“Knocking Bird” at West of Lenin

Do you love Edgar Allen Poe? Do you wish Rod Serling were still alive to create more creepy TV shows? Have you any interest in psychological dramas? If so make every effort to get over to West of Lenin Oct. 1-3 to catch the world premiere of “Knocking Bird” before it closes.

Three talented actors (Angela DiMarco, Sam Hagen, and Alex Matthews) take on a script that’s as psychologically taut as any I’ve seen recently. Each one offers a nuanced performance, with just the right mix of placidity and tension for the role.589364-250-1

I don’t want to say more about the plot than to tell you that a young couple, after the wife’s serious automobile crash, move into the woods where life includes trips to a not too distant 7-11 and an intense interest in the local bird life, especially the woodpeckers. The husband takes up woodworking, and his ever so realistic and ever so significant birdhouse hangs over the audience. A former colleague who had been an extremely special friend comes to visit. Secrets are out. Life as they knew it is no more.

This is a first class production of Emily Conbere’s psychological thriller. Director Paul Budraitis and his entire production crew deserve raves. The special effects are intense. There are amazing video projections. DeMarco’s costume transformation is shocking yet perfect. The birds are ingenious. And the optical illusion created by the last set is awesome.

And then, when the play is over, and you think back on it, it gains in richness as you realize how all the lines, all the bits fit together so neatly to create a whole that has revealed itself to you oh so slyly.

Through Oct 3, at West of Lenin, 203 N. 36th St., Seattle, (206 352-1777 or http://westoflenin.com).

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