BWW Review: IPHIGENIA IN SPLOTT at 59E59 is Excellent and Gripping
"I wonder what is going to happen when we can't take it anymore."
-by Effie in IPHIGENIA IN SPLOTT
The US premiere of the critically acclaimed play, IPHIGENIA IN SPLOTT, written by Gary Owen and directed by Rachel O'Riordan, is now onstage at 59E59 Theaters though June 4th. This superbly crafted one-woman show features excellent staging and an awe-inspiring performance by Sophie Melville. It is part of the Brits Off-Broadway festival of shows that will be performed at 59E59 Theaters through Sunday, July 2nd.
In IPHIGENIA IN SPLOTT, Effie is an off-putting type of person, a rowdy, foul-mouthed young woman whose life seems to be an endless cycle of drinking binges, partying and fiery encounters. But there's another side to her, one that is revealed when she meets a former soldier, Lee who is disabled. After just one night with him, Effie imagines that her life could change saying, "I'm feeling something new, I'm not alone." But her efforts to communicate with Lee afterwards are fruitless and Effie must deal with a pregnancy. As the story unfolds, Effie's vulnerability becomes more and more evident. This show is a deeply affecting view of humanity with all of its promise and pain. The play was inspired by the enduring Greek myth of Iphigenia and has well placed parallels to the tale.
Sophie Melville is stunning as Effie. She captures the drama, passion and occasional humor of her challenging role. Effie is a dynamic character, one that is at first seems nasty and contentious, but later evokes sympathy and finally must be admired. Melville masters all of these dimensions.
The Creative Team has done a top job of bringing IPHIGENIA IN SPLOTT to the stage with design by Hayley Grindle; lighting design by Rachel Mortimer; sound design by Sam Jones. The Casting Director is Kay Magson, CDG; Company Stage Manager, Charlotte Unwin; AEA Stage Manager, Veronica Aglow.
This is an essential time in our society for us to recognize individuals like Effie and take a close, empathetic view of people and their struggles. IPHIGENIA IN SPLOTT is a gripping, must-see play for metro area audiences.
IPHIGENIA IN SPLOTT is produced by Sherman Theatre. The show runs for 80 minutes with no intermission. It is being performed on a limited engagement through Sunday, June 4th at 59E59 Theaters located at 59 East 59th Street between Park and Madison Avenues. The performance schedule is Tuesday - Thursday at 7:15 PM; Friday at 8:15 PM; Saturday at 2:15 PM & 8:15 PM; and Sunday at 3:15 PM. Tickets are $25 ($20 for 59E59 Members). To purchase tickets, call Ticket Central at (212) 279-4200 or visit www.59e59.org.
Photo Credit: Mark Douet