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It's been a busy couple of weeks

Last night I went to the NVTA One-Act festival in Falls Church and saw some personal friends in the assorted performances. The last one was the one that was the most thought provoking called "Your Mother's Butt" by Alan Ball. It was incredibly interesting in that it asked very hard questions about your basic assumptions about gender traits. The actor playing Male Patient chose to portray him as a swishy gay man who discusses lightweight topics like shoes, and belts, and complaints about his kitchen appliances. Female Therapist was portrayed as an ineffective, crunchy-granola new age woman who made me feel like she was pushing Male Patient too hard for "healing." Male Patient seemed bound and determined to keep these all topics firmly on the surface, and every single time the discussion seemed to dive deeper into the substance, up came the defense mechanisms like "Force Shields to Full!" He'd start crying, spraying his face, or yelling "STOP TELLING ME WHAT TO DO!" and then firmly yank the conversation back to shoes or belts or suchlike. I found myself wondering just what happened to the character in his childhood that caused such emotional damage that he couldn't even talk about deeper subjects.

The second scene of the one-act was where it got interesting. The two actors changed costume and came back AS EACH OTHER, and replayed the scene the same except with small differences. All the things that Female Therapist said and did seemed pushy and wrong and discomfiting sounded normal and authoritative and guiding when done and said by Male Therapist. All the things that Male Therapist said and did that made him seem horrifically emotionally damaged and disturbing sounded perfectly normal, if a bit flighty when done and said by Female Patient.

I thought it to be a very good play and found myself enjoying being smacked in the face by my own blind-spots.

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( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
itskoi
Jun. 21st, 2010 04:24 am (UTC)
Yeah that is fascinating. :-)
(Deleted comment)
lizzibabe
Jul. 2nd, 2010 02:00 pm (UTC)
They won?! THAT'S FANTASTIC! I haven't been on FB for a week.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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