MEMETERIA by Thomas May

Music & the Arts

Azeotrope’s City-Country Double Bill

 Richard Nguyen Sloniker, Tim Gouran and Mariel Neto in Red Light Winter; photo: Benito Vasquez

Richard Nguyen Sloniker, Tim Gouran and Mariel Neto in Red Light Winter; photo: Benito Vasquez

My recent profile of Seattle’s remarkable Azeotrope Theatre is up on Crosscut:

What makes people want to attend live theater? Sure, it’s an art that dates back to the origins of human culture, but why put up with the hassle when it’s become so easy to find entertainment from the comforts of home? Even the allure of films is no longer enough to guarantee the future of movie theaters.

But Azeotrope has a way of making you remember what’s so unique about theater in the first place. No amount of digitalized special effects can trump the raw, gritty emotional power or the gripping depictions of desperate characters who populate Azeotrope’s latest project.

 Richard Nguyen Sloniker in Red Light Winter; photo: Sebastien Scanduzzi

Richard Nguyen Sloniker in Red Light Winter; photo: Sebastien Scanduzzi

Over the next month the company is presenting a double bill of plays in rotating repertory at the Eulalie Scandiuzzi Space, a tiny black box theater located downstairs at ACT. Both plays are less than a decade old: Adam Rapp’s Red Light Winter (2005), which was a Pulitzer finalist, and the Seattle premiere of the recent 25 Saints by Joshua Rollins (who will be on hand for post-play discussions on Nov. 2 and 3).

“When I when I first read Red Light Winter, it just kicked me in the balls,” says Richard Nguyen Sloniker, an actor, writer, teacher and co-founder of Azeotrope. “It hit me in a way I couldn’t quite grasp, and I had to try to parse out why.”

Rapp’s scenario is a bleak examination of the need for intimacy. It explores the consequences of a night two former college friends spend with a beautiful young prostitute in Amsterdam. “Sure, it’s not a very cheery play,” Sloniker explains, “but I identified with these lost, broken, human characters. A good play doesn’t necessarily have to give you a catharsis.”

continue reading

Filed under: review, theater

Recent Posts

Categories

%d bloggers like this: