My friend bought me a ticket to see this-I had no idea what the show was about, but I really enjoyed it. The acting was great! The space was really beautiful, too-I liked the way they used the windows with backlighting and shades to make it seem like daylight. Freder-even though he was a pretty nasty guy-his lines were delivered with perfect comedic timing. The show was funny in a dark, edgy sort of way. Pains of Youth is not something I'd normally go see, but I felt they really opened up the show to a wide range of audience members. I'm glad it wasn't some drab, takes-itself-too-seriously show. It made the struggles somehow more real, like anybody could be Marie, trying too hard to be happy or Desiree, wanting so bad for a more exciting life and lover.
I have had the unique opportunity to read this translation of a difficult piece, and let me tell you -the director truly brought this show to life in an inspired way. The actors fully immersed themselves in the post-WWI setting. Their interactions with each other amidst their struggles of defining themselves as educated independents were witty, impassioned, and--in the style of many just finding their way--borderline psychotic. Marie (Casey Hayes-Deats) and Desiree (Rachel McKeon) had an odd, fiery and sweet chemistry and the actors portrayed them as two young women grasping onto the last vestiges of childhood while trying to set forth on a future of love and meaning. Marie, childlike and innocent and Desiree, fighting tooth and nail against those same tendencies. And yet, both are completely dependent upon the other for comfort and a sense of self. I particularly could sense the vulnerable love and passion that Desiree held for Marie, despite her provocative nature and callous lines. Wonderful show, beautiful set! The director made incredible use of space, music and talent.