Sunday, June 13, 2010

five plays: Doubt

Last night I went to see my university's production of John Patrick Shanley's Doubt: A Parable. We usually don't include summer shows, but the department put on the production as part of the Christian Scholar's Convention. The show was directed by the head of the department and the cast was made up of Nashville actors (the crew was mostly university students).

The play is absolutely phenomenal on its own right, I can tell you that. It takes place in the 1960s in a Catholic school, where the principal, Sister Aloysius, begins to have doubts about a particular priest and his relationship with a particular male student- the first black student that has ever attended the school. It is an unsettlingly ambiguous play, but very powerful.

This particular performance was astounding. I've read the play, and a couple of fellow students used a scene from the show for class performance, but this was truly amazing. The acting was so believable, so motivated. There was never a second where I was distracted from their performance. And at the end I turned to my friend Erin and said "I know it's a good show when I'm tired at the end."

What makes it even more exciting is that the playwright himself, John Patrick Shanley, came to see the show and did a talkback session. He was very impressed with the production, and I have to say that I feel quite proud to be an alumna right now.

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