Skip to main content
  1. AXS Entertainment
  2. Arts & Entertainment
  3. Performing Arts

A Call for Quiet Intensity

One Flea Spare directed by Carlos Saldana (Spring 2009)


The image of a young muscle bound man in khaki shorts conversing with a gentleman in a powdered wig is one that cannot help but draw attention. The young man's arms open widely, his over-sized hands clench into fists, as his face contorts in a combination of frustration, fatigue, and understanding. At last his eyes open as his hands come together and he leans in to deliver the vital piece of direction that the moment calls for:
            This play requires a quiet intensity…
             After a lingering moment to make sure the statement registered properly for the performer, director Carlos Saldana returns to his seat, crosses his arms, and smiles encouragingly, “Let’s do it again.” Beneath his powdered wig Sean Cromwell smiles knowingly as Abe Jallad, the other actor in the scene, chuckles. The vague, seemingly oxymoronic phrase has hit home for both of them. 
            Legendary director and critic Harold Clurman once proclaimed that, “Casting is the first step of the interpretive process.” For Saldana the vital quality he seeks in casting is clear. Above any notion of necessary physicality or comforting experience, he searches for an ingredient virtually unfamiliar in far too many contemporary performances: brutal, unrepentant, unrelenting truth. 
His call for truth was powerfully purveyed in his production of Naomi Wallace’s One Flea Spare and he hopes to do the same again with another small and dedicated ensemble with Tennessee Williams’ Glass Menagerie. The venue is larger and the material more publicly familiar, leading to some practical challenges that must be overcome, but Saldana’s demand for honest exploration will undoubtedly again be the production’s centerpiece. The dream-like power of Tennessee’s masterpiece is in line for a quietly intense interpretation.
(Saldana’s production of The Glass Menagerie will open October 9th at UTEP’s Wise Family Theatre. For information call 915-747-5118.)



Today's top buzz...

  • Jack White
    Reddit users have fun photoshopping an angry Jack White at a Cubs game
    Music Buzz
  • Kliff Kingsbury
    Kliff Kingsbury reads a series of flattering tweets praising his good looks
    Today's Buzz
  • Jamaal Charles
    Kansas City Chiefs make Jamaal Charles the second highest paid running back in NFL
    NFL Buzz
  • Slash
    Slash and The Conspirators crush it at Hard Rock, AP Awards
    20 Photos
  • Monks of Mellonwah
    Exclusive interview: Monks of Mellonwah talk music, touring and more
    9 Photos
  • Nikki Bella
    How will fans react if the WWE decides to turn Nikki Bella into a heel?
    5 Photos