A rose without any words would sound as sweet
Someone has probably already used that title to headline a review of Synetic Theater's wordless production of Romeo and Juliet. But Google tells me no one has yet, so I'm going to strike while the iron is silent.
Lori and I saw the show yesterday night, the last of the theater's fall series reviving its award-winning Shakespeare work — Macbeth, Othello and now the greatest romance of them all. You should go. The revival runs until the 23rd. I really enjoyed it. Lori really enjoyed it. Friend and colleague Lauren and her husband Steve really enjoyed, and Lauren is a former dancer and arts manager. Don't buy my yokel view? Buy hers.
The performance is as wordless as they claim. You build the story from what you know already and the music, dance, set, and lights they use to assemble the plot and its themes. At the center? "… set within the gears of a giant clock, Romeo and Juliet highlights the exuberance and passion of youth in which time seems to both stop and accelerate," a director's note explains. While my first reaction was to see the gears as the machinations of fate, maybe such a connection still holds. You can feel the clock above you? Then your destiny isn't quite your own.
It's interesting afterward to hear the audience applaud but not cheer aloud much, having brought into a space without words. It's intriguing afterward to find yourself in dinner conversation that keeps returning to time and relationships and not realize as much until the next night.
If you're older than Juliet and Romeo and still find yourself pushing on these strictures, alone or with another, you're doing something right.