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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Player’s Trestle on track for second successful weekend

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The Carleton Players will continue The Trestle at Popelick Creek this weekend at the Weitz Theater, with shows Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Before a formal performance review commences, it should be noted early that Trestle is a shining glint of a play, a fight of the good fight against Platonics and a nifty series of turns of phrases. Wallace is not dodgy about the symbolics, treating dramaturges and their audiences with a substance often spared by highfalutin writers.

And the Players played it well. They expended resources to good effect; costumes believable (down to the undies), variously rugged and dark like dust settled on Depression era machinery.

Sorensen’s fresh-shaven face glowed moonly on the stage. The mens’ hair was slicked, the tired woman’s (Sasha Blinnikova ’17, playing Gin Chance: depressant) tamed. Queer critics will lavish in the implications of Pace Creagan’s costume changes, and actions in general.

Emma Halper ’18 plays Pace as something of a constant dare, elucidating persistent lapses into childishness bordered by traumatized solemnity. She, coupled with en-youthened Sorensen, plummets the cast years back, to at least the dream of fifteen projected on our walls.

Given the cast is, in the grand scheme, basically the same age, the generational distinction created between characters is striking.

Blinnikova and Ethan Ramsay ‘17 seem ages removed from Sorensen, their dreams crushed with a cold certainty.

Sam Braslow ‘15 doesn’t let the crowd down; his exhibited repertoire extends to charades no Braslow fan should miss. Classically savoring the words, he, much like Ethan Ramsay ‘17, set deep in character, illustrates the depth of the cast, playing a secondary character.

The trestle itself perhaps distracts; were it but 30% smaller, the actors would have been in a smaller metaphorical shadow. It would not spoil the show to add that the Players were wise to stay off the trestle – fascinating though the circus may be, this is not that.

Lighting and sound design danced arm and arm, creating impressive and ominous effects

when the train passes through. Catwalk cues further exempli-fied the full implementation of Weitz facilities, though special filter effects used in the climax could have been more stark, twisted, and fantastic.

Where did the players play short? The reviewer perceived some slight weariness, or tension, or second windedness about the production, the faintest rub the wrong way. Perhaps however this originates from the reviewer himself, and spectators generally – Trestle won’t help any winter blues or cure any winter coughs by its very nature. Though it’s a sip of summer’s dandelion wine (who would go bridge hopping in the winter?) it’s a wine gone sour, the sort that has you wishing the dog days further away.

More specifically, a cue or two might have been missed opening night. That said, each suspected instance plunged the actors to improvisation – a noble sight to see. I count this not as a strike on the performance, but rather more like an elegant rust.

How to recommend this show? Perhaps more vivacity and polish will attend the Players on the second weekend, but regardless they must be credited with sharing Trestle in a manner that does not betray its silences or its elegant dialogue.

Any serious theater fan who has yet to catch a show should go this weekend. For the casual viewer, the recommendation comes qualified. Trestle will stir up yearnings for the cusp of youth (or, should one have yet to cross said boundary, dread) and will perhaps leave them unsatisfied. Indeed (a warning to the faint of heart, or faint to commit) what it takes from you, it may not give back.


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