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"Well" is Well Worth Theater-goers' Time at Theatre Memphis



This is a plug for a play. The play is called Well, and it is being performed at Theatre Memphis on the Next Stage through April 20th.

My colleague, Chris Davis, will review it. He is a pro and an actor. I'm not trying to intrude on his turf. This is just a plug from a fan of an exceptional play that I think will speak to a lot of Memphians in a lot of ways.

Well was written and originally performed by Lisa Kron, who is the main character. The other main character is her mother, Ann Kron, also a real live person. At Theatre Memphis, these parts are played by Laurie Cook McIntosh and Martha Graber. Disclosure: Laurie is my neighbor. She and Martha and the rest of the small cast are great. Go see them.

It's easier for me to list the people I think Well might speak to than to summarize what it is about. The structure, as Chris Davis will explain, is a little complicated.

Go see it if you like the humor of Tim Sampson, who writes The Rant column in the Flyer. Well is funny in a Sampson-esque way.

Go see it if you ever wonder about the lifelong toll that serious activism takes on serious people who are passionate about causes. Ann Kron was a neighborhood activist in Michigan and sent Lisa to a mostly-black school. See it if you are a daughter or a mother of a daughter. Martha Graber is amazing, coming to life from her La-Z Boy on stage.

See it if you didn't fit in as a kid and were mocked by your classmates when you wore the wrong thing. Or if you dropped out of college. It will all come back to you.

See it if you think some people never get over high school.

See it if you have ever thought about writing about someone in your family and taking a few liberties with the facts because they probably won't mind or they probably won't notice. They will and they will.

See it if you are a journalist or a reader who thinks that, hard as they try, journalists often don't get as close to the truth as playwrights, novelists, and memoirists not strictly bound by the facts.

See it if you have a parent or child who is sick a lot of the time and you're running out of sympathy and patience.

See it you were a parent or student during school desegregation in Memphis 30-40 years ago before and during busing.

See it if you wonder about the line between the real and the made-up.

See it if you regularly read a blog or column about the details of ordinary life and think it would be easy and fun to do that.

See it if you are white, black, or Jewish. All three are represented.

See it if you think southerners have a monopoly on screwed-up childhoods.

Finally, go see it if you think most television is awful and plays and movies run too long. Well will make you laugh and make you think. It runs 90 minutes without an intermission.

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