In all transparency, this isn’t a review but more a shameless plug for Michiganders to go check out this remarkable performance that beautifully blends the theatrical and the cinematic. McBurney, clearly a student of Peter Brook (The Empty Space), fuses puppetry, sound sculpture, rear projection, a fourth (and possibly fifth!) wall smashed to bits, stylized movement to create a breathtaking stage allegory of age, gender, class tensions.
The show, based on a text by Junichiro Tanizaki, details an “almost-folk-tale” of the symbiotic relationship between a blind young woman and her devoted caretaker and of the tragic push-pull of a relationship that was both doomed and inevitably perfect from the start.
Thanks to Ken Fischer of UMS for including me in the opening night festivities, and, as a result, inspiring one of the few “high art” entries anyone is likely to see on this blog! I don’t want to spoil the surprises for you, so please check out this show. I’ve never experienced a performance that marries the visceral drama of a rock concert with the quiet, restrained soulfulness of haiku. This one does. Go see it. As UMS’ tagline reads, “Be Present.”
P.S. Enjoy fellow transplanted Ann Arbor-ite Nan Bauer’s take on the show here. A quote: “Throughout the performance, I had the feeling that it could suddenly make sense in an instant. It did, at the very end, a marvelous bit of drama that can only be achieved on a stage with a live audience.” Great piece!