Some people have bad days, others have bad years…
DOLORES is a precious gem of a show written Edward Allan Baker, who says: “I write about people born to brick and asphalt, who don’t have bad days, they have bad years.”
This play features Elena Gallego Jimenez and Nadia Duran and is an unconventional story focusing on a conversation between two very different sisters. Each is an apparent counterpoint to the other. Dolores is a professional victim and communicates a genuine neediness and desperation simmering under the surface. Sandra exhibits a more stable demeanor but slowly and poignantly reveals her character’s suppressed anguish.
The playwright’s injection of humor into the dialogue’s darker moments makes what would otherwise be a very tragic play, more palatable; presenting Dolores as a funny and lovable character, rather than merely a victim.
It is a Sunday afternoon; the only private time that Sandra, an emotionally hardened mom, has to enjoy the simple pleasures of peace and quietude. Her husband and children are visiting the in-laws, and so she disconnects the kitchen phone, to be totally undisturbed, and puts on some pleasant music.
Sandra’s peaceful interlude is disrupted when one of her sisters, Dolores, the entirely dysfunctional one, bursts in with a black-eye, obviously unstable and fleeing her abusive husband with a desperate fear that he is on her trail for further violence. She pleads her sister for refuge but Sandra doesn’t want to get involved and tells her to leave. This is a familiar pattern of behavior for Dolores, having been in similar situations with her past two partners and Sandra doesn’t want to get involved yet again. She views Dolores as an unwelcome, explicit reminder of the brutality that she tries to overlook in her own life.
Dolores is persistent and thwarts Sandra’ attempts to throw her out and together they gradually reveal in their search for some understanding, a sibling respect and warmth. We soon learn that their father beat their mother, and their mother in turn beat Dolores. Sandra, after denying it at first, finally admits that she is also an abused wife; they gradually establish a sense of their sisterly bond beneath the tension permeating the atmosphere.
Suddenly, Dolores is certain she hears her husband breaking into her sister’s house, and pulls out a gun – revealing the truth of her desperate situation and setting the scene for an unexpected heart-wrenching conclusion.
DARK MONDAY @ MERLIN is a FREE Online Event sponsored by the Staatministerin für Kultur und Medien in cooperation with MERLIN – Kulturzentrum and DAZ – Deutsch Amerikanisches Zentrum.
To watch the performance please go to the MERLIN Youtube channel – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6VWWUbmasOs
The presentation will be broadcast on Monday, April 12 at 20:00 hrs and the link will remain accessible.