Sunday, May 6, 2007
It would be easy to write off Gino Dilorio's Apostasy, a comedy-drama about death and salvation that just finished up a run at Urban Stages, as a bad play and call it a day. In many respects, it's an apt description; nearly everything that the play tries to do falters. It's glib when it tries to be heartfelt and cliched when it tries to be profound, and conveys as much emotional depth as a standard television movie. Still, the basic idea of the play is somewhat interesting--an agnostic woman, Jewish by birth, falls under the spell of a black televangelist, much to the chagrin of her abortionist daughter--and in the hands of a better playwright, it could have sizzled. The acting is what made the play watchable, with Harold Surratt particularly arresting as the preacher, but it wasn't quite enough. I lost my faith in the play early on, and unlike the central character, it never came back.