BWW Reviews: THE GREAT DIVORCE
The Great Divorce, by C.S. Lewis, is one of the most thought provoking fictions on the nature of Heaven, Hell, and Judgment to have been written outside of scripture. Fellowship of Performing Arts has brought this timeless work to the stage in a way that will delight, challenge, and entertain all from the average theater-goer looking for a good show to the most devout of philosophers and theologians.
Tom Beckett, Joel Rainwater and Christa Scott-Reed delivers a myriad of performances, each unique and solid, as they play out for you everything from the damned of Hell to the angels of Heaven. What appears at first as a post-modern delivery of the work quickly shapes itself into a imaginative and evocative interpretation of the afterlife for a group of souls sharing a bus trip together from the Grey City to the Far Country up above. While the idea of presenting Heaven and Hell through the medium of stage is a daunting one to say the least, the use of screens and projection-sets combined with a surrealist take on design and movement accomplish the task without so much as causing one to stop and question it.
To those who prefer their theater to have a little more High Art, they will not be disappointed in this work. To those who find the post-modern and high-art theater a bit too much, only the first five or so minutes of the 90 minute piece will give you pause; after that it grounds itself a bit more in its accessibility and is smooth and immersive sailing from there on out.
If you are already familiar with The Great Divorce, this will be a rare and welcomed treat! If you are new to the tale, this will prove a wonderful introduction to a thoughtful work by the author of some of the deepest apologetics and lightest children's stories in the English Language. While this is no trip to Narnia, there is still an imagination-capturing aspect to the story played out by Fellowship of Performing Arts.
For more information or to find their next performance, visit greatdivorceonstage.com.