“Inconceivable,” Not Farfetched

Reviews

By Alex Miller
 
Meirav Zur (Founder of English On Stage, an English‑language touring theater company based in Israel), looks and sort of sounds like Gillian Jacobs from Netflix’s “Love.” And you instantly like her. This is the story of her struggles with reproduction and fertility.
 
She informs us: “What you will see tonight is completely true.” And moments later, she asks the audience to shout out various names and euphemisms for vagina—words she promptly scribbles on an easel. Laughter ensues. The range of our answers is astonishing, and shows the many different kinds of feelings one might have about the female sex organ.
 
Ms. Zur mentions her first experience with female anatomy at the tender age of six. “My friend said, ‘c’mere,’ and we went to her room where she pulled out a box from under the bed with a children’s anatomy book inside. And that was all I needed. I’d seen enough. I was good.”
 
But life had other lessons to teach. A gym teacher in her “little town in Georgia” (portrayed by Ms. Zur in a red hat and whistle on a lanyard) tells her that sex is the root of all evil. In a deep Southern drawl, she says, “Sex gonna get ya’ll in trouble! Goodbye, homecoming queen. Goodbye, football quarterback. Hello, welfare!”
 
The heart of the play comes from Ms. Zur’s struggle with fertility treatments and her miscarriages. There’s a hilarious scene in which an Israeli IVF doctor explains the process using odd phrases, telling Ms. Zur’s husband to empty his “strong Marines” into a cup, so that “the machine that makes milkshakes” can analyze them to determine fertility. In the end, the couple finally has a baby girl.
 
In another scene, Ms. Zur uses plastic heads on a stick with different facial expressions, to illustrate her rapidly‑cycling moods on doses of hormones that were like “my regular period times 1,000.” Ms. Zur is talented, and engages us when her jokes reveal the visceral emotion underneath.
 
“Inconceivable: The Totally True One‑Woman Semi‑Fertile Quasi‑’Musical'”
Written and Performed by Meirav Zur
Oct. 21 at 4pm, Oct. 24 at 9pm
Dramaturg: Natalie Fainstein
Production Stylist: Wendy Lehmann
Photo: courtesy of the production
United Solo 2018
Theatre Row
410 West 42nd Street
New York City

ALEX MILLER, a Chicago native, has been a professional writer and editor for 6 years. He joined the Navy in 2004, and served for four years in such places as Haiti, Iraq, and Somalia. He has a degree in Public Engagement from The New School, and has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, Forbes, The New York Daily News, and QZ, among others. He lives in Harlem.

 

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