Revenge and Guilt


by Ed Malin · September 22, 2013


Playwrights on New Plays #4: Ed Malin looks at Marc Spitz’s new play at the Kraine Theatre

Feeling slighted could make you deranged.  What if your parents gave you a gold rolex as a graduation present and then (when some girl stole it) you found out it was a fake worth only 8 bucks?  What if you knew you were destined to be a rock star but your guitar teacher told you that you didn't have talent?  Would you find your guitar teacher 20 years later and take revenge?

It's years after New York was dangerous, and the disconcerting events mentioned above begin the play.    Fortunately, act one gives us a chance to rewind and catch up with shy Cal (Peter Buck Dettmann), who approaches the beautiful Gina (Emily Russell) in a dive bar.  Gina, a delightful, thieving femme fatale on parole, eventually admits to stealing Cal's watch but then feels sorry for him and wants to know his life story.  After some sexual adventures, she sees Cal as mentally blocked because of the judgment passed on him by his guitar teacher, "Major".  Gina and Cal obviously speak the same language, which is rock language.  As an example, they don't swear to God, they swear on Paul McCartney's life, and Ringo's, "because you know I don't want to lose any more Beatles".   Gina really acts like she cares about Cal, and in no time, posing as anti-fracking activists, they have forced their way into Major's humble abode on Long Island.  Almost-famous rocker Major has seen better days, and the distinct lack of things to steal is a turn-off for Gina, but that doesn't mean they can't take revenge.  But should they?  What would happen if they tried to talk it out?  What really happened to Major and Cal 20 years ago?

Talented downtown playwright / music journalist Marc Spitz adds so much to this story of people who think they're losers.  Maybe most people are just a step in either direction of success.  Such perspective would lend dignity to a lot of lives.  This production marks Spitz's directorial debut, and it's full of exuberance overlying fear and uncertainty.  This makes the play accessible, whether you're a music expert or you happen to like the newer, cleaner New York.  Andrew Diaz's sets are minimal and fit well with the punk rock aesthetic.  Joshua Rose's lighting does delightful things for the stage at the Kraine, another place that has stood the test of time and enjoys remembering the past.

 

 

 

 

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