A lot can be said about this election. Comments range from it being “fixed”to Russian infiltration. But there was something unique about this one. And not just because we had a woman running, but the stakes were sky high. That is why, Her Opponent a verbatim theater piece, is so wonderful. Now that the hoop-la of the election has settled down somewhat, we can really look at these two strong people and see their tactics at play. Seeing excerpts from the debates while knowing the end result, was a different position to find yourself in. One could go on and on about their political beliefs here, but I will endeavor to put my bias aside and review this as any other piece of theater.
The genders are reversed in this production with Trump being played by Rachel Tuggle Whorton and Hillary being played by Daryl Embry. The moderator was played by Andy Wagner. It was evident from the moment that the play started that not only was the cast talented, they had worked very hard at bringing their character to life. Each actor managed to capture the essence of who they were portraying. So much so, that the gender was invisible in a sense. you knew who each person was easily. I would be lying if I said that this production didn’t effect me emotionally, it did. The actors were so convincing that it was not to transfer my feelings about the candidates onto the actors playing them.
Yet, reversing the genders allowed me to see each candidate differently and the tactics they used against their opponent. And judging from the audiences reaction, it did similar things for all of them. This was more of an experiment than a play. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a beautifully crafted experiment. Would switching genders make you feel differently about the candidates? Well, you’ll have to go see it and decide for yourself. But whatever your takeaway is, it’s definitely a strong piece of theater.
Her Opponent plays at 210 W 50th st. For tickets visit http://www.HerOpponent.com