Photographer is picture of pain

Tara Falk and Daniel Morgan in Curious Theatre’s “Time Stands Still” by Donald Margulies. Courtesy photo
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A spacious New York apartment is too confining for international photojournalist Sarah, who returned from Iraq carrying visible and invisible wounds. Her partner of eight years, James, wants to build a marriage and perhaps a family, as does their publisher/friend Richard. But Sarah is edgy and ready to return to work as soon as she recovers from her painful wounds—always tense and thinking ahead.

Experienced actress Tara Falk, new to Denver stages, gives a fine, subtle performance as Sarah, showing the anguish she feels in Donald Margulies' wonderfully crafted dialogue in “Time Stands Still,” open at Curious Theatre.

She combines strength and great fragility in her portrayal of this woman who is not comfortable in her skin anymore.

In answer to concern about her viewing and photographing atrocities, she asks — who will know what happened in the future unless she does so?

Michael Morgan, as her partner, also a journalist, is the more vulnerable, nurturing one in the relationship, who carries the audience along in his painful adjustment to Sarah's needs.

David Russell, as Richard, and Devon James, as his young blond Mandy, offer a contrast in a newly married and pregnant couple. The publisher envisions a book with Sarah's photos and James' writing that he would put together and “take around.” Too simple.

Caitlyn Ayer's set is polished and believable, supported by lighting and sound design with Curious' usual fine production values.

Director Christy Montour-Larson has shaped this small-scale, intense drama by award-winning playwright Donald Margulies into another socially relevant, thought-provoking, finely tuned evening of theater at Curious. This play certainly won't send one out humming a tune, but with thoughts of another lifestyle. Could one handle it?

If you go

“Time Stands Still” by Donald Margulies plays through Dec. 15 at Curious Theatre, 1080 Acoma St., Denver. Performances: 8 p.m. Thursdays to Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays. Tickets: $18-$44. Curioustheatre.org or 303-623-0524.