The subjectivity of the truth appears to be a running theme in the intriguing work of young playwright, Amy Herzog, who follows the recent success of After The Revolution and 4,000 Miles with a moving drama, The Great God Pan.
With a title taken from Elizabeth Barrett Browning's poem about the woodland god who must destroy before he creates and multiple settings represented by Mark Wendland's impressionistic unit set of leafy camouflage, Herzog's drama is a series of short, intimate scenes, mostly involving emerging Brooklyn journalist Jamie (Jeremy Strong), who, as the play begins, is reunited with childhood friend Frank (Keith Nobbs) who is collecting evidence in order to file criminal charges. Frank says that his father molested him when he was a boy and believes he did the same to Jamie.
Though Jamie has no memory of such a thing, his long-time girlfriend Paige (Sarah Goldberg) suspects that if it did happen it might explain his recent bout with sexual dysfunction, his disinterest in getting married and his general lack of emotional communication. Jamie's quest for truth-revealing clues leads him to encounters with his suburban parents (Becky Ann Baker and Peter Friedman) and his childhood babysitter (Joyce Van Patten), whose memory is fading from senility.
Director Carolyn Cantor's ensemble is excellent, as the playwright introduces small revelations that might make Jamie question whether or not he's better off being ignorant. The only scenes not involving him reveal details about Paige, a former dancer turned nutrition counselor, by showing her sessions with an anorectic client (Erin Wilhelmi).
While Herzog denies us a traditionally satisfying conclusion, her astute talent for dialogue and gentle dramatics allow for convincingly subtle moments. This is a quiet drama with understated, but potent, impact.
Photos by Joan Marcus: Top: Jeremy Strong and Sarah Goldberg; Bottom: Sarah Goldberg and Erin Wilhelmi.
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“You can only close if you opened.”
-- August Wilson
The grosses are out for the week ending 12/23/2012 and we've got them all right here in BroadwayWorld.com's grosses section.
Up for the week was: THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA (15.2%), CHICAGO (14.9%), MAMMA MIA! (14.2%), MARY POPPINS (13.8%), SPIDER-MAN TURN OFF THE DARK (12.1%), BRING IT ON THE MUSICAL (9.5%), War Horse (6.9%), PETER AND THE STARCATCHER (3.0%), THE LION KING (2.8%), NEWSIES (1.7%), THE MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD (1.7%), WHO'S AFRAID OF Virginia Woolf? (1.6%), CHAPLIN (0.9%), EVITA (0.3%), ROCK OF AGES(0.2%),
Down for the week was: NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT (-13.3%), GOLDEN BOY (-6.5%), DEAD ACCOUNTS (-6.0%), PICNIC (-5.9%), GRACE (-5.7%), THE HEIRESS (-5.4%), JERSEY BOYS (-5.3%), A CHRISTMAS STORY (-5.1%), ELF (-4.7%), ANNIE (-4.4%), GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS (-1.8%), The Other Place (-0.5%), ONCE (-0.3%), WICKED (-0.2%),