As a critic, you never know when you're called upon to do a little genuine news reporting--as Caryn James discovered at St. Ann's Warehouse this weekend reviewing the visiting Dutch play Is.Man by Adelheid Roosen, when lead actor Youssef Sjoerd Idilbi walked off after expressing frustration with a faulty sound system:
It always takes a while to know when an exit is unplanned, but the performers left behind were vamping for a little too long: a musician sang and played, and a white-robed dervish who had been sitting quietly in the background got up and started whirling. But you knew Mr. Idilbi was leaving the building when he popped in from the wings wearing street clothes and carrying a plastic bag from Foot Locker. He retrieved something he had left at the rear of the stage and walked away, carrying any hope of a dazzling American debut for Ms. Roosen with him. The playwright herself took over the role, but it wasn’t the same.Yes, when the whirling dervishes and the Foot Locker bags start appearing, you know something's not quite right.
Unfortunately for the show, James says Idilbi was the best thing about it. And few dramas currently running, it seems, can boast an onstage moment more delightfully weird.