Pauline Adamek – Stage Raw
That director Ron Sossi decided to remount White Marriage might be an attempt to recapture the hit production for the Odyssey Theatre Ensemble that Sossi almost 40 years ago. In the here and now, however, the urgency of the play’s point is muted largely by Sossi’s own re-staging. Read more…
Neal Weaver – Arts In LA
Why would Bianca, a seemingly normal young woman, want to contract a “white”—i.e., unconsummated—marriage? That’s the question raised by Polish poet-playwright Tadeusz Różewicz’s surreal 1974 play. (The translation is by Adam Czerniawaki.) It’s set in an insular Polish town around the turn of the 19th century. On the surface it looks like a Chekhov play, with its family gatherings, picnics, and intimate conversations. But it blows the lid off Chekhov by examining the sexual underpinnings in a way no 19th century-writer could have done. Read more…
Myron Meisel – The Hollywood Reporter
The Odyssey Theatre Ensemble had one of its early successes with its 1979 production of this 1974 surrealist play set in early 20th century Poland. Tadeusz Rozewicz, scarred but unbowed by the traumas of war during which he served in the Resistance, and today still a survivor at 92, boasts that acrid national sardonicism that grounds absurdism upon a diamond-hard psychosexual dissection of a patriarchal society. Read more…
Margaret Gray – LA Times
Apparently the Odyssey Theatre had a hit 35 years ago with Ron Sossi’s staging of “White Marriage,” a madcap, expressionistic 1975 sex romp by the avant-garde Polish writer Tadeusz Rózewicz.
The Odyssey’s current revival of this play, while directed — again by Sossi — and acted with admirable frisky gusto, nonetheless gives off a whiff of the time capsule. Some plays are for the ages, transcending culture and context, but “White Marriage,” which serves up the preserved sociopolitical preoccupations and heavy symbolism of 1970s Eastern European theater like meats in aspic, may not be among them.
Now running through May 25.