Rough Draft – An Audience Member Review 

 “Nothing works without integrity,” says Stacy Donovan of Improbable Stage. Victor Cervantes Jr., the actor who literally, and figuratively, embodies Integrity, stays down stage left for much of the show. He was always a bit apart from the rest of the ensemble, but clearly a critical part of the piece. 

 The 8 actors/movers/creators/humans moved effortlessly as one entity with many unique parts, creating a near-spiritual experience for themselves and the audience. 

From the moment I walked into The Wild Project in the East Village, it was like coming home. Everything from the softly upbeat music that pulses in the seats towards the back of the house to the artfully lit stage and elegantly minimal set invites you in. I even got to plug my phone into the front desk when I frantically realized I would not be able to find my train home when it inevitably died; yes, I just moved here. 

I could babble about this show for hours, as it spoke to me on every possible level, but I will try to be as concise as possible. Bill Chameides effortlessly slides into his role as playwright/professor, stuck at his desk up stage right for much of the piece. We soon realize that the other seven performers are embodying the chaotic emotions spiraling through his mind as he endures the trials of life. Or perhaps they are characters he is writing? For throughout the piece, the words he smashes into existence on his rusty typewriter appear perfectly on an upstage projection. I could describe the way Emily Pintel’s youthful energy radiates boundlessly through the whole space, or how Julia Hansen’s aggressive yet welcoming impulsivity makes you want to leap on stage with her, but this ensemble works together so flawlessly that they are basically one person. While each individual has beautiful moments, it is heartwarming to see them as one pulsing, breathing, beating perfect mass of humans in awe-inspiring synchronicity. 

One moment that does stand out, of a whole slew of glorious ones, was the movement duet between two of the male actors, Ryan Castro and Dylan Wittrock. The way these two men took each other’s bodies with such ease, openness, and joy made me start weeping openly in the back row. The tears just kept flowing. At one point, each actor finds their own space on the stage and reclines to stare at the stars; a gorgeous star drop upstage and some breathtaking music only amplify this moment. 

In the end, as this collective psyche split apart and reunited, mine seemed to do the same. I was left sobbing into my bandana in the back row as the house cleared out. But obviously this empathetic group did not leave me to sit alone with my emotions- they hugged me and welcomed me and made this perfect night truly astonishing. Talk about catharsis. 

I can’t say it enough- 


Anna Doyle -  Audience Member on Friday, September 18, 2015