I had the pleasure of seeing Inventing Van Gogh yesterday afternoon in tech before the final Return to the Forbidden Planet performance. Damn, what a beautiful show. If you look at the run of material and approaches this season, I think you’d have a hard time pinning a label on us. That whole edgy/avant garde/whateverdyslogismsomeonecomesupformeaningartyandweirdprollywithafewswearwords certainly doesn’t hold. The designs from Kaylin, Brian,Bailee and Karla is exquisite (as is the latter’s direction, which anyone in town who’s prolly seen a play in the last decade already would have guessed). Ned and Nicole are two actors I always can’t take my eyes off of, and this one’s no different. The rest of the cast are folks I don’t really know (Steve Fisher, Greg Thompson and Jordan Foote), which for me really adds to the “mystery” of this piece, and all of them turn in rich, engaging, visceral performances.
The play itself is haunting, immediate even when ephemeral — bouncing around between 19th century Paris and the present day America. The historical aspect of things is great fun to watch (I have to admit the geek in me delighted in watching van Gogh, Gauguin and Gachet carousing and arguing in front of me), even if there’s a whole major plot point that’s fictitious (or is it?!?!). It’s an unsettlingly poetic, exceptionally lyrical play (augmented by the work of every member of the design team.). Lovers of art, anyone who’s ever been obsessed with expression and/or creation, this is a fantastic 2-hour meditation. I also think that this play shows us off at our best with what we do in the Shimberg, a perfect homecoming after our past two months next door.
Come see us. If you’re price-conscious the preview tickets for July 9-10 are just $14. The code YELLOW gets you $5 off July 11-13 IF YOU BUY THEM BY THE END OF TODAY (Mon., July 7). Of course, if you’d have bought season tickets at the beginning of the year, you’d have saved well over 30% off this and everything else we do over the course of the season. Don’t let the early bird offer for the 2014-15 season pass you by!