The Skriker

Suchyta, Sue/Dearborn Times Herald/15 November 2006: C21

     “The Skriker” is a fascinating theatrical study of evil. Whether it’s a condemnation of the sad state of the modern world or an extended schizophrenic nightmare, it is absorbing and will grab your attention for the entire one hour and forty minutes run time. (The show is run without an intermission.) The 3-D special effects add an extra layer of theatrical magic to the entire experience. The audience wears polarized glasses throughout, so you may want to wear your contact lenses if you have them. Dr. George Popovich has brought to fruition a challenging and amazing production to the HFCC stage.

    The story is about two sisters, Lily, who is pregnant and alone, and her sister Josie, who killed her baby due to her mental illness. The Skriker is an evil shape-shifter and death portent that tries to seduce humans to their doom. She haunts them throughout the play until she has brought about both of their downfalls, offering them false love, and tempting them with the symbolic poison food.

     The show is ripe with symbolism and set against a backdrop of the horrors of our post 9-11 modern world filled with all too real tragedies. It is dark and foreboding, yet fascinating and revealing. Even the stream-of-consciousness poetry is cleverly woven with metaphors transformed in mid-phrase to form other all-too-familiar slogans. You will leave with your own take on the show, and you will not leave unmoved.

     Carla Banks, as Lily, and Devona Moore, as Josie, are incredibly potent in their roles. They capture the desperation and futility of their characters and maintain the tension and desperate energy inherent to their roles throughout the production. Their anguish comes across loud and clear. Laura Mc Callum portrays the Skriker on stage in an extremely demanding role with skill and finesse. She and Hugh Duneghy perform the digital role that is projected in 3-D and shadows the live actor.

     The entire cast, both on-stage and off, shows a high level of skill and is the successful product of long rehearsals and dedication. The costumes, setting, and lighting are superb. The 3-D effects bring the show over the top and make an already outstanding play even more so. If you love theatre, this is a must-see production. However, leave young children at home – they won’t appreciate or enjoy the show. Teens, however, will love it, even if they don’t appreciate the surreal symbolism.

     Henry Ford Community College will presents “The Skriker” for three more weekends: November 15, 16, 17, 18, 29, 30, and December 1 and 2. All shows will begin at 8 p.m. The play is performed in the Adray Auditorium of HFCC’s MacKenzie Fine Arts Center, located on HFCC’s main campus at 5101 Evergreen Rd. in Dearborn. Seating is limited, and reservations are recommended. For tickets, call HFCC’s Fine Arts and Fitness Division at 313-845-6478. Viewer discretion is advised due to the show’s mature themes.

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