Matt spent the weekend with Dedo. We arranged for Dedo to pick up Matt at Michelle’s soccer game on Saturday afternoon (see here for details). Carole was out of town in Tennesee. Dad was good enough to call and ask if Matt would like to spend the weekend. Dad and Carole had tickets to see “States of Independence” and Dad thought Matt would enjoy the musical.
So the point of this essay is that both Matt and Dedo – and apparently a good portion of the audience – thought the musical was pathetic. Dedo is normally very balanced when it comes to the arts. He has an open attitude towards different points of view. If Matt had walked away from the experience with a poor review we would need to check with others. That both Matt and Dedo panned the musical is telling. That more then half the audience left at intermission is damning.
The irony is that we spent a portion of lunch on Saturday talking about how surprisingly good the Wright State University (WSU) theater department was. Normally you can count on a well-produced, directed and performed piece. Even though the reviews here and here are recommending we all go watch, the reviewers closest to the family have given it two thumbs down. Sorry guys, I’m sure that’s going to eat into your ticket sales.
Evidently, the story is based on actual events of a woman who joined the army and fought like a man. I also believe the woman was African-American. Both of our reviewers thought the play had a good basic premise. That is enough to create a good musical or play. Both Dad and Matt thought the actors did well. It was well performed – but not well-conceived. The directors take a good idea and introduce 21st-century sensibilities and mental frameworks and take the original concept in an entirely different direction. The woman is now homosexual and is identified as “African American” 200 years before the term was popularized. Characters refer to 21st-century technologies (the tv) destroying the illusion of authenticity.