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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

The Brothers Size

It is testament to the dynamic interaction between ritual and realism, as well as the raw emotional power and resonance of the script, that this play is neither predictable nor prosaic. African drumming propels the action on the wide, bare stage and the actors integrate their own stage directions into the dialogue to provide an oddly metronomic effect. The performance is a kind of inquest into the darker side of human experience, made accessible though the incantatory script. The intensity of the characters' struggles to make sense of their feelings for each other is offset by the exuberant theatricality of their spontaneous song and dance routines. The Brothers Size is a powerful feat of physicality and emotionality that was a highlight of New York's 2007 Under the Radar Festival. It explores the limits of family, but also the potential of the individual spirit and the startling idea that, no matter what, we are all responsible for each others' lives.
By Hilary Simmons
March 28, 2011
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The Brothers Size

It is testament to the dynamic interaction between ritual and realism, as well as the raw emotional power and resonance of the script, that this play is neither predictable nor prosaic. African drumming propels the action on the wide, bare stage and the actors integrate their own stage directions into the dialogue to provide an oddly metronomic effect. The performance is a kind of inquest into the darker side of human experience, made accessible though the incantatory script. The intensity of the characters' struggles to make sense of their feelings for each other is offset by the exuberant theatricality of their spontaneous song and dance routines. The Brothers Size is a powerful feat of physicality and emotionality that was a highlight of New York's 2007 Under the Radar Festival. It explores the limits of family, but also the potential of the individual spirit and the startling idea that, no matter what, we are all responsible for each others' lives.
By Hilary Simmons
March 28, 2011
  shares
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Tough love is hard to take, but for two uneasily cohabiting brothers, fraternal love is the toughest. The brothers Ogun and Oshoosi Size take their names from the guiding spirits of the Yoruba pantheon and elements of Yoruban myth, music and movement blend into this contemporary fable about inchoate feelings, fate and consequence.

The story of the two black Louisiana brothers may, at first, seem cliche: Ogun is the responsible car mechanic; his feckless younger brother is the ex-con who is happily aimless in life. Ogun's well-intentioned nagging about jobs makes Oshoosi feel like he's back in prison, and Elgeba, who looked after Oshoosi while they were both serving time, proves to be the catalyst for the inevitable rift between the brothers.

It is testament to the dynamic interaction between ritual and realism, as well as the raw emotional power and resonance of the script, that The Brothers Size is neither predictable nor prosaic. African drumming propels the action on the wide, bare stage and the actors integrate their own stage directions into the dialogue to provide an oddly metronomic effect. The Brothers Size is a kind of inquest into the darker side of human experience, made accessible though the incantatory script.

The intensity of the characters' struggles to make sense of their feelings for each other is offset by the exuberant theatricality of their spontaneous song and dance routines. The Brothers Size is a powerful feat of physicality and emotionality that was a highlight of New York's 2007 Under the Radar Festival. It explores the limits of family, but also the potential of the individual spirit and the startling idea that, no matter what, we are all responsible for each others' lives.

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