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September 2017

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May. 24th, 2017

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 There aren't that many people working in the theater who manage to receive a Tony award for best actor in a play and a Pulitzer for the best play, and in the same year!  The person who managed this feat is Tracy Letts, of course.  Whenever he is on stage, or whenever one of his biting plays is being staged, you can be sure to find me in the theater.

And, thus, last week I went to see his new play "Linda Vista".  The theater was kind enough to send me a cautionary email: full frontal nudity and frank depictions of sex.  Ha ha! I bought the tickets for the front row in the mezzanine to all the better have an unobstructed view.  Bring it on!

And Letts did not disappoint.  His play had sex aplenty, and it was frank alright, just like the rest of it.  As in: frank depiction of a middle-age white guy with all his infuriating deficiencies and endearing surprising decencies.  A frank depiction of a middle-aged single woman who is both needy and clingy, but also proud and sarcastic.  A frank depiction of a Vietnamese-American millennial - piercings, tattoos, language, morals, and all.

The dialogues are believable, extremely funny, at times poignant but never sentimental.  The characters are not easily defined, just like regular people.  And the message?  Well, there is really no message, and I loved that part the best.  I am so very tired of coming to the theater to be lectured, or preached to, or else...

And if you think that this is shallow, think again.  In every aspect of his play: the plot, the all-too-human characters, the true-to-life dialogue, the abundance of anti-heroes, the dark comedy and the lack of message Letts continues in the tradition of one Anton Pavlovich Chekhov.
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