On Good Dr. Mesmer
7 hours ago
This is the former location of the blog of the Mother of Invention Acting School in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The blog is now located at http://utteracting.com/blog. This old location has been left in place as an archive.
But it is Jacobi's Lear that drives the production. And what is truly astonishing is the way he combines Lear's spiritual trajectory from blind arrogance to impotent wisdom with a sense of the character's tumultuous contradictions. Even the rubicund features and close-cropped white hair suggest a mix of military autocrat and merry patriarch. And, having entered genially cuddling his adored Cordelia, Jacobi quickly unleashes a monumental fury. That's in the text. But what strikes one is the disproportionate nature of the rage. When Jacobi threatens Goneril by saying, of her sister Regan, that "with her nails she'll flay thy wolvish visage", he pictures the scene with vindictive savagery.
Jacobi's special quality, however, has always been his ability to forge a bond of sympathy with the audience: one thinks of his Cyrano, Peer Gynt or Philip II...It is a tremendous Lear, to be ranked with those of Paul Scofield and John Wood.
Played boldly but unsympathetically by the six-strong cast, they never transcend their status as standard-issue deadbeats. Their stories may have lit a flame in Williams, but they only smoulder here.
whereas Tom in Gordon Edelstein's stunning Taper "Glass Menagerie" was emotionally invested in the events he both lived and scribed, this guy is in a dreamy absinthe haze, a cut-rate Baudelaire spouting inchoate imagery amped up by the microphone attached to his jock. Bits of text are hazily projected against the rear wall, though inconsistently and sometimes rapid-fire, suggesting the production can't really be bothered with anything the man has to say.
Combining a passion for theater with experience in contract administration and entertainment business affairs, Yolanda Seabourne brings to Uranium Madhouse two distinct sides in a single, integrated personality. Formerly with the Business and Legal Affairs Department at Vin Di Bona Productions, Yolanda's business side assisted in launching the licensing division for one of primetime's longest running entertainment programs. As Director of Licensing for FishBowl Worldwide Media, Yolanda is responsible for licensing and strategic repurposing of television's largest library of user- generated content for use across various platforms, including feature films, national commercials and new media. Yolanda's actor side has appeared in productions of Hay Fever, The Chairs, The Bald Soprano, Nero Fiddles, The Tinker's Wedding and The House of Bernarda Alba. Yolanda is a graduate of the Theater Arts program at California State University, Fullerton and currently studies with Andrew Utter at The Mother of Invention Acting School. Yolanda's two sides peacefully coexist in a 101-year old house in the Echo Park section of Los Angeles.
Threshold of revelation, guys: Angels in America is one of the most over-hyped plays I've ever seen. Irresponsibly long and cripplingly ludicrous, I'm thoroughly convinced that if not for the novelty of the "epic" form coming in the midst of a dark time (1990), to say nothing of the light shed on those living with AIDS ("We will die silent deaths no longer"), Tony Kushner's script might have gotten the paring down it needed. Instead, it remains a gelatinous mush-up of three different (and slightly overlapping) plays, a set in which the only good one is entirely too preachy and chock full o' angels with a penchant for the obvious: suffering is a part of life; it is not the end of it.