Editor/Publisher, Bina Sharif

Thursday, December 2, 2010



Rosmersholm was written in 1886 and anyone who knows the works of Ibsen, knows that
he was way ahead of his times. Its about Politics besides many other things such as repressed emotions, desires, courage, liberalism, expression of free Ideals and the failure of those Ideals at the same time. But Politics, the right wing and the left wing makes your mind wander to
the thoughts of present day tea party movement and the the left wing's roundabout way of dealing with liberal Issues. Politics and the Ideals work side by side in this wonderful production and both fail at the end.

Some people will disagree with this conclusion because they would swear that
the right wing radicals win here but by their devious nature and because of it, they destroy
the liberal change which might had come if the Idealists didn't meet with the eventual tragedy.

Rosmersholm in this recent production under the taught direction of Elinor Renfield seems
fresh and breezy and the cast delivers Ibsen's language adapted by(Mike Poulton) in a crisp

Johannes Rosmer, a well respected and wealthy widower who has renounced his faith and
has joined a young, beautiful and dangerously liberal woman Rebecca West(Margot White)
who took care of Rosmer's late wife and stayed on after her mysterious suicide. Rosmer(Bradford Cover) also has given up on his political thoughts and is now a progressive thinker such as his companion and love interest Rebecca West,

But the things do not move along as smoothly as a romantic liberal fairy tail.
There are other ominous elements and persons to deal with such as Kroll(Austin Pendleton) Rosmer's brother in law who gives one of the finest, haunting and carfty performance of the evening. One just can not watch another performer no matter how good when Austin Pendleton is on stage.
Though the whole cast is extremely admirable, Pendleton offers something special. Spiced with mirth, sly knowing and cunning with a grin scary enough to keep you on the edge. It gives you the chills. No one can win against Kroll who knows and reveal a disturbing secret that Rebecca with all her honest and straight forwardness might be hiding a terrible secret about the death of Rosmer's wife and this revelation turn the the ending into a horrifying and disturbing tragedy.

The set and lighting design is very elegant and the space is utilized in a wonderful way making
it look more spacious.

Bradford Cover as Rosmer and Margot White handle their characters very well though the
monologue delivered by Rebecca in the second act is a bit long and should come to the point she wants to make a bit sooner and thus make a stronger impact. But that's in the writing and not the fault of the actress.

Pearl Theatre company has proved once again that this is certainly the place to watch the
classics which not many other theater companies dare to produce. Every one should see this
mesmerizing production.

Pearl Theatre Company
131 55th Street

Review by Bina Sharif

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