With Carlo Gozzi’s The Green Bird, Constellation Theatre has actually discovered the most wonderful medium for their hyper-surrealist style in a play inspired by commedia dell’arte. it is like a wild Ferrari driven by Max Ernst through a Brothers Grimm woodland. Every piece – acting, design, script – is totally invested in the creation of a madcap mythic globe.
A hilarious translation featuring quips like, “It’s as hard to find a genuine buddy as it is to wipe your ass with a rose” is a very good reason behind the success of this manufacturing, plus it’s in addition ably adapted and directed by Allison Arkell Stockman. Once the business’s imaginative director, she’s honed the ensemble’s distinctive vocal and physical gymnastics to the level where today when I think of Constellation, the thought of a majestically plumed green bird bounding throughout the phase to perch and speak riddles appears definitely believable.
And exactly what a bird. Because the Green Bird for the play’s title, Rex Daugherty handles to combine elegant sensibility with masculine power while appearing like a feather-festooned Brazilian performer at an acid-drenched Carnival. Every flick of their base like a wink in the market, and his first frenetic appearance is a signal that play will probably be one crazy romp.
Another clue you’re in for a very good time could be the witty existence of composer/performer Tom Teasley, ensconced over the phase in a type of bird’s nest DJ booth. Playing very nearly non-stop for the play, he keeps the vitality both onstage and in the viewers lively. However it’s his interplay because of the stars that is really the key element of the production’s success, as their musical accompaniment weaves through the dialogue sometimes like an echo also times like a conversation itself. With him, it is stupendous enjoyable and does much to counterpoint the play’s silliness.
The land is pure fairy tale with a part of philosophy, as two lost twins search for their particular parents in order to find their fortune with the aid of fantastical creatures. Along the way they understand essential life lessons towards risk of following reason blindly as well as how exactly to simply state no to greed. There’s a lot of physical comic relief when you look at the individuals of Truffaldino (every time we saw hilarious Matthew Wilson tumble, I held thinking, “Bumbles bounce!”) and his lovesick master Tartaglia (John-Michael MacDonald, ad-libbing pitch-perfectly a moustache accident), while organization member Ashley Ivey does keen justice on youthful lover Renzo’s change from prig to prince. The complete ensemble is similarly good, from Emma Crane Jaster’s vain but adorable Barbarina, to Misty Demory’s imperious statue queen along with her dogged quest for a brand new nose.
A surrealist romp would-be absolutely nothing without fancy costumes, here mashed up by fashion designer Kendra Rai. In my experience, the woman designs evoked classic commedia dell’arte figures with nods to Jean Cocteau, the Ballets Russes, and Walt Disney. They’re positively deliciously absurd, with a few hysterically vulgar touches that embolden the actor’s alternatives. View as Nanna Ingvarsson’s bad queen caresses the woman drooping tit corset like a beloved kitten, or as Katy Carkuff, encased in tree part camouflage, makes apple puppets sing with a Sesame Street poignancy.