I saw The Cake.
Last Edit: GabbyGerard 02:07 pm EST 03/05/19
Posted by: GabbyGerard 02:01 pm EST 03/05/19
In reply to: How was the Camelot concert / has anyone here seen The Cake at MTC? nmi - Ann 09:39 am EST 03/05/19

Debra Jo Rupp gives a performance that is so full of warmth, vulnerability, empathy for her character, and expert comic timing that it is tempting to overlook the many shortcomings of the play and its MTC production. It is a phenomenal--almost quietly phenomenal--performance that got me wondering how she had been in Frankie and Johnny and how she would be in plays that have gone to bigger named actresses like Good People, Frozen, God of Carnage, and Tiny Beautiful Things.

The play itself has a lot of good laughs and tries to be sympathetic to all of its different characters, despite their conflicting views and a fairly clear authorial perspective on what is right and what is wrong. I don't know that the piece has anything new to say or any special insight to offer into fairly familiar material.

The production is another story. Dan Daily acquits himself well, getting many laughs and suggesting his character's internal struggles, but doesn't approach Rupp's standard for bringing depth to a role that is, more or less, a "type." Genevieve Angelson and Marinda Anderson are another story. Angelson is self-conscious and effortful--qualities that have marred every performance of hers that I've seen (except, to some degree, in Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike). Anderson is a mess: all technique, no heart, and not for one second believable. She is not in the same league--maybe not even in the same game--as the actress whom I saw play the role at the Geffen this fall. Watching Angelson and Anderson, I felt like I was watching first year grad students in an MFA production demonstrating all they've learned.

The production is beautifully designed (I would love to live on a John Lee Beatty set) and credibly, though not creatively, staged.

Previous: re: How was the Camelot concert / has anyone here seen The Cake at MTC? nmi - manchurch03104 02:25 pm EST 03/05/19
Next: Thanks - you answered some questions I had - Ann 10:08 am EST 03/06/19

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