Ellen (ennienyc) wrote,


I'm not the most cultured person, but managed to see some George Bernard Shaw plays in the past year. I'm always scared I won't understand the plots of classic literature, but this wasn't a problem.

Last October, I saw "Arms and the Man" presented by Theater 1010 in a church basement with the audience seated onstage around the actors. Despite the way that sounds, it was very professional and enjoyable.

"Mrs. Warren's Profession" (currently on Broadway) starred Cherry Jones as the title character with a fake English accent, and Sally Hawkins as her daughter with a real one. Hawkins couldn't make it to a Q&A when I saw "Happy Go Lucky," so I finally got to see her live. The proceeds from Mrs. Warren's less than savory profession allowed daughter Vivie to study actuarial science (like me! I mean, I studied actuarial science - through the proceeds of thoracic and colon/rectal surgery), but she is conflicted when she learns what financed her education.

It's not Shaw, but Sally Hawkins also starred in the movie "Made in Dagenham." I saw it through NYWIFT in the same screening room where we did a "Wordplay" screening for a group I'm still not sure I can mention. The sound was crisp and TOO LOUD; I had to use the earplugs. The movie was about Ford female factory workers in the UK striking for equal pay, based on real events in 1968.

As part of the Players Club's Project Shaw, I saw a staged reading of "Captain Brassbound's Conversion." This rarely performed work featured Harriet Harris's charming portrayal of the adventuresome Lady Cicely Waynflete (very surprised to learn Harris isn't British), and Marc Kudisch in the title role (I've seen him enough to know he's not British), with pirates and other colorful characters adding to the mix. The crowded room at this venerable club felt a bit claustrophobic (note to self: in the future, do not sit against the wall, but get there early enough for an aisle or front row seat).

I was going to include "Ernest in Love," a musical based on "The Importance of Being Ernest," but that's Wilde not Shaw. The always excellent Irish Rep staged this production about life among upper-class British ladies and gents.

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