Following a critically acclaimed World Premiere at The 2008 New York International Fringe Festival, Razors Edge Productions proudly presents a revival of ZOMBIE, an award-winning solo play by Bill Connington, adapted from the novella by Joyce Carol Oates. ZOMBIE is directed by Thomas Caruso and performed by Bill Connington. ZOMBIE runs from February 18 to March 29, 2009 in a limited 6-week engagement at the Theatre Row Complex (Studio Theatre), located at 410 West 42 Street between 9 & 10 Avenues in NYC. Previews begin February 18 for a February 21 opening. Post-show discussions will follow select shows.
My original review posted on www.talkentertainment.com 8/14/08 follows:
What is a madman? What makes him murder and torture and rape young boys? Should we feel compassionate towards him? Is he just making fools of all the doctors brought in to treat him? Is his disease a result of his bad relationship with his daddy? Or is he simply looking for love and obedience in a world that has shunned him as being queer?
ZOMBIE, a one man monologue, based on the novella by Joyce Carol Oates attempts to enlighten us. In this hour long performance by Bill Connington who looks like your average ninety pound weakling, who could be your friendly next door neighbor, who learns how to do a lobotomy by going to the library and who becomes proficient with an ice pick totally and eerily inhabits the mind and body of Quentin P. No last names please.
His co-star in this production is a life sized dummy. Quentin is playing a game of chess with this stand in Zombie as the performance begins until Quentin can replace it with the real thing. We discover a bit about who he is and how he ticks until he explodes. We are privy to who he will target and how he will seduce them. This show is not for the squeamish.
The writing has a beautiful lyricism and style all its own. There is some very dark humor. No doubt due mainly to Ms Oates. Mr. Connington has adapted her prose. It’s an extremely interesting adaptation with an almost zombie-like performance of a tortured man who yearns for, lusts for his very own zombie to cuddle up with “as bidden”.
Quentin P. is a thirty one year old admitted sex offender, who lives in his Grandmother’s basement but is in the process of turning over a new leaf. Of starting over. Trying to look directly into the eye of someone. Anyone. To make some kind of contact. Until his inner demons compel him to do the awful deeds he does to the homeless, the handicapped and his unknowing victims – Raisin Eyes, Big Guy, No Name and Squirrel.
It is an extremely honest and open performance, with detailed direction by Thomas Caruso with musical underscoring by Deirdre Broderick which is most apt. You will never be able to look at an ice pick in quite the same way after seeing this show.