A Love Letter To “The Great Gatsby:” One Patron’s Response

We LOVE getting feedback from our patrons; everything from “the theatre was too cold” to “I fell in love with one of the actors” and everything in between. But it is particularly nice when we receive slightly longer, thoughtful responses to our shows from our patrons and audience members…as we did today from Sherry, who came to see The Great Gatsby on opening night!

Here is what she had to say,

 

Bag&Baggage-The Great Gatsby-Cast-courtesy Casey Campbell Photograhy“The Great Gatsby by Bag&Baggage, the first Venetian show of the sixth season, succeeds through the combination of a strong cast and very compelling design.

The cast: Cassie Greer is a fine, great Daisy; Addled, blowsy, not brave, careless. Tom (Colin Wood) is thuggishly right. Ty Boice has that gilded facade one wants for a Gatsby. Megan Carver was pitch perfect in the slightly cartoonish role of Myrtle.  Arianne Jacques looks and moves well on stage, and I really liked her take on Jordan Baker, the cheating golfer. Adam Syron was a poignant heartbroken husband to the roughhousing Myrtle. Throughout, a uniformly strong cast tackles a difficult story and script. They’re well supported by costumes that look like they actually live in the characters’ closets. When it comes to using clothing to help bring a character to life, Melissa Heller has perfect pitch.

Part of what I found fascinating was that I became rather sympathetic to the main characters…until I wasn’t any longer. For an act and a half, Gatsby and Daisy had a bittersweet, lost-and-found love story. Until they didn’t. That reverse in my own feelings was delightful. All so very relevant today.

The production!!! It’s almost unutterably fabulous. The projected words are a fine, fine aid to transitions, the scrim works brilliantly, the dock provides an Escher-esque angle which is well-used. The blocking. Lighting. Music. Dense and layered with meaning and all working together, a fine mesh, shimmering and luminous.

The pacing is interesting. The stage is set with a languorous summer day, placing us in the company of the quite idle rich. Things get complicated and the pace picks up, but the scenes don’t get rushed; they rather unfold, origami-like. And when all is unfolded, one sees, with Nick the narrator, that these people “smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness, or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made. . . .” Somehow, given the Robert Benmosches of this world, nothing has changed.2013-09-24 BNB Great Gatsby_0273

It’s great. It’s utterly relevant and beautiful and I am very proud of you and Bag&Baggage.”
Thanks, Sherry!

If you would like to submit a guest blog about your experience of a B&B show, just email us at info@bagnbaggage.org! We would LOVE to hear from you! Or, share your thoughts in the comments section below!