MvVO Art Launches AD ART SHOW
Off Broadway

She Says: This Flat Earth Is Timely and Relevant

She Says: This Flat Earth Is Timely and Relevant
Ian Saint-German, Ella Kennedy Davis, Lucas Papaelias

Ian Saint-German, Ella Kennedy Davis & Lucas Papaelias. Photo by Joan Marcus

Why are school shootings the norm and why have grown-ups done nothing about them? That is the question looming in Lindsey Ferrentino’s This Flat Earth which focuses on how trauma affects children in school shootings. This timely play tells the personal story of two 13-year-olds. Julie (Ella Kennedy Davis) and Zander (Ian Saint-German) have recently lost a number of friends and are trying to make sense of it all as they return back to the scene of the crime…. school. As they watch movies, Zander is trying to figure out how to bring his relationship with Julie to the next stage, after all, teenage hormones are raging. Julie’s mom is dead, so it is up to Julie’s dad, Dan (Lucas Papaelias), to cope with this issue. Julie lost a classmate, Nicole, and her mother Lisa (Cassie Beck) shows up on her doorstep grieving. Upstairs, Cloris (Lynda Gravátt) plays a cello album (brilliantly played live by the Grammy-nominated Christine H. Kim). This elderly lady lives in her own world until Julie and Zander climb up the exterior fire escape and bring their pain to her door. As normal life resumes, a visit from the vice president – who has really bad breath – and an uplifting concert cannot sooth the questions or the feelings of dread inside.

Ella Kennedy Davis, Lynda Gravátt

Ella Kennedy Davis, Lynda Gravátt Photo by Joan Marcus.

We never learn what really happened, and it seems a little out of touch for Julie to not know that these school massacres are becoming more and more frequent. Sadly, the questions are way too relevant, and unlike the show Office Hours at The Public which took on the shooter, we do not hear the answers or a version on how to truly cope with this out of control epidemic. Nobody actually talks about the shooting, but the focus is more on class and privilege.

Ella Kennedy Davis, Lucas Papaelias

Ella Kennedy Davis, Lucas Papaelias Photo by Joan Marcus.

Kennedy Davis and Saint-German are well cast, bringing a strength of emotion to their parts. Mr. Papaelias, Ms. Beck, and Ms. Gravátt all add their talent in support of the two leads.

Ferrentino’s play is compelling and brave but misses plausibility and is too overstuffed with ideas. She is, however, on the right track about speaking about issues and getting the conversation started.

I normally love Rebecca Taichman’s direction, but here it seems a little out of focus and a little too intense.

This Flat Earth

Photo by Joan Marcus.

Dane Laffrey’s excellent two-tier set and Christopher Akerlind’s lighting is subtle and well done.

I can understand why children think, “Yes, we are angry, yes we are frustrated, but we need answers, we need to take a stand and we need solace.”

This Flat Earth: Playwrights Horizons, 416 West 42nd St., until April 29.

Off Broadway

Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. Currently she has a screenplay in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She was the Broadway Informer on the all access cable TV Show “The New Yorkers,” soon to be “The Tourist Channel.” email: suzanna@t2conline.com

More in Off Broadway

Girl From The North Country

Bob Dylan’s Songbook Girl From The North Country Finds Cast

Suzanna BowlingJuly 19, 2018
George Salazar

Be More Chill’s Michael In the Bathroom George Salazar

Suzanna BowlingJuly 18, 2018
Shane Baker, Allen Lewis Rickman, Yelena Shmulenson

He Says: Tevye Served Raw

Jeffery SegalJuly 18, 2018
Joe Tracz, Joe Iconis

Meet Be More Chill’s Joe Iconis and Joe Tracz

Suzanna BowlingJuly 17, 2018
Tom Hoefner

Meet The Playwrights of NY SummerFest: Tom Hoefner Brings a Comic Look to The Rapture

Suzanna BowlingJuly 17, 2018
Allen Lewis Rickman, Yelena Shmulenson, Shane Baker

Tevye Served Raw” Is A Treat for “Fiddler on the Roof” Fans, And Others

Neha KashyapJuly 16, 2018
Pamela Scott

Meet The Playwrights of NY SummerFest: Pamela Scott Has Not One But Two Plays in Festivals

Suzanna BowlingJuly 16, 2018
Rebecca Aparicio

Pedro Pan Playwright Rebecca Aparicio Discusses Their Developmental Journey

Jeffery SegalJuly 15, 2018
Julian Silva, Taylor Caldwell, Gregory Diaz IV

Straight From NYMF: Pedro Pan Flies at NYMF

Jeffery SegalJuly 15, 2018