Home / Events / Theater / A Noble Failure

A Noble Failure

MITCH LILLIE
7:30 pm Thursdays-Saturdays, 2 pm Sundays through Feb. 3., Saturday January 26 | $22.25-$41.25.
Winningstad Theatre
1111 SW Broadway
 
“Something is wrong with our public schools. But it may not be what we’ve been told.” So reads the program cover for Third Rail Repertory Theatre’s world premiere of A Noble Failure, written by Susan Mach and directed by Philip Cuomo. Those lines prime audiences for a fierce political showdown, perhaps a frazzled veteran teacher like Rosalyn (Jacklyn Maddux) going on long tirades about the Youth and the System. That’s not, however, entirely the case. Yes, there are political elements. Young teacher Darren (John San Nicolas), fresh out of Dartmouth, has students with abnormally high test results, while Rosalyn has to fight with a hardheaded lawyer to keep her job because her students’ scores are low. Her rapport, though, with troubled student Ivan (Rolland Walsh) is strong. Principal Spencer (Bruce Burkhartsmeier) is helpless to aid Rosalyn, his power sapped by Barbara (Maureen Porter), a metrics-obsessed “teacher coach” sent by the district to boost state exam scores. Barbara, and those darn tests, quickly become the villains in A Noble Failure. Dropouts are now “non-completers,” teachers are “teammates” and testing is “assessing” for Barbara. Heartless lines pour out of her, like “Poverty poverty, blah blah blah,” and Porter’s deadpan delivery of both jargon and criticism are among the production’s many hilarious moments. Other gags are surprisingly scatological. After a PowerPoint mistakenly reads, “Assess, Asses again,” Darren comments, “Maybe your ass-istant should rectal-fy her error.” But when does the laughter stop? For those looking for a rallying cry, A Noble Failure falls a bit short. But as a comedy, the hallway humor of high school is a welcome distraction from the despair.

Where: Winningstad Theatre
Phone: 248-4335
Address: 1111 SW Broadway
Website: thirdrailrep.org

 
 
Other events in Theater

Betty Merken: Gravity and Whispers

Tuesday, Jul 22, 2014
Seattle-based painter and printmaker Betty Merken has a gift for abstract compositions that counterpose geometric and organic forms. The perfection of her geometries serves as a potent foil for the i ...
Laura Russo Gallery 805 NW 21st Ave. Web | Map

Bill of Goods

Tuesday, Jul 22, 2014
For those uninitiated to experimental movement, this is the best place to see Portland's foremost independent dancers. The atmosphere is relaxed with the audience free to roam around, and the pe ...
9 pm Tuesday, July 22 | $5
Holocene 1001 SE Morrison St. Web | Map

Christine Clark: Amass

Tuesday, Jul 22, 2014
Christine Clark doesn’t like to tell people what her ambiguous-looking sculptures are made of. “Some people think they’re wax,” she says, “and some think they’re soap....” What they’re ...
Nine Gallery 122 NW 8th Ave. Map
Also At Winningstad Theatre
There's no more events in Winningstad Theatre
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
comments powered by Disqus
 

Web Design for magazines

Close
Close
Close