Photo by Don Kellogg

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Great God Pan

Amy Herzog, last dazzled us with 4000 Miles at Lincoln Center Theater.  Once again, in a magical and emotional journey into memory, identity, and truth, Ms. Herzog assisted by a fine cast and delicate direction does not fail to impress.

Jamie (Jeremy Strong) is a seemingly normal young Brooklynite with a girlfriend (Sarah Goldberg) and family unremarkable to the naked eye.   But - curtain up - in walks Frank (Keith Nobbs), his childhood friend, and modern day messed up type who is back after 25 years to tell Jamie he's going to file charges against his father for molesting him.  Why is Frank telling this to Jamie?  Because allegedly Jamie was one of Frank's father's victims too.  Or so says Frank.

Slowly we realize that Jamie has no real memories of his childhood.  And perhaps, we being to ponder, this is the reason.   Jamie engages his mother  (Becky Ann Baker) and she's curt and uncharacteristically bothered by it (an odd reaction for a social worker, he points out).  His father (Peter Friedman) adds to the fire by telling Jamie about some early family and neighborhood shuffling.  His girlfriend, who through observation and innuendo also has many of her own set of "issues",  has her own take on the subject.   Jamie struggles with his lack of memory and visits his old nanny/babysitter (Joyce Van Patten) who, in her tender and forgetful old age adds even more questions than answers to the memories.

Is Frank who he seems?   Will Jamie ever remember what he needs to know?   Who is the Great God Pan and how will this all conclude?   Stop on over to Playwrights Horizons to find out.  It's well worth the price of admission to see these fine actors execute Ms. Herzog's emotional play under such fine direction.