Mother Courage and Her Children (review)

Mother Courage and Her Children (review)
Mother Courage and Her Children (review)
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THE PLAY: The titular parent traverses Europe during the Thirty Years’ War, selling her goods and trying to look after her children. The episodic drama presents scenes from the sidelines of war as cynical political commentary.

 

THE PRODUCTION: This classic by Bertolt Brecht is the most famous example of epic theatre, which is staged in a presentational style that focuses more on politics than emotional engagement. Mother is the dynamic thread that drives every scene and Boomie Pedersen’s larger-than-life delivery and commanding presence consummately commands the stage and the show. Director Keri Wormald manages her robust ensemble with inventive, scrappy style. Despite the commendable production, the play itself is a challenge and isn’t easy to “enjoy.” There are several pleasant songs by Savannah Hatcher that are simply performed with a variety of styles and instruments. Ryan Gardner’s set design is more about interestingly integrating elements into the basement’s unfinished space and is echoed by Erin Barclay’s raw, simple lighting. The sound design (by Wormald & Kelsey Cordrey) surrounds the space with echoes of war and the audience adjusts their chairs to follow the action (sit in the row of stools for the best vantage.) Running time: 2:20

 

THE POINT: This is a dynamic, scrappy staging of the Brecht classic, but is still more about appreciating the historical and stylistic context than enjoying the experience.

 

3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)

 

At TheatreLab’s Basement thru 11/12

 

LISTEN TO MY REVIEW (as aired on WRIR)

 

courge-wide

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