Tuesday, 3 March 2009

What's life without drama?

My book journal tells me that it has been two years since I read any plays. The last drama in my life was Peter Schaffer's Equus in March 2007, unless you count seeing Spamalot before it ended this January. I used to read (and study) a lot of plays but the only Tennessee WIlliams I had a chance to read before now was A Streetcar Named Desire, which I enjoyed, so I picked up my copy of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof with anticipation. I wasn't disappointed; the play contains a lot of raw emotion, family tension and energy, which I imagine transfers well onto stage.

Consisting of three acts, Cat tells the story (over one afternoon celebrating Big Daddy's birthday) of the deteriorating marriage between Brick and Margaret/Maggie/Cat; of Big Daddy's diagnosis of Cancer and what that means for him and his family; of Brick's drinking problem; of his grief at his friend Skipper's death and their homo-erotic relationship; of suppressed sexuality; of the not-so-subtle hint of scandal ... all of these stories and lies (or mendacity, as Brick describes the root of his disgust, the permeating theme of the play) are brutally exposed on the page/stage. Yes, Cat is dramatic.

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