Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Reckless shows Funky Little Theater Company is stretching its capabilities

Posted By on Wed, Nov 14, 2018 at 11:09 AM

click to enlarge Fridays-Saturdays, 7:30 p.m., through Dec. 1, and Thurs., Nov. 29, 7:30 p.m., Funky Little Theater Company, 1367 Pecan St., $15-$19, funkylittletheater.org - CHRIS MEDINA
  • Chris Medina
  • Fridays-Saturdays, 7:30 p.m., through Dec. 1, and Thurs., Nov. 29, 7:30 p.m., Funky Little Theater Company, 1367 Pecan St., $15-$19, funkylittletheater.org
Six months and a few shows after moving to its new space, Funky Little Theater Company has already stretched the limits of their larger theater’s capabilities. With their upcoming play Reckless, they not only stretch the bounds of the space, but also the bounds of the playwright’s “semi-linear” storyline. Craig Lucas’ Reckless, written and set in the mid-’80s, begins with a woman talking to her husband on Christmas Eve, musing about memory and identity. But her husband, clearly at the end of his rope, breaks down and admits that he has hired someone to kill her, and she needs to leave immediately if she wants to live. She climbs out the kitchen window to escape, and the rest is history — her history, to be exact. “From that point, we’re off,” says director Thom Dygert. “We’re off on this kind of journey, and memory is how we found a way to give it some structure. ... As soon as she climbs out that window things kind of go haywire, and we’re playing in a world of memory and confused identity.”
Smooth transitions take the place of scene breaks, and a multi-level set plays with pop-up set pieces and silhouettes to indicate setting, recreating the vague feeling of memory within the set itself. Funky artistic director Chris Medina says: “The set sometimes can be just a set, but in this capacity the set has almost become a character.” It carries our protagonist Rachel through memories of Christmas Eves past, and through gains and losses that contribute to her concept of her own self.

The effect of the play should prove almost dreamlike until we catch up to the present. “If it is a memory, when does she catch up to what she’s doing now?” Dygert asks. “She’s kind of unscrambling the memory as she goes.”

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