The Five Hysterical Girls Theorem by Rinne Groff had a successful run last weekend. I wad delighted to have full houses for my straight-play debut. Today, I had the above picture and mention in The Middlebury Campus, school newspaper.
Overall, I think I agreed with most audience members that the play is hard to understand. Thick European accents combined with mathematical equations don’t mix particularly well. That’s not to say it was not an entertaining theatrical performance. It just meant that the play relied upon the physical action to get across the meaning. In many ways, that’s easier to do with a comedy as such because if you play it enough like the Marx Brothers then it you don’t have to say anything at all.
I gained particular insight on the language element of the play from the playwright herself who came to the last day of performances. Rinne Groff is a wonderful individual (and a new parent, I might add) who wrote this play about five to six years ago. She explained that she likes the experience of not being able to understand everything in a play. That is precisely what she focuses her writing on: difficult to understand language. She apparently also has published a play about air traffic controllers. Math and mathematicians were intriguing to her just the same.
This is something to keep in my mind as I explore the context of foreign language plays and theatrical experiences.