It is difficult to put together the arms of prestigious international awards and nominations obtained from the dramatic drama of dementia by Florian Zeller in 2012 with the show that is currently on stage at the Teatro Wit. Zeller focuses on Andre semi-dodgy, a member of the Parisian upper middle class whose mental acumen has begun to decline. He insists that he is perfectly fine. Except it keeps losing the clock. And confusing the names of his recently dismissed domestic assistants. And forgetting his apartment where he lives. And not recognizing his daughter, Anne.
Dementia is a brutal thing to see (my father began to sink into it in the last years of his life, blessed, the congestive heart failure plunged in before he lost too much of himself). But Zeller's piece is extraordinarily lukewarm in his interpretation. His main theatrical intuition is to present reality from the point of view of Andre, with several actors who claim to be the same character in different scenes and often contradict some key information. (Anne got married? Did she move to London? Did she move into her apartment or vice versa?) She's intriguing for a short while, but Zeller is largely disappointed with the idea, and Andre's situation hardly progresses to 90 intermittent minutes. Ultimately, opera requires little to the public, except compassionate compassion for an old confused man.
It does not help the production without problems of Remy Bumppo seems locked in before. The cast of director Kay Martinovich of prominent Chicago actors seems unusually stiff and unrelated. It does not happen much below the surface, creating a curiously static evening. v