Monday, February 06, 2012

Good Goods at Yale Rep is the real goods

Yale Rep is a little like Forrest Gump’s box of chocolates. “You never know what you’re gonna get.” Well, that’s not entirely true. It is a repertory company, after all, and you can pretty much assume that when they do Shakespeare or Molière, you’re in for a good night of theater.

But when they do a world première from a young playwright who recently graduated from Yale School of Drama—well, let’s just say the results can be uneven. We’ve seen our share of unmemorable first plays from playwrights who haven’t lived enough to know anything about life. Oh, you can expect a great set and brilliant staging, and a cast that gives it their all. But sometimes, frankly, there’s not a lot to work with.

Tonight was not that night. Tonight was the other kind—the serendipitous discovery of a brilliant young playwright, who took a throwaway class exercise and fleshed it out into a wonderful entertainment. The playwright, mature beyond her years, is Christina Anderson, and attention must be paid.

Good Goods is an actor’s play, with juicy roles all around, the kind of characters that are caricatures of themselves and really can’t be overacted. Everyone in the cast had fun (one more than the others, but I won’t spoil the surprise for you). And so did the audience.

The set and the staging were up to the Rep’s high standards.

Go. You’ll enjoy.

And keep an eye on Ms. Anderson.

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