My King Lear experience a couple of weeks ago didn’t urge me to go see another play right away. My friend Sonia had staged and directed James Garner’s Life and Death of Katie Olson, a monologue for one actress. I knew Sonia had a flair for stage and getting a good performance from the actors. This time, her vision was simply beautiful in its simplicity. Marie Notte was outstanding as Katie Olson, a solitary pyromaniac woman who reflects on her life as she’s waiting for her death in prison.
I knew we the audience were not to be treated with a comedy. However the play was gripping.
Two old women showed up for the performance. I startled when I saw them, wanted to warn them that what they were to see wasn’t for the faint-hearted.
Sonia placed the audience around the stage. We were like the walls of the prison cell. The two women sat at the opposite side of me, so I could observe them. They hardly flinched during the performance. I thought they would leave or be shocked. They seemed very attentive and taken by the story and applauded heartily at the end.
I understood when I received a pamphlet against death penalty from them. These two women were very active in that field and were trying to people’s consciousness about that issue. The eldest was keeping in touch with David Lynn Carpenter who’s now awaiting his execution in Texas.She was full of fire and energy, which totally contrasted with her darling old woman