New York City
A Talk in the Park consists of two one-act plays, The Duck Variations by David Mamet and The Zoo Story by Edward Albee. Both plays involve two men sitting on a park bench on a sunlit Sunday afternoon, a simple formula which yields anything but simplicities.
The Duck Variations deals with two grumpy old men shadow-boxing in the dusklands of existential twilight, the park bench equivalent of two dueling armchair philosophers. They are jaded by what they see as the crumbling society around them. With a cleverly intertwined blend of both humor and dramatic revelation, they explore life’s elusive meaning, using the ducks surrounding them in the park as a metaphor to sublimate the fears they have in their own lives.
The Zoo Story deals with a chance encounter between two men on a sunny afternoon on a bench in Central Park. One is a conservative, family oriented, straight-laced executive. The other, a haunted, lonely, intelligent misfit, desperate for a genuine, meaningful human connection of depth and understanding. Just how desperate he is to achieve this type of connection makes this play one of the most fascinating, compelling and chilling works of drama in our time.
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