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Play Review: Langston and Nicolas

From the title itself, the play Langston and Nicolas is about two of the most iconic periods for the black race. Langston is Langston Hughes, the popular literary figure for the black people and Nicolas stands for Nicolas Gullen, also a popular Cuban poet of the post modern era. The play is about the time when these two people met in real life, shared their views and perhaps a part of their lives with each other. In a way, the play also tackled how each writer had influenced the work of the other. Set in Havana in the year 1930, the story all began when Gullen was assigned to interview Hughes who was then a rising icon of literature.

The poem Hughes wrote was about Karl Marx being the new salvation for the world. It was a controversial poem which pushed Hughes to the limelight. This poem fascinated Gullen as much as Hughes’ other poems. Tired of the social norm of black or colored people being considered as nothing but lower class citizens, Gullen and Hughes instantly jived with each others’ person and soon the two poems were not merely interviewer and interviewee, but friends sharing insights on significant social and racial issues. Like lovers mean to meet each other, their story was unforgettable.

Review The play was set during a time when the black revolution has not yet begun. About four years prior to the meeting of the main casts of the play, Langston wrote his greatest work, the piece the black people consider as his manifesto. It was the The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain, in The Nation. This was the considered the bible of the leftist movement of that time. In the beginning, the play touched on the commonalities of the two characters. Their issues as regards race and their points of view on their poetry.

The writer may be considered very creative as to be able to create such an interesting show without compromising the fact that every event, or scene in the show is based on the lives of two people who lived in the years back. The words were not exact but the gist of the conversations the two writers have shared before was properly relayed to the audience. Even the controversy that once spread about Langston and Nicolas was hinted in the play. This controversy was about the two having more than friendly relationship with each other.

The gossip was said to have been based on Langston Hughes’ contemplation on homosexuality. However, the allegations were denied by Nicolas. Thus, in the play hints were presented to the audience, but the script was wittily created to leave the audience thinking about the answer. It made the show more interesting and captivating. By the end of the play, no matter how controversial may have been the true relationship of Langston Hughes and Nicolas Gullen, the emphasis was successfully pointed to the poems and the works of the two great writers.

The story concentrated on the fact that these two people created great pieces that influenced the people to assert their rights and have themselves heard. The instances where each had an inspiration to write a poem was successfully conveyed, as well as the times when their own normal conversations sounded like poetry to those who heard them. Apart from the great story successfully delivered, the play was able to capture audiences by the accuracy of the setting and the props. The stage was well prepared for a 1930 Havana style location.

The bars and city streets in and on which the two frequently meet and chat as well as the people surrounding these areas were accurately designed. It really sent that historic feel in the audience. Even the costumes stood out because they truly looked like 1930s fashion, complete with suspenders and neck hankies for the women. As regards the characters, there have been two sets of Langston and Nicolas. There were the young Nicolas and Langston who really played the part well. They have set up a good foundation for the story.

For this reason, despite the change in cast, the transition was easily adjusted to by the audience. The personality of the characters were presented immediately and as the transition happened the new casts playing carried the same qualities. Hence, there did not seem any transition at all. Instead there was only growth. The actors portrayed the characters as if it truly was them. They blended into the backdrop and the entire stage became Havana in the 1930’s with Langston Hughes, and poet laureate Nicolas Gullen invading.

The audience turned into bypassers and the customers in bars. It was truly delivered well. Conclusion It may thus be concluded that upon watching the play and taking note of the different criteria, it was a captivating one. The writer brilliantly composed a play that successfully told the life of two iconic figures. Combine this with a meticulously designed stage and backdrop the play took the audience to where they should be, the time when La ngston and Nicolas were spending the days of their lives creating not only excellent poems but good memories.

Apart from this, the play was able to capture the moments when the two poets were giving their points of view and thus was able to explain in a way the meaning behind their poetic styles and themes. Due to the play, people reading the works of these two great poets may be more understood, based on the context laid out by the conversations in the play. The director and the entire cast of the show deserves to be commended for their brilliant performance.

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