Plan-B Theatre: The Scarlet Letter 

Breathing life into the classic text

click to enlarge Plan-B Theatre: The Scarlet Letter
  • Plan-B Theatre: The Scarlet Letter

There are certain advantages to adapting a literary classic like The Scarlet Letter, playing now at Plan-B Theatre Company—but there’s a lot of pressure, too.

Most of the audience is probably familiar with the characters and basic story, buried deep among high school English class memories. They know that the titular letter is an “A” for Adultery, worn by Hester Prynne (Lauren Noll) as punishment for bearing a child out of wedlock in a small 17th century Puritan New England village. They probably know that was a really big deal back then. However, when tackling such a monumental text, you darn well better bring your A game.

Fortunately, Jenifer Nii has crafted a tight script that manages to explore the themes of sin, shame, guilt and redemption from the Nathaniel Hawthorne original with a mere 75-minute run time. The show walks a fine of staying true to the original text while allowing some more contemporary tones to slip in, particularly when illustrating the affection and closeness between Hester and her illegitimate issue, Pearl (Claire Wilson).

The cast of four, rounded out by David Fetzer as Dimmesdale and Mark Fossen as Chillingworth, offers excellent performances. Claire Wilson, just a high school sophomore, brings a surprisingly mature control and purposefulness to the wild abandon necessary to the portrayal of Pearl.

So get thee to the Studio Theatre post-haste. There’s nothing at all shameful in desiring to see The Scarlet Letter.

Plan-B Theatre Company
Rose Wagner Studio Theatre
138 W. Broadway
Through April 22

Pin It


About The Author

Rob Tennant

Rob Tennant is a Salt Lake City freelance writer.

More by Rob Tennant

  • Jingle Plays

    Two theater companies present family-friendly holiday productions.
    • Dec 10, 2013
  • Review: Pioneer Theatre Company's Other Desert Cities

    If Pioneer Theatre Company’s Other Desert Cities were one of your co-workers, it would be that guy down the hall who’s name is probably Jim, but you’re not sure enough to actually call him that out loud
    • Oct 29, 2013
  • Rent @ Utah Repertory Theater

    Review: Small-scale production muddles the modern classic
    • Sep 24, 2013
  • More »

Latest in Theater


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment


© 2015 Salt Lake City Weekly

Website powered by Foundation