Wednesday, March 01, 2017

Yay good review!

Probably the most attractive cast I'll ever have.
Jenna Sander as Norma Jeane, Matthew DeCapua as Dr. Mark Lewis
Photo by Renee Nicole Gray

It was a nice birthday present to have a pretty good review in the Huffington Post of NORMA JEANE AT THE PAYNE WHITNEY PSYCHIATRIC CLINIC. The critic's main beef was with my casting a 20 year old brunette to portray the 34-year-old blonde Monroe. I can live with that.

Favorite parts:

The Marilyn Monroe in THIS play can also hold her own, especially when she spits a pill back at her doctor, or hits back at her tormentor with some teasing of her own (”You let me out of here, and I won’t tell anyone your ‘secret’!”) I won’t give away anything that’s not already part of Marilyn Monroe lore, but let’s just say that, believe it or not, there IS a gay ending (”gay” as in “happy” as well as the modern-day meaning...)
The performances by Sander and DeCapua are excellent...
both writer/director McClernan and Sander both deserve credit for avoiding the larger-than-life, often cliched “Monroe-isms” that have been done so often by Marilyn’s many imitators, including drag artists. Both Norma Jeane and Marilyn, who struggled with their co-existing personas for so long, would have both no doubt appreciated that.
Today I submitted a copy of the play to the Woodward/Newman Drama Award, as seen at NYCPlaywrights. Hopefully they won't think I'm sucking up because Joanne Woodward is mentioned, glowingly, in the play:

          DR. LEWIS

At what point do you become her? Do you have blackouts?

          NORMA JEANE

Like in The Three Faces of Eve? Didn't Joanne Woodward give the most incredible performance you ever saw? I admire her so much. Can you imagine how wonderful it must be, to be Joanne Woodward? To have such a career and to play such roles?
This was the first speech that Jenna really nailed perfectly during rehearsals so I'm especially fond of it.