24. April 2013 · Comments Off on This Side of Paradise – History Theater · Categories: Theater · Tags: ,

 “This Side of Paradise” at the History Theater is one of those excellent productions we need to see more of.  The play tells the story of Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald through Zelda’s perspective while being treated for mental illness in a sanitorium. Multiple Zeldas – Zelda as a girl, Zelda as a debutante, Zelda as a wife, Zelda as a patient – appear on stage.

The conflicted relationship between Zelda, Scott, and Ernest Hemingway is visualized with a tug of war.

A tug of war between Scott Fitzgerald, Zelda, and Ernest Hemingway

A tug of war between Scott Fitzgerald, Zelda, and Ernest Hemingway

Zelda as a mental patient revisits the past.

Zelda relives the partying of her youth. Young Zelda and Scott dance on the right.

Zelda relives the partying of her youth. Young Zelda and Scott dance on the right.

 

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Young Zelda, after getting engaged to Scott, and older Zelda

 

Scott and Zelda, flapper era and ever present alcohol

Scott and Zelda, flapper era and ever present bootleg liquor

 

Drinking buddies

Zelda’s frustrated creativity is a recurring theme. She had dreams of dancing in the ballet and  throughout the play she works on a painting of a dancer.

Zelda and her doctor

Zelda and her doctor

The following moment on stage captures multiple identities: little girl Zelda as a ballerina comforts 27 year old Zelda who has collapsed after a difficult dance practice.  In the foreground the doctor comforts Zelda at the sanitorium.

 

Zelda collapses after dancing for her doctor

Zelda collapses after dancing for her doctor

 

The santaroium

The sanitorium

The History Theater provides an in depth background piece on the Fitzgeralds here.

 

All photographs and content Copyright 2013 Alice Gebura All Rights Reserved.

 

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