Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Something remarkable about Equus

I went to see Equus. I thought I’d mention it here as this is a writing blog, even if not much writing is going on here at the moment.

Something struck me about the writing of the play: there’s a thing it does so well that you hardly notice it. It handles the different time sequences that are going on within it effortlessly and elegantly. The psychiatrist’s present time musings are layered in with his memories of conversations with the boy and his parents and other characters. The boy also introduces some of his own earlier memories within these conversations. All this happens in a perfectly natural flow of words, with never the slightest doubt about what point in time someone is speaking from, even when they overlap within the same scene. At times characters in different time layers seem almost to be responding to each other, but it never gets confusing. It’s quite remarkable, so I thought I’d remark on it.

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