Friday, March 04, 2005

Crave - the play

A grandfather takes his granddaughter into the car and pulls his pants down and it pops out- big and purple;she rears in fright and cries. The father sitting behind says, "she has never reacted liked this before".
Crave, the play by Sarah Kane, by Theatre Nisha, presents four characters, or perhaps four aspects of human nature all of which are singly, overwhelmingly traumatized by life. It reveals a litany of rape, infidelity, loneliness, familial rejection and childlessness. The characters are embittered and dismayed by an existence over which they have no control.
Thus, read the handout that we were given before we entered the hall in Alliance Francais to watch the play. About 10 of us went to watch the play on friday and came back, some confused, some disappointed. The play is about 4 people and how they are voicing out their inner most thoughts and emotions. It was a neatly done set with only black and white in every element of the set,though I am not sure why that was done; the two men on stage in complete black and the two women in complete white, the floor covered with white and all the walls being black. The play talks about the taboos of everyday life like paedophiles and rape and tries to show the helplessness of individuals under these circumstances, their cries of agony, their moans of distress. It depicts a scene where a grandchild comes home and finds his grandmother in the lap of another man. Its an intense play where it tries to depict the world in all its shades. However the performance did not live up to the play, with some unusually long pauses in places and with the accent of some of the cast being too Indian when it was clear that the play is set in a foreign land, most likely,the US, what with its references to the little Vietnamese girl who was running for cover with her back burning because of the Napalm bombing with a US fighter jet in the background. The play stood only on the strength of its script with various interesting lines, though disconnected, like
I am not what I am; I am what I do
It almost got me thinking about Hank Rearden in Atlas Shrugged and his belief that he was what his work was.
It talks about the definitive role of the centre in the geometry of the circle where there is no chicken and egg dilemma as to who came first as it was the centre that came first and then the circle was formed.
I had to fake orgasms before but now I have to fake not having an orgasm
Imagine that...
This and a variety of other interesting lines kept the audience occupied and then suddenly it ended, abruptly with a police cordon drawn across the stage. The abruptness left a lot to be desired.
My favorite line of the play
I suddenly felt ecstatic and then realised that it was only the absence of grief
Footnote: It has been stated here that the play is supposed to be American however it has been brought to my knowledge that its not and its actually British. The error is regretted.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hated every minute of it. 100Rs for that 1 hr of torture was totally unjustified.

Call me whatever but I have no clue as to what that was about, i cannot even begin to speculate as to what that was about. It was a ****-all script, cannot comment on the acting (cuz i don't think there was room in the script for any). If a theatre group likes to experiment and just see if some scripts work, it's ok, but at what cost? certainly not mine!!

No disrespect to the cast or the group, I KNOW they are a nice bunch.


9:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another line that i thought was interesting:
"Long before I had the chance to adore all of you, I adored the bits I could see."

An online summary of the play says "Crave charts the disintegration of a human mind under the pressures of love, loss and desire." Sarah Kane on most occassions focussed on plays that brought out human emotions when dealing with child abuse, rape, eating disorder and sexual identity.

I am reading a book right now called Cloud Atlas by Robert Mitchell that narrates the disintegration of human mind and human civilization due to the pressures of love, loss and desire because of money and power.

I honestly didnt enjoy the play because i think the actors didnt seem to live the emotions that the victims go through after such incidents. The play looked like a play. Lines were just being thrown. Bad accents. The script was bold though. The room too cold. Irritating chatter from audience that didnt understand.

Another interesting info: Sarah Kane was a victim of depression and passed away in 1999 at the age of 28.

1:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry...forgot to put my name after the writeup/comment...

- Manoj

1:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I suppose it is a rather confusing play if you weren't going through the motions of it. I was recently in the cast of Crave and I have never had a more eye-opening experience than that.

It's not only challenging for the audience to comprehend, moreso the actors for becoming the tragically twisted characters of A, B, C, and M. I played B, and to get in the mindframe of the boy was the most challenging role I've ever had the honour of performing.

Still today, I connect my own definition of love to A's monologue when he rambles on for five minutes about all the little things he's addicted to in C. The minute details that he picks up on seem to encapsule anything I could comprehend about love, despite it's source.

I'm sorry you all had a rough go with the show, but please do give it another chance, maybe from a more professional group.

11:55 PM  
Blogger Saraansh said...

Dear B
There is no need for apologies as I am sure that a play as intense as CRAVE must have been a challenge to put up and execute. Personally I loved some of the lines in the play which I have recounted in my post.I personally would love to watch more such plays because they are amazing food for thought and hope that you guys would continue where you left off and be assured to find me in the audience.

1:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was wondering if any of you actally have A's monologue from the play Crave? Or if you know about an internet site where it stands? It's about love... I've been looking for it for a while and can't find it anywhere.
- Madeleine

12:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that the only way of getting hold of the monologue is to buy the play, it's in the Sarah Kane Methuen collection. I recently acted in an adaptation of Kane's 'suicide note' 4:48 Psychosis, the two are surprisingly similar, and, as B said, extremely demanding plays to perform, but very rewarding emotionally. For those who have seen a production of this play they didn't like, I can only ask them to look into the meanings of the monologues in it; especially A's, they're just so raw and honest, please don't judge Kane's body of work by that one performance; 'Skin', 'Blasted' and 'Cleansed are all awesome.

4:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I once had to be a tech. for the play Crave... I wanted to hurt myself the show was so damn awful. I hoped the author dies/died painfully.

11:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi i have studied this play and performed many parts of it in my own way.. i have a's monologue in my skript his monologue goes something like .... i want to hold u and kiss u and play with your hair and touch your breasts and buy u blank tapes ..... etc this is part of wat i can rememeber off the top of my head

1:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear 11.16 anon:

she did.

11:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i havent even watched this play and have only read a bit of A's monologue, but i truely connected with the words.
Im sorry to say that you are all reading too deep into the message of the play, look closer to the surface, its so simple.
Like Shakespeare said "plays are for listening not watching"
I hope i don't come across as rude, just opinionated.
I hope to play A/B soon in my theater course.

4:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A group from my school did this play for their scripted piece at A level and it was truly amazing. When experimented with in the right way it can be a truly outstanding performance. Needless to say, they all got A's for perfect interpretation, really had me hooked on what was happening, feeling every emotion the characters were feeling

12:55 PM  
Anonymous Abby said...

"And I want to play hide-and-seek and give you my clothes and tell you I like your shoes and sit on the steps while you take a bath and massage your neck and kiss your feet and hold your hand and go for a meal and not mind when you eat my food and meet you at Rudy's and talk about the day and type your letters and carry your boxes and laugh at your paranoia and give you tapes you don't listen to and watch great films and watch terrible films and complain about the radio and take pictures of you when you're sleeping and get up to fetch you coffee and bagels and Danish and go to Florent and drink coffee at midnight and have you steal my cigarettes and never be able to find a match and tell you about the the programme I saw the night before and take you to the eye hospital and not laugh at your jokes and want you in the morning but let you sleep for a while and kiss your back and stroke your skin and tell you how much I love your hair your eyes your lips your neck your breasts your arse your
and sit on the steps smoking till your neighbour comes home and sit on the steps smoking till you come home and worry when you're late and be amazed when you're early and give you sunflowers and go to your party and dance till I'm black and be sorry when I'm wrong and happy when you forgive me and look at your photos and wish I'd known you forever and hear your voice in my ear and feel your skin on my skin and get scared when you're angry and your eye has gone red and the other eye blue and your hair to the left and your face oriental and tell you you're gorgeous and hug you when you're anxious and hold you when you hurt and want you when I smell you and offend you when I touch you and whimper when I'm next to you and whimper when I'm not and dribble on your breast and smother you in the night and get cold when you take the blanket and hot when you don't and melt when you smile and dissolve when you laugh and not understand why you think I'm rejecting you when I'm not rejecting you and wonder how you could think I'd ever reject you and wonder who you are but accept you anyway and tell you about the tree angel enchanted forest boy who flew across the ocean because he loved you and write poems for you and wonder why you don't believe me and have a feeling so deep I can't find words for it and want to buy you a kitten I'd get jealous of because it would get more attention than me and keep you in bed when you have to go and cry like a baby when you finally do and get rid of the roaches and buy you presents you don't want and take them away again and ask you to marry me and you say no again but keep on asking because though you think I don't mean it I do always have from the first time I asked you and wander the city thinking it's empty without you and want want you want and think I'm losing myself but know I'm safe with you and tell you the worst of me and try to give you the best of me because you don't deserve any less and answer your questions when I'd rather not and tell you the truth when I really dont' want to and try to be honest because I know you prefer it and think it's all over but hang on in for just ten more minutes before you throw me out of your life and forget who I am and try to get closer to you because it's a beautiful learning to know you and well worth the effort and speak German to you badly and Hebrew to you worse and make love with you at three in the morning and somehow somehow somehow communicate some of the overwhelming undying overpowering unconditional all-encompassing heart-enriching mind-expanding on-going never-ending love I have for you."

This is A's monologue. Hope you all enjoy it1

1:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Um... for those of you who don't understand the sheer beauty of sarah kane's use of language and her in depth portrayal of humanity's deepest fears and emotions emotions then this is your dull stupidity rather than a reflection on the play. Granted this play can be perfomed terribly, I've seen it done, but when her work is truly understood on stage it makes for one powerful piece of theatre.

For the person who said you hope she died horribly? She did. She killed herself when she was 29 years old. Perhaps you already knew this? which makes that comment truly sick.

4:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm performing A's monologue as my monologue for AS drama, i was wondering if B would give me hte interpreation of the play you used as i need to find loads of differnet interpretations to put my performance together,,,

Also to whoever said they hoped Sarah Kane died in pain,, i'd say hanging yourself through depression was very painful, suffering with depression full stop is, so i think taht comment was uncalled for a malicious.

Also, reading Crave i just love it and would love to see it in the theatre. i love it's abstratcness but the way the words echo to you.

if anyone could help me with interpreations that would be excellent, as i'm being assessed on this as my practical exam so need all the interpretations i can get.

4:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear 4:50 am Anon. I am currently playing B in my AS level drama course and we have done A's monologue by having him stand slightly to the side of the other three and deliver his speech in a rambling voice, but still putting the necessary emotions into the words, thus making it seem a little childish and as if he is insecure about revealing his feelings to whoever he is speaking to (in ours he speaks to the audience) then when he starts talking about holding someone, can't remember the exact cue feed, he starts using M as almost a toy doll and performing the actions he speaks. Then bored he starts walking towards the audience, with the other three in comfortable kneeling positions at the back of the stage, an continues his monologue to the front row until he reaches his final segment on how it feels, heart warming mind expanding etc…, where all people chorus the lines A- speaking B- questioning M- screaming C- crying to show all the different emotions that are often packaged with love. I hope this is helpful to you.

I also want to say that in all my times I have never had a more challenging and interesting character to portray as B. As I believe is the same with my colleagues. Any character that could be of any era, nationality and living or dead depending solely on te actor and directors feelings is a challenge and Sarah Kane loved to give us a challenge.

Yet another B.

10:30 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Does anyone have any ideas and tips for M? I am going to perform this and only have been given the script so any info would be amazing!

12:49 PM  

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