Tuesday, December 9, 2014
The Invisible Hand
After seeing Ayad Aktar's Disgraced, we immediately went home and scoured the internet to find out more about him and his works. We saw that another show, The Invisible Hand, was running over in the West Village so we figured we would check it out. And we even had a chance to grab some yummy Belgium fries at Pommes Frites before the show. We'd been talking about going here since we visited Brussels two years ago!
Pommes Frites is an extremely small spot, but we managed to find some space to devour the yummy fries before we headed over to The New York Theater Workshop just a few blocks away. The experience was much different from broadway. The venue is quite intimate and the set protuded over the audience which gave us a feeling of being included in the environment.
The play takes place in a Pakistani militant holding cell. Nick Bright (Justin Kirk), a high-level Citibank employee from America, is held captive. He interacts with three different "guards" varying in power - Dar, Bashir, and Imam Saleem. He has constructed a different approach to each one as he works to gain his freedom. Eventually, he agrees to dip into his own Caymen Island account to use the funds to make the money his captors are requiring as his ransom. Not being allowed access to a computer himself, he guides and teaches Bashir the ins and outs of futures trading with much success. The greed associated with the almighty dollar proves to be a major turning point for all parties involved.
We liked this one, but not nearly as much as Disgraced. The show is very well written and directed, but the subject matter at hand was not as identifiable across the board. It certainly did not resonate with me. I did feel that I learned a good deal about the complexity of trading futures, but I got lost a bit in the mix of all the business talk. I much preferred the commentary on greed and the feelings of inferiority to the trading talk. The play was relevant and modern. The actors performed their roles quite convincingly. In the end, I felt like everyone learned something, but there really wasn't a sense of closure or resolution. If you have interest in business, world politics, or economics then this show is a must see.