Spotlight: Hunger


That Nantucket is a crap place to scare up a late-night snack is the first lesson of Sheri Wilner's abstract short drama. We find Adam (Sam Bardwell) and Diana (Angie Haigh) fresh from a dinner where Adam proposed marriage and Diana accepted. In his parents' empty house, Adam is inclined to celebrate the event with a little impromptu passion; Diana, though, has other concerns. She's famished, having eaten every morsel in the house yet failed to find satisfaction. Early on, then, the play reveals a preoccupation with the broadest of metaphors: Diana's hunger is a stand-in for an empty feeling that Adam seems constitutionally unable to sate. Diana checks out for a quick walk on the beach alone, where she encounters the mysterious Seymour (Grant Chapman), whom Diana half-recognizes and who tells her, "We go way back." It's quickly clear that Seymour wants to steal Diana away from Adam, but he wants more than just her hand. After vanishing and then reappearing in bed after Diana and Adam have had sex (upping Seymour's creepy voyeur status), Seymour transports the bed to the middle of the ocean. There, he offers Diana the sparkling opportunity to dissolve her identity into a great watery void. Diana, you see, feels the pull of more than another man—she wants to wrap her arms around the cool contours of oblivion. So Adam has a problem. He's so earthbound that he dreams of reversing the beach erosion that will make Nantucket disappear in half a millennium, while his fiancée dreams of surrendering to a seductive water spirit. Unfortunately, little on offer here compels the audience to care how things come out. It doesn't help that Wilner's script hammers metaphors like so many penny nails. Chapman turns in a mannered performance, with slow, lithe movements that drain any sense of menace from his character. And Bardwell's Adam? Let's just say he's such a drip that Diana should drop him, watery infinity or no.