The Knox Theater Department is producing two bare stage plays this Friday at 7:30 p.m.: “Come and Go” by Irish absurdist playwright Samuel Beckett and “American Tropical” by American “dirty realist” writer Richard Ford. Being produced as bare stage productions, these shows can utilize little more than a few acting blocks, a plain table and simple lighting. But these bare stage shows use their minimalism and simplicity to their advantage.
“Whereas if it is a longer play, you can get caught up into making a spectacle [of the show], this play is only 10 minutes and it’s only one scene,” said junior Micah Snow-Cobb, the director of “American Tropical.” The play takes place in Florida around a game of Scrabble where the main character Evelyn, played by freshman Lara Braverman, describes her experience killing her former friend Penny. The play examines the morality our cultures attach to the act of killing.
“We always paint it like ‘Oh, you killed someone, you’re a bad person,’ ‘Oh, you saved someone, you’re a good person.’ It’s so black and white in our culture. So you spend this time with Evelyn and she just contemplates if she’s a bad person or not,” describes Snow-Cobb.
“Come and Go” follows three characters, senior Jo Niederhoff as Vi, freshman Sarah Lowe as Ru, and sophomore Moriah Chermak as Flo all sitting on a park bench like they did when they were young. Throughout the show one character leaves and the other two share a secret about the absent character before they return. This occurs enough times so that all of the characters leave at some point and are subsequently talked about amongst their other friends.
“The relationship between the three characters, Flo, Ru and Vi, is absolutely amazing. Though very little is said, I feel that the silences and the actions speak so much louder than anything that is actually saidÉ And this idea of gossip is something I’m really fascinated in,” said the director, senior Andrew Purvis.