1977 was a huge break-out year for John Travolta with the monster hits Grease and Saturday Night Fever bringing enormous financial success both at the box office and from the purchases s of the soundtracks.
I confess that I saw both these films whilst sojourning in exotic locations. This caused me to suspend all critical faculties such that I adored both films.
If I had to pick a favourite it would have to be Saturday Night Fever and in particular its gritty back story. I was also partial to its disco beat and dancing.
So desperate was I to see IRONBOUND that I wheedled and cajoled An Assorted Few to let me attend a preview on the one night I have off this week. Letting reviewers into a preview is a huge leap of faith and rarely done, and I thought that it would be close enough to ready that I could see what was what. But damn… if they get any better the earth will move beneath the Kings Cross Theatre and the iron of the building will shake and fold into itself. It is a production with four terrific performances, a production which challenges the viewer to listen and understand the beneath, a production which brings a life not our own, into blurred existence for our considered focus.
We meet Darja. A 42 year old Polish immigrant waiting on a bus stop in Jersey where she is in sight of the crumbling factory that once afforded her a kind of living and she is in a fluorescent lit place that draws her in crisis. Over the course of the play we will meet Darja over 20 years, from now when her boyfriend of convenience, Tommy, is with her in his own way, to her youth. Back then we will observe affecting love but also the tensions of unassailable difference between she and her husband, Maks, who is convinced that music is the way out of poverty. One other male will enter her world here in this barren place, Vic. The conundrum in him will bring into focus a societal rending of class and circumstance. Continue reading IRONBOUND: RAILS AGAINST THE GOING NOWHERE OF POVERTY→
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