Friday, the 13th of June had strange and unusual things in store for the audience at Club Theater Company. Hedwig and the Angry Inch is a novel and interesting look at human sexuality, complex human relationships, and the discovery of personal identity. The questions that the show cirlces around are essentialy "Who is the mystery woman" and "Can two people actually become one?" This is not a light hearted show, but you will laugh until you cry. You will probably be left with more questions than answers. "What is love?" "Are there really soulmates?" "What really defines gender?"
The theme of duality is echoed throughout the show: Man vs. Woman, East vs West, Ego vs Id. The production in the intimate, but newly remodled Club Diversity Theater is limited by space, but you are so caught up in the character of Hansel/Hedwig you can't get close enough. Stewart Bender directs the cast in a quiet, understated performance of one of the most flamboyant shows written for the stage. Imported from New York, Matthew Brennan is sheer genius in the title role. The depth of feelings he emotes is incomparable and the manic voyage he takes the audience on, from laughter to tears, flippant irony to raw honesty is a brilliant perfromance. He connects with the audience in a manner that destroys any barriers between them.
If you are planning on seeing any theater this year you must see this production.
Rarely will you see this caliber of performance in such an intimate venue or
by a local theater company. Club Theater Company has hit gold with their interpretation
of Hedwig and the Angry Inch and you will be lacking if you miss the opportunity
to take a trip through the fractured and tortured pshyche of this character.
The show runs through June 29th at Club Diversity in Columbus' German Village.
Review by Linsey Griffith
Photos by David Heasley