurian about murders he did not commit, McDonagh’s biting satire is in its purest form, thanks to Rubinek and McMillan’s mastery of the comic tone and timing. Rubinek, with a drawl reminiscent of a 1950s Chicago mobster, is the good cop (although in this hopeless totalitarian dictatorship, there is no such thing) . McMillan is certainly the bad cop, his speech menacingly quiet and his body language hinting at the imminent doom each of these characters is hurtling towards. The first act belongs to this freshman duo.
In the Next Room or the Vibrator Play, which opens tonight at 8:00 p.m. and runs through Monday, October 21st, is on the surface a rollicking comedy—a story of sex and deceit with a good dose of physical and slapstick humor and witty retorts. However, around fifteen minutes in, you begin to realize In the Next Room is not merely a wildly entertaining, 21st-century Oscar Wilde-esque play, but a modern feminist manifesto.
Directed masterfully by Karin Nilo ’14 and written by Sarah Ruhl ’97 MFA ’01, In the Next Room is set in Victorian-era New York and follows Mrs. Givings, a woman whose husband treats female (and later male) patients for hysteria using the vibrator, and Mrs. Daldry, one of Dr. Givings patients, as they discover their sexuality and slowly take control of their bodies. Continue Reading
Columbus Fall Weekend is upon us. While many flee our beloved “creative capital” for brighter city lights or the comfort of a home-cooked meal, those who are staying on campus can indulge in many seasonal activities and other cool happenings in Providence. BlogDH has conveniently listed a few things to knock off your fall to-do list.
Boiler House Yoga Student Art Show and One Year Anniversary Celebration
Where: Boiler House Yoga (166 Valley Street, Providence)
When: All weekend
What: Boiler House Yoga is hosting a weekend of free and reduced rate classes! This is the perfect pre-Halloween detox.
Fright Night in the Park
Where: Slater Memorial Park (Pawtucket)
When: Friday and Saturday
What: Prepare yourself for the haunted tunnel. Continue Reading
Tonight from 7–11 p.m., Brown’s Queer Alliance will be hosting the Queer Carnival on Pembroke Field, and everyone is welcome!
For those of you who don’t know, the QA is awesome and brings us the only Bill O’Reilly-air-time-worthy party of the year: SexPowerGod. For those of you wondering
, unfortunately this event will require that you wear clothing… but there are lots of awesome goodies that will make you want to come anyway.
RISD will have a photo booth, Bluestockings Magazine will be present, and Roger Williams Law School is bringing a BOUNCY HOUSE! Looks like Spring Weekend is coming early this year. There will also free cotton candy and popcorn, a variety of carnival games, and a kissing booth (!)
Whether you plan on going hard at the club Friday night or going hard at the SciLi, you should definitely stop by the Queer Carnival. Ethos Nebula (otherwise known as DJ Ben) will be spinning the music. If you win the most games at the carnival, you get a free ticket to SPG (major score)!
Check out the Facebook event here and look out for more cool events hosted by Queer Alliance!
You can feel the changes already: one month into the semester and you’re actually (somewhat) acclimated to life at Brown. You’ve figured out your classes (and took the S/NC jump), you have more than two people to sit with in the Ratty (and finally got that creepy dude off your back), and are well on your way to comprehending the difference between credits and points (one of them is for muffins only, right?). Looks like the only things left to master are homework and living for the weekend.
Oh, right…the weekend.
There are a lot of activities I could advocate for and against here, but for brevity’s sake, this post will deal with the locale where a lot of them will probably take place: Wriston Quad. One-armed Caesar Augustus has seen enough shenanigans in his day (and survived a hurricane!), so make his rusty visage proud by handling yourself like a champ in these situations.
But I’m basically Ansel Adams!
As inebriation and the hysteria of seeing your best friend from POLS 40 in the basement of Sigma set in, cameras and iPhones will inevitably be yanked out of purses and pockets. Like a well-built piece of flypaper, anything with a camera in it causes the more narcissistic of us to flock towards the flash. So go easy on the party’s flow – don’t take more than two pictures of the same group of people. Stick to one serious, one funny. You’ll wake up the next morning and not remember half of their names, so make the tagging easier and keep your photo seminars brief.