Sunday, April 7, 2019

Play a Day: Miranda from Stormville

Adam Bertocci
Seven plays in seven days!

For Sunday I read Miranda from Stormville by Adam Bertocci, and available from New Play Exchange.

“No one needs fixing. Just love or some cheeseball shit like that.”

My daughter started calling me “poppa” a couple years back, which I thought was sweet until I realized she was inspired by the name Eleven calls her captor in Stranger Things. Nowadays she calls me “Pops” which I have to say is pretty awesome.

In this keen adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Tempest, a nineteen year-old Miranda calls her father Pops, too. He is in the throes of Alzheimer’s, and it is against that backdrop, of grappling with an elderly parent whose fix on reality can change by the moment that new relationships form and others break apart.

It is an existential struggle for our female protagonist, thrown into an uneasy partnership with “Will Ferdinand,” the son of a man of prominence, on his way to Atlantic City, now lost in New Jersey. Unlike Shakespeare’s ingenue this young woman is wise beyond her years, though still burdened by an inability to break free of circumstance.

Bertocci has a remarkable facility with words, and he takes delight in messing with the works of Shakespeare. We met several years ago, when he attended Double Heart (The Courtship of Beatrice and Benedick) in New York City. He told me he appreciated the hidden jokes in the script that only a Shakespeare enthusiast like himself would get, which was pretty flattering.

Hip Shakespeare dorks must, must also read his Two Gentlemen of Lebowski, which GQ calls "a blast," and they are not wrong.

Who should I read tomorrow?

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