The Tennessean Review: Posterity

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Passionate performances anchor Nashville Rep’s 'Posterity'

by Amy Stumpfl | The Tennessean

Early in Nashville Repertory Theatre’s thoughtful production of Doug Wright’s “Posterity,” we meet an exasperated Henrik Ibsen, who couldn’t be more displeased at the prospect of sitting for a commemorative bust, to be created by Norway’s celebrated sculptor, Gustav Vigeland.

“Two dozen plays!” the famous playwright barks. “Apparently that’s insufficient to guarantee me a place in the public’s memory. No, I must be lionized in some God-forsaken park, where not the people but the pigeons will offer their accolades. This is what they call a tribute!”

But beyond the obvious humor, the bit neatly encapsulates Wright’s overriding question of what constitutes a person’s true legacy — “the work achieved during our life or how our loved ones remember us.”

Developed with the support of Nashville Rep’s Ingram New Works Fellowship, the intriguing drama imagines what the real-life encounter between the two artists might have looked like, with Ibsen nearing the end of his career and Vigeland still struggling for commercial success. And Wright (perhaps best known for his Pulitzer and Tony Award-winning play “I Am My Own Wife”) does a fine job of anchoring some distinctly lofty themes with truth and sensitivity.

Amos GlassNews, Posterity