Thursday, May 24, 2012
Mysterious Skin is a play by Prince Gomolvilas based on a novel by Scott Heim. This Fringe production was directed by Jeremy Seghers and produced by James Brendlinger. The show's promotional materials left plenty to the imagination showing a black and white photo of a mans naked belly. When I ran into Jeremy, I shouted "I'm ready for some Skin!" He laughed and said "Calm down."
The show follows Brian Lackey, (played by Anthony Pyatt Jr.) as he seeks the truth behind a childhood memory that forever haunts him. In the opening scene, he sat center stage withdrawn and introverted. His mannerisms vividly reminded me of a nephew of mine who committed suicide. I was mesmerized. Avalyn Friesen (Marcie Schwalm) sat on her bed talking to him. She was a firm believer that aliens had abducted her when she was a child. Brian began to believe this might explain the memories of his past.
Neil McCormick, (Michael Martin) New York City found himself draw to gay men and began to "turn tricks" which it turned out is a dangerous, and ego crushing way to make money. After seeing an old little league photo, Brian realizes that Michael played a part in the fractured memory of his child hood. Brian eventually finds Michael. Brian is awakened to the truth that he wasn't abducted by aliens when Michael shows him their baseball coaches abandoned home. The image triggered a flood of memories. In a moving scene near the end of the play Avalyn wrote Brian to describe her abduction. Her intense recreation made it seem that she and Brian had experienced a similar fate. When Brian finally faces the truth, his legs give out.
There is no clean resolution or moral to the story. The characters and their plights lingered with me. The play was haunting and hard hitting. Anthony, Marcie and Neil gave amazing performances. This play certainly got under my skin.
Friday 5/25 at 9:15PM
Saturday 5/26 at 3:15PM
Sunday 5/27 at 7:15PM
The show is in the Orange Venue and tickets are $10.