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The Pillowman

a Drama
CATEGORY : DRAMA
by Martin McDonagh

COMPANY : Out of Box Theatre [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Artisan Resource Center
ID# 4644

SHOWING : October 24, 2014 - November 08, 2014

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

With echoes of the series American Horror Story, the ghoulish pleasure of a well-told "scary story" reaches its pinnacle in The Pillowman, Martin McDonagh’s shocking, disconcerting and altogether memorable play. Set largely in an interrogation room in an unnamed totalitarian state, this black comedy follows fiction writer Katurian as he is questioned by police. The authorities suspect him of committing a series of murders that are strikingly similar to the gruesome crimes described in his short stories. Since only one of his stories has been published, he is the prime suspect. This brilliant work about storytelling and its implications won McDonagh two Tony Awards, the 2004 Olivier Award for Best New Play and the 2005 New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Best New Foreign Play.


CAST & CREW LIST
Director Zip Rampy
Katurian Ian Gaenssley
Tupolski Aaron Goodson
Ariel Daviorr Snipes
Michal Aaron Strand
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REVIEWS

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Riveting
by playgoer
Wednesday, November 5, 2014
5.0
Martin McDonagh’s "The Pillowman" sports a very strong script. When it’s performed with the intensity shown at Out of Box Theatre, the effect is galvanizing. Director Zip Rampy has amped up the suspense and the drama to ever-increasing levels, leading to a devastating ending.

The uncredited set design works well in the tiny Out of Box black box space, with two playing spaces arranged to provide generally good sightlines to most of the audience curved around two and a half walls of the space. Jon Liles’ lighting design is atmospheric, and the atmosphere is enhanced even more by M. Kathryn Allen’s underscoring. Projected graphics created by Brian Sweat and Robin Dimond add a neat visual appeal to what is otherwise a fairly bleak-looking production. John Evenden’s fight direction allows for some nice blood effects, although not all punches "land" from all audience perspectives.

The acting is top-tier all around. Ian Gaenssley plays the main role with great charisma and subtlety. Daviorr Snipes is anything but subtle for most of his performance as the thuggish Ariel, then surprises us at the end. Aaron Sedrick Goodson plays the low-key Tupolski with authority, providing a wonderful contrast to Mr. Snipes. I don’t know that I agree with the casting of the physically able and strong Aaron Strand as the "slow" and physically abused Michal, but his acting gets the nuances of the character across. It’s a terrific ensemble, wonderfully directed by Zip Rampy.

This is a long show, coming in at about three hours, with two intermissions. There are a lot of uncomfortable moments scripted in, but physical discomfort in the audience doesn’t seem to be a problem. "The Pillowman" is well worth the time your backside will be stuck in a seat. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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