Don't like to mix my years up.
Tonight was "The Big Rock Show" at Davenports, starring Scotty Iseri
as the whole band and Tim the Roadie as Tim the Roadie, who can't be
bothered. All kinds of fun. However, it's slightly too short to
sober up from one of Davenport's fine girly drinks, meaning that I
only got home after a lot of tipsy, cold, bewilderment. Can you catch
up to the Western bus on a bike? Yes, but not after midnight, folks.
Finally made it over to Angel Island for Buried Child. Angel Island,
which houses the old-school bruiser storefront Mary-Arrchie, has
challenged me in the past. I have twice been defeated by its address,
735 W. Sheridan, as Sheridan is a North/South street. Yes, it's not
only off the map, it's in some kind of alternate dimension.*
Buried Child is a very creepy little play, and M.A. did it flawlessly.
They had all kinds of rain machines dripping water onto the outside
of the set (How could they afford it? Perhaps because they got all
the furniture from the alley.) The atmosphere was damp, and close,
I'm not a huge fan of the whole Sam Shepherd terrible lacunae style.
The problem with awful secrets is that they're either confusing when
kept or a bit disappointing when revealed (Oedipus is a possible
exception.) His characters lead compulsive, illogical lives. This
seemed right for the southern Illinois farm nuts, but the big city
interlopers didn't make sense to me. They were entirely devoid of
personal resources, cute little straw people all ready to be
Nevertheless, Mary-Arrchie pulled me into the creeping horror of the
thing stagecraft, good actors, and sheer commitment. The characters
are constantly doing inexplicable things to each other that seem
somehow right, elements in a ceremony, like covering each other with
corn husks, or sticking fingers in each others mouths. This, combined
with the amount of physical change and destruction visited on assorted
props, gives the production a sweaty sensuality. The cast manages to
make it feel as if we'd all like to communicate this way. What's odd
about these people is that they don't feel the need to control
*Dogleg! Don't talk to me about doglegs. This stuff isn't natural