|GUARDIAN ARTS REVIEW
Bearing in mind the dramatic events of the recent US elections, "Voting In Kernville CA", a new short play by C.Owdude, captures superbly the spirit of the time and the outcome of the decade with just the one carefully crafted and honed line 'Posted in wrong place'.
In just four words, somehow, as it does, the author seems to have brought together the pathos of the losers' perceptions of how let down they must surely feel by their electorate with a neat but almost imperceptible reference to the votes being put in the incorrect ballot box. The clarity of the writing - which also, somehow, as it does, neatly reflects the antagonism of the outgoing representatives toward the incoming ones, who they would surely feel to have been poorly appointed - is startling in its simplicity, referring, too, somehow, as it does, to the almost certain unfavourable reaction of government officers who may now be sent to distant parts of the land in reshuffles planned by their new political supremos.
Even the author's (obviously deliberate) omission of the definite article suggests, somehow, as it does, a vague undertone of uncertainty, hinting, somehow, as it does, that the events do NOT represent anything 'definite', and, somehow, as it does, one is left with, or maybe filled with the feeling of, or rather emptied of the feeling of, or perhaps surrounded by the aura of, a profound realisation that political change is somehow not immutable, or is indeed so. With a quite blatant tip of the hat to classicism, Mr Owdude also injects just the right sentiment of conflict, and hints at a longer, tragic journey, and gives the enthralled audience much to ponder and debate in the bars later.
This work, in all its complexity, could only have been written by an American, for one feels that, somehow, as it does, it will inevitably be compared with Mark Ravenhill's classic 2002 play Incorrectitude ("Bollocks - I bloody put this shitting thing in the wrong fucking box") but carries infinitely more subtlety and brevity in message, tone and style. It will pass into theatrical history alongside Sam Beckett's Waiting For God - Oh, Sorry, That's Wrong ("Positional elevation qua qua qua qua and orientation being inappropriately qua qua qua enclosed qua qua in container.")
"Voting in Kernville, CA" has now, somehow, as it does, closed.
Last edited on Tue Nov 14th, 2006 04:27 pm by Poet