There is something unsettlingly and cynically satisfying
about Roland Tecís RAPT. A sly slap at the lack of corporate
conscience and accountability, this satirical new work fits into the neat
little niche of the off-Broadway play that could be going places. In fact,
it already has. Originally titled BODILY FUNCTION, Tecís work has
been awarded Top Prize at the 2000 Edward Albee Theatre Conference, and was
also a finalist in the 2001 Eugene OíNeill Playwriting Conference. Now,
making its world premiere at The Culture Project, Tecís work proves to be
both timely and prophetic.
Be prepared to witness perhaps the most bizarre job
performance review scene you could imagine as the fulcrum of the action in
RAPT, a comical yet stern examination of the corporate climate and
its ability to corrupt individuals. At this review, meet Superwoman Suzanne
(the feisty Lisa Barnes) and her unsuspecting patsy, Donald, portrayed with
restrained civility by Carl Palmer. The review gets increasingly bizarre,
focusing on bathroom visits and water consumption, and then, it becomes
surreal, as Suzanneís fantasies and memories interject themselves time and
again. We meet her wicked art teacher (Chris Arruda), his classroom nude
model (Chris Pade), and Suzanneís ailing, suicidal husband (Bill Tobes). The
action floats back and forth, it ebbs and flows, and as it does, Donald is
seemingly drawn under. In the end, he is essentially forced to wed a woman
he barely knows.
What?, you wonder. Let me introduce you to the peripheral
tale of a married CEO in a decidedly physical relationship with a company
employee. Let me introduce you to Carly (Cori Lynn Campbell) and Stryker
(Tom Bozell). Let me introduce you to a pair of people who operate from an
area of pure selfishness, and for whom consequences are someone elseís
concern. Welcome to the tapestry of RAPT.
Of course, I will not give it away, but the plot
developments here are largely unanticipated. If you do not get to RAPT,
at least remember Roland Tec. Heís onto something.
- Kessa De Santis -