Authored by Hansol Jung, and directed by SeonJae Kim, “Wild Goose Dreams,” currently playing in the Roberts Studio Theatre of the Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts, is the acting out of a love affair between two Koreans.
One, from the north, is Yoo Nanhee, a dutiful daughter living in the south after a tortuous escape, played by Eunji Lim. The other, Guk Minsung, acted by Jeffrey Song, tries to be a dutiful father holding a job in South Korea so that he can send money back to his wife and daughter in Connecticut, thereby enabling them to navigate the choppy seas of American capitalism.
What makes their affair interesting, indeed captivating, is the balancing act both the principles must perform at every moment of their affair between eking out a living and living in a state as near as possible to romance, even, not to be corny, ‘True Love.’
On one level, this is play is about two people who are in very different situations from most other people. How many of us, for example, are dutiful daughters, having escaped the straight jacket of an impoverished and despotic society to realize their own and their family’s dreams of freedom and self-determination?
On the other hand, how many of us are dutiful fathers self-exiling ourselves from our family of wife and daughter to pump money back to them so they can live in the very center of capitalism, America, on some capital?
When these two individuals seek to add the balancing act of an affair that betrays both their loyalties to their demanding family situations at home, they would seem to be, in relation to us, their audience, so far out in left field they would appear to us only as foreign forms of life seen at the dim end of a faulty microscope — which, in fact, too often for comfort, they appear so to each other and even to themselves.
What then, makes the hot and cold of their affair blow on the backs of our own necks — as well as other concerned parts?
In this reviewer’s opinion, it’s just the outrageous daring of author and director — as well as a cast of superlative actors drawing us in, kicking and screaming, to the very taste and feel of what ordinarily we wouldn’t expend a second look on — second looks being ordinarily so costly.
And, oh, there are also various ghosts, spooks, goblins, geese, penguins as well — get this! — as an internet made up of live actors. Not to mention music, song and dance. They are all each as effective in their own way as whatever magic improbably first commanded us to suspend our disbelief and believe! For a spell…
(The SpeakEasy Stage Company’s production of “Wild Goose Dreams” continues through April 8 in the Roberts Studio Theatre at the Stanford Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts, 527 Tremont St., Boston, Massachusetts. For show times, tickets and more information, visit speakeasystage.com.)