Sunday, June 08, 2008

A Taste of Honey

Still exciting fifty years after its London debut in 1958, A Taste of Honey by Shelegh Delaney is a gritty realistic drama that must have truly been dynamite on the stage in the fifties. I still remember the stir created by the film adaptation of this drama touching on issues of premarital sex, interracial marriage and homosexuality that was released three years later. It was partly my memory of this film that encouraged me to explore the current production by Shattered Globe Theatre.
Centering on the tumultuous relationship of daughter and mother, Jo and Helen, the play chronicles the events of about a year in their lives. The production last night was excellent in spite of minor technical problems that, fortunately, did not detract from the fine acting. I particularly enjoyed the lead performances of Linda Reiter as Helen (I have fond memories of her past performances in Suddenly, Last Summer and Arcadia); Helen Sadler as Jo, who was convincing in her search for love; and Kevin Viol as Geof, whose character brought some touching tenderness into Jo's life. Shattered Globe's production at the Victory Gardens Greenhouse Theater is a worthy revival of this now classic drama from the fifties.

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