The world premiere of “Thy Brother’s Keeper” by Ken Jones opened Oct. 25 at Northern Kentucky University’s Black Box Theatre.
The play is set in the year 1942 in the home of the main character, Scott Bentley, played by Freshman Andrew Bernhard. The action involves Scott remembering an earlier year with his mother, father and fiance.
As Scott’s memories emerge, his father and mother are talking to him in his mind. Director Samuel J. Zachary displays these flashbacks and memories brilliantly.
At some points in the play it is difficult to understand each character because they speak at the same time. By using this technique you understand how confused and disturbed Scott is about his life.
Scott does a remarkable job of switching from past to present. Danny Bentley, Scott’s brother, played by senior Jason Cooney does a wonderful job of bringing humor to the play.
Danny wants to get married but also wants to go to war leaving Scott alone. Scott doesn’t want Danny to leave because it has been Scott’s responsibility to take care of Danny. Scott goes into a rage and almost beats Danny to death, causing severe injury to his back and prevents him from going to war.
The actors do a masterful job of expressing how emotional each character in the play is meant to be. Scott’s abusive childhood is apparent and explains his abusive nature at an older age. It also shows how unfortunate it is that abused children typically grow up to be abusive themselves.
The play was a bit depressing, yet you leave the theater realizing because some poor children are so tortured by their parents that when they grow up,they really do not lead a normal life.
The play was very different, even though I was pre-warned that I would leave depressed. It was obvious that the play was meant to express the depression of the characters.