A critic can’t be objective about
her friends’ work, and she shouldn’t try: it’s wrenching–and dangerous to friendship.
Still, I feel safe in saying that my friend Paul Lazar is FANTASTIC–so charming and ridiculous, and inadvertently wise–in his starring role as the center of the whirring asteroid that is “1965UU,” a one-act play about language and its human predicaments–about love and inertia–by inveterate “scribbler” (as he puts it) Mac Wellman. “1965UU” plays the Chocolate Factory, by the East River in Queens, just through October 4. So run!
The only way a shadow happens on this unabatably bright planet is by a thickening of light.
And that’s how sense and story work here too–leaping so high into the comical, weightless absurd that they become their opposite. Imagine Beckett by way of Monty Python, or the Little Prince, but after he grew up and no one thought he was so cute anymore though he still had an arresting angle on things. While it’s probably especially
pleasing to people who love the stickiness and slipperiness of words, “1965UU” never
has the curdled cleverness you get when language isn’t hoping to
snag fact and romance from the world.
I think its success is largely due to Paul, whom you may know for his performances with the Wooster Group or the stupendous Big Dance Theater, which he directs with his wife, Annie-B Parson. As
a wise fool whose name may or may not mean “radish,” Paul galvanizes the
rest of the asteroid population (and an excellent small cast). Also spot-on: the direction, with perfectly placed special effects, by
“1965UU” plays two more weekends only!!! Thursdays through Saturdays at 8
pm one stop east of Grand Central Station. (Take the 7 from Manhattan
or, if you dare, the good old reliable G from Brooklyn. If you live in Queens and can bring a bill to prove it, the show is FREE on Thursdays.)
For details, here’s the Chocolate Factory website.
And I just discovered Foot contributor Eva Yaa Asantewaa’s delicious review on her website, Infinite Body.