Theatrical Blind Date different every night – Metro US

Theatrical Blind Date different every night

Do you believe in love at first sight? I do, because I’ve just spent 90 minutes under the spell of Rebecca Northan, whose Blind Date opened Wednesday night at the Brigantine Room as part of World Stage.

This show has one of the simplest yet most inventive premises ever. Northan appears at a Paris bistro, all wide-eyed innocence and shaggy auburn tresses, wearing the requisite red clown nose.

The only thing she’s lacking is a date, because some stupid fool has stood her up.

So what’s a girl to do? She turns to the audience and picks up a guy at random.

Talk about walking on the high wire without a net! Northan’s concept is that she can sustain a 90-minute improvisational blind date with someone who is not a performer.

Sounds crazy? Perhaps. But it works. Or at least it did last night and I have no reason to believe that this amazing woman couldn’t keep a similar relationship going with any other person on any other evening.

Her drive-by boyfriend last night was a young man from the military who came equipped with a boyish grin and a girlfriend in the audience.

Rather than putting a damper on the proceedings, Northan made the other woman’s presence viable by asking her opinion on her escort’s kissing and soliciting her approval at selected key moments.

Northan has carved out a rather slippery slope for herself, because the evening is bound to head toward physical intimacy, which — with a stranger who’s a theatrical amateur — might prove embarrassing. But somehow, her jaunty air and total lack of prudishness takes us serenely over the roughest potential patches.

In fact, the astonishing thing about Blind Date is how much depth Northan manages to slyly shoehorn into the piece, taking us into commitment, marriage and childbirth before we realize we’re heading there.

Once again, I have to stress that this review is based on the interaction Northan found with last night’s partner and the show could be totally different with another guy.

Still, I’m willing to wager that no matter who this gifted woman selects by chance from the audience, the end result is likely to contain the same mixture of uproarious laughter, honest sexuality and genuine emotion that it did last night.

Up until now, the phrase “blind date” has been the signature of an accident waiting to happen. But in the hands of Rebecca Northan, it becomes the recipe for a flight of theatrical fancy that is absolutely magical.

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