Time Stands Still
"Time Stands Still" is an honest, tender portrait of a photojournalist’s morally complicated enigma.
It isn’t overly theatrical, has little use for big, dramatic climaxes, and doesn’t ask any new questions. Instead, the play presents itself as a straightforward, truthful examination of its subjects and personalizes the often familiar ideas using its characters’ individual points of view. And it works.
Penned by Donald Margulies, an esteemed Pulitzer Prize winner, "Time Stands Still" is a relatively new play, having opened just a few short years ago in Los Angeles before heading to Broadway.
The play, currently running at The Biltmore Hotel’s GableStage in Coral Gables, is helmed by producing artistic director Joseph Adler. It makes for a welcome addition to the company’s current and past seasons, keeping in line with the theater’s tradition of selecting thought provoking and politically well-timed pieces.
The topics in focus have been examined before and quite frequently in our current political climate. But Time Stands Still personalizes them, and gives the questions it asks a fresh perspective despite the familiar territory.
Does a photojournalist offer worldly perspective by capturing photographs of pain and heartache on the battlefield...or do they insult their subjects by complacently watching them suffer and bleed through their lenses.
"Time Stands Still" is set in Brooklyn and orbits around Sarah (Deborah Sherman), a successful photo journalist who has been sent back from Iraq after being severely injured in a roadside bomb accident. Her long time, live-in reporter boyfriend, James (Steve Garland), struggles with guilt after leaving Sarah alone in Iraq just before the accident.
Their mutual friend, photo editor Richard (Gregg Weiner), introduces them to his new girlfriend Mandy (Betsy Graver), a blonde bimbo half his age. This, along with her near-death experience, inspires James to crave something Sarah has been resisting for years...a more stable, conventional married life.
Set designer Lyle Baskin creates a strong atmosphere by assembling a beautiful loft apartment setting, complete with a floor-to-ceiling arched window overlooking Brooklyn’s industrial communities.
Though, it is the actors who propel "Time Stands Still" into the territory of a memorable theatrical experience. The dynamic between James and Sarah is at the center of the story, and it is both complex and basic, all at the same time.
Actors Deborah Sherman and Steve Garland create a chemistry that intimately draws the audience in, and we believe their relationship from their first moments on stage.
It is that relationship that makes "Time Stands Still" so commanding and absorbing...the struggle of two people who love each other as they realize they want different things out of life.
"Time Stands Still" runs through June 3 at GableStage, 1200 Anastasia Avenue, Coral Gables. For info or tickets, call 305-445-1119 or visit www.gablestage.org.