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A View from the Bridge

a Drama
by Arthur Miller

COMPANY : Theatre in the Square [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Theatre in the Square [WEBSITE]
ID# 5509

SHOWING : May 09, 2019 - May 26, 2019



"A View from the Bridge" is a tragedy that tests the limits of family bonds and personal honor. The poverty of an American working class family comes face to face with the sheer destitution of their immigrant cousins, desperate to make a new life. As the unstoppable tragedy grinds towards its inevitable conclusion, against a backdrop of poverty and immigration, we find a play which is, like all great modern drama, about a family.

Immigration Officer Jeremy Crawford
Eddie Carbone Kyle Crew
Alfieri Steve Pryor
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A View from the Bridge Table
by playgoer
Tuesday, June 11, 2019
An angled back wall, with an opening to the kitchen up right, a bedroom door at stage right, and door to the hallway that leads to the apartment just left of center. The brick entry to the apartment building far left, with a pay phone on the audience right wall. Across the stage, in the far stage right corner of the playing area, a cramped lawyer’s office with desk, two chairs, and a cabinet and typewriter. Above the stage, an indication of the Brooklyn Bridge that is meant to be looming, but appears more to be an unintentionally lit glimpse of backstage pipes and wires. The uncredited set design for Theatre in the Square’s "A View from the Bridge" is workable, but spare. The few hangings on the walls are either religious or under-scaled for the wall space available, combining with the worn furniture (dining table and chairs, record player, armchair, and side table) to indicate a working-class Catholic living space. Lighting isolates the action taking place at the edges of the stage, while the apartment scenes are warmly lit.

The show starts with booming, ominous music that is also used to close the show. When the lights come up on the apartment building’s stoop, a dumb show plays out with continued underscoring. Record player music (principally the pop hit "Paper Doll") also figures as an accompaniment to other action in the show. The effect is sometimes that of a wanna-be movie.

Arthur Miller’s play hinges on a battle for the affections of Catherine (the engaging Gabrielle Stephenson), principally between her uncle/guardian Eddie (the booming-voiced Kyle Crew) and recent immigrant Rodolpho (the diminutive red-head Kevin Lombard). Bystanders who are powerless to oppose Eddie include his wife Beatrice (Alli Noto, in age makeup), Rodolpho’s brother Marco (the intense Michael Maglio), and lawyer/narrator Alfieri (the confident Steve Pryor). Minor figures in the play are two longshoremen (played by brawny Douglas Goodien and jokester Ivan Logvinov) and an immigration officer (powerfully played by Jeremy Crawford). Director Prodan Dimov has only the recent immigrants speak with accents, which are well done and pretty believable.

The major roles in "A View from the Bridge" are challenges to any actor. Here, the dynamics work exceedingly well, although layers of nuance often seem to be missing. Mr. Dimov has put together a creditable production of an American classic that moves with fluidity and oozes with intensity, but whose verisimilitude to real life is marred by questionable physical casting choices (a Beatrice who is too young; a Rodolpho who is too short and not blond). While the costuming for the two male leads features low-waisted pants of modern style, the play seems dated, with an influx of Italian immigrants a thing of the past and references to homosexuality restricted to the euphemism "he’s not right." This is a play that calls out for a modern-day update with an Hispanic spin and more up-to-date language, but decades will elapse before Miller’s work comes out of copyright protection, and cultural immigration conditions will have changed by then.

Marietta’s New Theatre in the Square has chosen to present a second-tier work by an American playwriting legend. It’s a welcome addition to the Atlanta theatre scene, which tends to focus on new works or overdone standards, but it’s more an historical curiosity than must-see theatre. There is visceral excitement in the performances and flow, but not the pitch-perfect professionalism that is needed to bring a show like this to life. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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