LAUGHING AROUND TOWN
….four one-legged men!
Written and performed by Gary Corbin
Directed by William Martin
The Producers Club
There’s nothing more harrowing than watching a person tell the absolute unfiltered, unexpurgated truth about their life’s struggles. The event opens all kinds of doors in an audience that have nothing to do with the show in front of their eyes.
Only a master storyteller can keep an audience focused on the subject and object of the oration. It’s rare, when it happens to you, you remember. Gary Corbin’s stellar one man performance is that kind of performance.
“….four one-legged men!” tells the riveting stories of mono-limbed characters in the title. Each character has his own way of dealing with his disability. Each man has a life brought to the stage by Mr. Corbin in a way that’s lets you enter into their hearts and feel their emotional stress.
The show is divided into four character segments with distinct tones and colors:
“A Day in the Life of Jamie Prince” is a tale of guilt and aging, something we all have or will go through with elderly parents or relatives. Jamie makes excuses for not seeing his elderly relative, while comparing his life to the old man’s on the bed. Then he projects his needs onto the still figure, asking and answering life’s hard questions. Who knows better about one’s life than the silent watchers waiting for the unknown and unknowable.
When the man of the house leaves the house there’s no telling where he’ll end up. In “Rainbow” a man leaves home and complains about the life his wife subjected him to. All he wanted was her. Instead he inherits her family and a group of friends who want nothing to do with him. He feels he’s just the financial support mechanism, a bottomless deep pocket of hard earned pittances. But he’ll show her. He’ll rebel. It’s the funniest story of the four, with a main character good enough to carry a sitcom in the Sanford and Son tradition.
Drag queens are easy to poke fun at. In “I’ll Betcha that!” a stranded queen reminisces about the good old days in the baths. There’s much humor, however Mr. Corbin makes us see the pathetic nature of an older queen while showing us that life goes on even with one leg missing.
In “Waiting For Oz” that we finally get the magic and power that Gary Corbin is known for. I can only say he made me ache deeply for wounded soldiers everywhere. This character’s story is too painful and too important for me to describe. In the final moments of the performance I was stunned by Corbin’s physicality and clear humanist vision. If he performs this series again. Don’t miss it. [Litt]
If you have any comments or want to notify him about performances or shows, you can e-mail Larry Litt at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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