A Knack For Anagnorisis

Lynne Thigpen, Regina Taylor, Linda Powell, and Welker White Celebrate Amid Generational Strife.
photo: Second Stage Theater
Lynne Thigpen, Regina Taylor, Linda Powell, and Welker White Celebrate Amid Generational Strife.

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Jar The Floor
By Cheryl L. West
Directed by Marion McClinton
Second Stage Theatre
307 West 43rd Street
246-4422

But then, everyone, even Taylor, seems a few tones down while Lynne Thigpen, as the glamorous grandmother, is taking center stage. Not that Thigpen ever does anything so banal as take center stage; it seems to come to her, like an obedient pet. Her approach to a role is like that of certain Baptist sects: total immersion: She is so completely involved in her action that everything she does or says seems both instantaneous and gigantic. She never condescends to do anything that seems like making an effect, and I doubt that anyone of the hundreds who screamed with laughter at her remarks last week could duplicate one of her line readings. In a sense, they aren't line readings, for the actress Lynne Thigpen is not visible onstage. Instead a woman named Lola is in her daughter's living room going on with her life, quite naturally, and if there was any actor-craft involved in her creation, it has long since vanished. I'd exclaim, "Ars est celare artem," but I'm sure that Lola would only make a rude retort, while Thigpen, if the remark were relayed to her, would reply that she wasn't concealing anything, she had merely created Lola and let her rip. And then they say there are actresses in England. I wouldn't know; I only live in the same city as— for instance— Uta Hagen, Kathleen Chalfant, and Lynne Thigpen. Maybe England has better weather, or fewer family conflicts; it couldn't have better actresses.

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