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Let’s begin with what made the Young Vic’s production of “A Streetcar Named Desire,” directed by ...

‘A Streetcar Named Desire’ Theater Review: Gillian Anderson, Ben Foster Take a Trip to Dollywood

By 19:03:00

Let’s begin with what made the Young Vic’s production of “A Streetcar Named Desire,” directed by Benedict Andrews, noteworthy: its revolving stage, designed by Magda Willi, with the audience seated in the round.

That “Streetcar” crossed the Atlantic to open Sunday at St. Ann’s Warehouse in Brooklyn, and the concept is a near disaster. Critics are usually given the best seats, but from where I was sitting at eye level with the actors, I couldn’t see much of Blanche’s entrance due to the sink and dish washer blocking my view. I completely missed seeing Stanley’s big “Stella!” moment thanks to that same sink and dish washer.

Yes, the set revolves, which means that just when you’re getting involved in a scene something will come along to break your concentration, whether it is the shower curtain, the bathroom door, or Blanche’s imitation Louis Vuitton luggage.

After intermission, I retreated to an empty seat in the back row of the bleachers, which put me near the rafters. The experience was improved but not great. The best way to see Andrews’ revolving “Streetcar” is on HD, which is what I did last year at the Symphony Space. The production was recorded using multiple cameras, and tellingly, it’s edited so that whenever a kitchen appliance gets in your way or someone forgot to put down the toilet seat, the film cuts to another unobstructed viewpoint.

Regarding Andrews’s interpretation of “Streetcar,” let’s just say that the battle between Blanche and Stanley has been decided, and he’s the clear winner.

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