Conceiver-directors Andréa Graugnard and Daniel J LeBlanc have researched and sifted through considerable material to create a moving piece about the poet Sylvia Plath, weaving a dreamlike tale, nonlinear and surreal in form, to explore her life and work, telling their story most poignantly through Plath's own journals, stories, letters, and poems.
Using a minimum of props, the capable cast of seven — Alex Beck, Rebecca Buller, Elizabeth Godley, Laura Harrison, Zach Harvey, Mark Jaynes, and Blake Williams — uses movement, dialogue, recitation, and frequent character changes to tell Plath's tale. Recognized as a brilliant poet, Plath was diagnosed as bipolar, a mental illness that drove her to suicide. Her poetry, with its startling imagery, depicts her life: childhood, college, a scholarship to Cambridge, marriage to poet Ted Hughes, and, ultimately, an early death.
Thanks to Plath's own words, Ariel View is a strong, affecting piece.
Presented by Royal Jelly Entertainment as part of the New York International Fringe Festival at the Lafayette Street Theatre, 45 Bleecker St., NYC. Aug. 8-20. Remaining performances: Tue., Aug. 12, 9:30 p.m.; Sat., Aug. 16, 7:15 p.m.; Sun., Aug. 17, noon; Wed., Aug. 20, 9:45 p.m. (212) 279-4488 or (866) 468-7619 or www.fringenyc.org.