Cate Blanchett and Richard Roxburgh
About halfway through The Present, an adaptation of Chekhov’s first play, Cate Blanchett, as a Russian general’s widow celebrating her 40th birthday, shoots off a shotgun, dances atop a table, and pours vodka on her head. It is an attention-grabbing moment in Blanchett’s Broadway debut performance – and one of the show’s few unmitigated pleasures…
There are those who are fans of the two-time Oscar winner who will find her performance entertaining enough to obliterate any other concerns, or who have the patience and curiosity to appreciate the production’s complex texture and thought-provoking themes of loss, regret, paralysis, desire, loneliness, fear of change — who will feel good for having experienced Quality Theater. And then there are the rest of us, who wish it were shorter.
Full review on DC Theatre Scene
Click on any photograph by Joan Marcus to see it enlarged.
Richard Roxburgh and Cate Blanchett
Richard Roxburgh (center) as Mikhail, who cuckolds and betrays his two best friends, Nikolai (Toby Schmitz, left) and Sergei (Chris Ryan, right)
Richard Roxburgh, Jacqueline McKenzie (Sophia), Chris Ryan (Sergei), Eamon Farren (Kirrill)
Jacqueline McKenzie as Sophia and Chris Ryan as her new husband Sophia
Foreground: Brandon McClelland (Dimitri)
Eamon Farren (Kirrill) and Martin Jacobs (Alexei, Kirrill’s father.)