Theatre Nova is a cute little spot in Ann Arbor. It’s basically a house that has devoted the living room to being a theatre room. There are only around 30 seats in the audience, and the room is so small that I was able to sit three feet from the mainstage. The intimate environment and the ability to see the actors facial expressions and eyes so closely made the viewing experience really unique.
This play was extremely well-written. It was ironic that I decided to see it with an expert in law, because I am an expert on The Beatles, and that is what this whole play was; John Lennon and a lawyer discussing how he is going to fight being deported and stay in the U.S. As a Beatles expert I was able to appreciate how accurately the writer portrayed John Lennon and captured John Lennon’s essence. This is difficult because John Lennon has an interesting personality; he is simultaneously laid-back and anxious. The author did a great job showing John Lennon’s humor while also showing his deep philosophical curiosity and capacity to be poetic. My friend confirmed that all the legal terminology was accurate and creatively put together. I assume the writer had legal expert help. I want to shake the writer’s hand for writing such a fantastic script.
There were some great plot points that kept the play interesting and engaging. It was very comical having a lawyer who did not recognize John Lennon was or any of his music. This made for some great wordplay. I also enjoyed scenes that had characters looking directly into the audience, the great use vietnam war radio casts, and the historical accuracy of the play, even with the small details.
The dynamic relationship between the lawyer, who was a total square, and John Lennon was fantastic. Not only did they become close friends, but they were also able to teach each other. The lawyer taught John the importance of being a family man and John showed the square that the government is not infallible and righteous.
I also learned a lot as an audience member. Historically war has been sold like a product. John Lennon wanted to sell peace like a product. Conservatives and radicals are evolutionarily advantageous for the human race. The constant struggle between those trying to change things and those afraid of change is somehow what moves us forward as a whole. Actions can be significant from intangible actions. Changing the world can be done in intangible steps. Woodstock was amazing just because it happened, it doesn’t matter what tangible actions happened afterwards.
The end of the play had the most emotional scene as the square lawyer, for the first time, lost his temper. He ranted in a state of befuddlement and fury how disgusting it was for the U.S. to use immigration law as a political pawn.