MELBOURNE, Australia — “Imperious, adorable, magnanimous, genteel, and girlish, almost simultaneously.” That’s how photographer Diane Arbus described Mae West in 1964. West, a 71-year-old screen legend, hated the unvarnished photos her visitor took for “Show” magazine. Still, the women — both trailblazers, yet polar opposites in other ways — spent hours together, and Arbus’s words suggest sparks flew between them.
While their sole encounter might seem like a thin premise for a play, Stephen Sewell’s “Arbus & West,” presented by Melbourne Theater Company, spins it into a complex chamber piece. One of Australia’s leading playwrights, Mr. Sewell is known for works tackling politics and power, among them “Myth, Propaganda and Disaster in Nazi Germany and Contemporary America.” But “Arbus & West” doesn’t feel insubstantial by comparison: The women at its center are taken seriously as artists and as individuals.
It’s especially true of the larger-than-life West, as famous for her sharp tongue as for her overt sexuality in strait-laced times. Her flamboyant style is a writer’s dream, and Mr. Sewell rises to the occasion.
Some of her more famous quotes — such as “Between two evils, I always pick the one I never tried before” — are expertly woven into the text alongside new witticisms. Of her eccentric all-white interior, reinvented by the set designer Renée Mulder, West memorably tells Arbus: “I just like seeing where I’ve been dirty.”
Melita Jurisic, whose credits include the movie “Mad Max: Fury Road,” relishes every line as West. Sarah Goodes’s production takes pains to make her look as visually close to Arbus’s photos as possible, with a very similar white négligé and blonde wig. That could easily make “Arbus & West” feel costumey, but Ms. Jurisic achieves a mix of crude verve and counterintuitive innocence (a trait Arbus noted in the real-life West) that make her performance irresistible.
Arbus comes across less clearly. She is a more aloof character: Her raw, intimate portraits of others often did the talking for her. “Arbus & West” strives to paint a nuanced picture. Her privileged background is mentioned, as are her difficult relationships with her family and her husband.
Arbus’s mental health issues hang over the action, and the play is peppered with flash-forwards to the day West is told of the photographer’s suicide, seven years after their encounter. (Her initial response is: “Didn’t she have enough people that wanted to kill her?”)
Regardless, neither Mr. Sewell nor Diana Glenn, who plays Arbus, manage to quite capture what might have animated her in person. Her lines about photography are oddly bland: It is “an art,” we are told, that “reveals who we really are.” Arbus is “looking for the mythic in the everyday,” she adds. All undoubtedly true, but hardly revelatory.
Where “Arbus & West” is most potent is in its exploration of relationships between women, and the generation gap between its heroines’ strands of feminism. West has no qualms about being America’s “wet dream,” as she puts it, and works to maintain an illusion of youth, while Arbus is interested in the cracks underneath that veneer, as always with her subjects.
The photographer came of age with the women’s liberation movement, to which West refers derisively as “the bra burners.” Before Arbus arrives, West and her protective dresser, Ruby (played by the outstanding Jennifer Vuletic), refer to her as a man, because it doesn’t even occur to them that a photographer might be a woman.
Their attitudes to sex crystallize the tension between them, well rendered by Ms. Jurisic and Ms. Glenn. When Arbus tells West, “You invented sex,” it is with some ambivalence, ostensibly because the actress’s brazenness is foreign to her. When she is asked by West whether she likes sex, there is a moment of silence. Later, West shows Arbus a cupboard full of plaster penises modeled after each of her lovers. According to Arthur Lubow’s biography of Arbus, the cupboard existed, and is narrative gold: Mr. Sewell could mine it even further.
It’s still too rare to see women’s stories treated with so much care. Mr. Sewell’s work has been presented in Britain, but Broadway appears to have ignored him so far: Perhaps a star vehicle like “Arbus & West” will convince producers to look twice.
The Melbourne Theater Company was entirely focused on American stories this month, with another production running at the Southbank Theater: Iain Sinclair’s staging of Arthur Miller’s “A View from the Bridge.” In this 1955 classic, the illegal arrival of Italian relatives in a Brooklyn home sets a tragedy into motion. After the young Catherine falls in love with one of the immigrants, Rodolpho, her guardian and uncle, Eddie Carbone, is driven mad by jealousy.
In Europe and in the United States, Ivo van Hove’s spare 2014 production of the play has become the standard after an extended, award-winning run. In Melbourne, Mr. Sinclair strips the action down further. The only prop is a chair. A quietly insistent soundscape, composed by Kelly Ryall, evokes the docks where Eddie and the arrivals work, while the lighting designer, Niklas Pajanti, immerses the characters in a permanent chiaroscuro.
Only the finest writing can survive that treatment. There is no padding in “A View from the Bridge”: Miller’s lines are constantly revealing, charged with tension, to the point, and Mr. Sinclair’s cast draw force from them.
As Eddie, Steve Bastoni finds the right balance between the character’s genuine kindness and the toxic masculinity that shapes his thinking. The character’s homophobia — “he ain’t right,” he repeats about Rodolpho, who sings and sews with sweet enthusiasm in the hands of Andrew Coshan — bubbles up slowly but effectively.
Zoe Terakes, 18, is a revelation as Catherine. She was named best newcomer at the 2017 Sydney Theater Awards for her portrayal of that role in another production, and it’s clear why. Ms. Terakes’s gauche sincerity as Catherine is torn between her first love and her affection for Eddie lends tragic weight to the play’s outcome. When she tugs at her first “grown-up” dress and jumps animatedly into Eddie’s lap, her innocence is poignant.
Mr. Sinclair doesn’t attempt to set the play in an Australian context. The cast’s accents range from Brooklyn-ish to Italian, and the production is faithful to Miller’s text. Yet more than half a century after it was written, and on another continent, this working-class tale continues to resonate like a warning. The Melbourne Theatre Company and Mr. Sinclair have cleared the way for it.B:
天下彩守护幸福【程】【星】【很】【明】【显】【地】【感】【觉】【到】【自】【己】【的】【手】【摸】【到】【了】【一】【块】【硬】【硬】【的】【东】【西】，【是】【他】【的】【肌】【肉】。 【她】【立】【马】【缩】【手】【回】【来】，“【你】【干】【嘛】！” 【他】【理】【直】【气】【壮】【地】【说】【道】，“【你】【不】【是】【一】【脸】【不】【相】【信】【吗】？” 【她】【也】【没】【有】【一】【脸】【不】【相】【信】【啊】…… 【他】【的】【声】【音】【沉】【沉】，“【现】【在】【相】【信】【了】【吗】？” “【相】…【相】【信】。”【摸】【都】【摸】【过】【了】，【的】【确】【得】【相】【信】。 【他】【露】【出】【了】【个】【得】【意】【的】【笑】【容】，【见】【着】
【当】【其】【它】【六】【方】【势】【力】【之】【主】【赶】【来】【之】【时】，【具】【是】【被】【眼】【前】【所】【见】【的】【境】【况】【镇】【住】【了】。 【多】【少】【时】【间】？【从】【得】【到】【消】【息】【到】【赶】【到】【这】【里】，【绝】【对】【不】【会】【超】【过】【一】【盏】【茶】【的】【时】【间】，【可】【眼】【前】【的】【是】【什】【么】？ 【整】【个】【青】【门】【的】【驻】【地】【破】【败】【一】【片】，【血】【迹】【渲】【染】【了】【青】【石】【铺】【就】【的】【地】【面】，【空】【气】【中】【散】【发】【着】【新】【鲜】【的】【血】【腥】【味】，【还】【没】【有】【发】【臭】。 【不】【过】【这】【都】【不】【是】【重】【点】，【无】【论】【是】【青】【门】【驻】【地】【的】【残】【像】，【还】【是】
【到】【了】【中】【午】【时】，【皇】【帝】【如】【约】【而】【至】，【他】【还】【带】【来】【了】【刚】【被】【禁】【足】【的】【魏】【氏】，【这】【是】【摆】【明】【了】【是】【要】【沐】【雪】【儿】【难】【堪】。 “【给】【皇】【上】【请】【安】！”【沐】【雪】【儿】【一】【行】【人】【向】【进】【来】【的】【皇】【帝】【请】【安】。 “【臣】【妾】【给】【皇】【后】【娘】【娘】【请】【安】！”【魏】【氏】【行】【了】【个】【礼】，【沐】【雪】【儿】【并】【没】【有】【理】【她】，【而】【是】【坐】【在】【了】【桌】【前】。【这】【让】【赵】【灵】【儿】【姐】【妹】【两】【个】【看】【着】【这】【场】【景】【很】【是】【尴】【尬】，【不】【知】【道】【该】【如】【何】【了】。 “【这】【是】【朕】【的】【魏】
【周】【娜】【娜】【做】【了】【一】【个】【梦】，【梦】【里】【她】【回】【到】【了】【大】【学】【的】【时】【候】，【她】【又】【见】【面】【了】【霍】【奕】【鸣】，【所】【有】【的】【一】【切】【都】【像】【之】【前】【发】【生】【的】【那】【样】，【她】【慢】【慢】【的】【喜】【欢】【上】【了】【霍】【奕】【鸣】，【霍】【奕】【鸣】【也】【很】【爱】【她】，【虽】【然】【梦】【里】【面】【还】【是】【有】【人】【来】【跟】【她】【争】【霍】【奕】【鸣】，【便】【是】【霍】【奕】【鸣】【却】【依】【然】【对】【她】【不】【离】【不】【弃】，【他】【们】【很】【恩】【爱】。 【她】【也】【越】【来】【越】【好】，【不】【管】【是】【爱】【情】【还】【是】【事】【业】【都】【很】【好】。 【后】【来】【她】【还】【带】【着】【霍】【奕】【鸣】【到】天下彩守护幸福【在】【黑】【暗】【维】【度】【想】【要】【飞】【起】【来】，【其】【实】【是】【一】【件】【很】【容】【易】【的】【事】【情】，【甚】【至】【都】【不】【需】【要】【去】【学】【习】，【就】【可】【以】【自】【然】【而】【然】【的】【习】【惯】【这】【种】【漂】【浮】。 【但】【是】【想】【要】【从】【一】【个】【位】【置】【精】【准】【地】【飘】【到】【另】【一】【个】【位】【置】，【就】【会】【变】【得】【有】【点】【难】【度】【了】，【毕】【竟】【你】【除】【了】【需】【要】【通】【过】【自】【己】【的】【能】【力】【去】【改】【变】【你】【漂】【浮】【的】【方】【向】【之】【外】， 【你】【还】【需】【要】【躲】【开】【四】【周】【不】【断】【地】【呼】【啸】【过】【来】，【又】【呼】【啸】【过】【去】【的】【一】【颗】【颗】‘【星】【球】’
【那】【把】【小】【刀】，【辛】【末】【一】【直】【藏】【在】【衣】【服】【里】，【连】【他】【自】【己】【也】【没】【想】【到】【还】【有】【机】【会】【派】【上】【用】【场】！【他】【紧】【紧】【的】【扣】【着】【沈】【芊】【涵】【的】【肩】【膀】，【刀】【子】【抵】【在】【沈】【芊】【涵】【的】【大】【动】【脉】【处】，【只】【要】【稍】【一】【用】【力】，【就】【能】【划】【破】【她】【的】【皮】【肤】！ 【白】【色】【的】【刀】【锋】【闪】【着】【锋】【利】【的】【光】【芒】，【映】【衬】【的】【沈】【芊】【涵】【的】【脸】【色】【越】【发】【雪】【白】！ 【这】【一】【变】【故】【出】【乎】【所】【有】【人】【的】【意】【料】，【陆】【宸】【远】【转】【身】，【看】【到】【这】【一】【幕】，【眸】【色】【沉】【沉】，【肃】【手】
【此】【刻】【楚】【萧】【然】【正】【被】【困】【在】【森】【林】【的】【浓】【雾】【里】，【他】【在】【迷】【雾】【里】【走】【了】【许】【久】，【然】【而】【周】【围】【除】【了】【树】【和】【草】，【就】【再】【也】【没】【有】【别】【的】【东】【西】【了】。 【他】【想】【喊】【人】，【然】【而】【一】【开】【口】【却】【发】【现】【自】【己】【发】【不】【出】【任】【何】【的】【声】【音】。 【走】【在】【浓】【浓】【的】【大】【雾】【里】，【表】【也】【停】【了】，【楚】【萧】【然】【已】【经】【没】【有】【任】【何】【的】【时】【间】【概】【念】【了】。 【他】【十】【分】【担】【心】【外】【面】【的】【事】【情】，【然】【他】【却】【一】【点】【办】【法】【都】【没】【有】。 “【你】.