One of the things that inspired me to start this blog was a desire to interact with others whose interests, if not tastes, at least ran somewhat parallel to my own. Whether you loved, hated or were indifferent to a particular opera, genre of music, book or political act you had enough of a reaction to it to say something about it and that impressed and pleased me enough to want to join in the conversation.
So please, I encourage you to comment on anything I've written if you feel the urge. This afternoon, through email, I received some pretty insightful comments about "War Music" from someone who also attended last night's performance and whose theater experience far exceeds my own. I won't identify the commenter, as that seems unfair without his knowledge beforehand, though he can identify himself at any time if he likes!I'm posting this because I wish the exchange we had took place in comments section of my blog, because I know my review was pretty harsh and these comments offer a different perspective which I find valuable and informative (and perhaps muffles the sound of my bludgeoning this play, no matter how much it deserves it, which it most certainly does). I hope he doesn’t mind.
I basically enjoyed it, but thought the script should have been tightened and focused a little more. And some of the staging didn’t work for me – the weird dance/fight at the end of Act 1, for example. I give them credit for trying something adventurous with a big cast, rather than another one- or two-person show.
I think a lot of your problems with the play are problems with the source material, which is Logue's version of the Iliad (not the actual Iliad). I haven't read more than snatches of it (one of which involved a discussion of how appropriate his use of "thong" was in his description of Aphrodite), but it is widely praised -- however, that doesn't mean everyone's going to like it. But a lot of what they were doing flowed from that. I don't think the double-casting was meant to indicate specific mirroring of the characters -- I think sometimes it was more for contrast.
I wouldn't try to persuade you that it's better than you thought it -- I see your points and they're valid, but I think sometimes you're criticizing them for things they are deliberately choosing to do -- in other words, you can hate it, but they're not failing at what they're doing, they're just doing something you wish they wouldn't ( bold is mine).
I think this last point is quite valid and captures a certain truth about what I found so loathsome about this play. Point taken- though I still think it’s awful.