Monday, June 22, 2009

Killer Joe, Capital T Theatre at Hyde Park Theatre, June 4 - 27, July 23 - August 8

UPDATE:Back on stage July 23- August 8, Thursdays - Saturdays, 8 p.m.

I knew that this one was going to scare us to death. I didn't get there early in the run but I saw that the reviews were popping up in the media and on line.

My rule is not to read the reviews until after I've seen the production and written about it. My ticket was for last Thursday night.

Thursdays are often down-time for Austin theatre, but this show was packing 'em in. There's no standing room in the pinched quarters of the Hyde Park Theatre, so the staff might have been turning some folks away. Something was going on here, for sure.

Killer Joe.

I admired the production but I despised the script.

There's a perpetual tension in theatre programming between those who want theatre to keep people happy and those who want theatre to make people think. Hyde Park Theatre programming is typically 'way over to the "make 'em think" side of the scale. The needle bumps up from time to time to the region figuratively inscribed with the French slogan "├ępater les bourgeois," translated approximately as "scandalize the conventional citizens." Or, more crudely, "Knock their socks off!"

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