This Obie Award-winning play is one of the best entries in L.A. Theatre Works' catalog. A 30-something successful artist (Adam Arkin) goes to England for his first foreign exhibition. He arranges to stay over with a former lover (Anna Gunn). The visit triggers thoughts about art vs. commerce, passion vs. compromise, keeping one's way vs. losing one's way in life. The cast (also with Jordan Baker and Randy Ogelsby) is superb, but Gunn stands out. She is completely convincing both in flashback scenes as a passionate young woman, humbled by being the muse for this promising artist, and in present-day scenes as a married exile in England coping with resentment and emotional erosion. Every line she delivers is richly shaded in a performance that captures the warmth and honesty of real life.
Jonathan Waxman is a hugely successful artist. He's been profiled in Vanity Fair and receives exorbitant prices for his works, sight unseen. But a visit with his original muse and lover causes him to reevaluate the success that now controls him.
Donald Margulies' Obie Award-winning drama explores the artist's role in society, the commerce of art, and the complications of love and memory.
(P)2004 L.A. Theatre Works
"This Obie Award-winning play is one of the best entries in L.A. Theatre Works' impressive catalog." (AudioFile)
Another winner by the playwright who brought us the 5 star projects Collected Stories and Dinner w Friends. The themes in Sight Unseen will likely appeal more to an older audience with some life experience under its belt. Still, there's plenty here for anyone who appreciates finely crafted theatre. I've given it 4 versus 5 stars because there are some lapses into unbelievability that were unnecessary (and Don is capable of doing better). The project, nonetheless, remains strong.
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