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Kinky Reboots: Mies Julie and Bondage, reviewed.

Chris Klimek

Hilda Cronje and Bongile Mantsai in Mies Julie. (Rodger Bosch)

My reviews of Mies Julie, a South African August Strindberg update, and Bondage, a 1992 David Henry Hwang play from locals Pinky Swear Productions, are in today's Washington City Paper.

While their origins and scale differ, it's useful to compare the productions to one another. Both plays use the sexual negotiations of an interracial couple as means of discussing the troubled racial histories of their native lands.

Bondage reminded me of David Ives' Venus in Fur, while Mies Julie recalled uncomfortably a slavery-era exploitation flick from 1975 called Mandingo that's come up lately in discussions of Steve McQueen's 12 Years a Slave. I don't imagine that's what adapter-director Yael Farber was going for, but nothing exists in a vacuum.  Anyway, read.