Poor Richard

Who else but Lit Moon Theater Company and director John Blondell would put on a production of Shakespeare’s Richard III with 4 women playing all the roles? Well, in these days of gender fluidity, seems like a natural. A little bit of humor has been injected into this dark tale of murderous ambition, but for the most part the supremely evil Richard is appropriately nasty. Innovatively played by Marie Ponce-DeLeon, this Richard is subtle and menacing at once and like no other you’ve seen. The staging and acting maintain a sly, intimate intensity interspersed with surprising outbursts of kinetic chaos as the play builds toward Richard’s inevitable downfall. The other three actresses, Victoria Finlasyson, Nina Sallinen and Paige Tautz, play all the other characters in a dizzying display of virtuosity as they move in and out of the audience on both sides of the room. James Connolly’s score moves between lyrical and ominous, and is just as different and intriguing as John Blondell’s re-imaginaing of Willie’s 2nd longest play, shortened to 73 minutes. Some quick excerpts: