Tag Archives: Mark St. Germain
A genial older woman with a warm smile, a self-deprecating charm and a cute mittel-European accent via Brooklyn greets the audience to her apartment like new neighbors. While packing for a move, she tells the story of her life in vignettes marked by humor and pathos. The narrator providing such good company is the titular heroine of Becoming Dr. Ruth, a one-woman bio-play.
Riverside Theatre chose an intriguing time to mount its handsome and exquisitely well-performed production of Mark St. Germain’s play, Freud’s Last Session. Indeed, opening it between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday, a time that challenges the Christian faithful to relinquish rational thought for spiritual belief, mirrors the drama’s lingering questions about faith.
Scott and Hem, an imagined reunion of Fitzgerald and Hemingway, is half comprised of deadly accurate insights into the angst of creative souls; the other half is just deadly dumps of name-dropping and exposition. A talented cast and director struggle to make the play at Actors Playhouse land solidly, and sometimes they succeed, but not always.
Awash in sex, war, adversity, sex, divorce, achievement, motherhood, determination, sex, the Holocaust and sex, it’s difficult to understand how the biographical play Becoming Dr. Ruth can be mildly charming, intermittently funny, occasionally poignant but not as terribly compelling or enchanting as its heroine.