DRIVING WILDE

Critics

LemonMeter

33 %

Reviews: 6

Audience

LemonMeter

Reviews: 1

DRIVING WILDE is Jacqueline Wright’s very free, very contemporary, shockingly frank and surreal adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s classic novel The Picture of Dorian Gray. Wright transforms the gothic horror story into a present-day meditation on the pursuit of beauty. In Wright’s version, the beautiful young Dorian awakens from a coma with amnesia, unaware of his past and seeing the perfection of na-ture with fresh eyes. But how long can innocence last in a corrupting, aging world? Can beauty be kept, or is its fading as inevitable as death? A trip hop fanta-sy with existential themes.

Reviews

.......at 95 rambling minutes without intermission, the show feels overextended. Unlike Wilde’s novelette, where Dorian is pure and uncorrupted at the start, this Dorian (Michael Kodi Farrow) comes across from the beginning as sly and manipulative. His progression from innocence to corruption ......... plays as less shocking, less dramatic.......

sweet-sour - Deborah Klugman - Stage Raw - ...read full review


The resultant play does not begin to explain what director Bart DeLorenzo has managed to bring to the stage. This play is one hot mess and that is not meant as a compliment.

sour - Rob Stevens - Haines His Way - ...read full review


It should be no surprise to audiences familiar with her work that playwright Jacqueline Wright chooses to bend the story to her own purposes with her world premiere adaptation, Driving Wilde. In her introductory notes, Wright points out that she has borrowed from “De Profundis” and other writings by Wilde in creating the play. But, since most biographical dramatizations of Wilde’s life as well the adaptations of his work raid his treasure trove of quotes and aphorisms, the choice doesn’t truly surprise.

sour - Michael Van Duzer - Show Mag - ...read full review


In addition to its two-dozen or so movie/TV adaptations, Oscar Wilde’s most notorious novel has inspired a couple of L.A. theater offerings, Michael Michetti’s brilliant A Picture Of Dorian Gray and the musical travesty that was Dorian’s Descent. Jacqueline Wright’s never-boring Driving Wilde falls somewhere between the two.

sweet-sour - Steven Stanley - StageSceneLA - ...read full review


It is called “Driving Wilde” but the only relation it has to Oscar Wilde is that it is playwright Jacqueline Wright’s tedious version of Wilde’s classic “The Picture of Dorian Gray” and the actor who plays the lead is actually called Dorian. And Dorian (Michael Kodi Farrow) at one point expresses the wish, as Wilde’s Dorian did, that he could remain young and beautiful as his portrait becomes old and ugly.

Farrow, who actually is young and beautiful, is represented as a swanning gay man who spends all his time posing seductively and fluttering around orgasmically. And as his personality grows more and more evil, he develops the habit of addressing his conquests lavishly and lovingly one moment and turning vicious and hateful in the next, berating them and insulting them vociferously.

sour - Cynthia Citron - Santa Monica Daily Press - ...read full review


It’s difficult to know the point that Wright is trying to make with her dramatic jumble, but DeLorenzo and his able cast keep our attention riveted. A wild ride, this production is more about the thrill of the journey than the final destination.

sweet - F. Kathleen Foley - LA Times - ...read full review


Anyone familiar with Oscar Wilde and/or The Picture of Dorian Gray should love this adaptation. The acting is intense and the performances overflow with passion. Particularly outstanding are Michael Kodi Farrow, who plays Dorian; Carl J. Johnson, who plays Basil/Waitress/Moon's Mother; and David Wilcox, who plays Henry/Chuck/Hag. They each leap from one emotion (if not to a completely different character) to the next with what seems like relative ease. And that is not to say that the other actors (Michael Sturgis, Raven Moran, and Stephen Simon) aren't also wonderful... because they are. There aren't that many performances left, so don't be left out in the Wilde (see what I did there?), go see it now.

sweet - Kevin Hopps


.......at 95 rambling minutes without intermission, the show feels overextended. Unlike Wilde’s novelette, where Dorian is pure and uncorrupted at the start, this Dorian (Michael Kodi Farrow) comes across from the beginning as sly and manipulative. His progression from innocence to corruption ......... plays as less shocking, less dramatic.......

sweet-sour - Deborah Klugman - Stage Raw - ...read full review


The resultant play does not begin to explain what director Bart DeLorenzo has managed to bring to the stage. This play is one hot mess and that is not meant as a compliment.

sour - Rob Stevens - Haines His Way - ...read full review


It should be no surprise to audiences familiar with her work that playwright Jacqueline Wright chooses to bend the story to her own purposes with her world premiere adaptation, Driving Wilde. In her introductory notes, Wright points out that she has borrowed from “De Profundis” and other writings by Wilde in creating the play. But, since most biographical dramatizations of Wilde’s life as well the adaptations of his work raid his treasure trove of quotes and aphorisms, the choice doesn’t truly surprise.

sour - Michael Van Duzer - Show Mag - ...read full review


In addition to its two-dozen or so movie/TV adaptations, Oscar Wilde’s most notorious novel has inspired a couple of L.A. theater offerings, Michael Michetti’s brilliant A Picture Of Dorian Gray and the musical travesty that was Dorian’s Descent. Jacqueline Wright’s never-boring Driving Wilde falls somewhere between the two.

sweet-sour - Steven Stanley - StageSceneLA - ...read full review


It is called “Driving Wilde” but the only relation it has to Oscar Wilde is that it is playwright Jacqueline Wright’s tedious version of Wilde’s classic “The Picture of Dorian Gray” and the actor who plays the lead is actually called Dorian. And Dorian (Michael Kodi Farrow) at one point expresses the wish, as Wilde’s Dorian did, that he could remain young and beautiful as his portrait becomes old and ugly.

Farrow, who actually is young and beautiful, is represented as a swanning gay man who spends all his time posing seductively and fluttering around orgasmically. And as his personality grows more and more evil, he develops the habit of addressing his conquests lavishly and lovingly one moment and turning vicious and hateful in the next, berating them and insulting them vociferously.

sour - Cynthia Citron - Santa Monica Daily Press - ...read full review


It’s difficult to know the point that Wright is trying to make with her dramatic jumble, but DeLorenzo and his able cast keep our attention riveted. A wild ride, this production is more about the thrill of the journey than the final destination.

sweet - F. Kathleen Foley - LA Times - ...read full review


Anyone familiar with Oscar Wilde and/or The Picture of Dorian Gray should love this adaptation. The acting is intense and the performances overflow with passion. Particularly outstanding are Michael Kodi Farrow, who plays Dorian; Carl J. Johnson, who plays Basil/Waitress/Moon's Mother; and David Wilcox, who plays Henry/Chuck/Hag. They each leap from one emotion (if not to a completely different character) to the next with what seems like relative ease. And that is not to say that the other actors (Michael Sturgis, Raven Moran, and Stephen Simon) aren't also wonderful... because they are. There aren't that many performances left, so don't be left out in the Wilde (see what I did there?), go see it now.

sweet - Kevin Hopps