At times a theatrical display can sustain the in-depth examination of its purpose and alignment to the human condition. Other times, as Freud might say, a show is sometimes just a show. Such is the case with Mortified, a monthly celebration of adolescent angst that needn’t ever be reviewed, just loved.
The show, in its simple brilliance, is a series of audience members who “perform” by reading from their own diaries. That’s right. The locked and hidden tomes that housed our earliest dreams and disappointments are now open for public entertainment in the forum. What is so surprising, however, is not the embarrassment in hearing people read one brutally honest experience after another, but rather how relatable these rites of passage were to all in attendance.
With groans of recognition at a kiss gone horribly wrong or an agonizing wince recalling that first rejection, the audience wasn’t there to mock but commiserate and it made for a revelatory event. In some ways it felt like an elementary school reunion, and while many of us didn’t know one another, we all shared the painful memories of the curriculum we collectively endured.