December 1, 2010

VENGEANCE IS THE LORD'S: Audience Comments

Have you seen Vengeance is the Lord's? Please share your thoughts with us.

Roberta Wallach, Lee Tergesen, Katie Kreisler, Larry Pine, and Karl Baker Olson, photo by T. Charles Erickson
Did the Horvaths display any family traits that you recognize in your own?

How did you think the play would end? What do you think happens to Donald after the curtain comes down?

Did you attend a post show conversation? What comments surprised you or made you think differently about the play? Would you attend a post show conversation again? What were you thinking about on the way home from the theatre?

Leave your comments here

The Huntington Theatre Company production of Vengeance is the Lord's by Bob Glaudini plays now through December 12th, 2010 at the B.U. Theatre, 264 Huntington Avenue, Boston. Get tickets and information or call our Box Office at 617 266-0800

11 comments:

Irene Glassman said...

The play was not what I had expected. The material was too grave to experience it as a comedy, and too comedic to experience it as a drama. While I initially liked the family a lot and thought the characters were strong, their hypocrisy and lack of insight was so disgusting to me that I ultimately found myself unable to feel compassion for them or to like any of them. Ultimately, I guess it was a very darkly ironic play about a classic dysfunctional family that was full of denial and when push came to shove, circled wagons and put family loyalty above doing what was right.

Jim Kreidler said...

We attended a post-show conversation and as always found it intriguing. For this play, the comments seemed to be primarily about what bad people the characters were, and only a little about the staging or the acting or the play itself. To me, this says that the play works. The audience was drawn into a real and tangible world, and afterward reacted as if these were people appearing on the news. We have attended several post-show conversations, and plan to attend them again. Each is unique and enjoyable in its own way. On the way home, we talked most about Donny – how could he have been so sheltered from the business realities when they were discussed so openly around the table (except the murders)? How could he have acquired the ability to quote Thomas Aquinas without finishing high school, even with a 140 IQ and lots of books? Was the actor’s stiffness on stage imposed by the director, or was he just less experienced than the others? As always, thought provoking stuff. Keep it up.

Anonymous said...

I was very disappointed in the second half of the play. The first half set up some dramatic tension, then nothing happened. Donny was the obvious outsider and should have reacted in some way to what he discovered about his family. I was stunned when the play ended - wasted evening.

Lynne Beasley said...

We actually left at intermission because we couldn't get into any of the characters, or care much about their decisions. It is extremely rare that we leave a show before the end.

What we talked about on the way home was "Is this entire Huntington season going to be dedicated to new plays?" While we don't mind occasionally looking at new plays, one per season is about enough.

These last 2 plays were not really worth our attention. There are so many great plays out there. I best liked the seasons when there would be an Asian play, a classic play of some sort, a musical, and a contemporary play. It was a nice balanced mix.

Lynne Tirrell said...

Vengeance is the Lord’s is a real theatrical achievement, and it is exciting to see it in its premier engagement. Congratulations to all involved. The play drew us in, the actors inhabited their roles beautifully. I was particularly impressed with the accuracy of the complex emotions portrayed by both parents about the murderer of their daughter. This was really superbly crafted writing and powerful acting. The parents try to find black and white, and end up with marbled shades of gray, conflicting needs and emotions through and through. Brilliantly handled. Woodrow was excellently drawn as the pragmatic older brother, and beautifully inhabited by Lee Tergeson. Donny is striving for his own sense of purity, but of course he fails. Roanne's character still may need some development, but is well delineated as the one who holds them together. The whole cast deserves “bravos” for their performances. Bravo.

Margie Arons-Barron said...

Play had potential, but I was always aware that the actors were doing just that, acting. I agree with those who commented that they just couldn't get into the characters. I really didn't come to care about any of them. Their emotions were mechanical. The second act really dragged. Too bad!

Mike Perrow said...

The set is brilliant, with the revolving rooms turning as the seasons change and the impending release of the family's jailed nemesis draws near. The problem with this play is the writing. The playwright doesn't engage the really difficult dilemma that the youngest sibling seems to be aware of: that honesty might trump loyalty to family. This character is, consequently, the missing link in what could be an interesting play. Imagine what Arthur Miller might have done with the moralities on display here. Last season's "All my sons" offered us an original look at what happens in a family that confronts its demons and conflicting versions of the truth. The lack of tragedy in "Vengenace" is really just the lack of a well imagined plot.

Alan Zinn said...

I was intrigued by the set. The house was, intentional or not, the main character. If the dialog could have more resembled the set the play might have had a chance of succeeding. After all the home is likely the most eloquent measure of family character. The textual information built into the Horvath's home was very different from the drama and which would have been more appropriate for the squalor of a slum or police station - think, The Wire.
I can imagine that many people have lived in a similar house but I believe a real family, even with the Horvath's criminality and weaknesses, would not be as depicted by Glaudini in any house let alone that one.

redmont said...

My major complaint is that the actors do not speak loudly enough for all in the audience to hear all the dialogue. Doesn't the director see to this problem by during rehearsals sitting in the last row to be sure all can hear?. We have this constant problem, even though we have seats close up, and your hearing assistance devices do not work well at all. We are thinking of ending our subscriptions after a decade or two because you do not address this problem.

sylvia said...

This was my first show at the Huntington, a beautiful venue. I loved the talk-back and it seems that is a kind of tradition, nice touch. The flow and subject reminded me of "August,Osage County" and I found myself comparing the two. I guess that the Horvath family reality was hard for me. It felt like a visit to the absurd. This wasn't a show for "entertainment" and I find myself asking "what was the point the playwright was making?" Did I miss it? The quote on which the play is named and the ending left me nonplussed...and what was the bedroom for? Am I the only one who waited for something to happen there? Acting was great and my struggle to connect was about the disparity rather than the portrayal. I hope it is a long stretch for most of us to the Horvaths...and maybe there I've found a point.

Anonymous said...

We enjoyed the play immensely. It was intense, the characters were well-developed and the set was terrific. However, Donnie's character did not make sense to me. How could someone drop out of high school and have a room filled with books? I think something needs to be added to explain this anomaly.