I first discovered the American Repertory Theater last spring when audiences were delighted by the lively and memorable Woody Sez. Since then, I’ve seen an eye-popping, heart-wrenching rendition of Marie Antoinette and a magical, enchanting performance of Pippin. And last week, I took in the A.R.T.’s latest show, Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie.
I’ve loved all of the shows I’ve seen at the A.R.T. and I hate to pick favorites, but I think The Glass Menagerie just rocketed right to the top of my list. I was actually sad at intermission and when the play was over because I felt like I could’ve kept watching the incredibly talented cast all night.
There are only four cast members, Zachary Quinto as Tom, Cherry Jones as his mother Amanda, Celia Keenan-Bolger as his sister Laura and Brian J. Smith as the Gentleman Caller. Every one of the actors was absolutely superb in these complex, difficult roles. And seeing Quinto, of Star Trek fame, in person was pretty cool. I already thought he was a great actor, but seeing him as Tom truly allowed him to showcase some serious acting chops.
The A.R.T. tends to create amazing sets that complement the story being told perfectly and The Glass Menagerie was no exception. The apartment where the action takes place was staged so well, with some very interesting features, like a moat of water around it and a whimsical fire escape that started out wide and ended up teeny-tiny and narrow at the top.
The day after seeing the show, my husband Mike asked me what I wanted to do that night and I replied that I wanted to watch The Glass Menagerie again. And I meant it. This performance was truly special and I know it will stay with me for a long time. The Glass Menagerie runs at the American Repertory Theater through March 17 and I urge you to attend a show if you have the chance.