Everything’s bigger in Texas. When Dallas Theatre Center takes on an American classic like Death of a Salesman, you know they’ll go big. You just might not expect them to go big with emptiness, but that’s just what they did. Scenic designer Daniel Ostling gives director Amanda Dehnert a stage filled with space. Depending on how you feel about their choices, you may see this production as low tragedy writ large or just much ado about nothing.
Fat Pig was not written as a companion piece to The Shape of Things, but by presenting the two side-by-side in repertory as the Dallas Theater Center is doing now, it’s all but impossible not to compare and contrast. Where The Shape of Things’ characters kept secrets, created tension, and danced an escalating dance of manipulation, the foursome of Fat Pig seem too exposed, too obvious. It’s a treat to see the actors in such a different light from their Shape of Things characters, but sadly they’re not given much to explore.