Need a little ‘extra’ this weekend? Not quite ready to figure out personal grooming for public yet?
By Melanie Hooks
Enter the oh-so-welcome return of professional-level theater. Pasadena’s A Noise Within troupe has been employing its Resident Artists in some clever, perfect-for-the-times online offerings, and the thoroughly enjoyable Sonnets for an Old Century could be your answer.
With a brisk 45 minute runtime, including a personable introduction and epilogue by Artistic and performance Director Jonathan Muñoz-Proulx, the audio-only performance is available by an on-demand link that you can play either for yourself or your household at any time. This is the last weekend it’s around, through the end of Sunday, May 9th.
It’s a beautiful set of vignettes by Oscar-nominated screenwriter José Rivera (The Motorcycle Diaries, On the Road). They’re set in an undefined space between life and death, some reflections on a last moment, others on an entire life. The play, when staged, is intended to be full-length, but Rivera gives free rein to companies to decide which monologues to perform.
Muñoz-Proulx has chosen ones that suit his three Resident Artists’ voices very well: Erika Soto, Rafael Goldstein, and Veralyn Jones. Soto’s youthful earnestness contrasts nicely against Jones’s always great gravitas. And Goldstein’s voice seems custom-made for the audio format – a nice revelation of an artist’s broader skill set in these strange times. Original music by fellow Resident Artist Robert Oriol sets the mellow, soul-searching, occasionally humorous tone well.
A perfect bon mot for those of you not quite ready to face the whole world or a full-length experience yet.
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