Critical Moments

Eric Bogosian: from the sublime to the obsequious, in a flash.
photo: Joan Marcus
Eric Bogosian: from the sublime to the obsequious, in a flash.


Wake Up and Smell the Coffee
By Eric Bogosian
Jane Street Theatre
113 Jane Street 212-239-6200

Yard Gal
By Rebecca Prichard
Manhattan Class Company
120 West 28th Street 212-727-7765

At this late date, my review of Rebecca Prichard's Yard Gal is probably superfluous, too, given the rambling littleness of the script. I respect the impulse behind it, which was presumably to tell us something about the lives of teenage girls in the East London slum of Hackney, but—as Bogosian would be quick to point out—that impulse often has a tacky, sensationalist edge, titillating comfy middle-class theatergoers with the luridness of violence in streets and clubs. Probably everything in Prichard's account is true, but there's no driving force or vision behind it, and no dramatic shape to justify it, either: It's a sort of solo performance for two, with a pair of very gifted young actresses, under Gemma Bodinetz's direction, sharing between them the data and dialogue of half a dozen gang girls. The performers, Amelia Lowdell and Sharon Duncan-Brewster, can certainly talk the talk and walk the walk; Duncan- Brewster is a particularly commanding figure. I expect we'll see both women in an actual play sometime, which would be a good idea. But if current trends in playwriting continue, I don't expect to stay around much longer, so plan on getting Bogosian to review it.

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