Photo by Don Kellogg

Thursday, May 28, 2015

The Qualms

From a master of dialogue and interesting, quirky, provocative topics, Bruce Norris has shared a slightly uncomfortable, marvelously funny, and touching story that delves into the lives of swingers!  Yes, you read that correctly - Swingers!

The cast of couples is superbly unique, extremely diverse, and wonderfully talented.  The story centers around newcomers to the swingers group - upscale couple Jeremy Shamos (Chris) and Sarah Goldberg (Kristy).  The group starts out with the host couple - the mature John Procaccino (Gary) and younger and ditzy Kate Arrington (Teri) and grows more eclectic with each completely different couple that arrives - heavyset firecracker Donna Lynne Champlin (Deb) and hunky handsome, likely gay Andy Lucien (Ken) and exotic Chinasa Ogbuagu (Regine) and white bread American-as-can-be Noah Emmerrich (Roger).   What a wild mix and what a wild ride they are in for.

Ruminating on faith, love, commitment, religion, and everything related to the meaning of life itself, this group of swingers go on one wild ride this evening.  The audience is along for the ride the entire time - but I must say that the play slowed to an unbearable crawl about 2/3rd of the way through as if Mr. Norris just couldn't wrap it up cleanly enough.  The penultimate scene pertaining to statistics in a large metropolitan city should really have ended the play so cleverly but he needed a comforting reconciliation scene around the gun they brought out in Act I - the banana pudding.

And finally, I love a play that features what is likely to be a new actor - in this case he doesn't even have any lines - but the expression on his face was worth 1000!  Kudos to Julian Leong (Delivery Boy). And Kudos to writing such roles into plays to let everyone get their start!