Prior to seeing Bombshells, I knew it was going to be a unique performance being a one-woman show. I was looking forward to seeing another production in the Quadracci Powerhouse Theater of the Milwaukee Rep, after having enjoyed seeing Cabaret there. I knew very little about Bombshells other than it being a one-woman show, which is why I made sure to get there in time to see the Rep in Depth. At first, I thought the Rep in Depth for this production bragged a little too much about the actress in this show Caroline O’Conner. I felt like they were talking about her career more than the actual production. However, in retrospect I suppose this makes sense; Bombshells was written by playwright Joanna Murray-Smith specifically for Caroline O’Conner, so it makes sense that they would focus on her. When I first sat down in my seat, I noticed odd the stage looked. There was simplicity to the stage design that seemed to work for this production after watching it. Also there was a great choice of music used in the production, some of which was original. After seeing the production though, it is hard to discuss much else other than Caroline O’Conner’s performance.
Firstly, the look of the stage for Bombshells definitely caught my eye at first. I was rather confused when I first saw it, wondering how this could work. Without any lights on, it looked like a panel of foggy glass windows. When the show began, they did make some interesting use of this type of backdrop. Rather than having to change the stage a lot for each scene which took place in a wide variety of locations, they used colors or just darkness to help set the tone for the scene. My favorite use of this stage setup though was the transition from one scene to another. Since Caroline O’Conner was portraying six different characters in this production, in between each scene required some rather quick costume changes. Rather than just have the audience sit there staring at nothing, we could watch the changing of the...
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