Dating sharp, funny, creepy Becky Shaw at SF Playhouse

Jan 30

Dating sharp, funny, creepy <i>Becky Shaw</i> at SF Playhouse

The humor is in direct proportion to the discomfort in Gina Gionfriddo's Becky Shaw, now in its West Coast premiere at SF Playouse.

If David Mamet were good at anything other than provocation and crisp dialogue, he might write something as entertaining and as distressing as Becky Shaw, a smart, incisive and very funny play that, despite its lack of focus, makes for a beguiling evening of theater.

By lack of focus I mean that Gionfriddo doesn't delineate protagonist or antagonist. Even though the title of the play belongs to one character, the playwright's aim seems much broader – like how power works between family members, between men and women and between the seemingly weak and the seemingly strong. She's interested in highly functional dysfunctional people, which is to say, just about everybody.

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