Tuesday, November 14, 2006

One Day

Sojourn Theatre
Posted by Frenchglen Nov. 12, 2006; closes Nov. 19, 2006

SHORTCUTS for Portland, but with more plot. Dynamic team of ten packed us all over town in search of community. We found humor, adversity, opportunity. Audience hungry for connection, insight at close. In Q&A, someone nailed our theatre future: “How do we attract an audience as diverse as this cast?”

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Just FYI, this is closing weekend.

Anonymous said...

Thoughts:

Pacing was great. Interwoven lines and stories anchored by the ticking of the minute to minute happenings around the city and given breathing room by humor, both within the stories and as interludes. An awesome execution of a very specific set of conventions and devices that added to the play, became an integral part of the experience rather than an just an opportunity to, say, directly address the audience. Jono’s song introducing the second half, the oddball dance interludes... perfect.

Along those lines: clear and positive explanation of what the play is and isn’t. Puts everyone on the same page of focus. A live program note.

Characterization and new faces (for me). Really nice to add so many strong outside players to the mix. There’s something weird that happens when you see the same actors on stage together more than a couple of times. (A) you know their tricks, but moreover (B) I subconsciously view the play as less of a special event. ie “yeah, ok, I know these guys.” Having new faces (to me) charged the event with a bit of mystery. That, and the performances were really investigated and truthful. The most mileage towards the overall success of the play was earned here.

Narrow focus and Portland specific references. It’s like listening to a rap song about your home town. Check out http://www.garageband.com/song?|pe1|S8LTM0LdsaSlY1Swa2g to see what I’m talking about. It’s the “oh my god, I know that exact intersection” moment that brings the audience to the edge of their seats and reminds us that we are watching a piece of theatre about something real and specific, which subtly invites us to view it with a thinking mind that can/does have the power to think of viable solutions. (That, as opposed to tackling something like (well, to use a real example) war, which is hard to think of in personally affectable way, and perhaps impossible to act on those thoughts in an affecting way.) If it is a goal to tie the theatre experience to the outside world (and I’m sure it is) Sojourn succeeded.

Follow Spot said...

Though stories shared were more familiar than revealing, Sojourn’s intimate slice of hometown life succeeded admirably in mission to spark sympathetic dialogue concerning individual responsibilities surrounding daily choices that surely shape future of Portland. Sojourn’s also a master of engaging, post-play conversation, demonstrating that live theatre continues past the curtain.