BWW Review: BLONDE POISON at Primal Forces
Fun. I Just Wanted to Have Fun.
She's a blonde of an uncertain age, bright red dress with black stripes. Sensible black heels. Shovel applied make-up. Eyes that have seen more than eyes should ever see. She's Stella Goldschlag, preening into a mirror. "I could pass for fifty". Smirk. "Forty, even". Laugh. "Well, maybe." . Pause. "I'm Seventy-one." and Lourelene Snedeker as Stella is into a ninety minute monologue, strong German accent all the way, that revels in sex, death and treason.
The play is BLONDE POISON, by Gail Louw, produced by Primal Forces at Boca Raton's Sol Theatre.
BLONDE POISON? That's the name awarded Stella by the Gestapo, in gratitude for the work she accomplished in Berlin, 1943. That's the truth. Stella was real.
When she was nineteen she and her family could have left Germany for the US, but her father demurred. 'They'll never touch us."
They stayed and became 'U Boats', Jews living underground and in Stella's case a Jewess able to pass as an Aryan because of her blonde hair and fair complexion. Until the day she was reported to the Gestapo. Her choice then: betray her fellow 'U Boats' or watch her parents be deported to the camps.
She chose to betray and continued doing so even after the Nazis deported her parents despite their promise. She was credited with between 600 and 3000 victims and postwar served ten years in a Russian prison.
So, Lourelene Snedeker. How does she do as the reviled murderess waiting in her apartment to be interviewed by an old school friend?
BLONDE POISON is a piece swollen with primal drives. Survival is foremost, "don't blame me", "I did what I had to". And as Stella rehearses her answers to the yet to be asked questions, there's a shift in her that transmits her joy in music, her affection for her husbands, her love of the sexual, the constant seeking for attention, the steel that permits her betrayals. The disavowal of guilt. The silence.
So well written by Gail Louw, so well directed by Keith Garsson and so movingly performed by Lourelene Snedeker. A triumph.
Set design by Nicole Nicole DiCicco, lights by Guy Haubrich, sound David Hart and costumes by Alberto Arroyo.
BLONDE POISON runs through March 10 at the Sol Theatre, 3333 North Federal Highway, Boca Raton. 866-811-4111 http://primalforces.com/