Making a permanent impression since 1994
-- Play review --
A breathtaking 'Rose' takes to the Stage
The Hartford Stage’s one-woman summer show
simply entitled Rose, proved a
dramatic, funny, and heart-wrenching portrayal of the life of an 80-year-old
Told in monologue form by Academy Award winner
Olympia Dukakis, Rose is the story of a woman whose expansive life ranging from
enduring the Warsaw Ghetto, where her husband and daughter died at the hands of
Nazi soldiers, to her brief and emotional arrival in
Dukakis portrays the title role with
Comfortable and at ease onstage, Dukakis at
times manages to enlighten the audience with humor while moments later bring
their hearts to an emotional edge.
As the 80-year-old woman, Dukakis brings a
sense of poise and dignity to the role.
The play, performed in a shortened version of
its Broadway predecessor, is penned by Tony-nominated playwright Martin Sherman
(The Boy From Oz) and uses events
inspired by the life of his mother to create a compelling and realistic portrait
of life and human nature.
The play opens with Rose’s detached
description of a young girl’s shooting death. Rose then continues to describe
her life as girl in
After moving to live with her brother in
Warsaw, Poland, she marries “the love of her life,” and soon gives birth to
a daughter. Shortly after, she tells how the Nazi army invaded
While working in a factory one day, Rose and
the rest of the workers see smoke arriving from the ghetto walls and their worst
fears are recognized as they return home to find their loved ones lying dead in
The play continues to present the compelling
life story of a woman, at times sure of herself and other times feeling as if
she is a complete outsider in the world she inhabits.
It’s a universal theme in today’s world.
The emotion is raw and realistic, drawing compassion and pain for the character
from the audience as Dukakis recounts the remarkable, yet ordinary story of a
woman who sees her world changing, and the ideals she once held losing
Presented on a bare stage, with only a bench and a few small props, the play is an interesting and dynamic story – thought-provoking and relevant.
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