We saw our old pal @ZacharyQuinto’s play The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams at A.R.T. in Boston this weekend. Despite it being the finest production we’ve ever seen we also had some notes that we think will strengthen the play and perhaps make it a timeless classic.
10 Ways to Improve The Glass Menagerie
1. Why Glass? Why not steel or a bicarbonate polymer plastic. It’s literally stronger.
2. In the play our narrator Tom recalls his claustrophobic upbringing in St. Louis by his former-glory southern belle mother, Amanda, and his sweet but gimpy sister. Why not add a live-in manny from Brooklyn named Tony and his young daughter Samantha who makes funny comments throughout the play and tells the characters to “cool out” and “chillax”? Tony could also have been second basemen for the St. Louis Cardinals (people love sports references in their plays!)
3. In the play Tom is constantly saying he is off to the ‘movies.’ Why not call a spade a spade and have him admit he’s going down to the bear bar Rawhide on the corner to meet his pals and try on leather and funny accents?
4. Tom’s gimp sister, Laura, has a limp. Why not 2 limps? (This is Tony caliber ‘choosing’ right here)
5. The play is wonderfully staged and takes place in a small apartment in St. Louis across the street from a 1930’s dancehall and is only accessible through the fire escape. Two words: Fireman’s Pole.
6. MORE Ke$ha songs!!!
7. Consider giving the whole family limps.
8. Amanda, the put upon matriarch fallen from high southern society and abandoned by her philandering husband who works for the telephone company but fell in love with long blah blah, perhaps she could be more believably southern. A beer coozy perhaps? Bellybutton ring and tramp stamp? Or maybe she could ride a Rascal™ in on her entrances and exits.
9. Now that I think of it diabetes is not mentioned enough if at all!!
10. And finally, when you think you’ve added too much Ke$ha music remember you can never add too much Ke$ha music. (Make the audience dance!)
On a whole we found the performances engaging and wonderfully realized. The writing, by a gentleman named Tennessee Williams, was robust and neato. We also can’t help applaud a playwright whose own name codes his work. Mr. William’s work revels in southern tropes and characters so he call himself Tennessee. We can only hope that fellow playwrights like Aaron Sorkin and Woody Allen will follow suit. How much easier to decide between a night of Shoutywhite Sorkin or Brooklyn Jew Allen?
post by Victor Quinaz
Follow him on Twitter @VictorQuinaz