|Photo Kent Taylor|
THE HABIT OF ART - A PLAY BY
THE ALAN BENNETT PLAY by is a celebration of Gayness. The Buoyant nervous breakdown moments reach out to touch with No-Apologies.
This play is a little confusing at times - but he does leave indelible impressions on us - as we try to figure it out. Its hard to keep in mind what is going on with the Actors.
This exciting play is about play writing and acting. Yes, its a multi layered play that is entertaining but very intellectual.
Auden is portrayed as a charming curmudgeon. He lives his life by the clock - including his time with a sexy asian rent boy. Of course, remember...it is a play.
Britten is struggling with his Opera 'Death in Venice'. But his does take a break and auditions choir boys. I wonder what his motives are? Britten's motives may seem pure - but his thoughts may not be. Oh well, that life on the stage.
They occasionally leave to the stage. The playwright conjures up problems as the actors argue with him and how the play should go. There are many arguments of what should be done and what shouldn't. This is a run through - but without the director - everyone is acting up. Finally, the cast is exhausted to the point where everyone acts up. Finally the run through is over and we all leave sadder and wiser.
The characters break off during the rehearsal to discuss the play. Auden's failings and other issues reveal dark stories of their own backgrounds.
Auden hired a Rent Boy. He is quite attractive, but their is a strong difference between the ages. All of the characters reveal stories of their own backgrounds. And that's where the fun is.
This is a strong play about theater about music, poetry and ethics. But then there is the terror of age, as Bennett gets older. The play is really about actors that rehearse. The scenes are constantly interrupted by prompts and arguments. They agonise about their roles. As one actor sez: "You're not a Rent Boy - you're a Rent Person." Yep - that's what he is.
The play gets into deep emotions. It's one of the deepest and strongest stageing that I have seen yet.It is clearly Rousing and stunning. It's part thriller and part love story that certainly is engrossing and perceptive. Superb!
Here is the vibrant cast: Kathryn Wood, Craig Souza, Tamar Cohn, Donald Currie, Justin Lucas, John Fisher, Seth Siegel and Michael DeMartini.
RATING: SIX STARS****** (highest rating)
and Six Glasses of Champagne!!!!!!
DIRECTED BY JOHN FISHER AT THEATRE RHINOCEROS. www.TheRhino.org.
at Z Below * 472 Florida St. * San Francisco