Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Wait a minute, What?

Update: Sorry, Readers. Yesterday, when reading the review I mistakenly thought it was written by Carolyn Clay. The review is actually written by Ed Siegel. I stand by the statements changed the following post to Ed Siegel.

So, Ed Siegel is reviewing The Clean House and, (like Louise Kennedy has intimated in the past,) she reveals that she thinks the play was deserving of the Pulitzer Prize:

There’s something awe-inspiring about watching an ensemble in which everyone is performing at the top of his or her game. The New England Patriots of the first half of the season come to mind — which makes that February 3 performance all the more painful.

But I have no painful memories associated with the New Repertory Theatre’s crack production of Sarah Ruhl’s 2005 Pulitzer finalist, The Clean House (through March 23). In fact, if the Pulitzer panel had seen this production, maybe Ruhl would have gotten the gold.

Great. But later in the review, Seigel has this to say though:

My one quibble with The Clean House is that it doesn’t stay with you as long as a great play should. This is the third time I’ve seen Ruhl’s work, and it’s always enjoyable to watch — never more so than in this incarnation — but not something I find myself thinking about much the next day.

I could say the same thing about The Bad News Bears with Walther Matthau, but I'm not sure I would suggest that maybe if the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences could have seen the remake with Billy Bob Thornton they might have nominated it for Best Picture. Although, Bears did win the Writers Guild Award for Best Screenplay. And, well, Rocky won Best Picture that year. Darn, thought I was making a good point.


Thomas Garvey said...

Well, remember "The Shadow Box" won a Pulitzer, along with a lot of other mediocre stuff. We only remember the Pulitzer Prize winners that were actually good!

Thomas Garvey said...

It's worth noting, though, that Clay's review is another data point supporting the general view of her - intriguingly, she's only really passionate when she's wrong.

Art said...

About the Pulitzer, you are right. Same thing with the Academy Awards, I guess.

If we were to just concede that the Pulitzer goes to the most entertaining play I wouldn't have any problem, actually, with the review.

Nobody, including you and several other Ruhl skeptics, has said that Ruhl isn't a "dazzling technician" and that her plays aren't entertaining. (Although John Heilpren, a big Ruhl dissenter, in the Observer this week admits that his patience with Ruhl's technique is starting to wear thin.)

And, if you read the Phoenix review, really that is all Carolyn Clay is saying too. (It is a bright enjoyable display of theatricality and skill.) I just found it so weird that she sandwiched her review between two statements that don't seem to square unless we just throw in the towel and concede on the Pulitzer.

Maybe everybody else has done that already and I missed the press release.

Clay does have a tough job having to now sandwich two, sometimes three reviews into the space that she used to do one.

Thomas Garvey said...

Whoops, so this was by Siegel, not Clay? Hehehe! Well, that explains the sports references! As for my earlier comment - well, it's still true she's most passionate when she's furthest off base (or at least she seems that way). I'll just have to dig up another example!!!

Art said...

Hello anybody reading this.

This original post intially attributed the review to Carolyn Clay, the lead reviewer for the Boston Phoenix.

The review was actually written by Ed Seigel.