Get Crazy with Richmond Triangle Players’ “Suddenly, Last Summer”

Did you know that Tennessee Williams’ sister, Rose, underwent a lobotomy at the behest of their mother?? Well, that event helped inspire Williams’ play, Suddenly, Last Summer. See how a local production measures up to the taks of taking on this remarkable one act play.

In the first moments of the Richmond Triangle Players’ production of Suddenly, Last Summer, the audience is thrust into the tormented mind of a girl haunted by the violent murder of her cousin. These eerie moments set the tone for a disturbingly wild ride as a mother struggles to uncover the truth about her son, Sebastian’s, murder from its only witness, her troubled niece Catherine.

Having struggled with his own sister’s mental illness, Tennessee Williams uses his personal experience to craft a complicated character with Catherine. Lauren Marie Hafner wonderfully captures Catherine’s tumultuous personality in her portrayal of the emotionally disturbed girl. Throughout the play, there are moments where Catherine displays both clarity and control, making it hard to believe she could possibly be insane. And yet, every so often, she loses control and the audience once again visits the horrific world inside her head.

As the story unravels and truths are revealed, it’s not just Catherine’s craziness that comes to light. Sebastian’s mysterious death brings about absurd arguments between every member of the family and soon they all find themselves struggling with their inner demons. Lorri Lindberg does a particularly superb job of bringing to life the hysterical sadness of Violet Venable, Sebastian’s disillusioned mother.

Clocking it at less than two hours, what the play lacks in length it makes up for with tension, emotion, and mystery. Join the Tennessee Williams Centennial Celebration by checking out the Richmond Triangle Players’ Suddenly, Last Summer but don’t be surprised if you leave feeling slightly unhinged. Because really–we’re all a little crazy, aren’t we?

Richmond Triangle Players present Tennessee Williams’ Suddenly, Last Summer
Showing until October 22, 2011

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Lauren Grant

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