Saturday, September 6, 2008

August: "Oh Sh*t!" County

Saturday afternoon I went to see August: Osage County. I had made it a goal that I would fit this in my schedule before the Summer was out, and I missed my self-imposed deadline by just a week. (I never did get to Chorus Line... sorry, Slater!) A:OC is an awesome long play that flies by. The acting is great, the writing is great, the three-story realistic dollhouse of a set is brilliant and it's just an excellent time at the theater.

It's a large cast of characters with a bunch of secrets that mostly all get exposed over the show's 3 hour run time (two 10 minute intermission at the one hour and two hour marks make you feel like it's moving along quickly enough). The secrets touch on a bunch of sensitive topics (child molestation! cheating! lying! possible incest!) but it's really not handled in a way that is uber-creepy. I've seen these topics handled in much more uncomfortable ways in lesser shows. There is certainly a lot of tension and the situations are unsettling, but it's all very watchable.
Estelle Parsons, Amy Morton, Sally Murphy and Mariann Mayberry, as mother and her three daughters respectively, all really shine. The dialogue is funny and painful and true throughout. If all that weren't enough, Kimberley Guerrero, the actress who plays Winona in "The Cigar Store Indian" episode of Seinfeld is a strong presence as the housekeeper for the crazy family. She totally rocks. I love you, Winona.

Straight plays don't usually have an extended run on Broadway, but this one looks to be staying around for a while. Don't take it for granted, though! Get out and see it while you can!

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