I've been blessed in the past three days with seeing three wonderful performances. One of them, I'll be posting about in a day or so.
The other two were more important - to me any way. Why? Well, mostly because of one of the performers. My beloved Kitty, fun, feisty, challenging, irritating, beautiful, insolent, loving, joyous, angry gal that she is (what? she's a 16 year old girl, how else do you describe a 16 year old girl?), made her hight school theater debut this weekend.
She's not a Thespian yet, but I think she certainly proved herself. She took on the role of Amelia in Othello, and performed it brilliantly. Most folks won't realize that the few moments she had on stage in the First Act may have shown greater acting ability than the brilliant rendition of righteous indignation in the last act, but she played the subservient handmaiden to perfection when she appeared beside Desdemona.
She then played the saucy wench, toying lightly with her husband, in a manner that I hadn't known she knew how to do. (I'm not at all sure I like that she can pull that off so well, but it made me proud to see her do it on stage).
But my favorite part was in Act II. There, she had a fairly lengthy bit to say, in a scene where she not only had to wrap her 21st century tounge around 17th century English, but do so with feeling. And my goodness. This woman-child just OWNS that Shakespearean English! There was no sign of stumbling over the odd locution. No hint that this isn't just the way one talks! No funky pandering to the iambic pentameter that so many let make Shakespeare sound stilted. Not here. She was feisty and furious and wonderful!
She died well.
How many actors die well? Really. You've seen them, the actors who over-die. Or who just flop so it looks like someone pulled the plug. This is not my gal. She get's stabbed -- in the lung, one suspects. She stumbles, as one would. But she doesn't flail about. And you hear in her speech that she's losing the ability to breathe. The coughing was just right. It's hard to die well, but she did. I saw it twice, and both nights, she did wonderfully.
I'm more than a little proud. Now if only I'd managed to get a decent picture!
(Oh, and while I wouldn't say that the production was the finest Othello I've seen, severa of the other cast members proved themselves able as well. The Othello in particular was amazing. He too, owned the language as well as the role. This is the second show I've seen with him; very different roles, very well played. I will be surprised if we don't see him on bigger stages in the future.)