Fall in Love with the Constructivists

April 10, 2019

In the mid-1990s, psychologist Arthur Aron published an experiment which seeks to answer the question: Can love be forged?

 

Aron provides a list of 36 questions, each more personal and intimate than the last, intended to create a deep bond between two strangers. The experiment concludes with four minutes of the subjects looking into each other's eyes, in absolute silence.

 

Jennifer Lane's To Fall in Love revisits these questions. Can two people fall back in love by the same experiment? The Constructivists production of this Midwest premiere runs at the Underground Collaborative through April 13th, 2019.

 

All photos courtesy of Christal Wagner Photography. Matthew Scales and Madeline Wakley.

 

30-somethings Merryn (Madeline Wakley) and Wyatt (Matthew Scales) have been together since college, but the weight of loss has forced a distance between the two. By the end of the evening and the 36 questions, the pair must decide whether or not their relationship can be mended.

Madeline Wakley and Matthew Scales.

 

Wakley plays an on-edge Merryn. The character feels like an open wound. She protects herself from further harm, but in doing so, prevents herself from being reached. Wakley's naturalistic acting style is fitting to Merryn's hesitancy. Then, in the moments where she allows herself to let go, it's a treat. We see into what Merryn's life may have been in her time with Wyatt.

 

Scales is then a dynamic counterpart. Where Wakley is quiet and reserved, Scales is emphatic and direct. Wyatt brings hope and lightheartedness into the room, as Merryn falls repeatedly into her own spiral.

Matthew Scales and Madeline Wakley.

 

Sarah Harris's scenic design is innovative and creates so much out of so little. The Underground Collaborative is known for its small performance space, and yet Harris has managed to create a kitchen, a sitting room, and a functioning hallway, all while maintaining the open living feel of a bachelor pad.

 

With To Fall in Love, the Constructivists have proven yet again that they are a fearless company. The Milwaukee group effortlessly explores complex topics through a realist lens. Jamielyn Gray's direction is bold, genuine, and not to be missed. 

 

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