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Posts Tagged ‘World Trade Centre’

The space is superbly theatrical. A large rectangular room with picture windows at both ends, restaurant booth seating on three sides & a bar on the fourth and a long elevated corridor on one side overlooking the main space, which contains an oval platform surrounded by tables and chairs. We’re in Windows on the World, a restaurant at the top the World Trade Centre, another one of Miriam Buether’s extraordinary designs and the most comfortable place I’ve ever seen ‘site-specific’ theatre!

A large number of ‘playlets’ take place (sequentially not concurrently!) on the platform, on tables, in booths, in the elevated corridor and on the floor. There’s a fair bit of ‘dance / movement’ between scenes (and sometimes part of them) with fine choreography from Scott Ambler.  There’s a superb cast of 13 who play many more roles than that. In conception and execution, it’s all wonderfully theatrical. The trouble is the material…..

……..I was expecting interesting and objective responses to 9/11 from many perspectives, but what I got were some rather slight sketches, few of which said much on their own, let alone together. Regular visits to the annual meetings of 9/11 widows (backwards in time) provides the only link, but not enough was made of this clever device. Many were monologues whose dramatic inertness was amplified by the theatricality of the space and staging. It didn’t educate or enlighten me, it didn’t illuminate anything and it didn’t really entertain me.

I suspect the multiplicity of writers doesn’t help; six more than there are actors (look what three did for Greenland!), but the key issue for me is that it just isn’t bold enough. It seems to be hinting at and skirting over issues rather than tackling them head on. I admire the ambition, but the rewards are limited.

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The space is superbly theatrical. A large rectangular room with picture windows at both ends, restaurant booth seating on three sides & a bar on the fourth and a long elevated corridor on one side overlooking the main space, which contains an oval platform surrounded by tables and chairs. We’re in Windows on the World, a restaurant at the top the World Trade Centre, another one of Miriam Buether’s extraordinary designs and the most comfortable place I’ve ever seen ‘site-specific’ theatre!

A large number of ‘playlets’ take place (sequentially not concurrently!) on the platform, on tables, in booths, in the elevated corridor and on the floor. There’s a fair bit of ‘dance / movement’ between scenes (and sometimes part of them) with fine choreography from Scott Ambler. There’s a superb cast of 13 who play many more roles than that. In conception and execution, it’s all wonderfully theatrical. The trouble is the material…..

……..I was expecting interesting and objective responses to 9/11 from many perspectives, but what I got were some rather slight sketches, few of which said much on their own, let alone together. Regular visits to the annual meetings of 9/11 widows (backwards in time) provides the only link, but not enough was made of this clever device. Many were monologues whose dramatic inertness was amplified by the theatricality of the space and staging. It didn’t educate or enlighten me, it didn’t illuminate anything and it didn’t really entertain me.

I suspect the multiplicity of writers doesn’t help; six more than there are actors (look what three did for Greenland!), but the key issue for me is that it just isn’t bold enough. It seems to be hinting at and skirting over issues rather than tackling them head on. I admire the ambition, but the rewards are limited.

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