I will admit, now that I'm confident I've made it through in one piece, that I was nervous about attending Echo, a Fringe Festival play, this Monday. I usually hate live theatre, and I don't mean sorta dislike, I mean get-me-out-of-here anxiety.
It's as if I'm somehow suddenly stuck at the house party of someone who gets to talk for as long as they want where I have to sit in the dark and listen nicely. Plus, I'm not allowed to do all my regular nervous partying activities: no interrupting, getting up to stretch, wandering down the hall to explore the family photos on a stranger's walls, drinking to excess or bad party food overeating. Mostly it feels like I'm doing a favour for the actors by sitting there absorbing the extra words they apparently need to let out.
But. I loved Echo. I did not wish I was elsewhere at any point. That is in itself the best review I can give a play, and I've been to assorted productions at Bard on the Beach, the Playhouse Theatre, the Queen E, etc.
Tiffany Markwart and Peter Counter have written a wickedly intelligent piece that Markwart delivers with haunting, heart-wrenchingly beautiful intensity. The wood nymph with whom we spend all 50 minutes of the play has always been known for her gift of gab until she is cursed by Zeus's wife Hera to forever only be able to repeat words that have just been spoken to her. She craftily manipulates these the best she can to still express the emotional hailstorm that is pent up within her as a result.
I don't give up my evenings easily, but sign me up for whatever this gal gets up to next. You can still see Echo this Saturday, September 18th, at 9pm or Sunday, September 19th at 5pm. Studio 16 is at 1545 W. 7th just off Granville.