(Laura Collins-Hughes’s article appeared in The New York Times, 9/22; via Pam Green.)
The rhyme about sugar and spice and everything nice has always been absurd. Anyone who’s ever been a little girl can tell you that much. But Madeleine, the faintly disheveled menace at the center of Genevieve Hulme-Beaman’s poignant and engrossing solo play, “Pondling,” is in particularly misleading disguise as a darling moppet.
With bows in her hair and patent leather shoes on her feet, one of her white knee socks sagging at half-mast, she pedals around her Irish village on a My Little Pony bike, entertaining two impossible fantasies: to become “a beautiful swan lady” and to win the affection of one Johnno Boyle O’Connor, an exotic older man of 14.
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