Life involves shit and gets messy. Life is anguish and suffering. Life is also care, love, frustration, solace, and release. Life is not easy for the faint-hearted or weak-stomached to get through. In all of these ways, ON THE CONCEPT OF THE FACE REGARDING THE SON OF GOD is like life.
We see a left to right movement of a father and son, both speaking Italian. Disgustingly genuine moments unfold at an alarming rate. There is a war between deafening sounds, and silence. As director Romeo Castellucci says in his talk-back, via translator, “It is a love story without hope… so it’s a perfect love story”. While the audience experiences a gamut of emotions, one element dominates: the colossal face of Jesus that hangs in the background. He has a look of poise and calm in a sea of chaos, but also of helplessness and sadness, like everyone else you know. Castellucci says, “It’s a look that makes me feel naked”. We cringe, but we may be comforted by the one element that remains untouched, watching us. Until the end. Then, we are shocked and left with more profound questions. We have seen a play unlike any other likely to be approved by the Broad Street Ministry. [Suzanne Roberts Theatre] September 12-14, 2013, livearts-