Sunday, August 31, 2014

Smoke *

I guess I wasn’t paying close attention when I booked a ticket for Kim Davies’s new play now in previews at The Flea’s tiny downstairs theater. Their website clearly describes it as a “BDSM erotic power game” so I can’t claim I wasn't warned. Although I usually try to avoid “spoilers” on this blog, I think it only fair to warn you that, unless your idea of the erotic encompasses having sex with knives, this 75-minute play will be a tough slog. (I should also warn you that many cigarettes are smoked.) I know I would have fled halfway through the play had I been able to. John (Stephen Stout) plays a 31-year old would-be artist who is the intern of a famous photographer. Julie (Madeleine Bundy) is a spoiled college student who, conveniently, turns out to be his employer’s daughter. They meet in the kitchen of a home where a sex party is in progress. Their encounter eventually leads to the aforementioned sex scene. If there was a point to it, I missed it. The actors make a very attractive couple (although Stout has the worst haircut in New York) and perform their roles with conviction. Director Tom Costello keeps things moving. Andrew Diaz’s set is simple but effective. Beth Goldenberg’s costumes are apt. I find it offensive that The Flea is presenting this. Maybe I am a prude after all. In fairness, I should report that the audience, almost exclusively under 35, gave it enthusiastic applause.

2 comments:

BSonArts said...

I rather liked Smoke. It's a bit too close to Venus in Fur, but it presents an alternate picture of people with kinky desires. Unlike Venus, it plays on the tentativeness and vulnerability of two people with S&M fantasies and their underlying need for a relationship. Needless to say, this is not everybody's idea of erotic or satisfying theatre.

Robert Sholiton said...

Thanks for sharing your view.