As published in EDGE on May 7, 2013.
The actors, positioned on stage, look off into the distance as someone states “Numero uno.” Suddenly the lights go out, there’s a sound of shattered glass, and a voice similar to the narrator in the horror films, “Saw” announces, “End of play.” This is the start of director Richard Foreman’s play, which follows young love between a coquette prostitute, Suzie, and a cerebral southerner, Samuel.
In a Brechtian form, the performance plays on the audience’s reflective detachment. With undimmed lights removing the fourth wall, a Michelin man smoking a cigar occasionally shining a mirror onto the crowd, and abrupt, unexpected flashbulbs directed at the masses, the audience is constantly on display and on edge.
The removal of melodrama demands a high level of acting skill, which is achieved by all the actors in “Old-Fashioned Prostitutes (A True Romance).” Dangling from a bar on the side of the stage like a prostitute on display through a window in a red-light district, Suzie, played by Alenka Kraigher, embodies her characters personal strength and yet constant discontent.
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