‘Orphans’ at Conklin Barn: A Deeply Moving, Dark Drama

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Playwright Lyle Kessler’s dark drama, “Orphans,” which has broken box office records around the world, opened at Huntington’s Conklin Barn to a sold-out house on Aug. 20.Directed with finesse by Jim Bonney, the play explores the primal fear of abandonment and its power over our behavior. Two brothers, Treat (Aaron Dalla Villa) and Phillip (Jay William Thomas), have been dealt a cruel blow by fate. Orphaned as young children by their father’s desertion and the death of their mother, they live hand-to-mouth in a rundown North Philly row house.Older brother Treat, interpreting the role of a father, supports the pair through petty thievery. To ward off any further abandonment, Treat has instilled Phillip with an intense fear of going outside and limits his access to any kind of knowledge that might empower him. A shut-in who spends most of his time watching The Price is Right, Phillip’s world has eclipsed into a few tiny rooms yet he harbors secrets that would make Treat angry. Hidden under the sofa are books and a painful remnant from the past—one of his mother’s shoes.The dynamics unexpectedly shift when Treat brings home Harold (Sean King), an inebriated businessman. Although Treat ties Harold up when he goes out to gather information about his ‘kidnap’ victim, Harold easily eludes these restraints and begins to assume the upper hand, both physically and psychologically.It turns out that Harold himself grew up in a Chicago orphanage. A man with a shady past whose enemies have followed him to Philly, the idea of hiding out while taking these two young men under his wing appeals to him. Harold wants to give these new age “dead end kids” the father figure he never had. Despite his best intentions, will it be easy to usurp the paternal role from Treat?Harold patiently encourages Phillip to slowly abandon his timeworn routines, delight in new discoveries and venture out into the world. At the same time, he is training Treat to be his emissary in a world in which he no longer feels safe. Treat has never known trust and does not do well when it comes to following rules and handling responsibility. When he feels that this interloper is trespassing on his relationship with his brother, a power struggle ensues.Audiences will find that the role of Harold, who has unexpectedly found his calling, provides King with the perfect vehicle for doing what he does best: turning the tables to his advantage and waxing nostalgic. His touching soliloquy about his days as an orphan paperboy in Chicago paints an eloquent picture which brings the audience to that windy night that cost his friend his life. It’s a stand-out.Dalla Villa shines as Treat, the older brother who has been jaded by life, having borne the weight of protector and breadwinner for far too long. Beneath the easy charm and cocky confidence of a streetwise con artist is a seething anger that threatens to boil over at any minute. And erupt it does. Dalla Villa deftly juggles these disparate emotions while maintaining the intensity that the role calls for throughout his performance.Thomas excels as the otherworldly Phillip, the wide-eyed innocent man-child who delights in Harold’s simple gift of a map of North Philadelphia and views the nightly illumination of the streetlamps as miraculous. He envisions beauty in simple things that Treat can no longer see. Phillip personifies hope.The ending wields an unexpected blow. What audiences come away with is that none of us are so different from these orphans. Love or any form of emotional attachment is inevitably coupled with risk and the pain of loss. What makes Bonney and King’s production of ‘Orphans’ so extraordinarily moving is that it touches those vulnerable places in the heart that reside in all of us.The Conklin Barn is located at 2 High Street off New York Ave. in Huntington. The show runs through Sept. 5. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at brownpapertickets.com. On Sept. 4, theatergoers can meet the playwright, Lyle Kessler, who will engage in a Q&A session after the performance.last_img read more

COVID-19: Surabaya and its satellites to start PSBB with curfew

first_imgPrior to the implementation of the PSBB, more than 80 checkpoints to monitor people’s movements have been established in the three regions – 13 in Surabaya, 24 in Sidoarjo and 45 in Gresik. Luki said checkpoints were not set up to stop people from going to work. “We will not make the people’s economic activities stop running. Shops, hypermarkets and traditional markets will stay open. We just want people to adhere to physical distancing rules,” he said. He said that a 4,300-strong joint team of police, military and public order agency (Satpol PP) personnel would be deployed to ensure people’s adherence to the PSBB order.  The COVID-19 task forces in Surabaya, East Java and its satellite regencies Sidoarjo and Gresik are set to impose a curfew during the large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) as part of efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19 in the three regions, which will be effective for 14 days from Tuesday until May 11.East Java police chief Insp. Gen. Luki Hermawan said the curfew and other restrictions would be enforced with several exceptions to make sure the PSBB did not hamper people’s economic activities. “Economic activities are not prohibited. There are at least two traditional markets in Surabaya that open at night, for instance. We will let them open [despite the curfew],” Luki told reporters on Tuesday morning.  “But we will give more verbal reminders to violators especially in the first three days of PSBB implementation,” he said. Similar to the restrictions imposed in Jakarta, the three regions are limiting vehicles to use only 50 percent of their seats. Motorcycles are not allowed to take passengers. Surabaya is the hardest-hit region in East Java with 372 confirmed cases and 51 fatalities as of Monday. The inclusion of Sidoarjo and Gresik in the implementation of the PSBB is partly due to Surabaya’s interconnection with the two satellite regions. Sidoarjo is the second-hardest-hit region with 81 confirmed cases and 11 fatalities, while Gresik has 22 confirmed cases and four fatalities. According to the official government count, East Java has 857 cases with 90 fatalities as of Tuesday. Topics :last_img read more

Toronto Raptors end Clippers’ 8-game home win streak

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error They started to watch the shots fall. Their minds said close out on those shots, move and talk on defense, and their bodies wouldn’t let them.And then the Clippers, in general, didn’t want to use the old fatigue excuse. But it was clear on Saturday at Staples Center that the Toronto Raptors were ready for an entire game and the Clippers weren’t.With a barrage of 3-pointers in the second half, Toronto ran away and hid in a 110-98 victory that ended the Clippers’ eight-game home winning streak. Even if they were without key ingredients like DeMar DeRozan (groin) and Landry Fields (concussion), the Raptors dealt with their losses better than the Clippers did without key reserve Spencer Hawes (knee bruise).“We were a little tired in the beginning,” said Blake Griffin, who had 22 points. “Any time you’re playing against a team that’s coming off of four days’ rest, that second half is going to be the toughest challenge.“I don’t think we responded well.”The Raptors made 54.5 percent of their shots in the second half and the Clippers shot only 40 percent. Toronto hit nine of their 13 3-pointers in the final two periods.Greivis Vasquez (16 points) came off the bench to hit four 3-pointers, Lowry added three and Lou Williams and Patrick Patterson each connected on two.Toronto took a two-point lead into the final period, when Patterson hit a 3-pointer and Vasquez hit two more plus a jumper to extend the lead to 93-80.The Clippers pulled to within 11 points with 5:55 left, but Williams hit consecutive 3-pointers.Center Jonas Valanciunas worked the inside for 22 points and 11 rebounds for the Raptors.J.J. Redick went 5 for 9 from long distance and led the Clippers with 23 points. Jamal Crawford had 20 off the bench.“We made many mistakes defensively,” Clippers coach Doc Rivers said. “I thought that in the first half we were in trouble. I thought we were exhausted.“When one of the guys on their team got going offensively, they kept feeding him the ball.”center_img Now L.A. gets to rest. Until Monday, anyway, when the third game of a nine-game homestand arrives.“I felt like we ran out of gas before the game started,” said Clippers guard Chris Paul, who missed 9 of 12 shots and had only 10 points. “We tried to stay the course and hopefully find enough toward the end to pull out the game, but they went on a run.”That’s one way to put it. The game was tied at 78-78 late in the third quarter when the Raptors (23-7), the leaders of the Eastern Conference, went on a 15-2 run that effectively decided matters.Kyle Lowry scored 11 of his 25 points in the third quarter and Toronto went 9 for-17 from 3-point land in one stretch to build a 17-point lead that buried the Clippers (20-11).The Clippers were coming off a gritty win on Christmas Day and the Raptors had not played since Dec. 22.last_img read more