Review: 'A Streetcar Named Desire'

March 20, 2014
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In Tennessee Williams' 'A Streetcar Named Desire,' a battle of personalities takes place between troubled Blanche and her brutish brother-in-law, Stanley. 

But thanks to an outstanding, nuanced performance by Lisa Ermel, Stella (Blanche's sister and Stanley's wife) not only is caught in the middle, but also serves as the compelling center in a solid presentation by Acting Up Productions at the Indy Fringe Building (Through March 23).

Not a long-suffering plain Jane, Ermel’s Stella is as passionate about her husband as he is about her. She loves her sister but she also knows her sister. She’s amused and afraid, comfortable and questioning—a complex, intense, sometimes not-so-bright, three-dimensional, flesh-and-blood woman.

No slight intended to the rest of the company, but in Ermel’s hands, the tragedy this time doesn’t seem to be about the destruction of fragile Blanche but, rather, the ripping apart of her sister.

Her final cry of anguish won’t soon be forgotten

More on "Streetcar" and the IRT's "Other Desert Cities" in the March 24 IBJ.

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  • Can't Wait
    Am seeing this on Saturday. Even the publicity photos of Lisa's Stella looked different from the way the character's normally played, intense, compelling. Can't wait.
  • amazing!!!
    We saw Streetcar last night. it was one of the best things we have seen in a very long time. Every character seemed to be so believable even those with small parts Recommend. hope they do it again.

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  1. So much for Eric Holder's conversation about race. If white people have got something to say, they get sued over it. Bottom line: white people have un-freer speech than others as a consequence of the misnamed "Civil rights laws."

  2. I agree, having seen three shows, that I was less than wowed. Disappointing!!

  3. Start drilling, start fracking, and start using our own energy. Other states have enriched their citizens and nearly elminated unemployment by using these resources that are on private land. If you are against the 'low prices' of discount stores, the best way to allow shoppers more choice is to empower them with better earnings. NOT through manipulated gov mandated min wage hikes, but better jobs and higher competitive pay. This would be direct result of using our own energy resources, yet Obama knows that Americans who arent dependent of gov welfare are much less likely to vote Dem, so he looks for ways to ensure America's decline and keep its citizens dependent of gov.

  4. Say It Loud, I'm Black and Ashamed: It's too bad that with certain "black" entertainment events, it seems violence and thuggery follows and the collateral damage that it leaves behinds continues to be a strain on the city in terms of people getting hurt, killed or becoming victims of crimes and/or stretching city resources. I remember shopping in the Meadows area years ago until violence and crime ended make most of the business pack you and leave as did with Lafayette Square and Washington Square. Over the past 10 to 12 years, I remember going to the Indiana Black Expo Soul Picnic in Washington Park. Violence, gang fights and homicides ended that. My great grandmother still bears the scares on her leg from when she was trampled by a group of thugs running from gun fire from a rival gang. With hundreds of police offices downtown still multiple shootings, people getting shot downtown during Black Expo. A number of people getting shots or murdered at black clubs around the city like Club Six on the west side, The Industry downtown, Jamal Tinsley's shot out in front of the Conrad, multiple fights and shootings at the skating rinks, shootings at Circle Center Mall and shooting and robberies and car jackings at Lafayette Mall. Shootings and gang violence and the State Fair. I can go on and on and on. Now Broad Ripple. (Shaking head side to side) Say It Loud, I'm Black and I'm Ashamed.

  5. Ballard Administration. Too funny. This is the least fiscally responsive administration I have ever seen. One thing this article failed to mention, is that the Hoosier State line delivers rail cars to the Amtrak Beech Grove maintenance facility for refurbishment. That's an economic development issue. And the jobs there are high-paying. That alone is worth the City's investment.

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