Monday, November 16, 2009
A lot is going on in Brecht's The Life of Galileo, and not just onstage. The program notes at the Mary Moody Northern Theatre will help you some, with a tidy summary of the historical figures, the heliocentric Ptolemaic model of the universe, and the heretical but accurate Copernican revision of it, and some of the elements of the plot.
With that crib sheet you can comfortably follow the depiction of that impatient and skeptical scientist's lifetime tussle with the Catholic Church. Director Michelle Polgar, three Actors' Equity members and the student cast and crew will give you the story, unrolling it much of the time in a design of curiously reduced lighting, as if the dark ages were lingering, literally, in the period 1610 - 1634.
You will not get much of a sense of the intensely brainy Bertolt Brecht or his reasons for fastening upon those 400-year-old events. Study of any of the several texts that Brecht crafted between 1938 and 1955 would show you that ideas and apprehension -- Angst -- are fundamental to the work.
Read more at AustinLiveTheatre.com . . . .