Wednesday, July 27, 2011

the four of us - Itamar Moses

I've been away from this. I've been reading, but mostly unpublished scripts. And I've been writing. And the teaching. That's also been happening. But, happily, I started reading plays just to read and the first one I picked up off the piles around the house was this. And dear oh dear am I glad I did. For the play - but also the afterward, which is right up there with the forwards that are included in many of Tennessee Williams collected plays.

The Four of Us is a two character play, David and Benjamin. It follows their friendship from their time at music camp as teens on through their twenties when they are both writers - a novelist and a playwright. It unfolds in nine scenes which move back and forth in time - in one scene different times for each character. Simply, the story is one character sells his first book and starts his professional life with acclaim and cash as the other works, finding some success later with a play written about his friend and their relationship.

I do try in these posts to give a nuts and bolts response. To withhold criticism and praise. There's plenty of that in the world and I'm interested in looking at how the play works, how it's laid out and how the story is told. To be primarily objective.

Being objective with this script is less about description and more about acknowledging the clean economy and simplicity at play in each scene which culminates in a perfect theatrical moment.

(and perhaps the subject matter and the perspective on writing and successes and friends and the frustrations of writing plays is all just hitting its target audience right here at this spot in my heart, but I'm guessing most readers of this blog may share a similar spot.)

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