Innocent Doves (Ingenuas Palomas)
translated by Prof. Charles Philip Thomas
CAST: 4 women, 1 man
A crime of passion occurs in the most expensive brothel on the Pacific coast, in which Martín and his lover are involved. They both die. This incident is the catalyst for the action of Innocent Doves, which begins when three women are hounded by reporters trying to obtain information about this page from a mystery novel. (There is talk about a strangulation and suicide). Then Martin's three sisters; Antonieta, Amelia, and Leontina, take possession of the previously mentioned establishment. They feel they are the rightful heirs of the wealth left by their ``stingy'' son, and show their true colors; ``getting a penny out of him was like finding a pearl in an oyster at the bottom of the ocean.'' But they are faced with another obstacle: the unexpected return of Loreto, Leontina's daughter, whose purpose is to show the three sisters for what they are, and put them in their place. What's more, per her uncle's instructions, she is the heir to the establishment.
As the play unfolds, we watch an ``almost'' tragic game, which involves a good dose of morbidity: these ``innocent doves'' don't really know in which world they live, and because of this weakness they leave themselves wide-open to be deceived. Besides, each one of them has some kind of skeleton in their closet, which borders on the grotesque. In their niece's words, ``they're picturesque to put it mildly.''
Behind the possible satire of mystery novels, as the playwright himself expressed, there is a hidden undercurrent in Innocent Doves of what's not said, from the half-truths, and the painful confessions. It's everyone for himself; it's time to strip off the facades and get to the heart of the problem. When Loreto says, for example, ``He thought you were a bunch of leeches that sucked him dry,'' she's throwing a real truth in their faces.
Indirectly and metaphorically, an undercurrent of criticism of dictatorial regimes (specifically the Chilean one) also comes to light along with all its implicit language; the absurd, the morbid, the grotesque, the obscure. In reality, Loreto ``was in jail here because of her ideas'' and she's returning from exile in Holland. Another element which is present in the work is the ethical question, with its final moral: we are all guilty in our own way.
Works in Translation by
Prof. Charles Philip Thomas
The Ragged Rascals Ran (Tres tristes tigres)
Everything Will Go-Went-and is Going to Hell (Todo se irá-se fue-se va al diablo)
Paradise Half-Lost (El paraíso semi-perdido)
Almost Happiness (Parecido a la felicidad)
My Brother, Christian (Mi hermano, Cristián)