This is a 3 Act play. It was a positive experience to shift from reading a novel to reading a play for a change. I'd forgotten how much I loved reading plays and the scope that they offer for the reader's imagination.
The play deals with the choices the protagonist, Onda, makes, with regards to men (relationships) and her quest for truth in her life. That certain something we all end up searching for at some point, whether physically or mentally.
Each Act in the play jumps forward seven years, perhaps hinting at the classic Seven Year Itch. I liked the time span. Not too muchand not too little.
Each Act has a very clear subject that it deals with.
Act 1 outlines naiveté. How we all begin our lives.
Act 2 is centred around carnality, desire, covetousness, immoral transgressions, falling from grace, etc.
Act 3 is about reclaiming yourself, or finding the idea of self – Absolution. Not easy for most, but the self is actually right under your nose. It's all about choices.
There was a lot to process within the pages of this play. The author had the task of developing several big ideas within the confines of 3 Acts and she succeeded.
I enjoyed the opening in particular, which was darkly comic, but the whole thing was really quite entertaining. It was by far my favourite section of the play and had me instantly captivated. Very clever, conceptually speaking.
I loved that she tackled the universally recognized subject of the Knight in Shining Armour, who both beguiles and ultimately thwarts expectations.
There was the subject of instability in relationships and lack of trust as everyone is cheating on each other.
I enjoyed the way the author outlined the politics of a post-communist society, which were weaved through the play without making the story drag. I don't know many people that enjoy politics (out of choice), but this time it was handled with care. It was more of a complimentary chronicle of change that ran parallel to her protagonists unfolding life story and added to the tone and ambiance of the tale. All of this was painted on the backdrop of Perrault's, The Sleeping Beauty, which in itself was a clever vehicle to utilize.
I found that Onda's alter ego gave an interesting perspective when questioning the fairy-tales we have all grown up with that inevitably make far-fetched promises.
It would be interesting to see the work on stage and how Onda, in particular, would be approached as a character. It would require someone with a broad and versatile acting range with regards to the change of each act and the shifting forward of time that changes the central theme quite dramatically; from naiveté, to carnality and then absolution. Not easy, but something a good actor would cherish, I am sure.
If I had one small negative thing to say it would be this: the play began so well, conceptually and literally, that I found myself searching for the same thing as it progressed and it fell ever so slightly short of that first hit. The first few pages really were excellent. It is, however, not a huge negative.
All in all it was an enjoyable read with many human interaction eye-openers and well-reasoned postulations.
I have to close by quoting something that made me laugh and yet it was really quite to the point and significant:
"Fighting for peace is like fucking for celibacy."
Sergiu Pobereznic (author)
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