Sleekly and brightly dressed by designer David Zinn in a pencil skirt and red heels that contrasts with everyone else’s sloppy attire, Charlotte Parry coolly depicts the visiting outsider Helena as trouble in more ways than one.
Absent from the action is Colonel Redfern, Alison’s courtly father, who normally appears in one scene to mourn for Britain’s sweeter times. I can’t say he is much missed from Gold’s production, which reboots the drama not so much as a romantic triangle but as more of no-holds-barred wrestling match among the sexes.
Vividly punctuated by the director with bursts of be-bop music, outbreaks of physical violence, lingering silences and deepening shadows, the play still remains unhappy in its overall emotions but at least this spirited, tumultuous approach overrides the self-pitying quality that often tends to make “Look Back in Anger” such a woeful occasion.
“Look Back in Anger” continues through April 8 at the Steinberg Center for Theater, 111 W. 46th St., New York. Call (212) 719-1300 or visit www.roundabouttheatre.org.