Boundless Theatre Company presents a revival of María Irene Fornés' classic drama, which paints a desolate portrait of toxic affection and rural poverty. More…
'Mud' follows Mae, a tenacious, illiterate young woman earnestly pursuing social mobility through education. Caught between Lloyd, her ill, resentful housemate, and Henry, a self-impressed neighbor-turned-lover, Mae struggles to pursue her personal goals while providing for the men who rely on her. Alternating between passion, cynicism, and surprising humor, 'Mud' relentlessly explores the cycle of economic oppression and the struggle of caring for one’s own.
“Fans of Fornés will recognize how the sparse language serves an immersive spatial experiment...Nicole Villamil as Mae takes on hope against a suffocating despair...Julian Elijah Martinez has impressive stamina and a charisma that buoys a dirge with energetic humor...Araoz has put together a fully realized production that makes every moment a story told in gesture. It is at times horrifying, but honest in its brutality and severe in its simplicity.” Full Review
"Araoz follows the playwright’s stage directions closely, including having the play’s seventeen short scenes end in a freeze frame...The characters speak with accents suggesting hill people of Appalachia...This is not a major problem—it just detracts from the universality of these characters...'Mud' possesses a kind of stark power, fueled here by the earnest, workmanlike performances of the three cast members. The standout for me was Avidon." Full Review
"It is funny, sharp, moving, and happily avoids the pedestrian...The dialogue is chiseled and rigorous like Beckett’s, the environment ambiguous and claustrophobic...This production does lack the image-punch of the original play, the visual grandeur and complexity of the enigmatic stage picture Fornes conceived. But it credibly captures the moment-to-moment nuance of the funny-sad, touchingly sick tale better than most others I’ve seen, and that’s no small accomplishment." Full Review
“This unrelievedly grim tale of rural poverty and toxic affection has been given a realistic production by Elena Araoz which only deals with one level of the play. The dialogue is poetic, controlled and repetitious, endlessly turning back on itself in an attempt to show these lives of quiet desperation. However, in the tiny Teatro Círculo, Regina García's setting which has the audience practically sitting in the kitchen of a country shack increases the claustrophobia inherent in the script.” Full Review
“Humor emerges occasionally in this new production...Fornés provides a smidgen of pity for Lloyd and Henry before finally giving them both the back of her hand; this tricky maneuver stays true to the tone of Fornes' play, which is uncommonly blunt and compressed, closed-down yet also somehow open...May's striving for something better has a slightly sentimental feeling in this production, whereas Fornés seems to have intended something darker and nastier." Full Review
"Mae’s quest to rise above the squalor that surrounds her might indeed seem touching, if handled well. But director Araoz’s revival feels more like an exhumation...Henry skews Texas, and everyone seems to slip in and out of a drawl...Mae’s struggle for ascendancy mostly seems ludicrous as Fornés’s brief play inches slowly toward its heavy-handed finale. What may have been shocking in 1983 seems, in this production, a muddy exercise in miserabilism.” Full Review
See it if you enjoy wonderfully acted and masterfully staged-in-a-small-space contemporary plays. Actors are so close you get to feel what they feel.
Don't see it if you want to see an entertaining, light comedy. This powerful story goes deep into human basic needs and shows us our survival mode raw.
See it if you like challenging, difficult theater. This play walks the line between comedy & tragedy & you are never sure if you should laugh or cry.
Don't see it if you want a breezy comedy or an easy drama. It is truly distressing, made even more intense by the proximity of the actors.
See it if Woman wants more from life but is stuck caring for two disabled men. Tragic, yet so black that it's funny. Wonderful acting, powerful ending
Don't see it if You don't enjoy broken characters engaging in physical humor. You can't relate to their cursed, absurd lives.
See it if You're interested in the rarely told stories of people affected by extreme poverty and lack of education. Like intimate spaces
Don't see it if Are offended by profanity, violence and sexual content. Prefer light fare.
See it if you enjoy good story telling by an exceptional cast
Don't see it if you are turned off by intense conflict or sexual situations on stage.
Also Never could figure out the bright light at the end of every scene.
See it if you want to experience a powerful staging of a complex masterwork
Don't see it if you need your plays to be plot-driven; if you're not up for a bleak story told with mordant comic flair
See it if like intense under-stated plays in intimate settings. There is so much that comes through without being said! Great acting.
Don't see it if you want a comedy or need your story to be completely spoken to you.
See it if You want to go down a see a play with great acting that will give you something to think and talk about after.
Don't see it if While there are quite a few surprisingly funny moments, this play is sad.
See it if you want to see excellent acting; are interested in the revival of a short play by a playwright of some historical importance.
Don't see it if you like fully staged productions; are looking for something light; prefer comfortable seating.
See it if A serious drama about poverty and trying to get out from under. Grim relationships. Insightful. Excellent staging for a very small stage
Don't see it if If, by the poster, you think you're going to see a comedy. This is dark.
See it if You like drama about a young woman who is struggling to learn how to read and do arithmetic while she maintains a household and works.
Don't see it if You are not interested in a play about rural poverty and how a young woman deals with it.
See it if You like intimate theatres and well-acted dramas. The action is often in your face (or on your toes if you are not quick).
Don't see it if You are looking for something funny - the poster is rather misleading. This is serious, gut-wrenching stuff. Well worth your time.
See it if You want to see some good character studies done by some very talented actors. Venue is small allowing for close interaction with actors.
Don't see it if Small scale plays with limited staging are not your thing. Plays about flawed members of society don't interest you.
See it if you are curious about people so impoverished & marginal that they make the Joads look like members of the middle class.
Don't see it if your preference is for a drama with sharp psychological insights rather than a sharp depiction of people sunk in the mud of dysfunction.
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