Extra-cultural reviews by synaesthetes, symbolists, and strangers.
Christopher Rozzi’s ‘BEZINKULE’ @ the NY Clown Theater Festival ‘Amuse Bouche’
BEZINKULE, written and Performed by Christopher Rozzi is a wonderfully paced and structured one hour, one man play that never drags. It is silly and clever in the best possible way. Rozzi’s humor combines the strangeness and absurdity of Brittish sketch comedy, with the wit and physicality of the best American humor. The “use” of hologram messages to Miss Lillian Tremont is an effective and unique way to add overall structure and a broader narrative, while allowing Rozzi to populate his one man play with an entire cast. It challenged the audience, pressing us to really picture the strange landscapes and bizarre creatures that populated the narrative.
Bezinkule is a refreshing reinterpretation of the clown tradition, melding it with traditional comedy and theatre. Housed in the beautifully intimate avant-garde performance space, The Brick Theater, Rozzi used his environment expertly, showing a wonderful and intuitive sense of space.
Unfortunately, the camera was unable to capture the hologram itself that comprises the entire show, but this is where it all happens (right). Or rather, not where it all happens. Chris Rozzi’s Bezinkule is a series of increasingly complex transpositions, beginning with his first trick, turning the entire audience into a fictional woman. The suspension of disbelief kicks in and the theater quickly becomes our (Miss Lillian Treemont’s) living room. Most one-act plays tend to strive toward a sensation of geographical intimacy, but in this case, we are immediately propelled into a massive universe, while still maintaining the impression that we are casually viewing messages in our homes. Somehow, that serves only to draw us psychologically closer to the imagined being we collectively inhabit, like an otherworldly reversal of Walt Whitman’s amalgamating process in “Leaves of Grass”. From this bizarre, yet thoroughly constructed perspective, we feel the skepticism Miss Lillian Treemont might feel when we suddenly begin observing a series of peculiarly desperate love-holograms. Fortunately, Chris Rozzi’s character, Lawrence Fishburne, is wildly compelling, and we are inevitably sucked into the vortex of his twisted adventures in extra-dimensional questing. His adventures are too strange and intricate to relate here, but as he searches for the mystical object intended to buy our affections, we are led not only through the brilliant connections of an astonishing brain, but also eventually into a theater where our collective self is abandoned by our holographic suitor in a mist of whimsy and intelligent bafflement that splits us into a full house of individual bodies who were once all the same woman.
-review by BWXC and SZ
Photographs from the show with Chris Rozzi can be found here.
(Thanks to Jim Moore for the link.)