The Crucible, Arthur Miller’s 1953 original play, has a new cast directed by Ivo van Hove and theatre critics are falling in and out of love with the conflict of the play as if it was the first time.
The show was first played at Broadway’s Martin Beck Theater on January 22th, 1953, the original cast starred E.G. Marshall, Beatrice Straight, and Madeleine Sherwood. Critics at the time thought didn’t serve well to the original play, but it won the 1953 Tony Award for Best Play.
The play tells the story of a dramatized and fictionalized Salem witch trials in the province of Massachusetts Bay in 1962. Abigail Williams plays the leading role of a young girl who accuses she was bewitched. The play revolves around hysteria and suspense.
Four years after the first play Belgian director Raymond Rouleau adapted the script with Miller itself, to make a film with a cast that included: Paul Scofield, Daniel Day-Lewis, and Winona Ryder. The play received an Academy Award nomination for Best Screenplay.
In February 2002, The Crucible revival cast opened at Broadway’s Virginia Theatre with a cast that included : Liam Neeson, Laura Linney, and Brian Murray. The remake obtained the 2002 Best Revival of a Play Tony Award nomination.
Its 2016 and a new cast of The Crucible is re-living the 1953 play, the cast includes Ben Whishaw, Sophie Okonedo, Saoirse Ronan and Ciaran Hinds, the re-make opened March 31st.
Theatre critics are impressed by the new play adaptation by Ivo van Hoven and the interpretation of the new cast. New York’s Time Bren Brantley addresses the play in a fully descriptive article in which every character is described perfectly and the actor is given full feedback.
“Mr. van Hove knew exactly what he was doing here. All the members of his large ensemble find revealing new shapes within archetypes and insist that we grasp and even sympathize with their characters perspectives” Said Mr. Brently in the New York Time’s Article.
Marilyn Stasio and author for Variety shared Teachout’s view’s on the play calling the directorial concept “Baffing”. The author assures the play is “too big, too complex too philosophical to deconstruct and reduce its essence”.
Many reviews of the play are giving audiences mix signals on whether the play adaptation is faithful to Miller’s original play or it’s a remake gone wrong. None the less, The Crucible’ will be available at theatres until July 17th.
Source: Christian Science Monitor