A LARGE CRITIC
Note: This space was originally intended to feature a review of the multimedia performance Esquixite Coprse, performed in Warner Mainspace this past weekend. Unfortunately, for various reasons, the Large Critic was unable to attend the event.
Thursday, the opening night of Esquixite Coprse, the Large Critic participated in a performance of Real World: Oberlin. This space featured a review of Real World: Oberlin while the series was in its infancy. Now that the series is winding to a close, it is interesting to examine the evolution of the project. This Thursday, the audience was relatively large, certainly not as large as that of the first two episodes, but larger than that of the mid-season dip the show suffered. However, the thing that ended up doing in Holy Virgin High two years ago is exactly what proved to be a shot in the arm for Real World: Oberlin.
Thursday’s episode was pure farce and the show was all the better for it. It gave fan favorite characters like Will, Chris and Jack some strong back-stories and allowed all the actors to be a bit looser. Unfortunately, the episode ended with a seemingly never-ending montage of sad couples, returning the mood of the show to what it has become: a little bit melodrama, a little bit rock and roll. Hopefully, the final two episodes will embrace a bit more irony than in the recent past. A show focused only on the characters leaves audience members yawning when their favorites are backstage.
Friday night saw the Large Critic preparing for the Big Parade. It was my first time at the parade and one of the more enjoyable afternoons of the semester. The parade has become such an Oberlin staple; it is hard to imagine that next spring will be only its fifth anniversary. It would have been nice to see more involvement from faculty members in Saturday’s parade. While I may be missing someone, the only faculty members I spied were philosophy professors Todd and Dorit Ganson and politics professor Eve Sandberg, who was appearing in the capacity of City Councilwoman. When it was conceived, the goal of the Big Parade was to bring together Oberlin College and Oberlin Township. That should include faculty members. Rolling dunking booth for next year? Anyone? Anyone?
The final night of Esquixite Coprse found the Large Critic preparing for participation in the Oberlin Student Theater Association’s first annual 24-hour Theater Competition. Since I served as a playwright for one of the productions, it would be highly inappropriate for me to make any assessment of the evening itself. However, I would like to speak to two aspects of the experience that could easily go unnoticed. First, I will always marvel at the commitment of theater students to the theater. The original intention was for students to spend 24 hours in Warner, but a power failure resulted in relocation to Shipherd lounge (Asia House). Despite these the obstacles, the show did go on.
The other thing that struck me about Sunday afternoon was the composition of the audience. Aside from professor Roger Copeland, who was invited to serve as one of the judges, the audience was composed of students. It is heartening to see student theater supported by fellow students for that means there will always be an audience for student theater. Yet, what would have been even more heartening would have been the appearance of one or two more faculty members. Just like at the production of This Is Our Youth two weeks previous, the audience was devoid of theater professors. I certainly hope they realize how important their presence is at student productions and make time to attend more of these in the future.
As you may have guessed, the Large Critic had a busy weekend but that did not
stop him from talking to a few people that had seen Esquixite Coprse.
Thus, what follows is a second-hand review of Esquixite Coprse: I heard
it was good.