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The Caretaker

7 pm Thursdays, 8 pm Fridays-Saturdays and 2 pm Sundays through March 23., Sunday March 16 | $17-$25.
Imago Theatre
17 SE 8th Ave.
In Harold Pinter’s 1960 masterpiece, all three characters experience some sort of cognitive plight—mental illness, self-delusion, general remove from reality. The play scarcely has a plot: A tramp stays at a fetid London flat—evocatively rendered here with water-stained walls, piles of paper and a discarded shopping cart—and interacts with two brothers in ways alternately mundane and bizarre. Younger brother Mick (Jeffrey Jason Gilpin) is a neon-hued maniac clad in orange and lavender, his hair a slicked-back, bleach-blond helmet. He darts about the stage like a razor, his moods and motives shifting like quicksilver. As the dark-haired, lumbering Aston, meanwhile, Jacob Coleman moves as if in slow-motion. But the real star of this Imago production is a near-unrecognizable Allen Nause, a twitchy, stuttering lump buried under dirty rags. Nause imbues the character with underlying sadness and wicked humor, whether he’s modeling a ridiculous-looking burgundy smoking jacket or insisting on matching laces for the shoes he’s been gifted. Davies might be a foul-mouthed, racist ingrate, but in Nause’s hands, he’s profoundly human. Swiveling from scabrously comic to deeply haunting, this production solves no mysteries and heals no wounds. Which is probably the way Pinter would have wanted it—if he ever would have said as much.

Where: Imago Theatre
Phone: 231-3959
Address: 17 SE 8th Ave.
Website: http://www.imagotheatre.com

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