Stage pick of the week



“Vaudeville for a modern age,” it’s called. Brüka Theatre’s appropriation of vaudevillian theater has moments of frivolity, but more often than not this “play” puts on a surprisingly sincere face as its actors dive into highly charged political and religious territory. In between skits that depict Burning Man, Grateful Dead shows and nutty mimes, Brüka State‘s actors recite quotations and poetry by some of the 19th and 20th century’s wisest and most caustic figures. The show is heavy with 1960s nostalgia, revisiting a counterculture spirit that mingles cynicism with fervent idealism. Creator and director Dave Anderson, who also appears in the production, says that in a post-Sept. 11 age, a new and challenging form of theater is needed. While the show lacks the sense of cohesiveness one might expect from a production as earnest as this one—as well as the goofiness one might get find in old-fashioned vaudeville—Brüka State is a charming and moving show that will challenge many of its audiences members’ views on religion, patriotism, art and life. 4"Vaudeville for a modern age," it’s called. Brüka Theatre’s appropriation of vaudevillian theater has moments of frivolity, but more often than not this "play" puts on a surprisingly sincere face as its actors dive into highly charged political and religious territory. In between skits that depict Burning Man, Grateful Dead shows and nutty mimes, Brüka State’s actors recite quotations and poetry by some of the 19th and 20th century’s wisest and most caustic figures. The show is heavy with 1960s nostalgia, revisiting a counterculture spirit that mingles cynicism with fervent idealism. Creator and director Dave Anderson, who also appears in the production, says that in a post-Sept. 11 age, a new and challenging form of theater is needed. While the show lacks the sense of cohesiveness one might expect from a production as earnest as this one—as well as the goofiness one might find in old-fashioned vaudeville—Brüka State is a charming and moving show that will challenge many of its audiences members’ views on religion, patriotism, art and life.