Arts Runoff: MOVE

This is a really full weekend, so I’m trying to space out reviews and not bury them. This is review 2 of 3.

Some of the places the cast takes the audience in MOVE.

Summary: A dance/theater piece written and directed by Adam Kritzer ’11. The show concerns the MOVE Organization, a radical neo-primitivist group that lived in several places in Philadelphia through the ’70s and ’80s. The piece is staged in the Mill, where the cast leads the audience from room to room and scene to scene. For more background, read The Campus interview with Christian Morel ’11 and Kritzer.

Good: Really innovative to stage Move in the Mill, and also really effective. It felt intimate but also grimy–exactly the right way, it seemed, to recreate the mood of the real-life MOVEment. // The sound design was impressive, especially since the crew had to build the sound system completely from the ground up and maintain the soundscape from room to room. // Peter Walker Kaplan ‘13.5 did some great acting: he played people we weren’t supposed to like but them human, and he transitioned smoothly from talking to the audience to entering the scene.

Bad: Although the dance elements were fantastic, some of the acting felt slightly flat. // The strobe light gave one scene too much of a haunted-house feel. // The dynamic between two of the main characters, Ramona and John, was a little ambiguous. I felt like the cast didn’t quite make a choice about whether to give them a father-daughter, student-teacher, or lover kind of relationship. It would have been fine to leave it ambiguous intentionally, but the ambiguity felt a bit more like confusion than subtlety.

Broad: One of the people represented in the piece, Ramona Africa, came to see the show the other day and offered discussion after the Friday shows. The project was funded by a Treehouse Grant, which the College gives to original student projects.

Contextual rating: If you have something important to do this weekend,
-…do it, and see this show if you can.
-…put it off and see this show. (Only 50 minutes long, at flexible times, and a very different experience)
-…skip it and see this show.

Move In the Mill. $4. Today at 4:30, Sunday at 12:00, 1:00, 2:00, 3:30 and 4:30.  Lots of shows!