"The Seagull" Lands Gracefully

Chekhov wrote The Seagull over a hundred years ago for a Russian audience longing to laugh in the misery of their daily lives. This month, the Huntington Theatre Company brings this classic to their stage with a keen sensitivity to Chekhov’s purpose. While some reviewers and audience members may disagree, I found the play wonderfully hilarious as people searching, yearning, and fighting for their dreams, despite the hopeless limitations of their daily lives. It’s some of the original modern “dark comedy,” and it’s not everyone’s tastes. However, the Huntington makes the play so deliciously good with nuanced performers from some very talented performers and a gorgeous set (yes, I recognize that most of Russia should not be this picturesque) that you can’t help but long to live in a world long ago and far away. With sharp reminders of our pursuit of art for art’s sake, the deep longing for dreams unachieved, and the conflict between the old and young, the Huntington’s The Seagull soars as some sharp commentary as timely as when Chekhov wrote the piece.

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