Martha, Henry, Albert Einstein discussed on The World

KCRW
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From NPR news. This is Anthony burns opening the curtain on L A theater for KCRW incognito. At son of simile is a puzzle play. Unlike classical linear play that begins with a fixed set of characters, and then tells a story about them engaging the audience with a question what's going to happen next Nick Payne's play engages an audience by asking them to figure out how all the pieces fit together four actors play a slew of different characters across a span of time. And the game is to try and keep track of who's who the quintessential character is Henry something's wrong. With Henry, we seem greet his darling. Martha wondering where she's been she tells him she's been right there. And then asks him to play the piano, he says, he's not sure he can she assures him along with someone who might be a doctor that. Yes, he can he plucks out a Notre to then something happens. He seems to forget everything and he greets his darling. Martha wondering. Where she's been lather rinse repeat? We see a variation of this scene. A half dozen times the other characters we need our an odd lot to there's a pathologist who in the middle of performing an autopsy on Albert Einstein steals, his brain. There's Martha a clinical neuropsychologist who seems to be having her first relationship with a woman after a failed marriage. These snippets of information reveal themselves in short little scenes that are juxtaposed against one another. There seem to be mysteries. There's a lot of talk about relationships and fathers in the brain. And it feels important you feel like you're solving some sort of the pseudo coup puzzle with characters drawn from an Oliver sacks essay all thrown together by a lesser, Tom stoppard, it's Joan bowl, but you follow along hoping for some big reveal or some magical gestalt when everything comes together. And you'll see how it all creates this grand tapestry come on this guy. Guys got Einstein's brain in a jar in his trunk. Shirley that's gonna pay off right? Somewhere around an hour into this ninety minute show. My question shifted from trying to figure out how it all fit together to why do I care? I'd love to tell you the final third of this play answered that question, but I can't despite a really lovely production from sun assembly, and some subtle and nuanced performances from the four actors who play all the roles, I wasn't sure why all these threads were woven together. It's not that there aren't touching moments. There are it's not that there aren't common ties between stories if you work you'll track them. It's that the reward for doing that hard work isn't clear, if you're someone who loves a puzzle and gets absolutely giddy in transit place, or you're fascinated by the patients that perplex Oliver sacks. Then incognito is for you. If not then.

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