Like a giant gorilla tearing up the streets of New York, Pamela Sneed’s one-woman show — “Kong,” at Bath Beach’s Harry Warren Theatre through June 29 — is taking on and tearing down the passivity and lack of responsibility that she said define theater today.
“‘Kong’ evolved out of what I thought was a need for some protest work,” said Sneed. “Whether they love it or hate it, it’s stirring people up. That’s the most important part of activism.”
The Cobble Hill performance artist, who considers the underlying purpose of her work to be enacting social change, based “Kong” — co-directed by Barbara Parisi — on her reaction to the 2005 “King Kong” film.
For Sneed (pictured), the film evoked anger at the racial stereotypes that the gorilla can represent as well as sympathy for the innocent monster. As she worked on her piece, the symbol grew to encompass themes that range from Rwandan genocide to 9-11.
In a post–9-11 world, Sneed said, the King Kong story takes on a new meaning.
“Kong becomes symbolic of the American people: a great Goliath that has been taken down by tiny planes,” she said.
Ryan Repertory Company presents “Kong” through June 29 at the Harry Warren Theatre (2445 Bath Ave. at Bay 38th Street in Bath Beach). Tickets are $20, $18 for seniors. For information, call (718) 996-4800 or visit www.ryanrep.org.
©2008 Community News Group
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