Seattle-based Nebunele Theatre’s The Secret Ruths of Island House was constructed around interviews with residents of a retirement home named The Island House where an unusual number of residents were named Ruth. The strength of this sixty-minute piece are the facts around its creation. Throughout much is the show the audience hears the (presumably) actually interviews with the residents while the three performers re-enact segments of the interviews and flashbacks of the content of those interviews. While the intentions behind The Secret Ruths of Island House may be finer than its execution, there are some poignant moments, like when the residents are asked, “When was the last time your life changed dramatically?” A special note should be made of performer and co-creator Claytie Mason’s hauntingly excellent masks for the piece.
Fringe Rating: 7 (out of 10)
For info: http://www.nebunele.com/ and http://www.fringenyc.org/