Stylish Fun at Expense. "Boston Marriage" by David Mamet. State Theatre Company of South Australia. [review]
Bramwell, Murray Ross
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David Mamet is well-known for the testosterone dialogue of plays like American Buffalo and Glengarry Glen Ross and the intriguingly minimalist expression of his film scripts, so it is interesting to see him venture into the very different world of Boston Marriage, a play he wrote for his wife the actor Rebecca Pidgeon. A Boston marriage is a late nineteenth term for a partnership of women either living together in companionship or as a lesbian couple. The term arose since such arrangements were seen as a Massachusetts kind of thing and the city of Boston was, indeed, home to a number of influential feminists, writers and intellectuals. In Mamet’s play, however, we find a much more light-hearted treatment of the idea with Anna (Victoria Longley) and Claire (Rachel Szalay), a pair of fin de siecle operators with late 20th century “me-generation” preoccupations. Catherine Fitzgerald has a good sense of the comedy and lets the actors test the full stretch of Mamet’s indulgence.