In an effort to clear the backlog of theater posts, I thought I’d double-up.
I went with J, who is a big Laurie Anderson fan. We both enjoyed the show but as we were walking out of the theater into a cool, autumnal Brooklyn night, J made a very astute observation. It was entertaining, but it was pretty much the same stuff that Anderson has been doing for years and years. The material was fresh, but the delivery vehicle was the same. It was a lot of voice modulated story-telling and poetry, some multimedia presentations and an amplified electric violin that’s run through a processor. Don’t get me wrong; it’s all great stuff, be we’ve seen it before.
Actually, I suppose you could say the same thing about the Rolling Stones. Or Jack Nicholson. Or Charles Dickens. Or. Or. Or.
Mrs. Warren is played by Broadway veteran and 24 alumni Cherry Jones. (She played the President on 24.) It’s a perfect tough broad performance that is suited to her temperament. I’d love to see Meryl Streep in it someday. The role of the combative daughter is played by Sally Hawkins, who was so adorable in Mike Leigh’s Happy Go Lucky. I’m not sure if young Miss Hawkins has a lot of stage experience but I, along with a few people I spoke to who saw the show, thought she was able to stand toe-to-toe with Jones which, I can assure you, is no small feat. The reviews came out this week and as hard as the actors worked, they were mixed. That’s show biz.