re: Spelling Bee / Olive Question
Posted by: ashleylm 03:04 pm EST 01/31/23
In reply to: Spelling Bee / Olive Question - reverb 02:12 am EST 01/31/23

One of my favourite things about the theatre is that directors and actors get to interpret texts. The best interpretations don't fight the script but illuminate it. The worst (I think) are when the Director imposes some sort of vision on a show that's at odds with the material. We have all been surprised though by some unlikely interpretations that turned out to be effective.

So if the actor plays Olive as a sexual abuse victim, and nothing in the show contradicts it, then in that production, yes, she's abused. But I suspect that would be an unfortunate choice, as the show is, for the most part, light-hearted, funny, a bit of a romp. However—perhaps if every decision leaned into the darkest possible choice—perhaps then critics would praise this new production as brave and revelatory ... who knows? It wouldn't be my choice!

But that's just how theatre works.

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