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Tickle · the · Pear

running around for art's sake - Full Circle

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MoBob won (because I entered his name) tickets from the local NPR station to a performance of "Full Circle" at the Woolly Mammoth Theatre. Since the plot's kind of complicated, here's the synopsis:
The ancient Chinese myth of the chalk circle re-emerges at the fall of the Berlin Wall: as the crotchety East German Chancellor watches a play, students suddenly riot and the profiteers swoop in. Amid the chaos, two women launch a madcap chase to save an abandoned baby and outrun the vultures of both communism and capitalism. Their journey through Woolly’s entire building comes full circle back to the stage—but can a disgraced artistic director help them reset the nation’s moral compass?

I don't know very much about theater and haven't been very often, but I don't think there are many plays which incorporate so many different types of, literally, everything, in one performance. Mixed media, song, dance, tightropes, a catwalk, a scene where one woman is taken down a flight of stairs in a shopping cart, the image of a baby boy projected onto a circle...it was a lot to absorb at once. Plus the audience was physically moving (but not participating) through the entire theatre. It was cool - and overwhelming. I liked the sheer physicality of the actors and the audience, and MB enjoyed the philosophical aspects. I was definitely impressed with the technical side, including how to coordinate and anticipate the audience. The reviews were pretty mixed though; I enjoyed it, and I'd recommend seeing it, but I don't know if I would've paid full price, since, in the end, there wasn't really any resolution.

“It’s like an obstacle course, or a triathlon. You’re doing one thing, and then the entire space changes,” said Kate Eastwood Norris. “The audience is in a different place for each scene, so one thing I’ve learned is how to incorporate them and still be heard, and where to hit each part of the audience to make each person feel included.”
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