“The Possessions of La Boite’

The Reformers: In possession of the family letters

A new theater company begins life surreally with "The Possessions of La Boite"

"The Possessions of La Boite"/Jody Ake

“The Possessions of La Boite”/Jody Ake

Since I saw it last weekend, I’ve thought quite a bit about “The Possessions of La Boîte,” the first production of The Reformers. Some random images, some shreds of text, Sean Doran’s Australian accent, Adrienne Flagg as a formidably opinionated mother. Had I been just a bit more creative, I might have assembled my own narrative linking all of these elements, but we’re cursed with the reviewer we have, which in this case is me.

I like the story behind the story. After her mother died four years ago, director Charmian Creagle inherited lots of household stuff, and among that stuff she found a batch of letters, some written by people she knew well and others not all. The letters started to obsess her, and then a year ago she and Sean Doran (the couple had moved back to Portland after nine years in New York) and some other theater artists started using the letters as source material.

For what? Not a play, exactly, more like enacted poetry, action poetry, surreal poetry. And I only use “poetry” to convey that we aren’t talking about traditional prose. Are these “found’ lines poetry, truly? Sometimes, maybe yes.


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