Theater Review

    “”2 By Shepard”” consists of two separate one-act plays written by Sam Shepard: “”Icarus’s Mother”” and “”Action.”” However, there is only one word to describe “”2 By Shepard”” What?

    What are the plots, relationships and themes? What is the point?

    These plays have a lot in common. They both have little or no plot, which makes them rely heavily on characters to carry the stories. However, the characters in both plays are presented with very few clues about their backgrounds and relationships with each other.

    With plots not being the point of the plays, it seems as though there should have been heavy thematic content. However, once again, these plays fail to deliver. While there are any number of themes that you could drag out of these plays if you wanted to spend hours analyzing them, there are no definite themes apparent. Rather, the apocalyptic ideas running through the dramas just leave the viewer feeling disturbed.

    Even more upsetting than the apparent lack of purpose to the plays is the lack of information to be found about them. The program lacks any real insight into the productions, and even the UCSD Web site devoted to them reveals only roughly a sentence’s worth of information.

    The bright spot to these plays were the sets and the lighting, which were designed by Patrick Larsen and M. Scott Garbau. “”Icarus’ Mother”” uses a screen as a background to first show the blue sky and fireworks of the Fourth of July, and then the final apocalyptic blast. “”Action”” was set against a backdrop of metal bars with only a table, chairs and a Christmas tree for scenery. The lighting was dim and the larger-than-life shadows created on the wall were great for setting the somber mood of the play.

    Overall, the plays are mediocre. If you enjoy in-depth analysis of post-modern theater, this is a great production. Other than that, this play is not one of the better theater experiences at UCSD.

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