The Rondo cast. Photo by Deshan Tennekoon, via Mind Adventures
I was supposed to write this last week but I had a deadline and got run over by a trishaw. But here goes. Rondo is a play happening at the Punchi Theatre today and tomorrow. I was invited for a preview but only hung around for 15 minutes cause I just wanted a taste. It tastes good. The play was commissioned to cover reconciliation, particularly as related to Sri Lanka’s recent war. Thankfully, this play doesn’t address the issue directly.
Too much work or discussion on reconciliation is out of touch with the actual messy humanity involved, dwelling instead in some ethereal politically correct fantasy-land. Rondo, at least as I saw it, seems to get around that issue by getting to the broader issue and by being deliberately weird.
The plot as I got it is about a repressed town where marriage is not free. There was a crime of passion in the past and so that and the present must be repressed. Thus, in allegory and sheer confusion, it’s able to provoke exploration within the viewers own mind beyond simply telling them that this is bad and feel sad.
I like Tracy Holsinger’s plays (disclosure, she’s a friend) because they allow this mind space, hence the name of the production company, Mind Adventures. Much of the time I don’t understand exactly what’s going on, but there are enough springs to launch me into my own thoughts which – while not necessarily shared by the audience – are presumably a shared experience. As a viewer I appreciate this since I think presenting a pat dissertation of something as complicated as reconciliation is a bit of an insult to the audience’s intelligence. It is obvious that everyone wants what we call reconciliation, but the fact that it’s so hard to do means that there are a lot of subconscious kinks to work out.
I don’t understand reconciliation. I reject anything that tries to predigest that understanding for me. I do, however, look forward to thinking about it for the closing show tomorrow.
There’s more info at Tracy’s Blog