Untethered, by Jinky de Rivera

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I haven’t made it to much local theatre recently, but thanks to Facebook I heard about an old high school friend of Joanne who’d written a new play. I hadn’t run across Bindlestiff before, but it’s a small theatre on 6th Street that’s focused on Filipino artists and culture, and Jinky’s play came out of a workshop there. Last night we went to see it performed as one of six single-act plays that came out of that process, and her short piece ‘Untethered’ turned out to be one of the highlights for us. There was a lot of acting talent visible in all of the plays, but her piece about love, loss, and family had an amazing script too. It was technically complex, with time-jumping, different actors playing the same characters, and a narrator addressing the audience, so it could easily have been confusing and stilted, but everything came together in a way that was moving and natural. It felt autobiographical, but part of that may just be because the characters felt so fully-drawn and real.

If you get a chance I highly recommend trying to catch the show while it’s still playing. You’ll be seeing works that are raw and in-progress, so you’ll need to be prepared for some ups and downs across the evening, but ‘Untethered’ is a consistent delight, and we came away with something good from all of them.

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