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No Child

I recently joined the Advisory Board of the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge.  I've been a subscriber for a long time and have always enjoyed the theater.  That started when I was a kid.  My parents brought us to shows at a local theater company in Western Massachusetts.  Although I have no ability to act myself (and have some stage fright), I have always loved watching a great production.  I really appreciate what the actors do in a live production where there is no margin for error.

The ART is staging No Child this month.  We saw it on Saturday night and really enjoyed it.  It's a one woman show with Nilaja Sun playing all the roles, swtiching in rapid fire fashion to do all sides of a conversation.  She physically transforms her body, face, and voice to do one character after another.  That effect itself is worth seeing.

But, the subject matter of the play is also interesting.  It's about an inner city school where Nilaja is brought in to put on a play as a student activity.  The No Child refers to the No Child Left Behind Act.  That's the backdrop of the production, where you can see that this law has very little impact on a school in a tough neighborhood and few resources.  The Boston Globe wrote an editorial on the show and this connection a couple of days ago.

The ART prides itself on being innovative.  Sometimes that may go too far for a broad audience.  But, they have had a series of great productions over the past 12 months, including No Child.  If you are in the Boston area, I suggest you give it a try.


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