Tuesday, Dec 11, 2018
 
search SGN
SERVING SEATTLE AND THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST FOR 43 YEARS!

click to visit advertiser's website


Javascript DHTML Drop Down Menu Powered by dhtml-menu-builder.com

Last Weeks Edition
   
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 




 

 
 

 

 

[Valid RSS]

click to go to advertisers website
to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, February 2, 2018 - Volume 46 Issue 05
Do we really want to go Camping with Henry and Tom?
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
  next story
Do we really want to go Camping with Henry and Tom?

by Miryam Gordon - SGN A&E Writer

CAMPING WITH HENRY AND TOM
TAPROOT THEATRE
Through March 3


Mark St. Germain's specialty is writing plays about real events and bringing them to life by infusing his imagination into how these events might have come about. Taproot Theatre really likes his stuff and has done three previous plays of his (the vital Best of Enemies, Freud's Last Session and Relativity) before their current production of Camping with Henry and Tom.

St. Germain is adept at inventing realistic dialogue with historical figures and even when his plays don't quite work all the way through, they are generally not boring. Camping is not one of his best plays. It, too, is not exactly boring, especially with the terrific actors employed by Taproot as Thomas Edison (Rob Burgess), Henry Ford (David Pichette) and President Warren Harding (Frank Lawler). Scott Nolte's usual deft direction brings out the best in these actors as they take on these semi-well-known people.

It's clear why Nolte chose to do the play. Written in the mid-1990s, Camping animated St. Germain after the presidential candidacy of businessman Ross Perot, and the idea that a businessman could run this country 'better than any politician.' ... Hmm... Where have we heard that, lately? Well, we almost had a similar situation back in 1923, when Henry Ford contemplated his own run at the presidency.

St. Germain discovered that Henry Ford and others took annual camping trips together and Thomas Edison was part of them until after one year, he never went camping again. So, what could have happened? St. Germain imagines these three highly placed individuals getting into a car wreck in the woods without any security and having to deal with that awkward situation.

There is smart dialogue about corporations and government and what each might do better than the other. However, St. Germain gives a lot of very lofty and eloquent dialogue about 'giving back to the People' to Henry Ford, who helped to perfect the assembly line, which is why he got rich. But Ford was a known anti-Semite, in fact virulent about it. In fact, each of these men has been revealed in history to have major humanitarian flaws.

St. Germain does allow Ford's antipathies to come out in the second act more than the first, but by withholding that dynamic and other controversies until Act Two, Act One is a bit too sedate and long. Too little happens, and there is no real danger, even though they are lost in the woods, may not be found for potentially days, and have few resources to protect them from the elements.

Each of the three main actors (eventually Kevin Pitman shows up as the Secret Service guy who gets them back home) finds special and unique mannerisms to deliver their characters. While Edison is not a joke, here he is often given a punch line, and Burgess uses full-bodied hand motions as a character development. Lawler subtly weaves pathos and weakness into Harding, a president most consider one of our worst ever. Pichette strongly performs the vitriolic and cunning Ford with forthrightness and a lot of swearing.

To the extent that an audience watching a play is expected to identify with and like the characters on stage, these particular individuals are problematic in that way. Because of the actors and the off-and-on comedic dialogue, it's as if we are supposed to like or at least agree that Ford and Edison, who stole a lot of patents and buried a lot of other people's inventions, and Harding are worth spending this time with in order to say 'important things.'

But frankly, while there are plenty of important things to discuss about corporations and government, this particular trio does not bring many of them to the surface, nor delve deeply enough into them to make for an interesting exploration.

Mostly, this play makes us sigh in relief that Ford never became president. It makes us long for another guy's lack of success, and unintentionally inspires us to think that no businessperson should ever again attempt to run for that office. We don't really know what a good businessperson, who also understands what government is good at, might really do for this country.

For more information, go to www.taproottheatre.org or call 206-781-9707.

Discuss your opinions with SGNcritic@gmail.com or go to www.facebook.com/SeattleTheaterWriters. More articles can be found at MiryamsTheaterMusings.blogspot.com.

Tell a friend:

Share on Facebook  Share on Facebook

Post to MySpace!Share on MySpace!

    Share on Delicious

Share on StumbleUpon!

Announcing #HAM4HAM lottery for Hamilton tickets in Seattle 40 tickets for every performance (except three) @ $10 each
------------------------------
February 2018 theater openings
------------------------------
Grammys 2018: Jennifer Higdon and Benj Pasek lead LGBT artist wins; Elton and Miley, Lady GaGa and Kesha give memorable performances in overall lackluster telecast
------------------------------
Country-folk duo First Aid Kit shines at the Moore with bravura performance
------------------------------
Howard Jones opts for stories over music in Benaroya Hall show
------------------------------
Do we really want to go Camping with Henry and Tom?
------------------------------
Kitten LaRue reflects on 10 years of 'J'ADORE!'
------------------------------
Seattle Humane - Pets of the Week
------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------
Help create a social and support network for LGBT veterans
------------------------------
Josh Ritter and The Royal City Band squeeze lots of songs and fans into The Neptune performance
------------------------------
Glitzy Freak puts on a heck of a show
------------------------------
Energetically convoluted Death Cure brings the Maze Runner saga to a close
------------------------------
Three Dollar Bill Wednesday series kicks off February 7 with 'Queer Fast Flirting' and 'Date Night Short Films'
------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

click to visit advertiser's website

click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
 
 
 
 

gay news feeds gay news readers gay rss gay
http://sgn.org/rss.xml | what is RSS? | Add to Google use Google to set up your RSS feed
SGN Calendar For Mobile Phones http://sgn.org/rssCalendarMobile.xml
SGN Calendar http://sgn.org/rssCalendar.xml

Seattle Gay News - SGN
1707 23rd Ave
Seattle, WA 98122

Phone 206-324-4297
Fax 206-322-7188

email: sgn2@sgn.org
website suggestions: web@sgn.org

copyright Seattle Gay News 2018 - DigitalTeamWorks 2018

USA Gay News American News American Gay News USA American Gay News United States American Lesbian News USA American Lesbian News United States USA News
Pacific Northwest News in Seattle News in Washington State News