Did I mention I'm in New York? Yeah, yeah I am! I've been so busy with work & crap that I forgot to mention that I would be visiting the Broadway. Let me tell you right now, the temperature is up in the high 80's and if that isn't hot enough, it's also fleet week!
Today I followed my routine of flying out of L.A. early in the morning, getting to N.Y. with just enough time to set my stuff down in my accommodations, get my Metro plan set up and get to the TKTS booth in Times Square just in time to see a show. Tonight my half-price (that seemed full price) show of choice was THE FATHER.
This Florian Zeller play, translated by Christopher Hampton and directed by Doug Hughes, is about the failing faculties of an old man who is living with his daughter and her husband, or not. I love that this play is told singularly through the point of view of an aging man who is suffering from oldness. Frank Langella, (whom I vividly remember seeing as DRACULA
on Showtime a few times when I was a kid in the early 80's and finding a spark of something that made me watch again and again...) stars as the frail minded father whom we follow through out the show, written in a way that we share his confusion. The use of several actors and repeated moments, which are slightly different, help see what he is going through and we suffer with him, not knowing what exactly is the truth. I also love that the play feels like it is moving forward and backwards at the same time. THE FATHER's final scene had my eyes moist as I couldn't help thinking of my very own mother going through the same things.
As a Gay of A Certain Age, stage plays about elderly parents suffering confusion, frustration and sadness hit really close to home and make one appreciate the show all the more. It does also make one wonder if one doesn't have any children to care for them, who's gonna get to suffer the brunt of their dementia? Who? And in that case, would they even know they're dying alone?
P.S. I'm happy to report that only 4 cell phones went off during the course of this 90 minute play.
Fortunately, for those who enjoy cell phone rings, one went off during the final touching scene so that everyone got to hear it real good!