GERMINOUS SEEDS is a multilayered work that uses Melville’s “Bartleby the Scrivener” as a point of departure for three inter-related stories told in three different styles. One is a realistic drama about a retiring professor of Melville studies who is destroyed by a brilliant and manipulative graduate student. The second is a sort of Joycean mono-drama exploring the mysterious friendship between Melville and Nathaniel Hawthorne: we hear the thoughts, fears, and memories of each as he prepares for what ultimately proves to be their last meeting, as they reflect on the mysterious turns their friendship has taken and why they separated (a question scholars still argue over). The third tale is a story-theater re-visiting of “Bartleby” itself, Melville’s disturbing story of the wall street lawyer and his clerk who “preferred not to.”
The three fables — interweaving with each other – are all performed by the same two actors. Each story is a variation on the one idea: the inability to connect and the mystery of why we keep on trying.
CAST: 2 M (see above description)
SET: Fluid staging