Angels in America.
Every time I type that I type Angles in America. I suppose they mean right angles. Or 45 degree angles. Not Angel Angles.
Adam and I had looked forward to the show for a long time. Neither of us had seen it live and it excited us to see it staged. We also were excited about the opportunity to see both parts on stage in the same day. Overwhelming yes. But also awesome.
As I mentioned last night it was a big deal to get the tickets.
And Sunday rolled around and there we were.
For those who don’t know Angels is an uplifting little comedic romp about AIDS in the mid 1980’s.
The performances were amazing. There was very little bad to say about any of them. The guy playing Joe Pitt was my least favorite. He didn’t seem to have the internal dialogue going on that is called for in his character. But he was still very good. Harper Pitt looked younger than she should have been which prompted a discussion between us about how old the couple really is. I think I won. I think they should be in their early to mid thirties. Adam thought late 20’s, which is what they looked to be. I explained to him that if Joe had been practicing law for 5 years, three years of law school, four years at BYU, and two years of missionary work, all after high school that he had to be at least 32, if not older. You get the feeling he and Harper have been together for a long time so she should be just as old. So there I won.
So the performances were great.
Unfortunately I was miserable during most of Part 2 and nearly all of Part 1.
When I got the tickets they didn’t tell me nor did I realize that it was a preview. Not only was it a preview but they’d only performed each show three times when we saw it. And normally this would have been fine.
If the tickets hadn’t cost so much and the set hadn’t been such a disaster.
There were times when I felt like I was watching the Peoria Community College production of Angels in America. The shifts between scenes were awful. They took forever and sometimes looked as if they hadn’t been rehearsed at all. Not to mention that each shift involved somewhere between two and four guys coming out to push things around. Things fell over. Beds collapsed. Chairs tipped over.
My favorite moment though involved the Angel. At the end of Part 1 and then again in Part 2 an Angel appears and is flown into the space. This was pretty impressive. What was not impressive. The two teenagers dressed in black that came out on stage and unclipped the wires from the harness. Only to come back out at the end of the scene to reattach them so she could fly back out.
What was not impressive was the same kids who came out and rolled a ladder across the stage with Pryor on top of it as he descended from heaven.
What was not impressive was the same kids how appeared upstage to help Pryor ascend to heaven.
What was not impressive…
You get the point.
And if this was the Peoria Community College production I’d have been very forgiving. But these were expensive tickets. AND there are about a million scenes in Part 1 and about 500,000 scenes in Part 2. Every time I was just about to lose myself in the show it was time for another clunky scene change.
I truly hope that they figure this all out because I really think they are going to get panned for how bad it is technically regardless of how good the acting is.